K-12 Education Legislative Update - Sunday, March 3

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K12 Education Legislation Update

Vision: Every public school student will graduate ready for post-secondary education and work, prepared to be a globally engaged and productive citizen through access to needed resources and rigor.
Mission: The State Board of Education will use its constitutional authority to lead and uphold the system of public education in North Carolina that guarantees every student in this state an opportunity to receive a sound basic education.


March 3, 2019

The Week In Review and Looking Forward into Next Week


State of the State Address, Filing Deadlines Approaching, and Continued Budget Preparation


Governor Cooper gave his State of the State Address (Audio here) on Monday, February 25 at 7 p.m. to a Joint Session of both the House and Senate in the NCGA House Chamber. He outlined his priorities for the session which included increasing state education funding and broadband technology expansion into rural areas of North Carolina, both of which have a direct impact on NC K-12 students. 


State Board of Education Chairman Eric Davis and State Superintendent Mark Johnson presented to Senate Education/Higher Education on Wednesday, February 27. The Board’s presentation covered the successes from the last biennium, challenges students and schools are facing today, and the State Board's non-budget requests to address the needs of the K-12 students. Chairman Davis and Superintendent Johnson were requested to focus on non-budgetary requests for this presentation but have been asked to speak to expansion budget priorities in future Committee meetings.


Over 40 bills addressing K-12 public education were filed this week, while Joint Appropriations Committee meetings continued to gather information for the biennium budget.  Education related committees will continue meeting next week to review and take next steps on bills being filed. The Legislative Calendar for next week, along with the bills scheduled for review, can be found at the end of this newsletter. 


NC Budget

Joint Meeting of the House and Senate Appropriations on Education Committee


Continuation: K-12 Education Budget Overview 

Wednesday morning the Joint House and Senate Appropriations Committee continued their deep dive into public school allotments.  The presentation materials can be found in the links below.


Senate: Education/Higher Education


State Board of Education Chair Eric Davis and State Superintendent Mark Johnson presented their education priorities before the Senate Education/Higher Education committee on Wednesday.

The presentations focused on non-budget requests, with Superintendent Johnson covering topics similar to his announcement at last week's Innovation and Leadership Dinner.  A common theme between both presentations was a focus around early literacy and the importance of 3rd grade reading proficiency.


State Board Chair Davis discussed numerous proposals with the Senate committee, one of which included partnering with the General Assembly to improve the effectiveness of the Read to Achieve program. Davis also expressed interest in the State Board of Education collaborating with the General Assembly on a plan to help address the needs of our low-performing districts and schools. The Board has formed a subcommittee, working in partnership with key stakeholders from the field, to build a comprehensive turnaround strategy that outlines a path forward for our struggling schools and students.  They will bring forward a list of requests in the coming weeks for the General Assembly’s consideration on both of these topics. 

North Carolina State Seal

March Board of Education Meeting - Next Week


The North Carolina State Board of Education is set to hold their March meeting next week on Wednesday, March 6 and Thursday, March 7. The audio stream of the meetings can be accessed at this link


The meeting agendas can be accessed at the links below. 

For a list of the K-12 public education districts click here and for a list of State Board members for each district, click here.


Education Agency Bills (AB)

The State Board of Education highlighted a number of non-budget priorities for the long-session.  They have filed two agency bills and are working with legislators to file all other priorities in separate bills.  These additional requests include:

  • Extension of the 15-point grading scale, while tasking the State Board and State Superintendent to bring back recommendations to the General Assembly for the indicators and weightings that may more accurately reflect the school performance.
  • Calendar flexibility
  • Principal pay hold harmless
  • Principal double bonus clarification pertaining to D or F school year
  • Teacher bonus clarification of current bonuses to allow eligibility for all public school teachers who are teaching the given courses or grades
  • School quality and success indicator to include % of students scoring certain levels on the ACTor WorkKeys. 
  • Staggered terms for the Professional Educator Preparation Standards Commission appointments
  • Education Workforce Innovation Commission members to also allow for designees

HB 251: State Bd. of Ed./Education Changes.-AB

This bill sponsored by Reps. HurleyHardister;Blackwell, and Horn would provide for a sales tax refund for LEAs, grant additional class size waivers, add flexibility to the subjects of textbook and digital resource allotment, and allow an extension on licensure rulemaking for the SBE and an exemption on rulemaking for Licensure. 

  • LEAs currently do not receive a sales tax refund; however, Charters, privates, universities and non-profits do.  The sales tax paid by our LEAs is currently estimated at around $40M.
  • The additional class size waivers are intended to help districts who are struggling to keep up with the growth of students in their area, as well as those who are having challenges finding quality teachers to fill positions.
  • Textbook and digital resources flexibilities are intended to allow districts to also rent textbooks which has been a common practice for community college courses, and to allow for the purchase of digital devices.  With the ever-increasing availability of free on-line education resources, districts may be able to also leverage this funding allotment to purchase a device and use on-line content.  Without this flexibility, districts can only purchase the content or textbooks.
  • Last term, the state Supreme Court held that Board “policy” did not carry the same weight as a rule in the Administrative Code and that the Board has to follow the Administrative Procedure Act. With this clarity from the Court, the Board is now engaging in the rulemaking process. This extension allows the Board to complete this work with fidelity.  Without it, the Board will not be able to enact and enforce rules that provide continuity for traditional schools and charters. This could include enforcement of licensure rules (suspensions and revocations); accountability for charter schools (renewals, revocations); testing security protocols; and other policies that have implemented general statutes. The Professional Educator Preparation Standards Commission (PEPSC) is required to recommend all Licensure policies to the Board for consideration.  Rather than an added layer of rulemaking, the Board is requesting an exemption for all Licensure policies.

HB 200: Education Report Changes.-AB

The State Board, Department of Public Instruction and State Superintendent currently have approximately 130 reports required through legislation.  This bill would amend a number of report due dates, combine some common reporting requirements and eliminate others that are no longer relevant. 


If you are aware of other non-budget K-12 education related legislative priorities the State Board should consider, please contact Cecilia.holden@dpi.nc.gov to share your input.

Relevant Bills with Action


Bills Heard in the Senate/House Chamber or in a Committee This Week:  

  1. HB 30: Official State Frozen Treat - Passed House Committee on Health - 2/26/19 
  2. HB 31: Allow Durham Pub. Schools to Provide Housing - Passed House Ed - K-12 - 2/26/19
  3. HB 57: Create Term for Public Schs. & Codify NCVPS - Passed House Ed - K-12 - 2/26/19
  4. HB 72: Support Multiple Recesses For Lincoln Co Schl - Passed House Rules - 2/26/19
  5. HB 73: Civic Responsibility Education - Passed House Ed - K-12 - 2/26/19
  6. HB 75: School Mental Health Screening Study - Passed House Ed - K-12 - 2/26/19
  7. HB 76: School Safety Omnibus - Passed House Ed - K-12 - 2/26/19 - Bill was amended with a Proposed Committee Substitute (Link to PCS)
  8. HB 105: Red Light Cameras/Hope Mills & Spring Lake - Passed House State & Local Govt -2/27/19

See the 2019 Long Session link for bills impacting K-12 education for a list of all the legislation impacting K-12 public education and where they are in the legislative process.

Bills to be Heard in Committee Next Week: 

House: Rules on Monday, March 4 at 3:30 p.m. Room  1228/1327 LB | Audio 

  • HB 30: Official State Frozen Treat
  • HB 57: Create Term for Public Schs. & Codify NCVPS
  • HB 73: Civic Responsibility Education
  • HB 75: School Mental Health Screening Study
  • HB 76: School Safety Omnibus

House: Education - Universities on Tuesday, March 5 at 11:00 a.m. Room 421 LOB

  • HB 107: PED Oversight/EPP Changes

House: Education - K-12 on Tuesday, March 5 at 1:00 p.m. Room 425 LOB

  • HB 90: DPI/EC Div. Feedback/DIT Study/PED report
  • HB 151: Katelyn's Law

The NCGA Calendar is at the bottom of the update. 

Bills Filed/Assigned to Committees This Week: February 25 - 28


House Bills (Excluding School Calendar Flexibility Bills)

  1. HB 145: 15-Point Scale For School Performance Grades
  2. HB 165 (SB 88 is companion bill): Electrician Requirements for Certain Orgs
  3. HB 168: College Advising Corps Expansionists/Funds
  4. HB 172: K-12 Academic Freedom
  5. HB 180: State Benefits/Pension Revisions.-AB
  6. HB 184: Study State Health Plan Design
  7. HB 188: Retirement Administrative Changes 2019.-AB
  8. HB 196: Parental Consent for Sex Education
  9. HB 199: Permanent Charter School Transportation Grant
  10. HB 200: Education Report Changes.-AB
  11. HB 209: Prohibit Ed. Funds Allocated by Tier
  12. HB 213: Equal Tax Treatment of Gov't Retirees
  13. HB 214: Retirement Technical Corrections Act of 2019.-AB
  14. HB 216: School Self-Defense Act
  15. HB 229: Repeal Municipal Charter Schools
  16. HB 230 (SB 160 is companion bill): Life Changing Experiences Sch. Pilot Program 
  17. HB 231: The Harrison Kowiak Act
  18. HB 236: Add World Languages/Teaching Fellows Program
  19. HB 241: Education Bond Act of 2019
  20. HB 248: Restore Longevity for Teachers
  21. HB 249: School Annual Report Card
  22. HB 251: State Bd. of Ed./Education Changes.-AB

Senate Bills  (Excluding School Calendar Flexibility Bills)

  1. SB 117: Modify School Performance Scores & Grades
  2. SB 123: Portability of Leave/Carter Schools
  3. SB 130: State Employees/Paid Parental Leave
  4. SB 134: Economics & Financial Literacy Act
  5. SB 152: Restore LEA Sales Tax Refund 
  6. SB 160: Life Changing Experiences Sch. Pilot Program
  7. SB 170: Expand Principal Bonus Multiplier Eligibility.-AB

School Bond

HB 241: Education Bond Act of 2019


Speaker Moore (R- Cleveland) and House education leaders released their plans for a $1.9 billion school construction bond referendum for North Carolinians to vote on next year. The breakdown includes $1.5 billion for construction and renovation needs for public school districts across the state, and $200 million each for the UNC system and the NC Community College System. Since the last statewide school bond was 23 years ago in 1996, school facility needs have exceeded counties abilities to pay for them. Urban districts are experiencing such rapid population increases that they struggle to construct schools to match growth, while many rural communities lack the tax base to fund new schools. The Senate already passed SB 5 Building North Carolina's Future, favoring a pay-as-you-go system. Senate leaders said they don't want the state to take on any more debt.

School Report Card

School Report Cards - Grading Our Schools


These are NOT your children’s report cards. These grade how well your school is performing and helps determine where improvement is needed.

  • HB 145: 15-Point Scale For School Performance Grades.
  • HB 249: School Annual Report Card 
  • SB 117: Modify School Performance Scores & Grades

SB 170: Expand Principal Bonus Multiplier Eligibility.-AB

SB 170 would amend Section 8.3(a), SL 2018-5 which provided the schedule for principal bonuses ranging from $1,000 to $10,000 based on the statewide percentage growth. The bill deems a bonus provided under this new provision to be an add-on to the bonus the principal already received and not a new or second payment..


Overview:  This week, lawmakers filed 15 school calendar flexibility bills bringing the total to 50. The majority of North Carolina school districts support these bills returning school calendar control back to local school boards. 


Under current state law, North Carolina school districts are prohibited from starting the school year earlier than the Monday closest to August 26 and ending it later than the Friday closest to June 11.


School Calendar Flexibility bills filed this week:


HB 142: School Calendar Flex/Pitt County 

Sponsors: Humphrey;  Murphy; K. Smith

County: Pitt


HB 148: School Calendar Flex/Hoke County

Sponsor: Pierce

County: Hoke


HB 149: School Calendar Flex/Scotland County

Sponsor: Pierce

County: Scotland 


HB 163: School Calendar Flex/Certain School Systems

Sponsors: Lewis;  Sauls;  Strickland;  Reives 

Counties: Chatham, Harnett, Lee


HB 175: School Calendar Flex/Certain School Systems

Sponsors: Speciale;  Kidwell;  Dobson

Counties: Beaufort, Craven, Hyde, Pamlico, Washington


HB 183: School Calendar Flex/Wake

Sponsors: Gillvon Haefen;  Dahle 

County: Wake


HB 192: School Calendar Flex/Guilford

Sponsors: Clemmons;  Hardister;  Quick;  Brockman 

County: Guilford


HB 194: Allow Coordination of School & CC Calendars

Sponsor: Goodwin 

Public Bill - All Local Boards of Education in North Carolina


HB 207: School Calendar Flex/Weather/Certain Counties

Sponsors: Dobson;  Russell

Counties: Ashe, Avery, Mitchell, Watauga


HB 210: School Calendar Flex/Orange Co. Boards of Ed.

Sponsors: Meyer;  Insko

County: Orange 


HB 232: Increase School Calendar Flexibility

Sponsors: Setzer;  Henson;  R. Smith;  Goodwin

Public Bill - All Local Boards of Education in North Carolina 


SB 115: School Calendar Flex/Orange Co. Boards of Ed.

Sponsors: Garrett;  Robinson

County: Guilford


SB 121: School Calendar Flex/Person County

Sponsor: Woodard 

County: Person


SB 122: School Calendar Flex/Granville County

Sponsor: Woodard

County: Granville


SB 171: School Calendar Flexibility/Cumberland County

Sponsors: deViere;  Clark

County: Cumberland


School Safety Bills

HB 73: Civic Responsibility Education

HB 75: School Mental Health Screening Study - House Health

LINK to Documents:  Heard on Tuesday, Feb 26 - House Health


HB 76: School Safety Omnibus will be heard House Education - K-12 


House Education Committee passes school safety measures (EdNC) A bill with recommendations from the House Select Committee on School Safety (2017-2018 committee) — including threat assessment teams for each school and school resource officer training — moved successfully through the House K-12 Education Committee Tuesday. The school safety committee was established after a mass shooting at a high school in Parkland, Florida, left 17 students and staff members dead in February 2018. The group met multiple times throughout last year and visited schools to study how to improve the physical and mental wellbeing of students and schools across the state.

DPI Logo

2019 Long Session link for bills impacting K-12 education.

Legislative Calendar

Monday, March 4, 2019 

     2:00 p.m.: Session Convenes (Senate)                                                                             Senate | Audio

     3:30 p.m.: House: Rules, Calendar, and Operations of the House                        1228/1327 LB | Audio

                      H30: Official State Frozen Treat.

                      H57: Create Term for Public Schs. & Codify NCVPS.

                      H73: Civic Responsibility Education.

                      H75: School Mental Health Screening Study.

                      H76: School Safety Omnibus.

     7:00 p.m.: Session Convenes (House)                                                                               House | Audio


Tuesday, March 5, 2019 

     8:30 a.m.: House and Senate: Appropriations, Gen. Gov. & IT (Joint)                          425 LOB

   11:00 a.m.: House: Education - Universities                                                                    421 LOB

                      H107: PED Oversight/EPP Changes.

     1:00 p.m.: House: Education - K-12                                                                               643 LOB | Audio

                      H90: DPI/EC Div. Feedback/DIT Study/PED report.

                      H151: Katelyn's Law. 


Wednesday, March 6, 2019 

    11:30 a.m.: Senate: Education/Higher Education                                                   1027/1128 LB | Audio


North Carolina General Assembly 


Legislative Info and Acronyms 

This section includes details pertaining to acronyms and bill information referenced throughout the K-12 Education Legislative Update newsletters.


Biennium- A two-year term of legislative activity

Public Bill- Legislation enacted into law that applies to the public at large

Local Bill- Legislation put into law that has limited application (How many counties)- Local bills do not have to be signed by the governor

Sponsor- The legislator who presents a bill or resolution for consideration

Resolution- A document that expresses the sentiment or intent of the legislature or a chamber. Resolutions, when finalized, go to the Secretary of State

Glossary of Legislative Terms- LINK


DPI = NC Department of Public Instruction

LEA = Local Education Agency

NCGA North Carolina General Assembly

LB/LOB = Legislative Building/Legislative Office Building 

SBE = North Carolina State Board of Education


AB = Agency Bill

HB/SB = House Bill/Senate Bill

JR = Joint Resolution

SL = Session Law

GS = General Statute 

PCS = Proposed Committee Substitute 


To view previous 2019 Weekly Legislative Updates click here.

 The NC Department of Public instruction offers a number of topics for subscription.

  • To subscribe to the Weekly Legislative Update, click here.
  • To subscribe to other NC Department of Public Instruction topics, click here.