The last two days of the session were long and the mischief was minor Sine Die 2021. Several education bills did pass the session and April 1st is the beginning of reviewing the key bills that will have an impact on K-12 education in Georgia.

The FY 22 budget was passed late into the night Wednesday.  It is a favorable budget to K-12 education so please take the time to review.  I will complete a full analysis of the budget in a future Friday News and certainly at Spring Bootstrap.  Review the last column of the spreadsheet labeled CC.  This is where a conference committee was appointed by both chambers to negotiate and ultimately come to agreement on the small differences the Senate and House had on the budget.  So, those numbers in the last column will be the numbers we will be working with as a final FY22 budget. The QBE formula remains virtually untouched from the Governor’s recommendation and the 60% restoration also stands.

Legislation noted:

SB 42 – This bill went through many iterations and finally landed with discipline data kept in the school climate ratings and districts must post their discipline data on their website. (Too many cooks in the kitchen on this portion of the bill)  The Dexter Mosely Act’s language was added to this bill which allows home school students to participate in extra-curricular activities at their zoned local district.  One of the key points of this legislation is the home school students must be enrolled in at least one class/segment to participate in any of the public school sponsored activities.

SB 59 – Raises the charter school supplement amount for local charter schools.  Along with providing access to health care benefits.  There is language that requires some proportionate Titile dollars to be sent to charters as well. (the Title language is concerning, it is unclear)

HB 287– Requires tobacco and vaping products be added to current drug and alcohol content for grades K-12.

HB 32  – Teacher tax credit to attract them to rural districts and high need areas.

Hard to believe we have arrived to April 2021, and the Governor is now relaxing state of emergency restrictions and vaccinations are increasingly available for the citizens of Georgia.  One year ago the landscape was so unrecognizable and very challenging to roles as leaders of K-12 education.  As one of the results, we canceled Spring Bootstrap 2020.  Here we are chugging slowly back to a more balanced and potentially refreshing moment for our local communities to return to “some” cautious normalcy.  The last year has definitely left an indelible impression on how we deliver K-12 education in each of our communities.  It has also shown the critical importance of local schools and their impact on students, parents, educators, business communities and even the politicians. It is our time to tell our story to all from the delivering of food and educational content to our children throughout the pandemic. Developing the story line of how it has changed our views on instructional integrity and the emphasis of the importance of literacy, numeracy, and critical thinking.  Now engaging in the conversation and planning of how to address the students’ learning loss using the CARES Act funding is of the utmost importance.  How you handle the learning loss dilemma will be judged by your local communities and state officials. You have accomplished much during the pandemic and now we are emerging to a “new” day.  Take the opportunity to shine!

GSSA News:

Spring Bootstrap is scheduled for April 21-22, 2021, in Savannah at the Marriott Riverfront.  Our conference theme is Steadily Leading in an Uncertain Environment.  We have a variety of speakers that will support the theme and hopefully you will find the time for renewal and networking with your colleagues.  There will be many activities that will support the reconnecting of relationships that will last a lifetime.  We all need the support and camaraderie.

Quote: If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, you are a leader. John Q. Adams

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