Advocate to Impact Pending LegislationWhen the Illinois General Assembly returns to regularly scheduled business the week of April 12, there will be less than two months remaining before scheduled adjournment on May 31. During the current two week “spring break,” the House and Senate are still meeting in committees and discussing important legislation. Now is a great time to reach out to your State Senator and State Representative to advocate on behalf of your district and public education. IASB makes it easy for you to connect with your legislators.
Active Bills Moving in the 102nd General AssemblyAs we have covered in previous legislative reports, a number of bills that would have major impacts on school districts and school board members are actively moving. Among the most potentially impactful is House Bill 7 (Mayfield, D-Waukegan). HB 7 was passed out of committee on the promise to make amendments and return it to committee for further discussion. We encourage you to reach out to members of the Elementary & Secondary Education: Administration, Licensing & Charter School committee to voice your opposition to HB 7. We also suggest that you review two recent studies on consolidation that dispel the myth that school consolidation saves money.
House Bill 7 is among several bills we have been tracking that are moving through the legislative process. Here is a list of active bills we think deserve special attention.
HB 4 (Mayfield) allows student instruction to be delivered electronically as an e-learning day when a school is required to be used as a polling place.
HB 21 (Scherer, D-Decatur) allows a school district to apply for a waiver to remove the cap on the number of days a retired teacher can substitute teach in the district that applies for the waiver, without impacting the retirement status of the retired teacher.
HB 219 (Carroll, D-Northbrook) requires the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) to create a grant program for schools to implement school-wide behavioral interventions. Limits a school district’s use of time out and physical restraint to only under certain circumstances and provides for certain prohibitions and information to parents.
HB 1736 (Willis, D-Northlake) mandates that a comprehensive, standards-based sex education course be taught pre-K through 12th grade, including school disclosure, parental requests, and notice of program. Allows school districts to collaborate with public health departments to identify a point of contact for inquiries and comments about course instruction and materials.
HB 1874 (Davis, D-East Hazel Crest) an IASB initiative, will make the usage of Short-Term Substitute Teaching Licenses permanent in teaching content-areas where teacher shortages exist.
HB 1975 (Mussman, D-Schaumburg) provides several resources and training for parents, students, and teachers regarding sexual misconduct in schools, including developing a code of conduct, employment history review, and sex education class curriculum. The bill also adds grooming and aggravated criminal sexual abuse to criminal sexual assault offenses in the Criminal Code.
SB 564 (Ellman, D-Naperville) adds January 17, the birthday of Muhammad Ali, to the list of commemorative holidays and requires the teaching of the contributions made by Muslims and Muslim Americans to society as part of U.S. History.
SB1637 (Rezin, R-Morris) provides that a school board shall, upon passage of a referendum after submission of a petition signed by no less than 8% of the school district's voters in the last consolidated election, may, by resolution, enter into a joint agreement with other school boards to share the services of a superintendent or other administrator.
SB2071 (Castro, D-Elgin) provides that an applicant who has earned a master's degree in social work and holds a valid license may obtain a social worker endorsement on an Educator License.
Bills Not Currently MovingDuring the first year of a new General Assembly, no bills are ever dead, but below is a list of bills that do not appear to be moving at the current time.
HB 8 (Mayfield, D-Waukegan) requires high schools to offer home economics.
HB 38 (West, D-Rockford) requires school districts with 3,000 or more students to interview a minimum percentage of minority candidates for teaching positions. If the school district is unable to interview the required minimum percentage for two years, requires the district to recruit school district employees to seek a teaching license.
HB 273 (Wilhour, R-Effingham) requires the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) to provide a voucher for parents who wish to relocate their children to schools offering full-time, in-person instruction.
HB 356 (Williams, D-Chicago) beginning with the 2021-2022 school year, requires a school district to include in its curriculum an annual unit of instruction on the Spanish language.
HB 553 (Evans, Jr., D-Chicago) requires school districts to hire counselors meeting a ratio of 1 counselor per 150 students.
HB3769 (Mayfield) provides that, beginning October 1, 2021, culturally responsive teaching standards shall apply to the issuance of all professional educator licenses endorsed in teaching, school support personnel, and administrative fields.
HB3817 (Brady, R-Bloomington) provides that the parent or guardian of a child with disabilities who resides in a school district shall have the option of enrolling the child in a school district in which the child was previously enrolled as long as that school district is, in whole or in part, within the county in which the child currently resides.