Before diving into the fourth week of the Legislative Session, please be sure to watch our FSBA Weekly Video Update featuring FSBA Executive Director Andrea Messina providing a recap of the main events during the third week of the Session. To date, there have been few, if any, bills of interest on Monday’s schedule but this start of the fourth week of the Legislative Session is an exception. Today’s agenda includes a few bills that are tied to the FSBA 2019 Legislative Platform with regard to mental health, high quality teachers, and career education. Today’s schedule is posted below and is updated to show the outcome on these bills after each meeting concludes.
- Clicking on the Committee/Subcommittee names linked below provides access to membership, meeting packets, and other committee information
- Clicking on the PCBs linked below provides access the actual text of the proposed bill
- Clicking on the bill numbers linked below, you can access the bill summary, analysis, related bills, and other information
In the Senate Criminal Justice Committee:
SB 1796 – Public Records/Commissioners & School Administrators by Perry – AMENDED; PASSED WITH A COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE (CS)
The bill creates two new exemptions from public records requirements. The first applies to current and former commissioners and investigators of the Florida Commission on Offender Review (FCOR). The second makes exempt from public records requirements the personal and location information related to school administrators, their spouses, and children. The exemption is based on a statement of public necessity that explains the nature of the authority, decisions, and actions the job of a school administrator entails, and the potential that harm might come to the administrator or his or her spouse and children because of the contentious action of a disgruntled student, parent, or school employee.
In the House Oversight, Transparency & Public Management Subcommittee:
HB 363 – Public Records/Admission to Mental Health Facilities by Silvers — PASSED
The bill provides that petitions for voluntary and involuntary examination for mental health treatment, court orders, and related records filed with a court pursuant to the Baker Act are confidential and exempt from public record requirements. These documents may only be released to specified individuals. The bill prohibits the clerk of the court from posting any personal identifying information on the court docket or in publicly accessible files. Additionally, the bill requires that anyone who receives clinical or court records under this section must keep them confidential. [NOTE: Passage of this bill is contingent upon passage of HB 361relating to the Baker Act and involuntary examination of minors.]
HB 601 – Public Records/Reports of Abuse, Abandonment, Neglect by Roth — PASSED
The bill expands the public record exemption that protects the name of a reporter of child abuse, abandonment, or neglect to also protect identifying information that would inadvertently identify the reporter of child abuse, abandonment, or neglect.
- Codifies early learning professional development standards and career pathways in law.
- Requires the Office of Early Learning to develop early learning professional development training and course standards for school readiness program providers and identify both formal and informal early learning career pathways with stackable credentials and certifications, which allow early childhood teachers to access specialized professional development.
- Requires the established credentials and certifications to align with the training for K-12 teachers, reading coaches, and school principals to the greatest extent possible.
HB 7055 – Career Education by PKI – PASSED
To help meet growing workforce demand and provide students flexibility and options to pursue advanced career pathways, the bill:
- Revises the school grades formula to recognize career certificate clock hour dual enrollment and establishes formal career dual enrollment agreements between high schools and career centers;
- Allows students with an industry certification to earn two mathematics credits for Algebra I;
- Allows a computer science credit to substitute for a mathematics or science credit and requires a biennial review of career education courses for alignment with high school graduation requirements;
- Requires the Department of Education to provide assistance in increasing public awareness of apprenticeship and pre-apprenticeship opportunities;
- Requires the elimination of industry certifications that are not aligned to industry needs;
- Establishes a “College and Career Decision Day” to recognize high school seniors for their postsecondary education and career plans;
- Doubles the cap on career and professional education (CAPE) Digital Tool certificates the State Board of Education may identify for weighted FTE funding; and
- Reestablishes a middle grades career planning course requirement.
HB 7061 – Teacher Preparation by PKQ – PASSED
The bill addresses teacher preparation and retention by increasing the opportunities for mentorship, professional development, and examination preparation to equip first-time teachers with tools and supports when they enter the classroom. The bill establishes consistent requirements for curriculum and field experience provided by teacher preparation programs.
With regard to teacher certification, the bill:
- Extends the timeframe by which a candidate may satisfy the General Knowledge Test (GKT) from one to three years, aligning the timeframe with the number of years in which a teacher-candidate may be employed pursuant to a temporary certificate.
- Increases access to GKT preparation materials and establishes a baseline for materials available to teacher-candidates.
- Requires the State Board of Education (SBE) to establish separate fees for each subtest of the GKT.
With regard to teacher preparation, the bill:
- Revises requirements for teacher preparation program uniform core curricula.
- Revises program requirements to include content aligned to state standards for both school district-operated teacher preparation programs and Educator Preparation Institute (EPI) programs.
- Requires programs to administer participant satisfaction surveys and report survey results.
- Requires practicum experience to include classroom management in a variety of teaching environments and for diverse student populations for all teacher preparation programs.
With regard to teacher professional development, the bill:
- Increases the school district-operated mentorship program from one to two years and provides an exemption from passing the GKT for those teacher-candidates who successfully complete a two-year mentorship program.
- Increases the opportunities for mentorship and professional development and standardizes professional development content.
- Requires the FDOE to publish results of a biennial survey on teaching conditions and student learning at the school, district and state levels.