Legislature(2015 - 2016)CAPITOL 106

03/16/2016 08:00 AM EDUCATION

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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+= SCR 1 CIVICS EDUCATION TASK FORCE TELECONFERENCED
Moved HCS CSSCR 1(EDC) Out of Committee
+= HB 102 RESIDENTIAL PSYCH CTR; EDUC. STDRS/FUNDS TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
+= HB 156 SCHOOL ACCOUNTABILITY MEASURES; FED. LAW TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
               SCR 1-CIVICS EDUCATION TASK FORCE                                                                            
                [Contains discussion of HB 89.]                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
8:03:59 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER announced that the  first order of business would be                                                               
CS FOR  SENATE CONCURRENT  RESOLUTION NO.  1(EDC), Relating  to a                                                               
legislative task force on civics education.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
8:04:04 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  TALERICO moved  to adopt  the proposed  committee                                                               
substitute  (CS) for  CSSCR1(EDC),  labeled 29-LS0237\I,  Glover,                                                               
3/11/16, as  the working document.   Without objection  Version I                                                               
was before the committee.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
8:04:52 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
TIM   LAMKIN,  Staff,   Senator   Gary   Stevens,  Alaska   State                                                               
Legislature, presented the CS, with  the incorporated changes and                                                               
notations of the requesting member, which read:                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     Change 1:                                                                                                                  
     Page 1, Line 8, following "knowledge," INSERT:                                                                             
        "based on an understanding of the values of our                                                                         
     founders that are revealed in our founding documents,"                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Intent: Requested by [Chair Keller], to give specific                                                                      
     reference to the U.S. founding documents.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     Change 2:                                                                                                                  
     Page 2, Lines 1, following "help":                                                                                         
          DELETE: "ensure that schools"                                                                                         
          INSERT: "encourage schools to"                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     Page 2, Line 2, following "for all students":                                                                              
          DELETE: "through"                                                                                                     
          INSERT: "in such a way so as to compliment"                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
        Intent: Representative Seaton requested this to                                                                         
     clarify that the task force would not be adopting new                                                                      
     state standards for civics education.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Change 3:                                                                                                                  
     Page 2, Line 14-20, following (4):                                                                                         
     INSERT: "(5) Evaluate the  merits of and implementation                                                                    
     requirements for requiring high  school seniors to take                                                                    
     and  satisfactorily  pass  the civics  portion  of  the                                                                    
     naturalization   test  used   by   the  United   States                                                                    
     Citizenship  and Immigration  Services  under 8  U.S.C.                                                                    
     1446(b)  as  a  contingency  of  graduating  from  high                                                                    
     school;                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     (6)  Review the  merits of  and consider  ways to  best                                                                    
     implement  the  Federal   Every  Student  Succeeds  Act                                                                    
     (ESSA), as it pertains to civics education in Alaska;"                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Result: Adds two subsections to  the duties of the task                                                                    
     force.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Intent:  Incorporates  the  goal   behind  HB  89,  and                                                                    
     considers  new federal  policy in  the field  of civics                                                                    
     education under ESSA.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Change 4:                                                                                                                  
     Page 3, Lines 8-9:                                                                                                         
          DELETE: "one member of the National Education                                                                         
     Association [(NEA)] who is a"                                                                                              
          INSERT: "one current or retired high school                                                                           
     teacher with significant  teaching experience in civics                                                                    
     or social studies education in the state"                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     Intent:  Chair's request  to remove  explicit reference                                                                    
     to the NEA.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
8:09:41 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER expressed  support for  the bill  and gratification                                                               
for inclusion of  the specific language inserted  on his request.                                                               
He  stressed  the importance  for  including  the reference,  and                                                               
paraphrased  the proposed  language from  page 1,  line 8,  which                                                               
read:                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     ... develop civics knowledge  based on an understanding                                                                    
     of the values  of the nation's founders  as revealed in                                                                    
     the  nation's founding  documents, including  knowledge                                                                    
     of our system of government and how it works, ...                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
8:10:30 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  COLVER  turned  to  the fiscal  note,  and  asked                                                               
whether civic  groups, or  other non-profits  organizations, have                                                               
been solicited to cover the costs of the task force.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MR. LAMKIN  indicated the frugality incorporated  into the fiscal                                                               
note and that  costs will be borne by members  of the task force.                                                               
The fiscal note was previously zeroed out, he reported.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
8:12:23 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 8:12 a.m. to 8:13 a.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
8:13:24 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE COLVER  moved to report  the CS for  CSSCR 1(EDC),                                                               
labeled  29-LS0237\I,  Glover,  3/11/16, out  of  committee  with                                                               
individual  recommendations  and  the  accompanying  zero  fiscal                                                               
notes.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
8:14:29 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   SEATON  objected   for   discussion,  and   upon                                                               
receiving  clarification  that  the  motion  was  on  Version  I,                                                               
removed his objection.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER without  further objection HCS for  CSSCR 1(EDC) was                                                               
reported from the House Education Standing Committee.                                                                           
        HB 156-SCHOOL ACCOUNTABILITY MEASURES; FED. LAW                                                                     
                 [Contains discussion of SCR 1]                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
9:22:25 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER announced that the  final order of business would be                                                               
HOUSE BILL  NO. 156 "An  Act relating to compliance  with federal                                                               
education  laws; relating  to public  school accountability;  and                                                               
providing  for  an  effective  date."    [Before  the  committee,                                                               
adopted as  a work draft  on 3/30/15, was the  proposed committee                                                               
substitute  (CS)   for  HB  156,  Version   29-LS0566\I,  Glover,                                                               
3/28/15.]                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:22:54 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  TALERICO moved  to adopt  the proposed  committee                                                               
substitute  (CS)   for  HB  156,  labeled   29-LS0566\Y,  Glover,                                                               
3/11/16, as  the working document.   Without objection  Version Y                                                               
was before the committee.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:23:08 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The committee took a brief at-ease at 9:23 a.m.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
9:23:40 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER  described  the  changes   proposed  in  Version  Y                                                               
beginning  with Sec.  1, page  1, lines  7-13, and  continuing on                                                               
page 2, lines 1-6, which read as follows:                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     *Section 1. AS 14.03.120(f) is amended to read:                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     (f) By January 15 of  each year, beginning in 2001, the                                                                    
     department  shall  provide  to the  governor  and  make                                                                    
     available to  the public and  the legislature  a report                                                                    
     on  the performance  of public  schools in  this state.                                                                    
     The report  must be entitled "Alaska's  Public Schools:                                                                    
     A Report Card  to the Public." The  report must include                                                                    
          (1) comprehensive information on each public                                                                          
     school compiled, collected, and  reported under (d) and                                                                    
     (e) of this section for the prior school year;                                                                             
          (2) a summary of the information described in (1)                                                                     
     of this subsection;  the summary must be  prepared in a                                                                    
     manner that  allows school  performance to  be measured                                                                    
     against established state education standards; and                                                                         
          (3) for a report due by or after January 15,                                                                          
     2005, the most recent  performance designation under AS                                                                    
     14.03.123  received by  each public  school and  by the                                                                  
     state public school system.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER explained that the inserted language is intended to                                                                
generate a report on the entire school system.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
9:26:18 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER turned to page 2, lines 17-19, which read as                                                                       
follows:                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     (2) a comparison  of the state public  school system to                                                                
     public schools in other  states, including a comparison                                                                
     of   student    participation   in    standards   based                                                                
     assessments    and   student    performance   on    the                                                                
     assessments;                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER explained that this language directs the State                                                                     
Board of Education to compare the performance of Alaska's                                                                       
students with that of students across the nation.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
9:27:04 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER continued on page 2, lines [24]-29, which read as                                                                  
follows:                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     (5)   [(4)]    additional   measures   that    may   be                                                                  
     progressively  implemented   by  the   commissioner  to                                                                    
     assist schools  or districts to improve  performance in                                                                    
     accordance with  this section;  [AND WITH  FEDERAL LAW;                                                                  
     TO  THE EXTENT  NECESSARY TO  CONFORM TO  FEDERAL LAW,]                                                                    
     the  additional measures  may be  unique  to a  certain                                                                    
     school or district if that  school or district receives                                                                    
     federal funding  that is not  available to  all schools                                                                    
     or districts in the state.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER said  the removal  of this  language is  to conform                                                               
with  a change  made later  in the  bill, and  indicated that  he                                                               
would refer back to this  section, when the other modification is                                                               
noted.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
9:28:05 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER turned to Sec. 4, page 3, lines 6-9, which read:                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     The  improvement plan  must,  to  the extent  possible,                                                                
     include  measures   that  increase  local   control  of                                                                
     education and  parental choice and that  do not require                                                                
     a direct increase  in state or federal  funding for the                                                                
     school or district.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER  said  this  is  a  response  to  the  new  federal                                                               
regulations  being instituted  under the  Every Student  Succeeds                                                               
Act (ESSA) and to provide local accountability.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
9:29:15 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER continued with Sec.  5, page 3, lines [11]-14, which                                                               
read:                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     (e)  The  department  shall   establish  a  program  of                                                                    
     special  recognition  for  those  public  schools  that                                                                    
     receive a  high performance  designation, based  on the                                                                
     accountability system  under (f) of this  section, that                                                                
     demonstrates   an   improvement   over   the   school's                                                                
     performance designation for 15 the previous year.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER  said this is the  aspect of the bill  that requires                                                               
the state  to establish a  system of special recognition  for the                                                               
schools  that  receive  a  high  performance  designation.    The                                                               
recognition  will be  based on  improvement,  rather than  status                                                               
quo.  A school maintaining the  standard, for many years, will be                                                               
incentivized to  improve beyond  the bar, he  said, and  there is                                                               
always room for improvement.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
9:30:10 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER  remained on  page 3, lines  18-19, to  indicate the                                                               
deleted Sec. 6 language, which read:                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     (1) [IMPLEMENT  20 U.S.C. 6301  - 7941  (ELEMENTARY AND                                                                    
     SECONDARY EDUCATION ACT OF 1965), AS AMENDED;                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER emphasized  the importance  of this  change, as  it                                                               
serves to  remove the federal  code, including ESSA,  and ensures                                                               
district  control.   The  interpretation  of  the language  being                                                               
deleted,  may be  construed in  a manner  that would  inhibit the                                                               
state legislature  from establishing policy, as  well as district                                                               
involvement  in  the  process.    He pointed  out  that  the  EED                                                               
attorneys  do not  consider  this deletion  to  be a  significant                                                               
change or threat.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
9:31:54 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER  continued with Sec.  6, page 3, lines  23-25, which                                                               
read:                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     (A) measures of  student performance on standards-based                                                                    
     assessments  in  language  arts  and  mathematics;  the                                                                
     assessments  must   be  selected  with  the   input  of                                                                
     teachers   and  school   administrators  and   minimize                                                                
     disruption to classroom instruction;                                                                                   
     (B)  measures  of   student  improvement  and  academic                                                                
     achievement; and                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER said  this language  assures that  the measures  of                                                               
achievement  are   based  on   student  improvement   and  actual                                                               
performance.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
9:32:22 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER moved to Sec. 7, page 4, lines [5-10], which read:                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     (2)  study  the  conditions  and needs  of  the  public                                                                    
     schools  of  the  state,   adopt  or  recommend  plans,                                                                    
     administer  and  evaluate   grants  to  improve  school                                                                    
     performance  awarded  under  AS  14.03.125,  and  adopt                                                                    
     regulations for the improvement  of the public schools;                                                                    
     the  department  may  consult with  the  University  of                                                                
     Alaska to  develop secondary education  requirements to                                                                
     improve  student  achievement  in  college  preparatory                                                                
     courses;                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER  said the  inserted language  is intended  to insure                                                               
that  EED works  in  concert  with the  University  of Alaska  to                                                               
improve student  achievement and provide  appropriate preparatory                                                               
courses.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:32:48 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER turned  to Sec.  7,  page 5,  lines [16-20],  which                                                               
read:                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     (12) provide educational opportunities  in the areas of                                                                    
     vocational education and  training, and basic education                                                                    
     to individuals over  16 years of age who  are no longer                                                                    
     attending  school;  the  department  may  consult  with                                                                
     businesses  and labor  unions to  develop a  program to                                                                
     prepare  students  for apprenticeships  or  internships                                                                
     that will lead to employment opportunities;                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER explained  that the  insertion here  is to  address                                                               
businesses and labor union collaboration  for the same purpose as                                                               
the language inserted in the previously reviewed paragraph (2).                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
9:33:08 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER pointed  out  page  6, line  5,  and the  reference                                                               
change,   inserting  AS   14.03.123(f)(1)(A)  and   removing  [AS                                                           
14.03.123(f)(2)(A)].  He  said this relates to  the inclusion and                                                               
consideration of the classroom teachers and local districts.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
9:33:39 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  DRUMMOND  returned to  page  2,  lines 17-19,  to                                                               
express  support for  the  added paragraph  and  ask for  further                                                               
elaboration on the proposed language.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER  replied that it changes  the accountability segment                                                               
of law.   He anticipates  that the  comparisons will be  made via                                                               
assessments  such  as  the  National  Assessment  of  Educational                                                               
Progress (NAEP).   The assessments will not be named  in the bill                                                               
as it  will be up to  the board to make  those determinations, he                                                               
said,  and added  that  it  may also  consider  the inclusion  of                                                               
international standards.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:35:16 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ  directed attention to page  2, lines 1-3,                                                               
which read:                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     (2) a  summary of the  information described in  (1) of                                                                    
     this  subsection; the  summary  must be  prepared in  a                                                                    
     manner that  allows school  performance to  be measured                                                                    
     against established state education standards; and                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ suggested amending this to include "and                                                                  
national education standards," to remain consistent with the                                                                    
page 2, lines 17-19 language [paragraph (2)].                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:36:32 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE COLVER asked if the CS contains opt-out                                                                          
provisions for parents who object to testing.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:37:22 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER directed attention to Sec. 8, page 6, lines 13-31,                                                                 
and continuing on page 7, lines 1-3, which read:                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     * Sec. 8.  AS 14.07 is amended by adding  a new section                                                                  
     to  read:  Sec.  14.07.175.  Development  of  statewide                                                                  
     assessment   plan;  review   of   education  laws   and                                                                  
     regulations.   (a)    Notwithstanding   AS   14.03.078,                                                                  
     14.03.120,   14.03.123,    14.03.300,   14.03.310,   AS                                                                    
     14.07.020,  14.07.030,  14.07.165,  or a  provision  of                                                                    
     federal  law to  the contrary,  the department  may not                                                                    
     require  a school  district or  school to  administer a                                                                    
     statewide  standards-based  assessment  after  July  1,                                                                    
     2016, and before  July 1, 2018. The  department and the                                                                    
     board  shall  create a  plan  for  working with  school                                                                    
     districts  to develop  or select  statewide assessments                                                                    
     that are  approved by school  districts. The  plan must                                                                    
     provide  for the  first administration  the assessments                                                                    
     not later than the school year that begins in 2020.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     (b) The  department shall  review state  education laws                                                                    
     and  regulations   to  identify  unnecessary   laws  or                                                                    
     regulations  and areas  where the  laws or  regulations                                                                    
     may  be  changed  to   provide  school  districts  with                                                                    
     greater control  over public education policy  in light                                                                    
     of  the enactment  of the  Every Student  Succeeds Act,                                                                    
     P.L. 114-95.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     (c) On or before January  1, 2018, the department shall                                                                    
     submit  a  report to  the  senate  secretary and  chief                                                                    
     clerk of  the house  of representatives and  notify the                                                                    
      legislature that the report is available. The report                                                                      
     must describe                                                                                                              
         (1) the final plan for developing or selecting                                                                         
     statewide assessments as 3 required under (a) of this                                                                      
     section; and                                                                                                               
           (2) recommendations for changes in laws or                                                                           
     regulations as required under (b) of this section.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     (d) In this section, "school district" has the meaning                                                                     
     given in AS 14.30.350.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER termed this to be  the most important section of the                                                               
bill, and  said notwithstanding the existing  statutes that apply                                                               
to   assessment   and   performance   standards,   this   section                                                               
establishes  that  EED  may  not require  a  school  district  to                                                               
administer a standard based test  assessment, after July 1, 2017.                                                               
The  language is  not  stated  as an  opt-out  provision, but  it                                                               
creates a timeframe  when tests will no longer be  required.  The                                                               
current reauthorization  of NCLB to  ESSA will take some  time to                                                               
assimilate,  and the  bill provides  the  time-out to  accomplish                                                               
that task.  The assumption  is that the commissioner of education                                                               
will be in conversation and  negotiation with the U.S. Department                                                               
of  Education  to ensure  that  federal  funding remains  secure.                                                               
This  is  a  reasonable  action, he  opined,  and  reported  that                                                               
California   has  paved   the  way   with  similar,   successful,                                                               
negotiations.    Further, he  stated  his  belief that  the  bill                                                               
provides  an important  tool  for  the governor/commissioner  for                                                               
negotiation purposes and  provide adequate time for  the state to                                                               
review Title 14 and establish  clearly defined accountability and                                                               
assessment requirements and standards.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
9:41:05 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 9:41 a.m. to 9:43 a.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:43:58 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SPOHNHOLZ  asked  whether   a  legal  opinion  is                                                               
forthcoming.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER  responded that  an earlier  version is  under legal                                                               
review, and comments,  thus far, indicate that  federal funds may                                                               
be at risk, but the constitutionality is not under question.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
9:45:36 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DR.  SUSAN  MCCAULEY  PhD, Interim  Commissioner,  Department  of                                                               
Education and  Early Development (EED),  turned to page  2, lines                                                               
17-19, and said  the ability for Alaska to  accomplish the stated                                                               
comparison requirements  would depend on two  situations.  First,                                                               
the  ability to  leverage results  of like  assessments that  are                                                               
administered  by both  Alaska and  other  states.   Or the  board                                                               
would  need   to  determine  other  factors   that  constitute  a                                                               
sufficient comparison of  Alaska's state system to  that of other                                                               
states; such  as graduation rates.   Alaska currently  utilizes a                                                               
unique,  custom designed,  assessment:   the  Alaska Measures  of                                                               
Progress (AMP).  The proposed  language suggests that AMP will be                                                               
replaced and an alternative assessment  adopted which would align                                                               
with  that of  other states.   However,  other than  the National                                                               
Assessment  of Educational  Progress  (NAEP), there  is no  other                                                               
uniform  assessment administered  by all  of the  states.   Every                                                               
state is free  to choose assessments, and some do  as Alaska did,                                                               
and administer unique assessments.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:48:55 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER passed the gavel to Vice Chair Vazquez.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
9:49:01 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER said  the  intent  of the  bill  is  to require  an                                                               
assessment  comparison, but  not to  mandate a  specific type  of                                                               
test for  the state.   In the past  NAEP has been  specified, but                                                               
has  received  resistance.   He  acknowledged  that the  proposed                                                               
language may need to be clarified.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:49:39 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ asked for elaboration on NAEP.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
COMMISSIONER MCCAULEY  offered that NAEP  is also referred  to as                                                               
the Nation's assessment, as it's  the only assessment required by                                                               
the federal government.   The test is administered  to a sampling                                                               
of students,  in two grade  levels, and national  comparisons are                                                               
drawn from the statistics.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
9:50:39 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ asked if it  is possible to administer the                                                               
NAEP to every child in the state.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
COMMISSIONER MCCAULEY stated her  understanding that the sampling                                                               
system used  is a  prescribed and  exclusive methodology  and she                                                               
offered to confirm her statement.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  DRUMMOND opined  that NAEP  is a  thorough, grade                                                               
specific,  assessment, and  the results  have continued  to prove                                                               
useful.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
9:54:02 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
COMMISSIONER MCCAULEY moved  to Sec. 8, page 6,  lines 13-31, and                                                               
continuing on  page 7,  lines 1-3, to  address the  timeframe and                                                               
proposed deadline.   Currently, the state is  under contract with                                                               
the  Achievement and  Assessment Institute  (AAI) [University  of                                                               
Kansas]  to  deliver and  administer  AMP.    It was  decided  in                                                               
February [2016],  that the department  would issue a  request for                                                               
proposal (RFP) to replace the  AMP assessment.  Federal and state                                                               
law requires  that an  annual assessment  be administered  to all                                                               
students in  grades 3-8 as well  as all high school  levels.  She                                                               
said completing  the proposal process by  next spring constitutes                                                               
a "tall order," and described  the steps involved, which include:                                                               
issuing   the  proposal,   receiving  and   reviewing  responses,                                                               
selecting  viable proposals,  and formulating  a new  assessment.                                                               
Whether  the assessment  chosen is  custom designed,  or off  the                                                               
shelf,  she said  aspects will  need  to be  tailored to  include                                                               
elements  that  pertain  specifically  to  Alaska.    Checks  and                                                               
balances  will need  to be  considered in  the areas  of cultural                                                               
bias and  sensitivity of items  given the unique  demographics of                                                               
the state.   The job must be done right,  she stressed, and doing                                                               
it fast,  although possible, may  compromise the outcome.   Thus,                                                               
the challenge  is doing it  right, as well  as fast, at  the same                                                               
time.   There may be  an opportunity,  and some wiggle  room, she                                                               
conjectured and directed attention to  page 6, lines 15-17, which                                                               
read:                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     Notwithstanding  AS  14.03.078,  14.03.120,  14.03.123,                                                                    
     14.03.300,   14.03.310,    AS   14.07.020,   14,07.030,                                                                    
     14.07.165,  or  a  provision  of  federal  law  to  the                                                                    
     contrary, the department may not ...                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
COMMISSIONER  MCCAULEY  opined that  it  would  be beneficial  to                                                               
negotiate an  understanding of state requirements,  with the U.S.                                                               
Department  of Education;  given the  reauthorization transition.                                                               
The  ESSA  law is  very  different  than  NCLB, and  an  enormous                                                               
transition is  occurring throughout the  field of education  on a                                                               
national level.  Alaska has  already begun the transition and the                                                               
confluence  might provide  room for  negotiation by  establishing                                                               
what the federal government will  minimally require by the spring                                                               
of  2017.    She  opined  that  it's  improbable  that  the  U.S.                                                               
Department  of Education  would grant  a two  year reprieve  from                                                               
administering a  statewide assessment.   Additionally,  the state                                                               
may question the wisdom in  not collecting assessment data on the                                                               
students  for a  period  of two  years.   However,  quality is  a                                                               
concern, and  to have  all of  the conditions  previously stated,                                                               
met by  the spring of  2017, will  make that a  difficult period,                                                               
she underscored.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
9:59:27 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  COLVER  cautioned  that  rushing  to  prepare  an                                                               
assessment  may not  prove  beneficial,  and the  superintendents                                                               
need to be  heard.  The elements of the  bill address reform that                                                               
is necessary, he  opined, and a hiatus would be  appropriate.  He                                                               
agreed that being  prepared with a new regimen by  spring of 2017                                                               
may not be  plausible.  He then  referred to the CS  page 6, line                                                               
17 to point  out the term "may" and opined  that "shall" could be                                                               
more appropriate in this section.                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
10:02:44 AM                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
POSIE BOGGS,  Alaskans for Reading Proficiency,  offered comments                                                               
on SCR1  and HB  156, from  a prepared  statement, which  read as                                                               
follows [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     I'm  involved now  in six  advocacy  groups focused  on                                                                    
     reading  proficiency for  Alaskan children  for example                                                                    
     Literate  Nation Alaska  and the  Alaska Branch  of the                                                                    
     International Dyslexia Association.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     I would like to testify on SCR 1 and HB 156.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     First, I  would simply  like The Civics  Education Task                                                                    
     Force to know  a couple of little details  that I think                                                                    
     are  important to  their work.   I  would like  them to                                                                    
     know the  grade level  reading required for  the United                                                                    
     States   original   or   founding   documents.      The                                                                    
     Declaration  of  Independence  requires  a  12th  grade                                                                    
     reading ability, the Federalist  papers require an 18th                                                                    
     grade,  college  graduation  reading ability,  and  the                                                                    
     Constitution  of  the  United States  requires  a  17th                                                                    
     grade reading ability.  Given  that only 30% of Alaskan                                                                    
     students graduate high school able  to read at the 12th                                                                    
     grade  level,  I  think  we  have a  little  bit  of  a                                                                    
     problem. School districts are not  meeting the needs of                                                                    
     our students.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     Second, I  would like to  testify on HB 156.   However,                                                                    
     my testimony can  also be related to HB 102.   You just                                                                    
     heard from  a mother on HB  102 and the effects  of low                                                                    
     reading proficiency on mental health.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     In  HB 156,  I'm very  much in  support of  item number                                                                    
     five, line  6 in  page 2 [CS  for HB  156, 29-LS0566\I,                                                                    
     Glover, 3/28/15, previously adopted 3/30/15].                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     That states  the methodology used  to assign  the state                                                                    
     public  school system  of performance  designation that                                                                    
     compares  the  state  public school  system  to  public                                                                    
     school  systems  in  other states  and  countries.    I                                                                    
     believe that  this the most important  drivers that can                                                                    
     in  proof Alaska's  dismal reading  proficiency levels.                                                                    
     Rep.  Keller   thank  you  very  much   for  supporting                                                                    
     matching  the rigor  of National  standards because  we                                                                    
     can do it.   I would further recommend that  on page 3,                                                                    
     line  23 be  changed  to assess  English language  arts                                                                    
     that  reports  reading  proficiency  as  a  unique  and                                                                    
     separate  result.   What the  heck is  English Language                                                                    
     Arts anyway is the question asked by parents.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     However, on  page 2 line  16 where it  gives preference                                                                    
     to measures that increase local control.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     I have some concerns.   My main concern is that reading                                                                    
     instruction   is  scientifically   evidenced  but   our                                                                    
     teachers  and their  own educators  often  do not  have                                                                    
     this  knowledge  because  the  research  about  reading                                                                    
     occurs  outside of  education. Many  do  not even  know                                                                    
     that  it  exists.   If  we  continue to  leave  reading                                                                    
     instruction  up  to local  control  this  means that  a                                                                    
     school  or  district  or   school  board  can  continue                                                                    
     choosing  to ignore  and  discount scientific  evidence                                                                    
     from  over 35  National  Institutes  of Health  reading                                                                    
     research centers  for over  40 years.   If we  do allow                                                                    
     schools,  districts,  and  school  boards  to  continue                                                                    
     current  practices,  Alaskan  children  are  doomed  to                                                                    
     ridiculously low  reading proficiency  levels.   I want                                                                    
     the  legislature  to  make  a   plan  to  uphold  their                                                                    
     responsibility  per  the  Moore   Case  to  ensure  our                                                                    
     children  are proficient  readers.   My  masters is  in                                                                    
     Educational diagnostics  and Section  8 taking  a break                                                                    
     is a good  idea however, in the mean time  I would also                                                                    
     recommend  that there  are  quick standardized  reading                                                                    
     assessment tools that schools  and districts could give                                                                    
     to students that would provide  a very accurate reading                                                                    
     proficiency  score  so  that parents  know  while  this                                                                    
     transition  period  happens.   They  are  low cost  and                                                                    
     group administered.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
10:09:05 AM                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE VAZQUEZ returned the gavel to Chair Keller.                                                                      

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
SCR1_CivicsEd_BillText_VersionI.pdf HEDC 3/16/2016 8:00:00 AM
SCR 1
Work Draft for {versioni} 3/16/2016.pdf HEDC 3/16/2016 8:00:00 AM
SCR1_CivicEd_VersionI_Summary_of_Changes.pdf HEDC 3/16/2016 8:00:00 AM
SCR 1
SCR1 Fiscal Note.pdf HEDC 3/16/2016 8:00:00 AM
SCR 1
Work Draft for {version s HB102} 3/16/2016.pdf HEDC 3/16/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 102
6 HB102 Fiscal Note EED-SS 3-13-15.pdf HEDC 3/16/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 102
HB 102 ASD Opposition House Education Committee Letter 031516.pdf HEDC 3/16/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 102
HB156 Fiscal Note.pdf HEDC 3/16/2016 8:00:00 AM
1. HB156 Work draft Y.pdf HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/16/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 156
HB102 North Star Response to Kenai Peninsula School District.pdf HEDC 3/16/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 102