A hearing on Senate Bill 3, the $5,000 across-the-board pay raise for teachers, leads off this week’s activities.

Monday through Wednesday

The House Appropriations Committee subcommittee on Article III, having completed agency and public testimony on the education-related agencies, will hold budget discussions and work sessions Monday through Wednesday to finalize its recommendations for the full committee.

Monday

The Senate Finance Committee will hear SB 3, the proposal by Finance Chair Jane Nelson to provide a $5,000 across-the-board raise for classroom teachers. TCTA will testify to support the bill, and will suggest improvements including additional funding to ensure that other key educational and support personnel receive raises as well.

Tuesday

The House Public Education Committee will hear 21 bills:

  • HB 76 by Chair Dan Huberty requires cardiac assessment of students prior to participating in athletic activities.
  • HB 92 by Rep. Eddie Rodriguez provides that a campus turnaround plan can allow a campus to operate as a community school. The commissioner cannot order a school closure without giving the school the opportunity to operate as a community school for at least two years.
  • HB 129 by Rep. Diego Bernal requires that at a campus with at least 90% educationally disadvantaged students, the district must assign at least one person who is a school counselor, audiologist, occupational therapist, physical therapist, physician, nurse, school psychologist, associate school psychologist, professional counselor, marriage and family therapist, social worker or speech language pathologist. This person cannot be required to provide assistance in connection with assessment instruments.
  • HB 198 by Rep. Shawn Thierry allows a district to provide mental health services and mental health education at a school-based health center.
  • HB 199 by Bernal specifies that instructional material allotment funds used for an employee can be used not only for an employee providing technical support (current law) but for an employee who is directly involved in student learning or addressing student social and emotional health.
  • HB 204 by Thierry adds to the requirement of health instruction in the enrichment curriculum that mental health and the relationship between physical and mental health must be included.
  • HB 239 by Rep. Jessica Farrar provides that a social worker can provide social work services to students and families in a school or district and must collaborate with school administrators and other professionals to enhance students’ learning environments.
  • HB 314 by Rep. Donna Howard specifies that compensatory education funds can be used for child-care services for students at risk of dropping out, or to pay costs of services provided through a life skills program; and requires the commissioner to include pregnancy in the PEIMS reporting system as a reason for dropping out.
  • HB 330 by Rep. Gary VanDeaver requires that the commissioner exclude from the calculation of dropout and completion rates students who have a condition or injury that requires substantial medical care such that the student is unable to attend school.
  • HB 391 by Rep. Cesar Blanco requires districts and charter schools to provide instructional materials to a student in book form if the student does not have reliable access to technology at home.
  • HB 396 by VanDeaver allows instructional materials funding to be used for interstate freight and shipping, and for inventory software or systems for storing and accessing instructional materials.
  • HB 397 by VanDeaver provides that instructional materials funding can be used for inventory software or systems for storing and accessing instructional materials.
  • HB 403 by Rep. Senfronia Thompson revises current laws regarding school board training and superintendent continuing education to require training on identifying and reporting potential victims of sexual abuse, human trafficking and other maltreatment of children.
  • HB 422 by Rep. Alma Allen requires districts to annually report to TEA their compliance with the state laws requiring the establishment of campus and district decision-making committees.
  • HB 455 by Allen requires TEA to develop model recess policies that encourage appropriate outdoor playtime and include guidelines for outdoor equipment and facilities. After review of the TEA model, districts must adopt a recess policy that specifies the required recess time and whether recess can be withheld as a form of discipline.
  • HB 613 by Rep. Drew Springer removes the requirement that school board elections be held jointly with other local or state elections.
  • HB 637 by Rep. Mary Gonzalez repeals current provisions that the salaries of the superintendents of the Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired and the Texas School for the Deaf cannot be more than 120 percent of the salary of the highest paid instructional administrator at the school.
  • HB 638 by Rep. Giovanni Capriglione revises current law regarding the posthumous award of a high school diploma to specify that the diploma would be from the school from which the student was expected to graduate, and cannot be awarded prior to the graduation date of the student's class.
  • HB 663 by Rep. Ken King requires the SBOE to review and revise the foundation TEKS to narrow their scope and number.
  • HB 674 by Rep. Jared Patterson requires that the commissioner survey school districts regarding their reliance on regional service centers for assistance in complying with federal and state laws and rules.
  • HB 678 by Rep. Ryan Guillen allows an elementary school student to receive a credit for languages other than English by completing a course in American Sign Language.

Wednesday

The House Higher Education Committee will hear several bills that remove the current law that requires the denial of a license renewal if the applicant is in default on a student loan.

Other committees are expected to meet later in the week but have not yet posted their schedules. This listing will be revised as those postings are made.