University of Arkansas Office for Education Policy

News From The Capitol: January 21, 2015

In AR Legislature on January 21, 2015 at 4:51 pm

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Scholarship Deferment

In its first meeting of the 2015 legislative session, the Senate Committee on Education this morning heard Rep. Nate Bell’s presentation of HB 1011 that would allow Governor’s Distinguished Scholarship recipients to defer college entrance for up to two years for military or community service or family/medical emergency. According to Bell, other state scholarships already include this allowance. HB 1011 passed the House yesterday with a vote of 99-0, and the Senate education committee voted to move the bill on to the full Senate with a Do Pass recommendation.

Paperwork Reduction

The House Committee on Education also held its first meeting of the session yesterday. Rep. Kim Hendren presented HB 1051 that would form a public school efficiency and evaluation task force to examine where regulations and reporting requirements may create excessive paperwork for teachers and administrators. Several committee members noted that their teacher constituents regularly express frustration that paperwork infringes upon teaching time. Rather than appointing another task force, however, committee members agreed the issues could be addressed by the House K-12 Subcommittee on Education chaired by Rep. Charlotte Douglas. Douglas committed to completing the work by December 2016 as specified in HB 1051, and Hendren pulled down the bill.

Several education bills are on committee agendas for next week, and News from the Capitol will keep you posted.

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