The fourth week of the 2019 legislative session is underway. Below is a quick recap of what you can anticipate through Wednesday of this week.
Today, March 25
- 3:30pm House PreK-12 Appropriations Subcommittee will take up HB 7061 on Teacher Preparation. This bill would, among other things, allow school boards to permit a teacher to continue teaching even if they can’t pass the certification exam.
Tuesday, March 26
- 1:30pm Senate Education Committee will take up SB 1296.Getting this bill stopped (or amended) is a top legislative priority for the United Faculty of Florida’s. Specifically, UFF is opposed to a provision in the bill which would mandate colleges and universities survey students, faculty, and administration with regards to “intellectual freedom”
- 3:30pm House Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee will take up HB 839—which is the companion bill to SB 1296 that you just read about.
- 3:30pm House PreK-12 Quality Subcommittee will take up a committee substitute for HB 855. This original bill has been referred to by many as the “book banning” bill. The bill is also of concern to Florida’s scientific community since the bill discusses teaching of “controversial” topics (i.e. evolution, climate change). Fortunately, the committee substitute for HB 855 removes both of those controversial aspects of the bill. Additionally, there does not seem to be much traction for the bill in the Senate.
- 4:00pm Senate Infrastructure and Security Committee will take up SB 7030. Currently classroom teachers are not permitted to be “guardians” and carry firearms on campus. This bill would remove that exclusion thereby permitting the arming of teachers on school grounds. There was a full room ready to speak on the bill last week when it was temporarily postponed last week due to time constraints. We anticipate there will be packed house once again. You can take action here to let the committee know you don’t support the arming of teachers.
Wednesday, March 27
- 1:00pm Senate Appropriations will take up SB 2500the appropriations bill. We’re continuing to try to encourage the Senate to put money directly into the base student allocation instead of funding categoricals.
As always, you can watch the meetings live (or catch replays on your own schedule) on the Florida Channel.