Advocacy in Action (4/26/21) - Bill Requiring Instruction and Credit for Suspended and Expelled Students Remains Viable

By Advocacy In Action posted 05-20-2021 16:09

  

April 26, 2021

 

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Summary of this Week’s Legislative Action

Last week, the Illinois House and Senate focused on “final action,” meaning bills were debated and voted on before the full membership of each chamber.  Friday, April 23rd marked the third reading deadline for both the House and Senate.  Most bills that failed to advance out of their chamber of origin by this date are essentially dead for the session, although this deadline was extended on several pieces of legislation.  Additionally, with a great deal of pressure from school management and labor groups, House Bill 7 failed by a vote of 42-55-3.  This bill would have required mandated school consolidation.  This week, House bills that passed will arrive in the Senate and Senate bills that passed will arrive in the House.  Both chambers are scheduled to adjourn on May 31, 2021.

 

Bill Requiring Instruction and Credit for Suspended and Expelled Students Remains Viable

Senate Bill 2088, sponsored by Senator Chris Bell, mandates that schools provide 5 clock hours of instruction each day, including daily synchronous (direct) instruction, for suspended and expelled students.  The bill also provides for academic credit for all work completed by suspended and expelled students.  Please contact your local State Senator today and voice your opposition to S.B. 2088.

 

Bill Requiring 1 Hour of Daily Unstructured “Playtime” in Grades K-8 Passes the Senate

Senate Bill 654 would require all public schools to provide daily time for supervised, unstructured, child-directed play for all students in kindergarten through grade 8. The bill provides that playtime shall not count as a course of physical education. Playtime would count toward the 5-clock hour day requirement.  This measure, sponsored by Senator Robert Peters, passed out of the Illinois Senate by a vote of 36-16-0.  The bill now moves to the House for consideration.  This measure will create a catastrophic disruption to the educational process in higher grades.  Please call your local State Representative and ask them to vote “no” on S.B. 654.

 

Bill Action for the Week:

 

The following key education bills advanced this week.

 

IL - HB15 SCH CD-STUDENT DISCIPLINE

Last Action: Passed 114-000-000

Primary Sponsor: Representative Curtis J. Tarver, II (D)

Summary: Amends the School Code. With respect to all school districts, requires a school to provide written notification to (i) the parent or guardian of any student who commits an act or acts of misconduct and (ii) the parent or guardian of any student who is the victim of that act of misconduct and requires a copy of any statement made by the student who committed the act of misconduct to be provided to the student's or guardian within 24 hours after the statement has been made. Sets forth the information that must be included in the disciplinary report. Requires that a copy of the disciplinary report be provided to the parent or guardian of the disciplined student. Effective immediately.

 

IL - HB18 SCH CD-TEACHER EVALUATION

Last Action: Passed 108-000-000

Primary Sponsor: Representative Sue Scherer (D)

Summary: Amends the School Code. With regard to teacher evaluations, provides that no later than September 1, 2022, each school district must establish a teacher evaluation plan that ensures that each teacher in contractual continued service whose performance is rated as either "excellent" or "proficient" is evaluated at least once in the course of the 3 school years after receipt of the rating (rather than at least once in the course of every 2 school years) and establish an informal teacher evaluation plan that ensures that each teacher in contractual continued service whose performance is rated as either "excellent" or "proficient" is informally evaluated at least once in the course of the 2 school years after receipt of the rating.

 

IL - HB40 SCH CD-SPECIAL ED-MAXIMUM AGE

Last Action: Passed 096-009-003

Primary Sponsor: Representative Frances Ann Hurley (D)

Summary:  Amends the Children with Disabilities Article of the School Code. Provides that a student whose 22nd birthday occurs during the school year is eligible for special education services through the end of the school year (rather than being eligible for services only until the day before his or her 22nd birthday). Effective immediately.

 

IL - HB3195 EQUITABLE RESTROOMS-ALL-GENDER

Last Action: Passed 063-043-001

Primary Sponsor: Representative Katie Stuart (D)

Summary:  Amends the Equitable Restrooms Act. Provides that, notwithstanding any other provision of law, any multiple-occupancy restroom may be identified as an all-gender multiple-occupancy restroom and designated for use by any person of any gender. Requires that an all-gender multiple-occupancy restroom must include specified signage, stall dividers, and partitions for urinals. Provides that any multiple-occupancy restroom may be converted into an all-gender multiple-occupancy restroom. Provides that, if a facility commences construction, or commences alterations exceeding 50% of the facility, and implements an all-gender multiple-occupancy restroom, the all-gender multiple-occupancy restroom must satisfy or include specified requirements. Requires certain newly constructed or previously existing restrooms to be designated as all-gender multiple-occupancy restrooms. Provides that, where a person or entity must meet female-to-male ratio requirements, each individual toilet stall in an all-gender multiple-occupancy restroom may be counted toward the required number of either female or male toilet stalls. Provides that during any inspection of a facility by a health officer, health inspector, or building inspector, the health officer, health inspector, or building inspector may inspect the facility to determine whether it complies with the provisions. Requires the Department of Public Health to adopt rules to implement the provisions. Defines "multiple-occupancy restroom". Makes other changes. Effective immediately.

 

IL - HB3223 SCHOOL STUDENT-PARENT/VICTIM

Last Action: Passed 088-027-000

Primary Sponsor: Representative Anna Moeller (D)

Summary:  Amends the School Code and the Illinois School Student Records Act. In provisions concerning the suspension or expulsion of a pupil, adds references to guardians (rather than just parents). Provides that a student may disclose mitigating factors, such as the student's status as a parent, expectant parent, or victim of domestic or sexual violence, in suspension or expulsion hearings. Provides that home instruction or correspondence courses must be made available to students who are unable to attend school because of pregnancy-related conditions, parenting obligations related to the health of a child, or health and safety concerns arising from domestic or sexual violence. Includes attendance at a medical or therapeutic appointment and appointments with a victim services provider as a valid cause for absence from school. Adds provisions to the Code concerning children and students who are parents, expectant parents, or victims of domestic or sexual violence, the purpose of which is to ensure that Illinois schools have policies, procedures, and protocols in place that ensure children and students who are parents, expectant parents, or victims of domestic or sexual violence are identified by schools in a manner respectful of their privacy and safety, treated with dignity and regard, and provided the protection, instruction, and related accommodations and services necessary to enable them to meet State educational standards and successfully attain a school diploma. Makes changes to the Chicago School District Article of the School Code concerning the transfer of students. Amends the State Mandates Act to require implementation without reimbursement. Makes other changes. Effective July 1, 2022.

 

IL - SB1989 PEN CD-TRS-RETURN TO SERVICE

Last Action: Passed 058-000-000

Primary Sponsor: Senator Patrick J. Joyce (D)

Summary: Amends the Downstate Teacher Article of the Illinois Pension Code. Provides that through June 30, 2023 (instead of June 30, 2021), an annuitant may accept employment as a teacher without impairing his or her retirement status if that employment is not within the school year during which service was terminated and does not exceed 120 paid days or 600 paid hours in each school year. Makes a conforming change. Effective immediately.

 

IL - SB2091 SCH CD-STUDENT DISCIPLINE DATA

Last Action: Third Reading Deadline Established to April 30, 2021

Primary Sponsor: Senator Christopher Belt (D)

Summary: Amends the School Code. With regard to the State Board of Education's student discipline report, provides that, beginning with the 2021-2022 school year, the State Board must annually collect data on all of the data elements pertaining to school discipline, student seclusion, and student restraint collected by the U.S. Department of Education as part of its Civil Rights Data Collection. Provides that, beginning with the 2021-2022 school year, the State Board must collect data on all disciplinary incidents that result in office referrals but do not result in out-of-school suspensions, expulsions, disciplinary transfers to alternative schools, referrals to law enforcement, or school-based arrests. Sets forth the categories of data that must be collected by the State Board and included in the school discipline report. Sets forth provisions regarding a school discipline improvement plan. Requires the State Superintendent of Education to convene an Equitable and Restorative School Discipline Advisory Council to advise the State Board on the ongoing implementation of school discipline policies in this State. Makes other changes. Effective immediately.

Illinois Principals Association

2940 Baker Drive

Springfield, IL 62703

 

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