GOVERNOR WORKING HIS WAY THROUGH BILLS
Governor JB Pritzker has been signing into law dozens of measures every week as he works through the 600 bills that were approved by the General Assembly and sent to his desk. Just last Friday, the governor acted upon 150 pieces of legislation. Many of the recent bill signings were bills opposed by the Alliance that will cause challenges for local school districts. The Alliance offered amendatory language in most cases to try to make the bills less onerous for school districts. Letters were also written to the governor asking for vetoes or amendatory vetoes, but instead the bills have been enacted into law.
HB 2719 (Stuart, D-Collinsville) will require each high school student to complete the Federal Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as a prerequisite to receive a graduation diploma. There is a provision for a waiver form to be completed by the student declaring that he/she is aware of the FAFSA application but chooses not to file one. The school district would be responsible for providing, verifying, and collecting the waiver forms. The high school principal shall “attest that the school district has made a good faith effort to assist the student”.
Also, the school district “must provide to each high school student any support or assistance necessary to comply with this Section.” The bill is now Public Act 101-0180, effective June 1, 2020.
Several new curricular mandates have been approved as well.
HB 246 (Moeller, D-Elgin) requires schools to teach about the diversity of our society, including the role and contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals in society. The bill is now Public Act 101-0227, effective July 1, 2020.
HB 2265 (Lilly, D-Oak Park) requires every public elementary school to include in its 6th, 7th, or 8th grade curriculum at least one semester of civics education. The bill is now Public Act 101-0254, effective July 1, 2020.
SB 459 (Ellman, D-Naperville) amends the Critical Health Problems and Comprehensive Health Education Act to require the instruction on mental health and illness to evaluate the multiple dimensions of health by reviewing the relationship between physical and mental health so as to enhance student understanding, attitudes, and behaviors that promote health, well-being, and human dignity. The bill is now Public Act 101-0305, effective January 1, 2020.
SB 1601 (Sims, D-Chicago),with regard to the instruction on history of the United States, requires that the course must also include instruction on the history of Illinois. The bill is now Public Act 101-0341, effective January 1, 2020.
OTHER BILLS SIGNED INTO LAW
HB 1579 (Burke, D-Oak Lawn) provides that before sentencing a juvenile for a threat against a school building or school personnel, the court must order a mental health evaluation. The bill is now Public Act 101-0238, effective January 1, 2020.
HB 2087 (Carroll, D-Northbrook) creates a distance learning option for drivers’ education, disallows a student from taking the entire driver education course through a distance learning program, and requires approval, on a case-by-case basis, by the school’s administration, the student’s driver education teacher, and the student’s parent. The bill is now Public Act 101-0183, effective August 2, 2019.
HB 3652 (Edly-Allen, D-Libertyville) requires school counselors to discuss post-secondary education options, including 4-year colleges and universities, community colleges, and vocational schools with students. The bill is now Public Act 101-0290, effective August 9, 2019.
HB 3659 (Ortiz, D-Chicago) provides that a charter school's governing body must include at least one parent or guardian of a pupil currently enrolled in the charter school and requires members of a Charter School governing board to complete the same training as elected school board members. The bill is now Public Act 101-0291, effective January 1, 2020.
SB 75 (Bush, D-Grayslake) requires the Department of Human Rights to adopt a model sexual harassment prevention training program and requires all employers to use the model or establish a training program that equals or exceeds the minimum standards provided by the model. It also includes a provision regarding the filing of economic interest statements for public officials, including a requirement that county clerks notify by April 1 of each year and allows them to notify by electronic means. The bill is now Public Act 101-0221, certain provisions effective August 9, 2019; January 1, 2020; July 1, 2020.
SB 455 (Castro, D-Elgin) provides that a school district, public school, charter school, or nonpublic school must allow a school nurse or school administrator to administer a medical cannabis infused product to a student. The bill is now Public Act 101-0370, effective January 1, 2020.
SB 1250 (Murphy, D-Des Plaines) combines self-administration of medications by students for several conditions. It requires schools to allow students to self-administer if the student’s parent provides the school district with written permission and written authorization from the student’s physician. Parents must also provide school with prescription label of the medication to be administered by the student. Additionally, it requires the school district to adopt an emergency action plan for students who self-administer medications that includes a plan of action in the event a student cannot self-administer and situations when a school must call 9-1-1. Immunity for school personnel is provided except for willful and wanton conduct. The bill is now Public Act 101-0205, effective January 1, 2020.
SB 1694 (Bush, D-Grayslake) allows high schools to include in their workplace preparation studies that cover legal protections in the workplace, protection against sexual harassment, racial and other forms of discrimination, and other protections available to employees. The bill is now Public Act 101-0341, effective January 1, 2020.
SB 1731 (Koehler, D-Peoria) provides that the in-service training on mental health may utilize the Illinois Mental Health First Aid training program that educates participants on recognizing the signs and symptoms of mental illness and substance use disorders. The bill is now Public Act 101-0350, effective January 1, 2020.
SB 1932 (Manar, D-Bunker Hill) creates the Property Tax Relief Task Force that will use a racial and economic equity lens to identify the causes of increasingly burdensome property taxes in Illinois. It will review best practices in public policy strategies that create short-term and long-term property tax relief for homeowners. The report is due by December 31, 2019. The bill is now Public Act 101-0181, effective August 2, 2019.
This legislative report was written and edited by the lobbyists of the Illinois Association of School Boards to provide information to the members of the organizations that comprise the Statewide School Management Alliance.