Capitol Week in Review

Legislation | 02/17/2020

Amy Pitlik
Director of Government Affairs

Last Week

House State, Veteran, and Military Affairs postponed indefinitely HB20-1063 Fundamental Family Rights in Colorado on a vote of 6-3.

HB20-1111 Parent Authority To Require Educational Reforms was also postponed indefinitely on a vote of 6-3.

The House Finance Committee approved HB20-1043 Income Tax Credit for Early Childhood Education Fix on a vote of 8-3 and referred it to Appropriations.

The Senate Finance Committee heard the following bills:SB20-074 Bonuses for Highly Effective Teachers was pulled from the calendar and will be heard at future hearing.

SB20-112 College Trust Scholarship for Early Graduation postponed indefinitely on a vote of 4-3.

SB20-004 Postsecondary Education Loan Repayment Assistance approved and referred to Appropriations on a vote of 5-2.

In the Senate State, Veterans, and Military Affairs Committee, SB20-111 School Transportation Grant Program was postponed indefinitely on a vote of 3-2.

The Senate Education Committee amended, approved, and referred to Appropriations SB20-158 Professional Training for Educators on a vote of 4-0.

Finally, the Senate Health and Human Services Committee removed SB20-144 Home Visiting Expansion Grant Program from the calendar to be heard a future date.

Friday morning, House Appropriations passed the following bills:HB20-1007: Diverse K-12 Educator Workforce Report HB20-1128: Educator Education Requirements Special Education


Looking Forward

This week the House Education Committee will hear a bill related school safety on Tuesday, February 18 at 1:30pm in room 0107 in the basement of the Capitol.

HB20-1238 Safe And Healthy Learning Environments For Students, which requires the department of education to give preference to grant applicants that articulate a strong, comprehensive approach to significantly reduce the use of school policing, school resource officers, and invasive security technologies and practices, and implement evidence-based or promising practices designed to promote school safety and healthy learning environments.

The House Education Committee will hear two bills related to concurrent enrollment and family engagement on Thursday, February 20 at 1:30pm in room 0107.

HB20-1240 Early College Program And P-tech School Expansion, which expands opportunities for high school students to enroll in postsecondary courses. It also creates the early college policy development advisory group to design and recommend policies to support the statewide development of and funding for early college programs and p-tech schools.

On Wednesday, February 19, the Public Health Care & Human Services Committee will hear HB20-1197 2-1-1 Statewide Human Services Referral System, which rewards an annual grant to the Colorado 2-1-1 collaborative which assists residents of Colorado in accessing information about services and programs regarding emergency shelter and food and human services programs upon adjournment in room 0112.

On Thursday, February 20, the State, Veterans, & Military Affairs Committee will hear HB20-1149 16-year-olds Voting In School District Elections, which allows a person who is preregistered to vote in school district elections beginning at 16 years of age at 1:30pm in room LSB-A.

Many bills are also moving onto the House and Senate floors for full consideration and while calendars often change, we expect to be watching the following bills on Tuesday in the House:

Bill HB20-1007 - J. Coleman | B. Buentello / R. Fields Diverse Kindergarten Through 12th Grade Educator Workforce Report

HB20-1128 - B. Buentello | J. Wilson / R. Zenzinger | K. Priola Educator Education Requirements Special Education


Our Take

While things are continually busy at the Capitol, we want to direct attention to some work across the street at the Department of Education. The State Board of Education met last week and made significant progress on the READ Act rules (Chalkbeat article). After substantial updates to the READ Act last session, CDE and the State Board have their hands full updating the applicable rules.

We want to acknowledge staff at CDE for spending many hours with stakeholders to try and address several complicated provisions and members of the State Board for leaning in with clear urgency to improve literacy outcomes for all students.

The State Board also held several hearings related to accountability and made the important decision to order Hope Online’s elementary operations to close after many years of struggling academics and other issues. They also approved improvement plans for Denver’s Lincoln and Manual High Schools.

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

For More Information

Colorado READ Act FAQs - CDE

Colorado wants to ensure teachers know how to teach reading. But some say proposed rules lack teeth and transparency.

State Board orders HOPE Online to close its elementary operations following low performance

Denver’s Lincoln and Manual high schools ordered to follow improvement plans

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