Capitol Week in Review

Legislation | 02/09/2020

Amy Pitlik
Director of Government Affairs

Last Week

In the House  Education Committee, we saw  exciting wins for early childhood and special education.   

HB20-1011 Helping Others Manage Early Childhood (HOME) Act  was referred, as amended, to Appropriations on a vote of 8-4. 

HB20-1016 Increase Quality In Early Childhood Education Programs was referred, as amended, to Appropriations with a vote of 9-4. 

HB20-1043 Income Tax Credit for Early Childhood Education Fix  was referred, unamended, to Finance on a vote of 8-4.   

HB20-1053 Support for Early Childhood Educator Workforce  was referred, as amended, to  Appropriations, with a  8-4 vote.

HB20-1128 Educator Education Requirements Special Education  was referred, as amended, to  Appropriations  unanimous support vote  

HB20-1135 Replace High School Social Studies Assessment  was rescheduled to be heard later this month.     

In the Senate, the Education Committee unanimously referred SB20-001 Expand Behavioral Health Training for K-12 Educators as amended, to Appropriations. 

SB20-014 Excused Absences in Public Schools for Behavior Health  was unanimously referred, unamended, to the Senate Committee of the Whole with a recommendation that it be placed on the consent calendar.

In the Senate Finance Committee,  SB20-112 College Trust Scholarship for Early Graduation  was laid over, as amended and will be voted on in the future. 

Looking Forward

 This week, the House Education Committee will hear HB20-1231 Amend Programs Addressing Educator Shortages  on Thursday, February 13 at 1:30pm in room 107 in the basement of the Capitol.This bill  aims to address educator shortages by establishing frameworks for local grow your own programming and funding scholarships for students to participate in higher education programs.     

On Thursday, February 13, State, Veteran, and Military Affairs will hear 2 bills at 1:30pm.     

HB20-1063 Fundamental Family Rights in Colorado  which  defines parental rights as the right to direct the upbringing, education, and care of a parent's child and establishes parental rights as a fundamental right in Colorado.   

HB20-1111 Parent Authority To Require Educational Reforms  which gives parents authority to request reforms for low-performing schools.     

The House Finance Committee will hear  HB20-1043 Income Tax Credit for Early Childhood Education Fix  on Thursday, February 13 upon adjournment in room 0112.     

The Senate Appropriations Committee will hear  HB20-1244 Department of Education Supplemental, concerning a supplemental appropriation made to the Department of Education. The committee will be held  on Tuesday, February 11 at 7:30am in room LSB-B.     

The Senate Finance Committee will hear the following three bills on Tuesday, February 11.     

At 2:30pm in room SCR 357, the committee will hear  SB20-074 Bonuses for Highly Effective Teachers  and  SB20-112 College Trust Scholarship for Early Graduation.     

Upon adjournment the committee will hear  SB20-004 Post secondary Education Loan Repayment Assistance.     

On Wednesday, February 12, the Senate State, Veterans, and Military Affairs Committee will hear  SB20-111 School Transportation Grant Program,  which creates a school transportation grant program.     

The Senate Education Committee will hear  SB20-158 Professional Training for Educators, concerning providing professional education to educators for purposes of increasing the number of educators in the state on Wednesday, February 12 in room SCR 352 upon adjournment.     

Finally, the Senate Health and Human Services Committee will hear  SB20-144 Home Visiting Expansion Grant Program ,  which  expands the availability of early childhood home visiting programs to support school readiness.   


Our Take 

At Stand for Children Colorado, expanding access, quality, and educator   pipelines  to early childhood education is a priority. We are energized that this legislature is showing a commitment to address current challenges we face in Colorado. As these bills are heard, Legislators voiced  excitement  for the opportunities to address longstanding issues within ECE while others  had concerns around government involvement in early childhood, as well as how we plan to define and measure quality programming.      Research shows that access to early childhood programming  leads to significant outcomes for students and families and we are committed to fighting alongside community for expansion of this access.      Want to learn more about the current state of pre-k in Colorado and upcoming  opportunities  to advocate for more access for Colorado’s kids? 

Join us for an informational  webinar  Tuesday, February 11 at 4pm. Reserve your spot today to hear from policy and advocacy experts.     

For a full rundown of bills related to K-12, we encourage you to keep tabs on Chalkbeat’s bill tracker.

For More Information

Despite significant outcomes for kids, the Colorado Preschool Program only serving about 40 percent of eligible children, new research finds    

Colorado bill to expand mental health first aid training for teachers moves forward   

You may be asking, “How does a bill become a law in Colorado?” Previous Stand employee, Lauren Craig gives a helpful overview  here. 

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