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The Senate Education Committee will meet starting at 9 a.m., Thursday, May 18, to hear testimony on the following K-12 bills, which have been passed by the House:

  • HB 890 (Keith Bell) requires school districts to adopt policies related to the processing of complaints received from a school district employee, parent, student, or member of the public. Policies would be required to: allow a complaint to be filed at any time, regardless of when the issue of concern occurred, if the complaint alleged a violation of law or board policy that was continuous or ongoing; unless otherwise prohibited by law, include an initial administrative hearing and an opportunity to appeal the administrative decision following the initial hearing; unless otherwise agreed to by the parties, provide for a final decision on the complaint within 120 calendar days after the date the complaint was filed; and if a final decision was not made by the 120th calendar day, require the district to immediately issue a final decision in favor of the complainant.
  • HB 1157 (Lozano, et al.) requires a public school district to excuse a student from attending school for a temporary absence resulting from an appointment with mental health professionals for a student or the student’s child if the student commences classes or returns to school on the same day of the appointment.
  • HB 2120 (Keith Bell, et al.) allows a person to operate a barbering and cosmetology establishment on the same premises as a public secondary school without separating the facilities by a wall or other permanent structure.
  • HB 2273 (Oliverson, et al.) amends the essential knowledge and skills required to be adopted by the State Board of Education for the foundation curriculum related to civic knowledge to include an understanding of political ideologies, such as communism and totalitarianism, that conflict with the founding principles of the United States.
  • HB 3315 (Keith Bell, eat al.) creates requirements for the grievance procedure for parental rights violations that the board of trustees of each school district is required to adopt to address such complaints. (Read the HRO Analysis for more.)
  • HB 3708 (Buckley, et al.) entitles a school district, for each non-enrolled student who participated in a UIL activity for a school in a district that allowed participation of non-enrolled students as required by certain provisions, to an annual allotment of $1,500 per league activity in which the non-enrolled student participated.
  • HB 3908 (Wilson, et al.) requires each public school district to annually provide research-based instruction related to fentanyl abuse prevention and drug poisoning awareness to students in grades 6 through 12.
  • HB 4358 (Allison, et al.) requires the State Board for Educator Certification to provide continuing education opportunities for and issue micro-credentials to educators in digital teaching. Boards of trustees would be required to engage relevant stakeholders in proposing rules to implement these changes.
  • HB 4656 (Thimesch, et al.) requires the State Board for Educator Certification to create a temporary educator certificate for educators certified by other states and to immediately issue such a certificate to a person who applies for permanent certification and meets certain eligibility requirements.
  • HB 2673 (Hull, et al.) requires TEA to adopt standards for the use and transfer of electronic devices to students by public schools that: minimize student data collection through electronic devices and software applications; require direct and informed parental consent for student use; require direct and informed parental consent for software applications to conduct assessments unrelated to education; provide parents with resources to understand cybersecurity and online safety risks for their child using electronic devices; specify time periods during which an electronic device transferred to a student would have to be deactivated for safety reasons; limit electronic device use in classrooms to age-appropriate levels; consider reasonable limitations on student access to social media when using an electronic device provided by the school; require schools to check if more secure alternatives to social media are available for educational purposes; consider using an Internet filter to alert administrators if students accessed self-harm, suicide, or violent content, so parents could then be informed; assign a school officer to receive reports of electronic device use, cybersecurity, and online safety from staff, students, or parents; and provide ways for a district or school to ensure that a software application operator complies with certain requirements when it provides software applications.
  • HB 2285 (Noble, et al.) authorizes the board of trustees of specific districts to adopt resolutions, not later than December 31, 2023, changing the length of the terms of trustees.
  • HB 1662 (Burns) requires that a grievance made by a district employee regarding a regulation violation be considered timely regardless of when the grievance was made if the school district had not complied with the requirements of Education Code sec. 11.1513(k) or provided a copy of the regulation to the complainant.
  • HB 1926 (Hull, et al.) repeals the expiration date of the Supplemental Special Education Services (SSES) program, which currently expires September 1, 2024.
  • HB 681 (Keith Bell) repeals the September 1, 2023, expiration date from sections of the Education Code pertaining to: allowing a candidate for certification as a teacher to satisfy certification requirements through an internship that provided the candidate employment as a teacher for local remote learning program courses; attendance exemptions for students participating in one or more courses offered by a local remote learning program; counting the time a student participated in an off-campus electronic instruction program as part of the student’s minimum number of instructional hours to be considered a full-time student; the authority of certain districts or schools to operate a local remote learning program; the evaluation by the education commissioner of the performance of a district or school that operated a full-time local remote learning program; performance indicators for reporting poses for certain students enrolled in a local remote learning program or who received remote instruction; excluding certain students who received virtual or remote instruction from being counted by a district or school for purposes of calculating the district’s or school’s average daily attendance; off-campus courses or programs counted for purposes of average daily attendance; and the establishment of an asynchronous progression funding method to be used to determine certain districts’ foundation school program entitlements. The bill also would remove the restriction for school districts and charter schools to calculate virtual and remote learning enrollment only for the 2021-2022 and 2022-2023 school years. This bill was added to the agenda after the original posting. 
  • HB 1206 (Guillen, et al.) prohibits the public school financial accountability rating system from including an indicator or any other performance measure that included any amount the district had to expend to reduce its local revenue levels in excess of the district’s entitlement under the Foundation School Program in determining the district’s ratio of assets to liabilities. This bill was added to the agenda after the original posting. 
  • HB 2162 (Dutton, et al.) amends provisions of Education Code regarding the regulation, reporting, funding, and implementation of various reading instruments in Texas schools. Read the HRO analysis. This bill was added to the agenda after the original posting. 

Watch the hearing starting at 9 a.m., Thursday, May 18.