Legislature(2015 - 2016)CAPITOL 106

03/16/2016 08:00 AM EDUCATION

Note: the audio and video recordings are distinct records and are obtained from different sources. As such there may be key differences between the two. The audio recordings are captured by our records offices as the official record of the meeting and will have more accurate timestamps. Use the icons to switch between them.

Download Mp3. <- Right click and save file as
Download Video part 1. <- Right click and save file as

* 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
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
               HOUSE EDUCATION STANDING COMMITTEE                                                                             
                         March 16, 2016                                                                                         
                           8:03 a.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Wes Keller, Chair                                                                                                
Representative Liz Vazquez, Vice Chair                                                                                          
Representative Jim Colver                                                                                                       
Representative Paul Seaton                                                                                                      
Representative David Talerico                                                                                                   
Representative Harriet Drummond                                                                                                 
Representative Ivy Spohnholz                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
All members present                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CS FOR SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 1(EDC)                                                                                  
Relating to a legislative task force on civics education.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED HCS CSSCR 1(EDC) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 102                                                                                                              
"An Act providing for funding of educational services for                                                                       
students in residential psychiatric treatment centers."                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD & HELD                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 156                                                                                                              
"An Act relating to compliance with federal education laws;                                                                     
relating to public school accountability; and providing for an                                                                  
effective date."                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     - HEARD & HELD                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
BILL: SCR 1                                                                                                                   
SHORT TITLE: CIVICS EDUCATION TASK FORCE                                                                                        
SPONSOR(s): SENATOR(s) STEVENS                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
01/21/15       (S)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
01/21/15       (S)       EDC, FIN                                                                                               
02/26/15       (S)       EDC AT 3:30 PM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
02/26/15       (S)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
02/26/15       (S)       MINUTE (EDC)                                                                                           
03/12/15       (S)       EDC AT 3:30 PM BUTROVICH 205                                                                           
03/12/15       (S)       Moved CSSCR 1(EDC) Out of Committee                                                                    
03/12/15       (S)       MINUTE (EDC)                                                                                           
03/16/15       (S)       EDC RPT CS 4DP SAME TITLE                                                                              
03/16/15       (S)       DP: DUNLEAVY, STEVENS, HUGGINS, GARDNER                                                                
03/25/15       (S)       FIN AT 2:00 PM SENATE FINANCE 532                                                                      
03/25/15       (S)       CLEAN AIR ACT PLAN                                                                                     
04/09/15       (S)       FIN AT 1:30 PM SENATE FINANCE 532                                                                      
04/09/15       (S)       Moved CS SCR 1(EDC) Out of Committee                                                                   
04/09/15       (S)       MINUTE (FIN)                                                                                           
04/10/15       (S)       FIN RPT CS (EDC) 5DP 2NR                                                                               
04/10/15       (S)       DP: KELLY, MACKINNON, BISHOP, DUNLEAVY,                                                                
                         HOFFMAN                                                                                                
04/10/15       (S)       NR: MICCICHE, OLSON                                                                                    
04/13/15       (S)       TRANSMITTED TO (H)                                                                                     
04/13/15       (S)       VERSION: CSSCR 1(EDC)                                                                                  
04/13/15       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
04/13/15       (H)       EDC, FIN                                                                                               
02/03/16       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
02/03/16       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
02/03/16       (H)       MINUTE (EDC)                                                                                           
03/16/16       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 102                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: RESIDENTIAL PSYCH CTR; EDUC. STDRS/FUNDS                                                                           
SPONSOR(s): EDUCATION                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
02/11/15       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
02/11/15       (H)       EDC, FIN                                                                                               
03/20/15       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/20/15       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/20/15       (H)       MINUTE (EDC)                                                                                           
04/08/15       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
04/08/15       (H)       <Bill Hearing Rescheduled to 4/10/15>                                                                  
04/10/15       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
04/10/15       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/10/15       (H)       MINUTE (EDC)                                                                                           
04/13/15       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
04/13/15       (H)       Scheduled but Not Heard                                                                                
04/15/15       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
04/15/15       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/15/15       (H)       MINUTE (EDC)                                                                                           
02/01/16       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
02/01/16       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
02/01/16       (H)       MINUTE (EDC)                                                                                           
02/10/16       (H)       EDC AT 8:30 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
02/10/16       (H)       <Bill Hearing Canceled>                                                                                
03/16/16       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 156                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: SCHOOL ACCOUNTABILITY MEASURES; FED. LAW                                                                           
SPONSOR(s): KELLER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
03/20/15       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
03/20/15       (H)       EDC                                                                                                    
03/30/15       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/30/15       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
03/30/15       (H)       MINUTE (EDC)                                                                                           
04/08/15       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
04/08/15       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/08/15       (H)       MINUTE (EDC)                                                                                           
04/10/15       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
04/10/15       (H)       Scheduled but Not Heard                                                                                
04/13/15       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
04/13/15       (H)       Heard & Held                                                                                           
04/13/15       (H)       MINUTE (EDC)                                                                                           
03/14/16       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
03/14/16       (H)       Scheduled but Not Heard                                                                                
03/16/16       (H)       EDC AT 8:00 AM CAPITOL 106                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
TIM LAMKIN, Staff                                                                                                               
Senator Gary Stevens                                                                                                            
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Presented the proposed committee substitute                                                              
(CS) for CSSCR 1(EDC).                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
JANET OGAN, Staff                                                                                                               
Representative Wes Keller                                                                                                       
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Presented the proposed committee substitute                                                              
(CS) for HB 102, on behalf of the House Education Standing                                                                      
Committee, which Representative Keller chairs.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
EVELYN ALSOP, Education Director                                                                                                
North Star Behavioral Health                                                                                                    
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Responded to questions during the hearing                                                                
on HB 102.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CAELA NIELSEN, Parent                                                                                                           
Eagle River, Alaska                                                                                                             
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 102.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
ED GRAFF, Superintendent                                                                                                        
Anchorage School District (ASD)                                                                                                 
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in opposition to HB 102.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
KATHIE WASSMANN, Executive Director                                                                                             
Special Education                                                                                                               
Fairbanks North Star Borough School District                                                                                    
Fairbanks, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified with concern for HB 102.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
JOSHUA BANKS, Staff                                                                                                             
Representative David Talerico                                                                                                   
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Presented an amendment to HB 102, on behalf                                                              
of Representative Talerico.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
DR. SUSAN MCCAULEY, PhD                                                                                                         
Interim Commissioner                                                                                                            
Department of Education and Early Development (EED)                                                                             
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified with concern for HB 156.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
POSIE BOGGS                                                                                                                     
Alaskans for Reading Proficiency                                                                                                
Anchorage, Alaska                                                                                                               
POSITION STATEMENT:  Offered comments on the proposed committee                                                               
substitute (CS) for SCR 1; testified on HB 156, Version 29-                                                                     
LS0566\I.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
8:03:19 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR WES  KELLER called the  House Education  Standing Committee                                                             
meeting to order at 8:03  a.m.  Representatives Keller, Talerico,                                                               
Seaton,  and   Colver  were  present   at  the  call   to  order.                                                               
Representatives Drummond,  Spohnholz and  Vazquez arrived  as the                                                               
meeting was in progress.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
               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.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
8:15:14 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 8:15 a.m. to 8:27 a.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
        HB 102-RESIDENTIAL PSYCH CTR; EDUC. STDRS/FUNDS                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
8:27:01 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER pointed out there have  been a number of versions to                                                               
the bill  with concerns the  committee has tried  to accommodate,                                                               
and the at ease was to ascertain a possible understanding.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
8:27:28 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER announced  that the next order of  business would be                                                               
HOUSE BILL NO.  102 "An Act providing for  funding of educational                                                               
services  for  students   in  residential  psychiatric  treatment                                                               
centers."   [Before  the committee,  adopted as  a work  draft on                                                               
2/1/16, was  the proposed committee  substitute (CS) for  HB 102,                                                               
Version 29-LS0519\I, Glover, 1/29/16.]                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
8:27:39 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  TALERICO moved  to adopt  the proposed  committee                                                               
substitute (CS) for  HB 102, labeled 29-LS0519\S,  as the working                                                               
document.  Without objection Version S was before the committee.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
8:28:29 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JANET  OGAN,  Staff,  Representative  Wes  Keller,  Alaska  State                                                               
Legislature, described the changes  contained in Version S, which                                                               
include:   page 2, line  20, "may"  was removed, and  "shall" was                                                               
inserted; page 2,  line 23, "school board" was  eliminated, as it                                                               
will now apply to a proposed  contract; page 4, line 19, the term                                                               
of the  contract was extended  from "one" year to  "three" years,                                                               
to accommodate this pilot program.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
8:30:01 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
EVELYN ALSOP,  Education Director, North Star  Behavioral Health,                                                               
on request  of Chair  Keller, confirmed  the proposed  changes in                                                               
the new version, as described.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
8:31:21 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON directed  attention to the CS  page 2, line                                                               
20, to ask  the intent behind the insertion of  "shall", and what                                                               
mandate it  places on districts  for contracting with  a licensed                                                               
provider.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MS. ALSOP  responded that the  "shall" was inserted to  allow for                                                               
an appeal process.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
8:32:36 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CAELA NIELSEN,  Parent, stated support  for HB  102, paraphrasing                                                               
from  a  prepared  statement, which  read  [original  punctuation                                                               
provided]:                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
       I am writing this letter in support of HB 102.  My                                                                       
      name is Caela Nielsen and I am the parent of a child                                                                      
     who has  received mental health  treatment in  both the                                                                    
     long  term and  short  term facilities  at North  Star.                                                                    
     The stress  created in a  family and a child  when they                                                                    
     enter treatment  is great and can  often exacerbate the                                                                    
     already  pre-existing  conditions requiring  treatment.                                                                    
     This  is multiplied  many times  over  when your  child                                                                    
     does not  receive education that  is equivalent  to the                                                                    
     education  he  would  receive  in  his  regular  school                                                                    
     setting.  My  child has fallen behind  in his schooling                                                                    
     and  struggles to  reintegrate into  the public  school                                                                    
     system due to this.  Can  you imagine being a child who                                                                    
     just received help for a  serious mental health problem                                                                    
     and  then being  told you  are now  one year  behind in                                                                    
     high  school?   This  causes even  more  stress to  the                                                                    
     family when  trying to convince  the child  to continue                                                                    
     their  education  rather  than  drop out.    My  family                                                                    
     received  the appropriate  transition  material for  my                                                                    
     child to return to  the community, however the struggle                                                                    
     was in  getting the educational records  needed for him                                                                    
     to transition  back into school.   Many of  the classes                                                                    
     he took while  in treatment did not  align with classes                                                                    
     being  offered  at  his high  school.    The  treatment                                                                    
     facilities are in need of  support in order to properly                                                                    
     meet the  educational goals  of all  children.   My son                                                                    
     has  often  times  wanted  to   give  up,  but  I  have                                                                    
     advocated  for  him  and  he   will  return  to  school                                                                    
     however, it took  a full week after we  left North Star                                                                    
     to transition  back into  the public  education system,                                                                    
     so he will  now have even more  educational material he                                                                    
     has  missed.   The  current system  for educating  this                                                                    
     population does not  work.  I believe  by passing HB102                                                                    
     the  education  and  school  transitions  for  children                                                                    
     receiving  mental  health   treatment  in  Alaska  will                                                                    
     greatly  improve.    North  Star  has  the  ability  to                                                                    
     incorporate  education  with  mental health,  and  when                                                                    
     working  through the  treatment team  process create  a                                                                    
     sound, supportive  educational and transition  plan for                                                                    
     each child.  Please support this population of children                                                                    
     and  pass  this  bill   to  support  their  educational                                                                    
     undertakings.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
8:41:57 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ED GRAFF, Superintendent, stated opposition to HB 102,                                                                          
paraphrasing from a prepared statement, which read [original                                                                    
punctuation provided]:                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     The Anchorage  School District is committed  to working                                                                    
     collaboratively  with   other  organizations   for  the                                                                    
     benefit  of  our  students.   We  have  enjoyed  strong                                                                    
     partnerships    with   Providence    Hospital,   Alaska                                                                    
     Psychiatric   Institute,  Alaska   Child  and   Family,                                                                    
     Volunteers of  America and Office of  Children Services                                                                    
     to  name a  few.   Through collaboration  with clinical                                                                    
     care  providers,  we  have continued  to  increase  our                                                                    
     educational service and supports  for our children with                                                                    
     the most complex mental health and behavioral needs.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     The Anchorage  School District agrees with  most of the                                                                    
     legislative  findings set  forth at  Section 1  of this                                                                    
     bill.    Students  admitted  to  residential  treatment                                                                    
     facilities  are entitled  to  educational services  and                                                                    
     those services  should not be compromised  by virtue of                                                                    
     the fact that a student needs psychiatric treatment.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     Where ASD  disagrees is with  paragraph (3)  of Section                                                                    
     1,  which provides  that a  treatment  center, in  some                                                                    
     instances,   is   able   to  provide   more   effective                                                                    
     educational  services  to  a   student  than  a  school                                                                    
     district  can  provide.   Additionally,  ASD  disagrees                                                                    
     with paragraph  (7) that there  is a  demonstrated need                                                                    
     to provide uniform requirements  to allow school boards                                                                    
     to  enter  into  contracts  for  treatment  centers  to                                                                    
     provide educational services.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     School districts  exist to  meet the  educational needs                                                                    
     of  students.   That is  their  primary role.   ASD  is                                                                    
     unaware  of  any  statistics or  anecdotal  information                                                                    
     supporting  the  premise   that  psychiatric  treatment                                                                    
     centers are  more able to provide  educational services                                                                    
     to students than the public school district.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     ASD believes  that a  strong working  relationship with                                                                    
     these  treatment  centers  is   critical  so  that  the                                                                    
     corresponding  needs  of  students  for  education  and                                                                    
     treatment  can  be  accomplished.   However,  ASD  also                                                                    
     believes that this bill is  not premised upon a need of                                                                    
     students; but rather, upon a  desire of certain private                                                                    
     treatment centers to take  over educational services at                                                                    
     public expense.   For this reason and  others, ASD does                                                                    
     not support HB 102.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     The Anchorage  School District has  several psychiatric                                                                    
     treatment    facilities    within   its    geographical                                                                    
     boundaries.   Under  current law,  ASD is  obligated to                                                                    
     and does serve  all students who are  admitted to these                                                                    
     treatment  facilities, regardless  of whether  they are                                                                    
     ASD  students  or  students from  other  Alaska  school                                                                    
     districts.   These current laws include  both state law                                                                    
     (AS  14.30.186, AS  14.30.340,  and  AS 14.14.090)  and                                                                    
     federal law (34 CFR 300.323).                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     Because  of the  presence  of  treatment facilities  in                                                                    
     Anchorage,  ASD  serves  a   large  number  of  Alaskan                                                                    
     students  who are  in need  of residential  psychiatric                                                                    
     treatment.    For  decades, ASD  has  met  the  general                                                                    
     education and special education  needs of these Alaskan                                                                    
     students  and  intends  to  continue  doing  so.    ASD                                                                    
     provides  direct  instructional   support  to  students                                                                    
     through   qualified   teachers,   administrators,   and                                                                    
     support personnel.   In Anchorage, where  most students                                                                    
     are  served,  there  is  not  a  need  for  residential                                                                    
     treatment centers to  provide educational services, nor                                                                    
     does  ASD agree  that such  a center  can provide  more                                                                    
     "effective" educational services.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     HB 102  has been compared  to the charter  school laws.                                                                    
     The "contract" provided for in  HB 102 is comparable to                                                                    
     the   charter  school   application   required  to   be                                                                    
     submitted by  charter school applicants.   There  is an                                                                    
     important  difference,  however,  Charter  schools  are                                                                    
     public  schools.    They   are  not  private  treatment                                                                    
     centers.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     Additionally,  the  charter  school laws  allow  public                                                                    
     school districts to carefully  consider the need for an                                                                    
     educational program  like that proposed by  the charter                                                                    
     school applicant.  Under the  law, the School Board has                                                                    
     broad  authority and  discretion to  approve or  deny a                                                                    
     charter  school contract.   Unlike  the charter  school                                                                    
     laws, HB 102 removes  all discretion from school boards                                                                    
     because  it requires  a school  district  to execute  a                                                                    
     contract   so   long   as  the   contract   meets   the                                                                    
     requirements of the law.   ("A school board shall enter                                                                    
     into a  contract to provide  payments to  a residential                                                                    
     psychiatric treatment center ..." HB 102, Section 2.)                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     ASD believes that HB 102  is unconstitutional.  Article                                                                    
     VII   of   the   Alaska  Constitution   prohibits   the                                                                    
     expenditure of  public funds for the  direct benefit of                                                                    
     a private educational institution.   The Alaska Supreme                                                                    
     Court has  stated that "the direct  benefit prohibition                                                                    
     involves government aid  to education conducted outside                                                                    
     the  public schools."   Sheldon  Jackson v.  State, 599                                                                    
     P.2d 127, 130 (Alaska 1979).   HB 102 does exactly what                                                                    
     Sheldon Jackson  v. State prohibits -  it establishes a                                                                    
     system  of  education  to  be  provided  by  a  private                                                                    
     organization.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
     The  fact  that  the  private entities  at  issue  also                                                                    
     provide  treatment  services  does not  mean  that  the                                                                    
     educational  services  they  provide can  be  supported                                                                    
     with public  funds.  There's  been some  testimony that                                                                    
     by   providing  ancillary   services  these   treatment                                                                    
     centers may  not run afoul  of the Constitution.   This                                                                    
     is not accurate.  Even  if non-educational services are                                                                    
     provided, these  private treatment centers  would still                                                                    
     be  accepting public  funds  for providing  educational                                                                    
     services.   The "contract"  requirements of HB  102 are                                                                    
     designed  to  ensure   that  the  educational  services                                                                    
     comply  with the  same  requirements  in existence  for                                                                    
     public schools.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     The  Alaska  Supreme Court  has  also  found that  even                                                                    
     indirect support of private  schools (such as providing                                                                    
     bus  transportation  to   students)  violates  Alaska's                                                                    
     constitutional  prohibition of  using public  funds for                                                                    
     private education;  Matthews v.  Quinton, 362  P.2d 932                                                                    
     (Alaska  1961).    Here  HB  102  provides  for  direct                                                                    
     payment of a local  school district's educational funds                                                                    
     to a private  treatment center for the  sole purpose of                                                                    
     allowing  that private  center  to provide  educational                                                                    
     services to students.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Finally, ASD  believes the appeal process  provided for                                                                    
     in HB 102 is inappropriate.   The proposed law provides                                                                    
     a private vendor  with a statutory right  to appeal the                                                                    
     district's decision  to the Commissioner and  the State                                                                    
     Board  of  Education.    No  other  private  vendor  is                                                                    
     afforded  this type  of appeal  in  Alaska's system  of                                                                    
     public education.  This  represents yet another example                                                                    
     of  how  public  funds  will  be  expended  to  support                                                                    
     private institutions.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Thank  you  to  members   of  the  committee  for  your                                                                    
     consideration  of our  written comments  about HB  102.                                                                    
     We  would  welcome  and appreciate  an  opportunity  to                                                                    
     address the  committee and  describe in  further detail                                                                    
     our   program   to   support  students   in   treatment                                                                    
     facilities,  our   record  of  success   meeting  these                                                                    
     students where  they are and  keeping them on  track to                                                                    
     meet  their educational  goals, and  our commitment  to                                                                    
     serving these students now and into the future.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
8:47:05 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KATHIE   WASSMANN,   Executive   Director,   Special   Education,                                                               
Fairbanks  North Star  Borough  School  District, testified  with                                                               
concern  for HB  102, pointing  out the  individualized education                                                               
program  (IEP)  needs and  requirements  that  the bill  has  not                                                               
addressed.  The lack of an  IEP becomes a liability to the school                                                               
district,  not  the  contractor.     Additionally,  a  means  for                                                               
tracking student funding  is not clearly stated in  the bill, and                                                               
she  provided   several  anecdotal  scenarios  for   how  special                                                               
education  funds are  determined  and  the administrative  issues                                                               
that may arise.   Solving the administrative  concerns will incur                                                               
costs as  a tracking system  will need to  be established.   As a                                                               
parent with a daughter who has  been in treatment, she said, when                                                               
a student  falls behind in  school issues  can arise and  the IEP                                                               
becomes crucial.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
8:54:10 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER closed public testimony.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
8:54:32 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  VAZQUEZ  inquired what  the  procedure  is for  a                                                               
student to receive an IEP.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS.  ALSOP described  the collaborative  process that  is entered                                                               
into when a  student arrives.  Parent's,  certified teachers, the                                                               
designated oversight  administrator from the district,  and other                                                               
care  providers, are  included in  meetings with  the North  Star                                                               
staff when addressing/modifying an IEP.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER  confirmed  that  the parent  is  involved  in  the                                                               
process.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MS. ALSOP stressed that parental involvement is imperative.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
8:56:29 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  COLVER  noted that  federal  law  holds a  school                                                               
district responsible for providing  special education services to                                                               
students.    He asked  about  the  school district's  ability  to                                                               
contract   for   those   services,    and   how   the   districts                                                               
responsibilities are satisfied.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MS. ALSOP  the intent  of HB  102 is for  the contractor  to work                                                               
closely with  the district to  develop the IEP, with  the parents                                                               
or other agencies involved with the student.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE COLVER  commented that this is  a highly litigious                                                               
area  and  parents  may become  dissatisfied  and  bring  charges                                                               
against any/all of the agencies involved.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER pointed  out that  the concept  of an  education is                                                               
held under the constitution.                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
9:00:39 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  DRUMMOND  noted that  a  number  of changes  have                                                               
recently been made to the North  Star facility.  She asked for an                                                               
updated overview from the contractor, as well as ASD.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:02:14 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. ALSOP reviewed the situation  beginning in September, and the                                                               
beginning  of  the  school  year.     An  immediate  increase  in                                                               
allocated  time allowed  for additional  teaching staff,  and the                                                               
hiring  of  an  administrator  to  oversee  the  special  schools                                                               
department  was  completed.   Committee  members  visited in  the                                                               
succeeding two  months and during  that time several  issues were                                                               
apparent,  some  in  the  area  of  high  priority  needs,  which                                                               
included:   absence of computer  equipment for  accessing on-line                                                               
education;  clear transitions  between the  neighborhood schools,                                                               
the treatment facility, and re-entry  to school; oversight by the                                                               
administrator was  not clear and apparent;  transcripts were not,                                                               
and  are  still not,  being  aligned;  and other  lingering  high                                                               
priority  leads.   She said  that although  the district  has put                                                               
forth a  good faith  effort, to  try to meet  these needs,  it is                                                               
still  not possible  for students  to  [matriculate] forward,  as                                                               
expressed in the previous testimony, and continued:                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     It is  our belief, she  stated, that if we  are allowed                                                                    
     to be  able to integrate mental  health with education,                                                                    
     we can  provide a system  that will help that  child be                                                                    
     able   to  move   forward  and   go  back   into  their                                                                    
     neighborhood  residential school  and  be  on the  same                                                                    
     track with their  like peers.  We also,  do belief that                                                                    
     we  have the  ability  to  be able  to  provide a  much                                                                    
     clearer transitional process.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:05:32 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. GRAFF reported on the improvements, paraphrasing from a                                                                     
prepared statement [subsequently made part of the committee                                                                     
packet], which read [original punctuation provided]:                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     In order  to support students in  psychiatric treatment                                                                    
     and   provide   educational   services  at   NSBHS   in                                                                    
     Anchorage,   ongoing  conversations   with  the   local                                                                    
     Educational   Director  and   the  Vice   President  of                                                                    
     Specialty  Education  of   United  Health  Services  of                                                                    
     Delaware,  Inc.,  have  occurred and  resulted  in  the                                                                    
     following improvements;                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
       1.  Updated  registration  process with  current  ASD                                                                    
     enrollment packet;                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
       2.  Enhanced communication  with parents  of students                                                                    
     in  psychiatric   treatment  at   enrollment  including                                                                    
     personal calls by the  transitional counselor to ensure                                                                    
     appropriate course placement,  IEP goals are addressed,                                                                    
     and accurate contact information is shared;                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
       3. Facilitated communication  with parent or guardian                                                                    
     and the  receiving school  to discuss  transition plans                                                                    
     upon student discharge;                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
       4.  Scheduled weekly  meeting  between ASD  Counselor                                                                    
     and NSBHS clinicians;                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
       5.  Purchased and  installed  technology upgrades  by                                                                    
     ASK  for NSBHS  facility: 92  new computers;  ten radio                                                                    
     controllers;  complete reinstallation  of an  Anchorage                                                                    
     School District wireless network;                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
       6. Increased staffing:                                                                                                   
         a. Sue  Doherty was recently named  as Principal of                                                                    
     Special  Schools  upon the  death  of  Jerry Koetje  in                                                                    
     December.   Ms.  Doherty  has thirty  years of  special                                                                    
     education experience as  a resource teacher, transition                                                                    
     specialist,  department  chair, supervisor  of  special                                                                    
     education, and  an administrator.   Most  recently, she                                                                    
     served  as an  assistant principal  at a  comprehensive                                                                    
     high  school  transitioning students  from  residential                                                                    
     treatment facilities back  to their neighborhood school                                                                    
     programs.                                                                                                                  
         b. Transition Counselor  position increased from .5                                                                    
     FTE (half time) to 1.0 FTE (full time).                                                                                    
         c.  Teacher positions  increased from  6 FTE  to 10                                                                    
     FTE.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
       7. Created  Special Schools  Office in  ASD Education                                                                    
     Center as  home base for ASD  Special Schools Principal                                                                    
     and non-teaching staff;                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
       8.  Scheduled  and  conducted monthly  staff  meeting                                                                    
     with Special Schools personnel;                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
       9.  Conducted  daily  site visits  to  NSBHS  by  the                                                                    
     principal,  counselor or  special education  department                                                                    
     chair;                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
      10.  Increased  communications   between  ASD  Special                                                                    
     Schools Principal and the hospital staff;                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
      11.  Established  weekly  meeting  between  the  NSBHS                                                                    
     Education Director and ASD Special Schools Principal;                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
      12. Affirmed  all teachers  are "Highly  Qualified" in                                                                    
     relevant core areas of instruction;                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
      13.  Increased   instructional  day  for   acute  care                                                                    
     students from  a half-day  to full  day program  at the                                                                    
     request of the NSBHS Director;                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
      14. Established  regular progress meetings  with NSBHS                                                                    
     staff Mike Lyons  and Evelyn Alsup, and  ASD staff Mike                                                                    
     Henry,  Executive Director  of Secondary  Education and                                                                    
     Sue Doherty, Special Schools Principal;                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
      15. Scheduled  quarterly progress meetings  with NSBHS                                                                    
     staff Mike Lyons  and Evelyn Alsup, and  ASD staff Mike                                                                    
     Graham,   Chief   Academic  Officer,   Linda   Carlson,                                                                    
     Assistant  Superintendent  for  Instructional  Support,                                                                    
     Mike  Henry,  Executive Director,  Secondary  Education                                                                    
     and Sue Doherty, Special Schools Principal;                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
      16. Addressed reported  staff shortages experienced by                                                                    
     North  Star Behavioral  Health  System  that result  in                                                                    
     relocation  of classrooms  and  increased class  sizes,                                                                    
     without  prior   notice  and  on  any   given  day,  by                                                                    
     remaining  flexible   and  committed  to   serving  our                                                                    
     students.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     In addition,  ASD has responded  to a list  of priority                                                                    
     areas in  need provided by  NSBHS in December  of 2015.                                                                    
     Because we  are committed  to serving all  students and                                                                    
     enhancing  our   services  through   communication  and                                                                    
     collaboration   with  community   providers,  we   have                                                                    
     accommodated   every  request   made   by  North   Star                                                                    
     Behavioral   Health   System  through   United   Health                                                                    
     Services of Delaware, Inc.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     The   Anchorage    School   District    enjoys   strong                                                                    
     partnerships    with   Providence    Hospital,   Alaska                                                                    
     Psychiatric   Institute,  Alaska   Child  and   Family,                                                                    
     Volunteers of  America and Office of  Children Services                                                                    
     to  name a  few.   Through cooperative  engagement with                                                                    
     clinical care providers, we  have continued to increase                                                                    
     our educational services and  supports for our children                                                                    
     with  the most  complex  mental  health and  behavioral                                                                    
     needs.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Anchorage  School District  is  providing a  supportive                                                                    
     educational   program    for   students    with   acute                                                                    
     challenges.   ASD  disagrees with  the  premise that  a                                                                    
     treatment  center is  able  to  provide more  effective                                                                    
     educational  services  to  a   student  than  a  school                                                                    
     district  can provide.   School  districts  are in  the                                                                    
     best   position   to   provide  high   quality   public                                                                    
     educational services.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Given  all  that  has been  accomplished  in  providing                                                                    
     comparable general and  special educational services to                                                                    
     students  in  psychiatric  treatment, we  believe  this                                                                    
     bill  is unnecessary  legislation and  could negatively                                                                    
     impact  the school  district's ability  to support  our                                                                    
     special needs  students.  As noted  during the meeting,                                                                    
     the  bill raises  concerns  about accountability  under                                                                    
     IDEA,  a highly  litigious area,  opening the  door for                                                                    
     future conflicts.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     HB 102  has been compared  to the charter  school laws.                                                                    
     Charter  schools  are public  schools.    They are  not                                                                    
     private treatment centers.  HB  102 abrogates the local                                                                    
     control  of school  boards to  determine  the need  for                                                                    
     educational  programs  and   circumvents  school  board                                                                    
     authority  and discretion  for approving  or denying  a                                                                    
     charter  school   contract.     HB  1202   removes  all                                                                    
     discretion  from school  boards because  it requires  a                                                                    
     school district  to execute a  contract so long  as the                                                                    
     contract meets the requirements of the law.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     HB  102  has  far-reaching implications  for  districts                                                                    
     across   Alaska.     ASD  has   consistently  expressed                                                                    
     concerns about  HB 102.  The  Anchorage School District                                                                    
     cannot  support  HB  102  because  districts  will  not                                                                    
     maintain   control  over   the  quality   of  education                                                                    
     delivered,  there   is  potential  for   conflict  over                                                                    
     accountability under IDEA a  highly litigious area, and                                                                    
     the bill  strips local school  boards of  the authority                                                                    
     to determine  what educational  programs are  needed in                                                                    
     their districts.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     For  decades  ASD has  met  the  general education  and                                                                    
     special education needs of Alaskan  students in need of                                                                    
     residential  psychiatric   treatment  and   intends  to                                                                    
     continue doing  so.  We  appreciate the  opportunity to                                                                    
     share  these accomplishments  and express  our concerns                                                                    
     relative to HB 102.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:09:51 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER closed public testimony.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:09:57 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE TALERICO offered Conceptual Amendment 1, labeled                                                                 
29-LS0519\S.1, Glover, 3/15/16, which read:                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Page 1, line 1, following "Act":                                                                                           
     Insert "relating to school districts;"                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Page 2, line 20, following "(a)":                                                                                          
     Insert "A school district may  enter into a contract to                                                                    
     provide   payments   to   a   residential   psychiatric                                                                    
     treatment center  that provides an  educational program                                                                    
     for  a student  admitted to  the center.   If  a school                                                                    
     district  and   a  residential   psychiatric  treatment                                                                    
     center are  unable to agree  on a proposed  contract on                                                                    
     or  before  April  1 immediately  preceding  the  first                                                                    
     school  year  for  which  the  residential  psychiatric                                                                    
     treatment center  is seeking funding, the  school board                                                                    
     where  a  student who  is  admitted  to the  center  is                                                                    
      enrolled shall enter into a contract with the center                                                                      
     as provided in (b) of this section.                                                                                        
     (b)"                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     Page 2, line 7:                                                                                                            
     Delete "(b)"                                                                                                               
     Insert "(c)"                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     Page 2, line 26:                                                                                                           
     Delete "(b)"                                                                                                               
     Insert "(c)"                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     Page 3, line 6:                                                                                                            
     Delete "(b)(21)"                                                                                                           
     Insert "(c)(21)"                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     Page 4, line 14:                                                                                                           
     Delete "(a)"                                                                                                               
     Insert "(b)"                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     Page 4, line 23:                                                                                                           
     Delete "(c)"                                                                                                               
     Insert "(d)"                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     Page 4, line 24:                                                                                                           
     Delete "(a)"                                                                                                               
     Insert "(b)"                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     Page 4, line 27:                                                                                                           
     Delete "(d)"                                                                                                               
     Insert "(e)"                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     Page 4, line 30:                                                                                                           
     Delete "(e)"                                                                                                               
     Insert "(f)"                                                                                                               
     Delete "(a)"                                                                                                               
     Insert "(b)"                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     Page 5, line 7:                                                                                                            
     Delete "(f)"                                                                                                               
     Insert "(g)"                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     Page 5, line 12:                                                                                                           
     Delete "(g)"                                                                                                               
     Insert "(h)"                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     Page 5, line 15:                                                                                                           
     Delete "AS 14.30.800"                                                                                                      
     Insert "AS 14.30.800(f) - (g)"                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     Page 5, line 17:                                                                                                           
     Delete "AS 14.30.800(b)"                                                                                                   
     Insert "AS 14.30.800(c)"                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER objected for discussion.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:10:58 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOSHUA BANKS, Staff, Representative  David Talerico, Alaska State                                                               
Legislature, explained that Conceptual  Amendment 1 is offered on                                                               
request of  Legislative Legal Services due  to concerns regarding                                                               
potential   constitutional   conflicts   by   setting   different                                                               
standards for school districts which  had entered into a contract                                                               
prior to January 1, of a given school year.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
9:13:00 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE TALERICO  expressed concern for schools  that have                                                               
working contracts  in place with  a treatment center.   Without a                                                               
provision for them to continue  the relationship, it will cause a                                                               
disruption in services in order to recreate a working system.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER  removed his objection.   Without  further objection                                                               
Conceptual Amendment 1 was adopted.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
9:14:48 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  VAZQUEZ clarified  the intent  of the  amendment,                                                               
and asked for comment from the contracting agency.                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
9:16:30 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. ALSOP stated support for the amendment as adopted.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
9:17:03 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER REPRESENTATIVE  offered Conceptual  Amendment 1  to                                                               
Conceptual Amendment 1, to wit:                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     page 1, line 8:                                                                                                            
     following "contract"                                                                                                       
     insert "with the provision in (c)"                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
[No  objection  was   voiced  and  the  motion   was  treated  as                                                               
withdrawn.]                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
9:18:13 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
The committee took an at-ease from 9:18 a.m. to 9:21 a.m.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:21:24 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER  moved  to  rescind   action  on  the  adoption  of                                                               
Amendment 1.  Without objection Amendment 1 was withdrawn.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER announced HB 102 as held.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
        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.                                                                      
10:09:16 AM                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being no further business before the committee, the House                                                                 
Education Standing Committee meeting was adjourned at 10:09 a.m.                                                                

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