Georgia PTA Legislative Update, 2/24/14

During the Legislative week of February 17-21, the House and Senate were moving extremely fast and I expect them to move even faster this week to continue passing legislation before “Crossover Day” on March 3, 2014.

Bills heard in Committee:

HB 861, the Georgia Student Religious Liberties Act 0f 2014Jacobs Subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee. This bill allows a local BOE to adopt policies to allow students to express beliefs about religion and pray or engage in religious activities or expression before, during, and after the school day.

HB 826 – Welch Subcommittee of the House. This bill provides changes to provisions relating to expulsion and disciplinary policy for students bringing weapons to school; change provisions relating to student codes of conduct and safety rules on school buses. This bill has several conflicts with HB 875 that are being reviewed by legislative counsel. This bill received a “Do Pass as Amended”. The next step is the House Juvenile Justice Committee and it passed. Now headed to Rules.

HB 886 – House Education Academic Achievement Subcommittee. This bill proposes public hearing and posting of the school district and charter school’s budget. This bill received a “Do Pass as Amended”.

HR 1186 – House Education Academic Achievement Subcommittee. This bill is a resolution to state board on graduation requirements on financial literacy. This bill received a “Do Pass as Amended”.

SB 356, this bill designates “Georgians of Great Character Month” in September. This bill received “Do Pass” and moves to Rules.

SB 319, this bill raises the dropout age to 17 ½. No action taken.

SB 343 – Senate Education & Youth Committee. This bill provides revision to requirements of Georgia High School Association to provide equality in hiring and selection processes. This bill received “Do Pass by Substitute” and moves to Rules.

SB 372, House Education Committee. This bill require districts to calculate no weighted GPA to determine Hope eligibility for freshman, sophomore, and juniors. This bill received “Do Pass” and moves to Rules.

HR 1109, this bill amends the constitution to permit up to 50% of the SPLOST proceeds to be used for specific educational programs and materials. This bill received “Do Pass”.

HB 405 – House Education Committee. This bill require training for charter governing boards. This bill received “Do Pass by Substitute”.


Bills Voted on Senate and House Floor:

HB 875, the Safe Carry Protection Act also known as “the Gun Bill.” This bill passed the House, 119-56. It now goes to the Senate.

SB 167, the Senate Education and Youth Committee met to hear Senate Bill 167. This bill was introduced last week, sent to committee, and referred to as common core legislation. A substitute bill was submitted and discussed in the Senate Committee; this legislation is now referred to as the “Act to Restore Educational Authority to Georgia Citizens”. Basically, this legislation prohibits the adoption of the common core standards in Georgia (Anti-Common Core). The substitute bill was voted on by the Senate committee and passed including three amendments from the bill sponsor Senator William Ligon. This bill moves to the House.

SB 350, this bill provide for the bidding out of child welfare services state wide through contracts with community based providers. This bill “Passed” and moved to House.


Committee Meetings Today:

The House Education Sub-Committee on Academic Achievement and Curriculum will meet on Monday,

February 24, 2014 at 3:00 PM in room 515 CLOB.

The agenda will be as follows:

1. HB 519 – Representative Rick Jasperse – Education; appointment of local school superintendents; change certain provisions

2. HR 550 – Representative Rick Jasperse – General Assembly; election of local school superintendents as alternative to appointment; provide – CA


The General Assembly will be in session today at 10 AM.