House Democrats have mixed results in amending charter school reform bill

House Democrats have mixed results in amending charter school reform bill

While House Democrats on Wednesday unveiled a package of bills they said would bring equality to the public school system by providing parity between traditional and charter schools, when those proposals were offered as amendments to House Bill 97—the charter reform proposal before the House—they were met with mixed results in altering the bill.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Charter school reform effort gets restarted in House

Charter school reform effort gets restarted in House

For the last several sessions, lawmakers in Pennsylvania have tried—but failed—to enact comprehensive reforms to the commonwealth’s charter school system.

 

Tuesday, that Sisyphean effort was restarted with the House Education Committee approving House Bill 97, vehicle legislation sponsored by Rep. Mike Reese (R-Westmoreland) that he said was akin to legislation that nearly got across the finish line last session in the form of House Bill 530.

 

According to Rep. Reese—the House member whose name has been attached to charter school reform the last two legislative sessions—the bill is aimed at leveling the playing field between charter schools (both brick and mortar and cyber) and traditional public schools.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
House Education approves bills to provide CTE graduation flexibility and increase funding for EITC/OSTC

House Education approves bills to provide CTE graduation flexibility and increase funding for EITC/OSTC

Meeting for the first time Monday for the 2017-2018 legislative session and under the helm of new Majority Chairman Dave Hickernell (R-Lancaster), the House Education Committee took up a number of bills, including one that would provide graduation flexibility for career and technical education (CTE) students and another increasing the limit for the Education Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) and Opportunity Scholarship Tax Credit (OSTC).

 

Both bills are sponsored by Speaker of the House Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny).

Monday, February 6, 2017/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Educators, administrators pan state assessments at House hearing

Educators, administrators pan state assessments at House hearing

The House Education Committee held a marathon hearing Wednesday getting input on state education assessments from frontline players who deliver and develop the tests. Most testifiers panned the state assessments as costly, unnecessary, and misapplied.

The committee’s aim was not to take testimony on any specific bill, but to get a ground-level understanding of what the tests do, how they’re viewed, and whether students are prepared for them.

“What we wanted to hear today is what exactly we Pennsylvania are required to do in terms of testing as far as the federal government requirements are concerned, what’s been going on at PDE and the Board of Education, but also to hear from different teachers, superintendents, and board members as to exactly what’s going on in each of the districts,” said Chairman Stan Saylor (R-York). “Let’s hear from individuals who are involved in the testing day in and day out to give us an explanation.”

It was noted the topic of state assessments has drawn a lot of interest lately, particularly in terms of preparedness for the exams after the adoption of Pennsylvania CORE standards in 2013.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Democrats urge education funding restoration before new funding formula is used

Democrats urge education funding restoration before new funding formula is used

House Democrats serving on the Basic Education Funding Commission took to the Capitol newsroom Wednesday to call on House Republicans to put off implementing the new funding formula recommended by the commission until funding is restored to those schools that saw cuts over the last four years.

Rep. Mark Longietti (D-Mercer) said the date of implementation should be done at the budget negotiating table.

“We believe there are three caucuses that are on the same page that it’s on the big negotiating table to talk about when the funding formula should come into place,” he said.

A bill moved out of the Senate Education Committee Tuesday implementing the recommended funding formula, but not specifying a date for its implementation.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
RSS
12