Education


Education Reform Committee 2011-2012 Legislative Sessions

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

As the chair of the Education Policy/Reform Committee in the Minnesota House of Representatives for the last two years, I am proud of the hard work and historic reforms we achieved. Together, we worked in a bipartisan fashion to pass effective reforms that helped return control to local school districts, empower parents and offer more choices for high school students.

With a focus on “students first” policies, we sought to create an environment in which our children can one day compete and obtain good-paying jobs in a global economy. We saw many positive pieces of legislation come out of our committee and go on to become Minnesota law.

Please feel free to contact me if you have ideas or questions concerning Minnesota K-12 education policy.

Sincerely,
Representative Sondra Erickson
Education Reform Committee Chair

 

Education Reform Bills – 2011-12 Sessions

Requires teacher candidates to pass the basic skills exam
Passed into law

Expands the role of digital learning in K-12 education
Passed into law

Creates a new teacher evaluation system based on achievement
Passed into law

Establishes joint operations between school districts to share resources
Passed into law

Encourages early childhood screening to detect potential eye problems
Passed into law

Maximizes the revenues received from state-owned school trust lands
Passed into law

Expands Post Secondary Enrollment Options to 10th graders
Passed into law

Requires annual evaluation of principals, including student growth
Passed into law

Allows a career/technical credit to count for HS science requirement
Passed into law

Creates alternative pathway to teacher licensure
Passed into law

Creates reading intervention for K-3 to improve student outcomes
Passed into law

Allows school districts to use teacher effectiveness when making layoffs
Vetoed by Governor

Length of School Year:  A school board’s annual calendar must include at least 425 hours of  instruction for Kindergarten, 1,020 hours of instruction for Grades 1 through 6, and 935 hours of instruction for Grades 7-12, not including summer school.
Passed into law

Early Graduation Achievement Scholarship Program: A student participating in the program is eligible for a scholarship up to $2,500 if the student qualifies for graduation one semester or two trimesters early, $5,000 if the student qualifies for graduation two semesters or three or four trimesters early, or $7,500 if the student qualifies for graduation three or more semesters or five or more trimesters early.
Passed into law

Early Graduation Military Service Award Program: Students qualify for this program if they (a) enter into the military service prior to graduation; and (b) graduates early as outlined in the Early Graduation Achievement Scholarship Program.
Passed into law

Early Education Scholarship Program: The state establishes a program to ensure that low-income children receive high-quality pre-school opportunities through the Early Education Scholarship Program. A child must be at least three years of age and his/her parent(s) must have income that is less than 47 percent of the state median income in the current calendar year. Public and private pre-schools may compete for funds. Funding is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Program is effective starting with the 2012-13 school year.
Passed into law

Super-Tenure for School Counselors Eliminated: Enacted in 2007, the bill eliminates so-called “super tenure” for counselors that protected school counselors and related staff from layoffs due to budget reductions.
Passed into law

Principal Dismissal and Demotion: A principal may be dismissed for inefficiency in the management of a school and specifically for failing to improve student achievement by using longitudinal data. In addition, principals are no longer guaranteed right of transfer in the event of a demotion.
Passed into law

Full-Service School Zones: A school board may establish a full-service school zone and provide transportation for students attending a school in that full-service school zone. A full-service school zone may be established for a school that is located in a higher than average crime or other social and economic challenges that provides education, health or human services, or other parental support in collaboration with a city, county, state or nonprofit agency.
Passed into law

Collective Bargaining Reform: The January 15th deadline and penalty for settling teacher contract is now repealed. Districts previously faced a $25/student penalty for failing to settle teacher contracts by January 15 of the even-numbered years. This law change is effective July 21, 2011.
Passed into law

Minnesota House education reform committee Chairwoman Sondra Erickson talks reform

 
PREPARED AND PAID FOR BY THE COMMITTEE FOR ERICKSON, 1947 RIDGE ROAD, PRINCETON, MN 55371