State House leaders this week rolled out Senate Bill 508 containing a slate of technical corrections to the recently enacted state budget law, and the new bill includes a proposed change to the state’s new early graduate program. S508 gained approval in the House and was sent to the Senate for concurrence, but the Senate did not consider it Wednesday before both chambers recessed their legislative session until Nov. 29th.
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The recently enacted 2023 state budget includes several provisions adjusting or clarifying requirements for public schools under the Parents’ Bill of Rights, which became law in mid-August following the state legislature’s successful override of Governor Cooper’s earlier veto of the bill. Because much of the bill became effective only days before most traditional public schools were set to begin the 2023-2024 school year, many school leaders raised questions and concerns about quickly implementing the bill’s numerous new requirements.
While the biggest news at the state legislature last week was certainly the long-awaited passage of the 2023-2025 state budget package, which is set to become law on October 2 without the Governor’s signature, state lawmakers also sent a handful of other education-related bills to the Governor’s desk last week for final consideration.
After weeks of little activity at the state legislature, lawmakers on Wednesday successfully voted to override Governor Cooper’s vetoes of several bills, including a handful relating to K-12 education, which have now become law.
Senate lawmakers on Thursday voted down party lines to concur with the House on a controversial parental rights bill, in the legislation’s last step before being sent to the Governor for final consideration.
It became clear this week that lawmakers would not meet their initial goal of passing a state budget before the July 1 start of the new fiscal year, with many lawmakers now estimating a final budget package to be shared after July 24.
While many legislative leaders were likely working this week on state budget negotiations behind closed doors, lawmakers in the Senate discussed and approved two education proposals not included in current budget proposals — a bill that would change state requirements for principal licensure and a bill that would require students to complete a computer science course before graduating high school.
The North Carolina Senate approved its state budget proposal on Thursday in a 37-12 vote after hours of debate throughout the week on its many controversial aspects, including a proposal that would allocate hundreds of millions of dollars in additional funding for the state’s Opportunity Scholarship Program, commonly referred to as “private school vouchers.
This week was especially busy at the NC General Assembly, as lawmakers in both the House and Senate pushed a frenzy of bills forward ahead of Thursday’s May 4 bill crossover deadline, or the last day in which a policy bill can pass from its originating chamber and still be eligible to be heard in the other chamber. As a result of the impending deadline, several legislative committees, including the Senate Education/Higher Education Committee, held meetings on Monday, a day usually void of any substantive legislative work.
NC House Republicans held a press conference Wednesday to roll out their two-year state budget proposal in House Bill 259. The proposal, which is reflected in the Money Report and bill text outlining Special Provisions, then was reviewed by subject areas in Appropriations Subcommittees this morning before moving to the full Appropriations Committee, where it faced discussion and numerous proposed amendments this afternoon.
North Carolina Superintendent of Public Instruction Catherine Truitt presented to members of the House K-12 Education Committee on Tuesday an update on her “Operation Polaris,” or her strategic vision for supporting public school students across the state.
The North Carolina General Assembly (NCGA) began its substantive work for the 2023 legislative session on Wednesday and legislators wasted no time filing bills to be considered.
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Helpful NC Education Links
NC Department of Public Instruction
- NC AI Implementation & Considerations for PK-13 Public Schools
- K-12 Education Legislation and Reports
- Operation Polaris
- District Human Capital
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- StrongSchoolsNC K-12 Public Health Toolkit
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