R-III News from the desk of Superintendent Mark S. Penny
JANUARY 29, 2016
THINKING OUTSIDE THE BOX FOR LEARNING AT BOONE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
Third grade students at Boone, under the guidance of their classroom teacher Mrs. Erin Roth and Technology Integration Specialist Natalie Cook created a math video.
The actions the students are doing were learned at the Mathematical Practices PD that is provided to teachers twice per month after school in the afternoon in Powell Conference Room.
Mrs. Roth's students are so excited to be movie stars! Click on the link below (or copy and paste into your web browser) to watch the video:
VALENTINES FOR VETERANS
A request from Representative Luetkemeyer resulted in our students creating hundreds of Valentine Day cards for veterans. Students from Early Childhood to High School participated in this event.
> January 8, 2016
> Luetkemeyer Requests “Valentines for Veterans” from Individuals in Missouri’s 3rd District
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (MO-03) is calling for all constituents in Missouri’s 3rd Congressional District to participate in his first ever “Valentines for Veterans” program.
“I am extremely excited to implement the “Valentines for Veterans” program. It is my hope the 3rd District takes a moment and creates a valentine to be sent throughout the district to the men and women who so bravely fought for the safety of our nation. This is a simple way for school classes, youth groups, families, and friends to help brighten a veterans day.”
HARLEM WIZARDS ARE BACK!
Save the date! Order your tickets now . . .
Supporting the Lincoln County RIII Education Foundation -
Sunday, February 28th at 2:00 pm (doors open at 1) & 6:30 pm (doors open at 5:30)
Join the fun at Troy Buchanan High School, located at 1190 Old Cap Au Gris Rd., for a 2:00 pm game! Doors open at 1:00 pm.
Make sure you purchase your tickets in advance. Advance tickets are $5 for Students, $10 for General Admission, $15 for Reserved seats, and $25 for Court Side Plus. If available, tickets at the door will cost $7 for Students and $12 for General Admission. To purchase online visit http://www.harlemwizards.com/schedule-tickets/. *The online box office for this event will close 24 hours before the event. If you purchase tickets online, you will receive your ticket via email. You MUST print the ticket(s) and bring them to the event. Your ticket will be scanned for entry.
NEW BANK OF OLD MONROE PROGRAM TO BENEFIT SCHOOLS
Bank of Old Monroe launched a new program called "School Debit Card Program". The program will be offered to consumer checking account holders, and Bank of Old Monroe will donate $0.03 to the R3 School District for each purchase transaction completed by the consumer.
Thank you, Bank of Old Monroe, for supporting Lincoln County R-III students!
As many of you know, we recently lost a student to an accident on Highway 61 between Troy & Wentzville. Unfortunately, this is not the first student lost. Community leaders launched a campaign today to get the attention of lawmakers and MoDOT.
Please do your part. Watch - https://youtu.be/CjUF78vN9Rc and share this movie produced by the Lincoln County Fire Department in collaboration with first responders from Lincoln and St. Charles counties.
The 2016 Session is beginning to pick up steam, however much of the work is still being done at the committee level with very little being done on the floor of either the House or Senate that affect public education. As you can see, we expect a busy week at the committee level next week.
Below are a list of bills, along with summaries, that will be heard next week regarding public education. If you have concerns regarding any of the legislation discussed below, please contact the appropriate committee members from the committee lists provided above said legislation. The committee lists and discussed legislation can be reviewed by clicking on the embedded links above each summary.
House – Emerging Issues in Education Committee List
Monday, February 1, 2016 at 12:00 p.m. in House Hearing Room 1
HB 1943 – Rep. David Wood (R – Versailles)
As has been mentioned in previous bulletins, the current version of HB 1943 modifies various areas of school funding (i.e., removing summer school from the foundation formula, allowing unaccredited and provisionally accredited school districts to extend their regular school year, reinstituting a 5% cap on growth in the State Adequacy Target, etc.).
After having a meaningful and substantive conversation regarding the revisions with Representative Wood, we are optimistic that the bill will be changed significantly. However, we are withholding final judgment until we are able to review the revisions in detail. As of the time of this message, we have yet to see an updated bill or simulation of the bill's effect on school districts.
House – Elementary and Secondary Education Committee List
Monday, February 1, 2016 at 5:00 p.m. or Upon Adjournment in House Hearing Room 7
HB 1602 – Rep. Becky Ruth (R – Festus)
This bill specifies that for counties without a county commission, in an instance where two or more vacancies exist on a school board, the vacancies must be filled by the county executive with the advice and consent of the county council.
HB 1416 – Rep. Jay Houghton (R – Martinsburg)
This bill prohibits school districts from beginning their school year earlier than September 1st beginning with the 2017-2018 school year and for all years thereafter.
HB 1683 – Rep. Steve Cookson (R – Poplar Bluff)
Beginning in school year 2017-18, this bill modifies the law governing school start dates by removing the option that a school district may set its opening date more than ten calendar days prior to the first Monday in September.
SAC is opposed to HB 1416 and HB 1683 as they seek to limit the local control of a school board. As we noted in a previous bulletin, in many communities, school districts align their calendars with industry needs, agricultural needs, tourism needs, but primarily to the needs of their students. These needs are not the same for every school district in the state and a one-size fits all start date for schools is not the answer.
HB 1667 – Rep. Kathy Swan (R – Cape Girardeau)
This bill specifies that charter schools will become eligible to receive state funding for early childhood education at the same time as the district in which they are located becomes eligible.
House – Emerging Issues Committee List
Monday, February 1, 2016 Upon Adjournment in House Hearing Room 5
HB 1735 – Rep. Charlie Davis (R – Webb City)
This bill creates the Password Privacy Protection Act. The bill specifies that school districts are prohibited from requiring or requesting a student to disclose any information that would allow access for the school district to his or her social media account. The bill further states that a school district is prohibited from requiring a student to add a school employee or volunteer to his or her list of contacts on the student's social media account. The school district is further prohibited from taking any action to discipline a student due to his or her refusal to provide password/account information or to add a school employee or volunteer to his or her list of contacts.
This bill permits a school district to access information about a student that is publicly available and further permits a school district to request or require a student to share specific content that has been reported to the school as a part of a specified investigation. The school district may also prohibit students from using a personal social medial account for school purposes or accessing or operating a personal social media account during school hours or while on school property.
If a school district or its employees/volunteers violate any of the above-referenced provisions, a cause of action for general or specific damages has been created.
The bill also pertains to employees. Indeed, the bill prohibits an employer (e.g., school district) from requesting or requiring an employee or applicant to disclose any user name or password for accessing a personal on-line account or service and further prohibits an employer from requiring an employee or applicant to add the employer to the employee's or applicant's list of contacts.
The bill further prohibits an employer from disciplining an employee for his or her refusal to disclose his or her username or password. However, the bill specifies that the act must not be construed to prevent an employer from engaging in specified investigatory activities regarding work-related employee misconduct once the employer is in receipt of specific information about activity on a personal online account or personal online service by an employee.
The bill allows an employer to request or require an employee to disclose any user name or password for accessing an electronic communications device paid for in whole or in part by the employer or any account or services provided by the employer used by the employee for business purposes or as a result of the employee's employment relationship with the employer.
HB 2058 – Rep. Elijah Haahr (R – Springfield)
This bill establishes the Cronkite New Voices Act. The act provides that a student journalist has a right to exercise freedom of speech and of the press in school-sponsored media regardless of whether the media is supported financially by the school district, if the student uses school facilities in production of the media, or if the media is produced in conjunction with class.
These provisions do not apply to content that is libelous or slanderous; or to content that constitutes an unwarranted invasion of privacy; violates federal or state law; creates a clear and present danger of the commission of an unlawful act; a violation of school district policy; or the material and substantial disruption of the orderly operation of the school.
This bill prohibits a school district from disciplining a student operating as an independent journalist. The bill requires each school district to adopt a written student freedom of expression policy which must include reasonable provisions for the time, place, and manner of student expression. The policy may include restrictions on speech that may be defined as profane, harassing, threatening, or intimidating.
House – Pensions Committee List
Tuesday, February 2, 2016 at 9 a.m. in House Hearing Room 4
HB 1472 – Rep. Tony Dugger (R – Hartville)
This bill clarifies provisions related to public pension forfeitures. When a felony is committed in direct connection with or directly related to the participant's duties, the employer is required to notify the appropriate retirement system and provide information in connection with the felony charge or conviction. The bill states that a felony conviction based on specific felonies enumerated in the bill will result the in the participant being ineligible for retirement benefits.
HB 1709 – Rep. Mike Lair (R – Chillicothe)
This bill allows retired members of the Public School or Public Education Employees Retirement Systems who have elected a reduced retirement allowance to provide for survivor benefits for his or her spouse to have the retirement allowance increased to the single life annuity amount, with no survivor benefits, if the member and his or her spouse become divorced on or after September 1, 2016, only if the dissolution decree provides for sole retention by the retired person of all rights in the retirement allowance. Any such increase in the retirement allowance will be effective upon the receipt of an application for the increase and a certified copy of the decree of dissolution that meets the requirements.
HB 1710 – Rep. Mike Lair (R – Chillicothe)
Currently, a retired teacher from the Kansas City Public School Retirement System can work part-time for a school district during a school year and not forfeit his or her retirement allowance. The retired teacher can work up to 600 hours and earn up to 50% of the annual salary received by the person while they were teaching prior to retirement. The bill expands this provision to include someone who is employed by a third party or working as an independent contractor as a substitute teacher or other position normally requiring certification. Documentation may be required showing proof of compliance with this provision.
Currently, a retired teacher receiving an allowance from the Missouri Public School Retirement System can work part-time for a school district covered by the retirement system and not forfeit his or her retirement allowance. The retired person can work up to 550 hours and earn up to 50% of the annual salary received by the person while they were teaching prior to retirement. The bill expands this provision to any individual who is employed by a third party or working as an independent contractor as a substitute teacher or other position normally requiring certification. Documentation may be required showing proof of compliance with this provision.
House – Local Government Committee List
Tuesday, February 2, 2016 Upon Adjournment of Morning Session in House Hearing Room 5
HB 1650 – Rep. Kevin Corlew (R – Kansas City)
Beginning January 1, 2017, this bill limits the increase in assessed valuation of residential property to the percentage of the increase in Social Security benefits in the previous year for an individual who is 67 years of age or older or who is disabled and has a federal adjusted gross income of less than $60,000 for a taxpayer filing as “single” on his or her tax return or $68,000 for a taxpayer filing as “married filing jointly” on his or her tax return and owns and lives in his or her principal residence.
Any taxpayer meeting the requirements stated above must provide the county assessor with either proof of age or proof of disability. The provisions of the bill will expire December 1st six years after the effective date unless reauthorized.
For the provisions above to take effect, the local county commission must issue an order stating the county’s intention to adopt said provisions.
SAC is opposed to HB 1650.
House – Ways and Means Committee List
Tuesday, February 2, 2016 at 5:00 p.m. in House Hearing Room 1
HB 1589 – Rep. Andrew Koenig (R – Manchester)
This bill institutes a voucher tax credit program. Beginning January 1, 2017, this bill authorizes a tax credit equal to 65% of a taxpayer's cash donations to the newly created, Foster Child Education Fund, to be used solely for providing vouchers to foster care children in order for them to attend a private elementary or secondary school in this state. For the donation to qualify for this credit, it must be at least $100 and not more than $50,000. The credit is limited to 50% of the taxpayer's state tax liability for the taxable year the credit is claimed, cannot exceed $25,000 per taxpayer, per taxable year, and is capped at $5 million per fiscal year and issued but not redeemed credit at $15 million per fiscal year. The credit cannot be refunded, or sold, but can be carried forward for three years.
An eligible recipient is a school-aged child enrolled in grades K-12 and who is in state protective custody for at least 12 of the last 48 months. The voucher created in the bill is an annual grant to eligible recipients to cover all or part of the applicable tuition and fees at a private school. The amount must be the lesser of the previous year’s tuition and fees for non-scholarship students at the private school or 90% of the previous year’s average current expenditure per average daily attendance for the student’s district of residence or the tuition amount set by the voluntary inter-district coordinating council for the student’s district of residence, if applicable.
Any scholarship recipient will continue to be eligible to receive his or her voucher upon a legal adoption, or after graduation from the private school he or she first received a voucher if attending a new private school.
SAC is opposed to HB 1589.
Complete Listing of 2015 Bill Summaries Impacting Education
If you can not access this link, simply copy and paste
http://www.mcsa.org/reference in your browser.