Nurse-Staffing Notification Bill Moving Forward

The Senate also this afternoon passed SB 196 by Sen. Sylvia Garcia (D-Houston), a bill requiring parents to be notified when their child’s school lacks full-time nurse staffing. For good measure, the bill extends the same requirement to schools that lack full-time counselor or librarian staffing. The bill met with opposition on the floor from […]

Three Good Bills in Senate Education Committee

Two late but welcome additions to the committee agenda for Tuesday are SB 463 by Sen. Kel Seliger (R-Amarillo) and SB 1854 by Sen. Carlos Uresti (D-San Antonio). The Seliger bill would make permanent last session’s temporary program allowing students to graduate without having to pass up to two state end-of-course assessments, as long as […]

Forward Motion on Two Issues in the Legislature: School-Nurse Staffing; Community Schools

We are pleased to report  the forward movement of two good bills in the Texas Senate, one on notice to parents when their child’s school lacks full-time nurse staffing, the other on state support for the community-school approach to improving student achievement. Both bills have the strong backing of Texas AFT along with allied parent, […]

Bill on School Nurse-Staffing Notification to Parents Passes in Senate Education Committee

SB 69 by Sen. Rodney Ellis (D-Houston) is a health and safety measure that would require school districts to notify parents when their child’s school lacks the full-time presence of a school nurse. The bill, a longtime priority of the Texas AFT School Nurse Task Force, was passed with just one nay vote in the […]

As Hearings Proliferate, Texas AFT Backs Important Bills

While big hearings on pre-kindergarten expansion, A-F school ratings, and full-time, online instruction via “virtual vouchers” engaged our attention this week, Texas AFT’s legislative team also took part in hearings on other important issues and took a stand on other key bills. Examples include: –Senate Education Committee:  Texas AFT supported SB 13, a bill by […]

Texas Public Education at a Crossroads, Part Two

Our last Hotline outlined the comprehensive attack on public schools embodied in many bills already filed in the 2015 legislature. That attack underwritten by moneyed interests has three basic elements:  underfunding; then declaring failure based on misuse of test scores; and ultimately privatizing and deprofessionalizing public education. But there’s an alternative, positive agenda worth fighting […]

Notable Bills Filed in Legislature on Pre-K, 13th Check for TRS Retirees, School Nurse Staffing

On February 26 Rep. Dan Huberty, Republican of Humble, introduced a bill creating a new pre-kindergarten grant program. Huberty’s HB 4 would give additional pre-K funding to a school district or charter school that met certain quality criteria for its pre-K offerings. The bill’s single-digit number indicates that it is a House leadership priority. HB […]

Notable Bills Pre-Filed for 2015 Legislative Session

More than 700 pieces of legislation already have been pre-filed for the 2015 legislative session starting on January 13 in Austin. Pre-filing by no means guarantees early action or indeed any action on these bills and resolutions. But it does attract attention, and here are some of the bills that have attracted ours since pre-filing […]

Ebola-related Training and Preparedness—Key Components of “Safe Schools Week”

Texas AFT issued a press release today marking the occasion of “Safe Schools Week” with a call for Ebola training and preparedness. Here is the text of today’s release: October 19-25 is Safe Schools Week—an initiative of the Texas Education Agency and the Texas School Safety Center to “to develop robust emergency operations plans for […]