Capitol Week in Review

Current Events & News | 05/05/2019

Amy Pitlik
Government Affairs Director

And just like that, the 2019 regular legislative session is over! The 72nd General Assembly was certainly an eventful one: we weathered a bomb cyclone (or two), participated in the Joint Budget Committee’s first ever public hearing, and celebrated when a bill creating funding for full-day Kindergarten finally made its way to the Governor’s desk!

This legislative session, we put a lot of energy and effort into supporting three bills: HB-1262 for full-day Kindergarten, HB-1276 for ninth grade success, and SB-199 for READ Act implementation. These bills represent the vision we have for education in our state. By ensuring that every child in Colorado starts school with a strong foundation by attending full-day Kindergarten, has access to needed interventions that will improve their reading skills, and receives targeted support in ninth grade, we can uphold our commitment of a high-quality and equitable education for our kids.

Before we dive into final bill updates, here are a couple of highlights from the past five months!

  • Governor Jared Polis prioritized funding full-day Kindergarten in his first State of the State address. Leah, a Stand parent, attended the address and expressed her support in an interview with Fox31.
  • The Joint Budget Committee held their first public hearing ever in early February and two Stand advocates, Hannah and Cristin, testified in support of funding for full-day Kindergarten.
  • Parents and community members holding “Full-Day Kindergarten NOW” signs filled the state capitol on Full-Day Kindergarten Advocacy Day. Participants urged their legislators to support HB-1262 and some even had the opportunity to sit down with Governor Polis to discuss the bill.
  • Parents testified in support of the Ninth Grade Success Program during a House Education Committee. Acacia and Eulalia delivered their remarks in their home language of Spanish and with the help of an interpreter. 
  • 1,521 people signed a petition in support of funding full-day Kindergarten statewide.
  • Funding for full-day Kindergarten, a grant program to support ninth graders, and a revamp of the READ Act all made it to the Governor’s desk for signing!
  • You can read more highlights on our blog!

Thank you to the parents and community members who came out to support and testify for these bills. Your passion for Colorado’s kids is truly inspiring!

These bills passed as session came to a close – some in the nick of time!

  • HB-1262, State Funding for Full-day Kindergarten (Rep. Wilson, R-Salida; Rep. McLachlan, D-Durango; Sen. Bridges, D-Greenwood Springs)
  • HB-1276, Ninth Grade Success Grant Program (Rep. Buentello, D-Swink; Rep. Exum, D-Colorado Springs; Sen. Todd, D-Aurora; Sen. Coram, R-Montrose)
  • SB-199, READ Act Implementation Measures (Sen. Todd, D-Aurora; Sen. Rankin, R-Carbondale; Rep. McCluskie, D-Dillon; Rep. Wilson, R-Salida)
  • SB-246, Public School Finance (Sen. Todd, D-Aurora; Sen. Lundeen, R-Colorado Springs; Rep. McLachlan, D-Durango; Rep. Wilson, R-Salida)
  • HB-1120, Youth Mental Health Education and Suicide Prevention (Rep. Michaelson Jenet, D-Commerce City; Rep. Roberts, D-Eagle; Sen. Fenberg, D-Boulder)
  • HB-1017, Kindergarten Through Fifth Grade Social and Emotional Health Act (Rep. Michaelson Jenet, D-Commerce City; Sen. Fields, D-Aurora)
  • HB-1032, Comprehensive Human Sexuality Education (Rep. Lontine, D-Denver; Sen. Todd, D-Aurora; Sen. Coram, R-Montrose)
  • HB-1171,  Expand Child Nutrition School Lunch Protection Act (Rep. Michaelson Jenet, D-Commerce City; Sen. Fields, D-Aurora; Sen. Priola, R-Henderson)
  • SB-204, Public School Local Accountability Systems (Sen. Story, D-Littleton; Rep. James Arndt, D-Fort Collins; Rep. Bird, D-Westminster)
  • HB-1194, School Discipline For Preschool Through Second Grade (Rep. Lontine, D-Denver; Rep. Larson, R-Littleton; Sen. Priola, R-Henderson; Sen. Fields, D-Aurora)
  • HB-1192, Inclusion of American Minorities in Teaching Civil Government (Rep. Gonzales-Gutierrez, D-Denver; Rep. Buentello, D-Swink; Sen. Gonzales, D-Denver)
  • SB-059, Automatic Enrollment In Advanced Course Grant Program (Sen. Moreno, D-Commerce City; Rep. Buckner, D-Aurora)
  • SB-216, High School Innovative Learning Pilot (Sen. Bridges, D-Greenwood Village; Rep. Bird, D-Westminster)
  • SB-176, Expanding Concurrent Enrollment Opportunities (Sen. Lundeen, R-Colorado Springs; Sen. Bridges, D-Greenwood Village; Rep. McCluskie, D-Dillon; Rep. Geitner, R-Monument)

Thanks for staying up-to-date by following our weekly email. We’ll see you for session 2020!

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