Tuesday was the deadline for committees to report (i.e., pass) general bills that originated in the other chamber. SB 2001, the teacher pay raise bill, was among the bills that did not meet Tuesday’s deadline, as it was never considered by House Education or House Appropriations, so it died on the calendar. House leaders cited COVID-19’s decimation of state revenues and the state budget as to why the pay raise died. Preliminary budget numbers call for most state agencies to be cut by 6.5% next year. We will continue to work with legislators to pass a pay increase as soon as possible, as it is critical for teacher retention and recruitment.
The following bills are among those that met Tuesday’s deadline and remain alive:
SB 2286 expands the Early Learning Collaboratives.The bill will enhance early childhood education opportunities throughout the state.
SB 2594 amends current law governing the Equal Opportunity for Students with Special Needs Act (i.e., SPED vouchers) and strengthens the accountability of this program and its funding. In its current form, SB 2594 eliminates online and out-of-state schools from eligibility, but there are rumblings at the capitol of a push to amend the bill to allow eligibility for these schools. MPE opposes any such amendment. SB 2594 passed the House earlier this morning without any amendments, but it has been held on a motion to reconsider.
SB 2511 has been approved by both the Senate and House, so it is headed to Governor Reeves for his consideration. The bill revises the entry requirements for teacher prep programs to includea 21 ACT or 3.0 GPA orpassing the Praxis Core. SB 2511 provides greater flexibility to potential teacher prep students and is a significant step in addressing Mississippi’s teacher shortage.
Click here for our latest bill tracking spreadsheet which reflects action as of 9:30 a.m. this morning. The next critical deadline is next Wednesday, June 17, which is the deadline for floor action on general bills originating in the other chamber.