Category «Legislation»

The Future of Student Assessments in Arkansas

It’s no secret that the Common Core State Standards are controversial, both here and throughout the country. I still don’t fully understand why, and I highly suspect much of it is political, but regardless, a controversy exists. In March, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced he had appointed individuals to serve on the Governor’s Council on Common …

Legislative Update

Just a few education bills filed recently that have caught my attention: SB176: This bill proposes to modify the qualifications required for the Commissioner of Education. Currently, the Commissioner is required to hold at least a Master’s Degree and have ten years experience as a teacher, with five of those years being in an administrative …

Legislative Update

One full week of the 2015 General Session is behind us, and surprisingly, there haven’t been many education bills filed that have caught my attention. The most notable bill filed, HB1077, would allow public college and university staff members to carry concealed handguns on campus. If you recall, guns on college campuses was a hot …

Coming Soon: 2015 Regular Session

It’s been a while since I last posted. The holidays and a new baby girl at home have kept me a bit busy over the last few weeks. However, I’m now back in the swing of things and plan to start posting regularly again over the next few weeks. The 2015 Regular Session of the …

Arkansas Schools to Receive Letter Grades

Yesterday, the Arkansas State Board of Education voted to adopt a letter-grade school rating system for every public school in the state. Beginning this school year, the Arkansas Department of Education will rate each school with a letter grade, A through F, as part of the school’s annual performance reports that are compiled and distributed …

The Battle Over Common Core Continues

The State of Louisiana is in the news once again, and it’s certainly not a glowing endorsement of the current status of the state’s public education system. Not one, but two lawsuits have been filed this week alone regarding the State’s implementation of the common core state standards. Initially, forty-five states plus the District of …

Special Session Starts Today

I’ve written briefly about the problems with teacher health insurance in Arkansas in the past here, here, and here. Last fall, Governor Beebe called a special session in order to find a solution to the projected 50% increase in premiums for teachers that was slated to begin this past January. A short-term solution was implemented, …

2014 Fiscal Session Starts Today

When the voters of Arkansas approved Amendment 86 to the Arkansas Constitution in 2008, I dare say that most of them didn’t know what they were really getting themselves into. That amendment, of course, requires appropriations to be passed annually rather than every two years, resulting in the requirement that the General Assembly meet in …

The 2013 Special Session

Governor Beebe has called a special session of the Arkansas General Assembly to begin today at 3:00 p.m. for legislators to address the health insurance premium increase that public school teachers and employees would otherwise face starting January 1, 2014, which I’ve discussed hereĀ and here. Governor Beebe had stated that he would not call a …