Legislative Update:  May 3, 2017 – BREAKING TESTING BILL MAJOR AMENDMENT

Activities Today In Florida House of Representatives-

Fewer Better Tests HB773 (Diaz) WAS TEMPORARILY POSTPONED on third reading up for final passage in Florida House again tomorrow (See look ahead below)

In Florida Senate:

SB1210 Instructional Materials - on Second Reading- Substituted House companion (HB989) up for final passage on 5/4.

SB902 (Gardiner Scholarship Expansion) and SB1314 were joined as the Senate decided to take up  HB15 which had both these bills on

Looking ahead: The trains are forming-

Testing Bill SB926 up in Senate, but will likely take up HB549 (Fine) as Sen Flores filed a 72 page strike all amendment which has MANY things-

  • School Visitation by a School Board Member (high priority for FCSBM) 80-102
  • Absence for Autism treatments
  • Sunscreen possession
  • Charter School Cooperative
  • High Performing Charter Network
  • Spells out that charter VPK are  PUBLIC schools 175-178
  • Eliminates Algebra II and Civics end of course (EOC) exams
  • Blended course meets “online course” requirement
  • Mandatory Recess 449-453
  • Removes requirement that 50% of instructional materials be digital
  • ELA & Math exams for grades 3-5 will be PAPER AND PENCIL
  • Grade 3 ELA results made available no later than May 31
  • Grade 3 ELA and Grade 4 writing begin no sooner than April 1st
  • Easy to read parent report
  • Commissions independent study of national tests (ACT/SAT) vs. FSA
  • Publication of the past assessments every 3 years 804-821
  • Removes caps on teacher bonuses for certain programs (IB/AP etc)
  • Sick and annual leave transfer with the teacher if he/she transfers to public charter
  • Alternate Teacher Certification Pathway 1347-1448
  • Charter school teacher certification / mentorship pathway
  • Shared use of playground equipment
  • Structure and accountability around Voluntary Pre Kindergarten


HB773 (Diaz / Sprowls) – Still on 3rd reading Calendar

Up in Senate 5/4:

SB926 Fewer Better Tests Sponsor- Pres. Pro Tem Flores is busy with budget negotiations so Sen Kelli Stargel is taking the driver’s seat on this very good bill. Her experience with education will be very valuable. We expect - HB549 to be heard / Amended with strike all and then sent over to House for final consideration. It will probably be passed 5/5 as one of the last bills.

These amendments will fall away as 549 is considered- (many appear in the Flores strike all)

  • Baxley Amendment- Allow students to carry sunscreen
  • Hukill Amendment- Financial Literacy Graduation Requirement
  • Baxley Amendment- Virtual School Remove Prior year (HB833 we supported) and This Amendment to the Amendment
  • Mayfield Amendment-   Alternative Teacher Certification path
  • Bean Amendment – Use of playground equipment by non-district organizations

Galvano 1468 (Similar to HB833 Virtual Education). Senate will likely take up 833 with a couple amendments and send back to House

  • Galvano Amendment- Virtual Education- Workers Comp- Children’s Musical Education Incentive Pilot Program
  • Baxley Amendment – Teacher Mentorship Certification Path



FCSBM Top Priorities Status:

Testing Reform- HB549 (Fine) passed House Last Friday- HB773 (Diaz) up for final passage in Florida House tomorrow 5/2/17 SB926 (Flores) in Rules not yet on Special order. Both 773 and 926 have become trains.  773/926 both contain Visitation of Schools by School Board Member

Religious Liberty – Passed both chambers (with Governor Scott) SB4436

Charter Capital Outlay- SB376 in conference – language may appear in another bill

Meeting Between Two Board Members (Sunshine)- HB843 up on House Floor for final passage tomorrow 5/2/17 - Senate uncertain  FAILED TO REACH THRESHOLD 68-48

Instructional Materials Adoption- HB989 Instructional Materials Adoption- Passed House- Senate SB1210 on Second Reading 5/2/17 should appear for final passage on Senate Floor 5/4/17

Choice Programs-  SB902 – Gardiner Scholarships on final passage 5/4 as HB15

Also support 1468 and 833 Virtual School