Legislature(1997 - 1998)

02/25/1997 03:06 PM House HES

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
               HOUSE HEALTH, EDUCATION AND SOCIAL                              
                  SERVICES STANDING COMMITTEE                                  
                       February 25, 1997                                       
                           3:06 p.m.                                           
 MEMBERS PRESENT                                                               
 Representative Con Bunde, Chairman                                            
 Representative Joe Green, Vice Chairman                                       
 Representative Al Vezey                                                       
 Representative Brian Porter                                                   
 Representative Fred Dyson                                                     
 Representative J. Allen Kemplen                                               
 MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                
 Representative Tom Brice                                                      
 COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                            
 *HOUSE BILL NO. 114                                                           
 "An Act relating to health care data and registration of births."             
      - MOVED HB 114 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                          
 HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 18                                                 
 Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the State of Alaska             
 relating to changing the rate of a tax or license that supports a             
 dedication of its proceeds.                                                   
      - MOVED CSHJR 18(STA) OUT OF COMMITTEE                                   
 *HOUSE BILL NO. 145                                                           
 "An Act relating to certification of teachers."                               
      - HEARD AND HELD                                                         
 HOUSE BILL NO. 121                                                            
 "An Act relating to A.W. Brindle memorial scholarship loans; and              
 providing for an effective date."                                             
      - BILL POSTPONED                                                         
 (* First public hearing)                                                      
 PREVIOUS ACTION                                                               
 BILL:  HB 114                                                               
 JRN-DATE     JRN-DATE             ACTION                                      
 02/05/97       242    (H)   READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                 
 02/05/97       242    (H)   HES                                               
 02/25/97              (H)   HES AT  3:00 PM CAPITOL 106                       
 BILL:  HJR 18                                                               
 SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) IVAN                                            
 JRN-DATE     JRN-DATE             ACTION                                      
 01/29/97       164    (H)   READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                 
 01/29/97       164    (H)   STA, HES, JUD, FINANCE                            
 02/04/97              (H)   STA AT  8:00 AM CAPITOL 102                       
 02/04/97              (H)   MINUTE(STA)                                       
 02/06/97              (H)   STA AT  8:00 AM CAPITOL 102                       
 02/06/97              (H)   MINUTE(STA)                                       
 02/11/97              (H)   STA AT  8:00 AM CAPITOL 102                       
 02/11/97              (H)   MINUTE(STA)                                       
 02/12/97       305    (H)   STA RPT  CS(STA) NT 4DP 1DNP 1NR                  
 02/12/97       305    (H)   DP: JAMES, HODGINS, DYSON, IVAN                   
 02/12/97       305    (H)   DNP: VEZEY                                        
 02/12/97       305    (H)   NR: BERKOWITZ                                     
 02/12/97       305    (H)   FISCAL NOTE (GOV)                                 
 02/12/97       305    (H)   REFERRED TO HES                                   
 02/20/97              (H)   HES AT  3:00 PM CAPITOL 106                       
 02/20/97              (H0   MINUTE(HES)                                       
 02/25/97              (H)   HES AT  3:00 PM CAPITOL 106                       
 BILL:  HB 145                                                               
 SPONSOR(S): HEALTH, EDUCATION & SOCIAL SERVICES                               
 JRN-DATE     JRN-DATE             ACTION                                      
 02/18/97       381    (H)   READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                 
 02/18/97       381    (H)   HES                                               
 02/25/97              (H)   HES AT  3:00 PM CAPITOL 106                       
 BILL:  HB 121                                                               
 SHORT TITLE: WINN BRINDLE SCHOLARSHIP LOAN                                    
 SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) WILLIAMS                                        
 JRN-DATE     JRN-DATE             ACTION                                      
 02/10/97       292    (H)   READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S)                 
 02/10/97       292    (H)   HES                                               
 02/20/97              (H)   HES AT  3:00 PM CAPITOL 106                       
 02/20/97              (H)   MINUTE(HES)                                       
 02/25/97              (H)   HES AT  3:00 PM CAPITOL 106                       
 WITNESS REGISTER                                                              
 GAYLE WOLF, Student Intern                                                    
 House Health, Education and Social Services Committee                         
 Alaska State Legislature                                                      
 Capitol Building, Room 106                                                    
 Juneau, Alaska  99801                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 465-3759                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Provided sponsor statement for HB 114                    
 JOHN MIDDAUGH, MD; Chief                                                      
 Epidemiology Section                                                          
 Division of Public Health                                                     
 Department of Health and Social Services                                      
 P.O. Box 240249                                                               
 Anchorage, Alaska  99524-0249                                                 
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 114                           
 MICHAEL H. MILLER                                                             
 6737 Gray Street                                                              
 Juneau, Alaska  99801                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 586-2952                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on HB 114                                      
 REPRESENTATIVE IVAN IVAN                                                      
 Alaska State Legislature                                                      
 Capitol Building, Room 418                                                    
 Juneau, Alaska  99801                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 465-4942                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Sponsor of HJR 18                                        
 TOM WRIGHT, Legislative Assistant                                             
   to Representative Ivan                                                      
 Alaska State Legislature                                                      
 Capitol Building, Room 418                                                    
 Juneau, Alaska  99801                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 465-4942                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on CSHJR 18(STA)                               
 NANCY BUELL, Ed. D.; Director                                                 
 Teaching and Learning Support                                                 
 Department of Education                                                       
 801 West Tenth Street, Suite 200                                              
 Juneau, Alaska  99801-1894                                                    
 Telephone:  (907) 465-8689                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 145                           
 JUDITH ENTWIFE, Administrator, Teacher Education and Certification            
 Teaching and Learning Support                                                 
 Department of Education                                                       
 801 West Tenth Street, Suite 200                                              
 Juneau, Alaska  99801-1894                                                    
 Telephone:  (907) 465-2857                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 145                           
 JOHN CYR, President                                                           
 114 Second Street                                                             
 Juneau, Alaska  99801                                                         
 Telephone:  (907) 586-3090                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 145                           
 JUDITH SNOW-ROSANDER                                                          
 P.O. Box 129                                                                  
 McGrath, Alaska  99627                                                        
 Telephone:  (907) 524-3929                                                    
 POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified on HB 145                                      
 ACTION NARRATIVE                                                              
 TAPE 97-13, SIDE A                                                            
 Number 0000                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN CON BUNDE called the House Health, Education and Social              
 Services Standing Committee meeting to order at 3:06 p.m.  Members            
 present at the call to order were Representatives Bunde, Green,               
 Porter, Kemplen.  Representative Dyson arrived at 3:07 p.m. and               
 Representative Vezey arrived at 3:14 p.m.  Representative Brice was           
 absent.  This meeting was teleconferenced to Anchorage and an                 
 offnet site.                                                                  
 HB 114 - HEALTH CARE DATA; BIRTH REGISTRATIONS                              
 Number 0023                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE announced the first item on the agenda was HB 114,             
 "An Act relating to health care data and registration of births."             
 Number 0077                                                                   
 GAYLE WOLF, student at the University of Alaska Anchorage, an                 
 intern for the House Health, Education and Social Services Standing           
 Committee, was first to testify.  She said HB 114 was introduced              
 last year as HB 540 at the request of the Department of Health and            
 Social Services (DHSS), passed the House unanimously, was referred            
 to the Senate for consideration but was never voted on because the            
 legislature adjourned before the bill was addressed.                          
 MS. WOLF said HB 114 will accomplish changes in law needed to                 
 assure that the DHSS has access to information on diseases and                
 conditions of public health significance which are essential to               
 carry out disease surveillance, control and prevention activities.            
 It will establish explicit civil immunity for providers who comply            
 with requirements to report health care data and assure access by             
 DHSS to health records needed to carry out its mandates and to                
 conduct research for the purposes of protecting and promoting                 
 public health.  These provisions are required to maintain                     
 eligibility for the $420,000 per year federal grant which supports            
 operation of a registry of cancer occurrences within the state.               
 The bill will also make the needed changes which will allow full              
 implementation of the Electronic Birth Certificate system,                    
 clarifying the rules for filing and registering births occurring en           
 route to Alaska.                                                              
 Number 0238                                                                   
 MS. WOLF said HB 114 will: Allow certification of births to occur             
 by an electronic process rather than only allowing certification by           
 a signature on a paper certificate and will shift the place of                
 filing to recognize electronic filing, reducing filing time from              
 seven to five days to comply with requirements of the National                
 Center for Health Statistics; it will clarify rules for filing and            
 registering births occurring on moving conveyances in international           
 waters, air space, foreign waters or air space en route to Alaska             
 to comply with the model Vital Statistics Act.  She said HB 114               
 contains two zero fiscal notes.                                               
 Number 0322                                                                   
 JOHN MIDDAUGH, MD; Chief, Epidemiology Section, Division of Public            
 Health, Department of Health and Social Services, testified next              
 via teleconference from Anchorage.  He commended Ms. Wolf's                   
 presentation of HB 114, as it covered everything that the bill is             
 designed to do.  He said this bill is important because it allows             
 DHSS to be in compliance with the federal grant which fully funds             
 the state's cancer registry.  The registry is within a month or two           
 of providing its first data analysis.                                         
 Number 0421                                                                   
 MICHAEL H. MILLER was next to testify.  He said he has a vested               
 interest in HB 114 as he has metastatic prostate cancer which has             
 spread to bone cancer.  He said, like anything else, you don't                
 understand it until you are there and he is there.  He said one in            
 five men will come down with prostate cancer, four out of ten                 
 Americans will come down with cancer in general.  He referred to              
 folders, located in the committee file, to show the committee what            
 California has done.  The statistics list the California cancer               
 data from 1996 and 1997.                                                      
 MR. MILLER said, in 1996, 10 million Californians had cancer which            
 is about one in three, whereas in 1997 there were 14 million which            
 is about two in five.  He said, in 1996, 822,000 and, in 1997, one            
 million people had cancer and survived.  He said 350,600 were                 
 diagnosed with a five or more year survival rate in 1996 and in               
 1997 they project 425,000.  He said, in 1996, 135,950 Californians            
 were diagnosed as having cancer which is almost 16 new cases every            
 hour of every day and added that California has a lower number than           
 the national average.  In 1997, California projects that number               
 will go down to 131,920.                                                      
 Number 0628                                                                   
 MR. MILLER said, in 1996, about 54,400 of the Californians who came           
 down with cancer will remain alive five years after diagnosis.  In            
 1997, 74,000 will be alive five years after diagnosis.  He said               
 this represents a change from 53 percent to 56 percent and said               
 this is significant to him because this figure is very motivating             
 for people who have cancer.  He said, in 1996, 52,685 people died             
 of cancer which equals 144 a day.  One out of every five deaths in            
 California is the result of cancer.  In 1997, this number will                
 increase to 53,610 which is about 147 people a day.                           
 Number 0693                                                                   
 MR. MILLER said a greater amount of people can be saved with                  
 educating the public on the different types of cancers.  The more             
 education that we can provide to men about prostate cancer, the               
 lower the risk there will be.  Cancer is the second leading cause             
 of death, it accounted for 23 percent of deaths in 1996.  Heart               
 disease accounted for 31 percent.  He said the statistics don't               
 change that much for 1997.  In 1996, for all stages, there was a 77           
 percent for a five or more year survival rate and, in 1997, that              
 increased by 7 percent to 84 percent.  Localized cancer, which is             
 just in the prostate area, increased 5 percent between 1996 and               
 1997.  Regionalized cancer, which means that it can go a little bit           
 beyond the prostate area, increased 11 percent from 81 percent to             
 92 percent.  For distant cancer, it increased 4 percent.                      
 MR. MILLER said he would look at the 84 percent number and see it             
 as a motivation that life can be prolonged.  He commented that                
 where there is hope, there is life.                                           
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE thanked him for sharing his personal experience with           
 the committee.  He said he appreciated it and wished him all the              
 MR. MILLER said both his bone cancer and prostate cancer are in a             
 stable position.                                                              
 Number 0907                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE BRIAN PORTER made a motion to move HB 114 with                 
 individual recommendations and zero fiscal notes.  Hearing no                 
 objection HB 114 was moved from the House Health, Education and               
 Social Services Committee.                                                    
 HJR 18 - DEDICATED FUNDS: RATE MAY BE CHANGED                               
 Number 0980                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE introduced the next item on the agenda, HJR 18,                
 Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the State of Alaska             
 relating to changing the rate of a tax or license that supports a             
 dedication of its proceeds.  He indicated that CSHJR 18(STA) was              
 before the committee.                                                         
 Number 0990                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE IVAN IVAN deferred any questions to Mr. Wright.                
 Number 0992                                                                   
 TOM WRIGHT, Legislative Assistant to Representative Ivan, said he             
 received information from Brad Pierce, Office of Management and               
 Budget, which outlined seven different dedicated funds that are in            
 existence right now.  He referred to a memo outlining those funds,            
 the fiscal year balance and the funding source.  In response to               
 Representative Porter's question, he had a discussion with Jim                
 Baldwin and looked back at the record in the House State Affairs              
 Committee.  He said Mr. Baldwin stated that the attorney general's            
 office is still using the 1959 opinion as a basis.  However, in the           
 House State Affairs Committee, Mr. Chenoweth did say, a good faith            
 legal argument could be made, that raising the rate for a specific            
 tax or proceed does not constitute a violation of the dedicated               
 fund.  He said, upon further discussion with Mr.Chenoweth, this               
 statement was reiterated.                                                     
 Number 1059                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said there is not a current attorney general's                 
 opinion on this matter.  He noted that the next committee of                  
 referral is the House Judiciary Standing Committee and indicated              
 that this question could be addressed there and in fact encouraged            
 it to be addressed there.                                                     
 Number 1086                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE J. ALLEN KEMPLEN said he was curious that there is             
 no limit on the amount of money that could be placed in a dedicated           
 fund.  He understood that the intent of the drafters of the Alaska            
 State Constitution was that they wanted to retain maximum                     
 flexibility to the people and their representatives for the                   
 dispersement of public monies and were hesitant about seeing a lot            
 of money earmarked for special accounts.  This bill seems to allow            
 for any amount of money to be placed into these dedicated funds and           
 appears to run counter to the intent of the people who set up the             
 Alaska State Constitution.                                                    
 Number 1156                                                                   
 MR. WRIGHT said the attorney general in 1959 had this reasoning as            
 the basis of his opinion, that the tax or proceeds could not be               
 raised, they had to stay the same.  He said, the Chenoweth opinion            
 dated April 26, 1996 as well as some of the discussion that took              
 place during the constitutional convention part of the record, it             
 seemed to be a point that they didn't want to bind future                     
 legislatures to keeping the same rate in effect, that there might             
 be some changes in the future.  He said CSHJR 18(STA) does not                
 address the maximum amount portion.                                           
 Number 1204                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE clarified that CSHJR 18(STA) talks about changing              
 the rate and asked if, in regards to the existing funds, there was            
 no prohibition as far as a maximum amount was concerned, if there             
 was just a rate at which money could accrue in these funds.                   
 Number 1217                                                                   
 MR. WRIGHT said he couldn't clearly answer those questions.  He               
 could look back at some of the conversations as well as the effort            
 to raise the rate on the highway fund.  He said it was decided that           
 they couldn't raise the rate based on this 1959 opinion.  By not              
 funding that particular dedicated fund, it nullified the fund.                
 Number 1250                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE clarified that the fish and game fund is one of the            
 dedicated funds and it doesn't top out somewhere.  He thought the             
 question was if there was a maximum amount that can be put into a             
 dedicated fund.  He asked if the question regarded the rate and not           
 the total fund.                                                               
 REPRESENTATIVE KEMPLEN said he was interested in the maximum amount           
 and asked if there was a maximum limit.                                       
 Number 1275                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said there is not a maximum limit that exists                  
 Number 1283                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER said, regarding the constitution prohibiting            
 dedicated funds, the drafters of the constitution recognized this             
 fund as an exception to the general rule about dedication to funds.           
 He said Mr. Chenoweth's opinion cited conversations during the                
 construction of the constitution and added that it is amazing that            
 some attorney general in past years didn't think the rate could be            
 increased.  His understanding, of attorney general's opinions, is             
 that without subsequent statutory clarification they are the law              
 until a statute or a revision of the constitution addresses the               
 same issue and contradicts it.                                                
 Number 1331                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE AL VEZEY said an attorney general's opinion falls              
 under the category of case law and the longer case law stands,                
 without being overturned, the more precedent setting it becomes.              
 To overturn the 1959 opinion, at this time, would be equivalent to            
 the Supreme Court overturning a previous Supreme Court ruling.  It            
 can be done, but it shows disrespect for precedence.                          
 Number 1359                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said CSHJR 18(STA) does not impinge on an attorney             
 general's opinion being overturned or not, this bill would allow              
 changes to the rate that money is put into a dedicated fund.                  
 Number 1395                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE JOE GREEN said he is co-sponsor of CSHJR 18(STA).              
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE noted it for the record.                                       
 Number 1409                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE GREEN made a motion to move CSHJR 18(STA) out of               
 committee with individual recommendations and the attached fiscal             
 note of $3,000 in the out year.                                               
 Number 1423                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE VEZEY objected to the motion.                                  
 Number 1440                                                                   
 A roll call vote was taken on CSHJR 18(STA).  Representatives                 
 Porter, Dyson, Green and Bunde voted yea.  Representatives Vezey              
 and Kemplen voted nay.  Representative Brice was absent for the               
 vote.  CHAIRMAN BUNDE said that CSHJR 18(STA) was moved from the              
 House Health, Education and Social Services Committee.                        
 HB 145 - TEACHING COMPETENCY EXAM FOR CERTIF                                
 Number 1494                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE announced the next item on the agenda was HB 145,              
 "An Act relating to certification of teachers."  He said it was not           
 his intention to move this bill out of committee today.  He said no           
 one would argue that we want the best teachers in Alaska and this             
 is what HB 145 aims toward providing.                                         
 Number 1531                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE read from the sponsor statement.  We all realize the           
 importance of having well-qualified teachers in our school system.            
 In an effort to provide our state with a quality teaching force, we           
 must ensure our prospective teachers demonstrate a minimum level of           
 competency in basic skills and he stressed minimum.  Presently                
 there are 40 states that include a test as part of their teacher              
 licensure.  The passage of HB 145 would add Alaska to that list.              
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said HB 145 would require people who are not now               
 licensed to teach to teach in the state of Alaska to pass a                   
 competency exam designated by the Alaska State Board of Education             
 before receiving their certification.  It is our intention that the           
 board will select a test for primary grades and a test of subject             
 endorsement for secondary teachers.  The board will also establish            
 a minimum acceptable level of performance for this examination.  He           
 encouraged the committee to support this increase in standards for            
 our teachers.                                                                 
 Number 1586                                                                   
 NANCY BUELL, Ed. D.; Director, Teaching and Learning Support,                 
 Department of Education (DOE), said the DOE is pleased to be in               
 support of HB 145.  She was here to offer some information about              
 what the department has already been doing over the past two years            
 in order to combine that work with the bill to produce an                     
 assessment of initial competence for beginning teachers.  She                 
 cited a quote form a report titled, "A Quality Professional                   
 Workforce", from a recent and prestigious report of the National              
 Commission on Teaching and America's Future.  She said the quote              
 speaks to the need for a new set of standards and skills for                  
 teachers.  She read from it, "Moreover, as students with a wider              
 range of learning needs enter and stay in school--a growing number            
 whose first language is not English, many others with learning                
 differences, and still others with learning disabilities--teachers            
 need access to the growing knowledge that exists about how to teach           
 different kinds of learners effectively.  Developing the kind of              
 teaching needed will require much greater clarity about what                  
 students must learn to succeed in the world that awaits them, and             
 that teachers must know and do to help them achieve it.  Standards,           
 not standards for students but standards for teachers, that reflect           
 these imperatives for student learning and for teaching are largely           
 absent in our nation today."                                                  
 DR. BUELL said, instead of being behind as recent reports may have            
 indicated, the state of Alaska is the first state to adopt                    
 professional performance standards and put them into regulation,              
 making them a part of both the evaluation system.  Subsequently,              
 there are plans to make those standards part of the licensure                 
 system in the state.  She said these are the regulations required             
 by HB 465; the performance standards for teachers.  If you glance             
 through them you will see that very few of them could be easily               
 accessed by a pencil and paper test.  Therefore, what the DOE has             
 been working on is a system of tiered licensure.  This has been               
 proposed to the Board of Education, members of National Education             
 Association (NEA) and other organizations such as state                       
 administrators organizations, retired teachers, Native education              
 and training groups and universities.  Three levels of licensure              
 have been looked at and the board has now told DOE to go ahead and            
 develop those three.                                                          
 Number 1727                                                                   
 DR. BUELL said the first area of licensure would be the initial               
 level which HB 145 would address.  She said Alaska is part of a               
 consortium of states, nationally, who are developing three types of           
 tests; a test of teaching knowledge, a performance examination for            
 teachers and a portfolio that new teachers would put together to              
 prove that they are ready to go into the classroom even though it             
 is obvious that they will need additional learning.  She believed             
 that DOE had excellent input from teachers, parents and                       
 administrators across the states.  The standards also include                 
 standards for parent and family involvement as well as a number of            
 other things which are not included in other states' licensure                
 Number 1766                                                                   
 DR. BUELL said the DOE has been working on this for two years, it             
 has been in their work plan which is a public document to be                  
 introduced next January.  This bill, HB 145, pre-dates the DOE's              
 Number 1795                                                                   
 JUDITH ENTWIFE, Administrator, Teacher Education and Certification,           
 Teaching and Learning Support, Department of Education, was next to           
 testify.  She referred to a chart labeled, "Assessments Used by               
 States for Teacher Certification/Licensure", and said that Alaska             
 is the only state that does not require a competency exam of any              
 sort, at any level.  She concurred with the chair that HB 145 is              
 something that we need, but also drew the committee's attention to            
 the fact that there are three different kinds of basic skills tests           
 being offered.  The first test essentially says that a teacher can            
 do what we expect students to be able to do and can demonstrate               
 that ability.  The second is a group of tests of teaching knowledge           
 which includes pedagogy or, in general, how to teach.  It also                
 includes specialty areas which would show that a teacher knows how            
 to teach high school history or knows how to teach special                    
 education students.  The last area is a group of performance                  
 assessments, where someone who goes in and watches this teacher in            
 action and observes classroom behavior.  The evaluator would be               
 able to say, not only does this teacher know how to do it, the                
 teacher can apply it and put it into action, helping our students             
 achieve academically.  She said DOE would like to do exactly what             
 is being proposed in HB 145, maybe even go beyond that and take the           
 time to do this in a deliberative manner as part of a comprehensive           
 Number 1889                                                                   
 MS. ENTWIFE said if she were to change HB 145 in any way, she would           
 take the word, "test", and make it, "tests".  She said it is                  
 obvious that it takes more than one test to give us the sense that            
 teachers really can do what we want them to be able to do.                    
 Standards are in place for teachers, one of which says that                   
 teachers will regularly access student progress.  As you look at              
 the performance indicators at the various levels, an initial                  
 teacher would be expected to align those tests pretty closely with            
 what the learning goals are for the students.  She said it sounds             
 pretty obvious, but it is not an easy thing to do.  At the second             
 level, we expect them to align those tests with student goals and             
 be able to use a variety of tests to allow students with different            
 styles to identify or demonstrate what it is that they actually               
 know and are able to do.                                                      
 MS. ENTWIFE said she would like to see assessments of teachers that           
 are equally as valid, are aligned directly with our standards for             
 teachers and have a variety of forms of assessment.  Her biggest              
 concern is that when we do this, we do it deliberatively and we               
 make sure that what we expect Alaskan teachers to know and be able            
 to do are in fact what they can do.  In some cases, we will find              
 out that they cannot do this.  Those people do not belong as                  
 teachers in the state of Alaska.                                              
 Number 1979                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE FRED DYSON asked if they found out how these tests             
 were working for other states.                                                
 Number 1984                                                                   
 MS. ENTWIFE said they seem to be very successful, but clarified               
 that she could not say it was true for all of the states because              
 many of the states are in transition.  All of the specifically                
 named processes, named in the chart, were commercially available              
 tests with the exception of the test used in Colorado.  The                   
 Colorado test is a state developed exam which is carefully aligned            
 with their state standards.                                                   
 Number 2008                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE DYSON heard that Arkansas and Virginia could not               
 find a combination of teachers that could pass the test and were              
 willing to work for the wages they were paying.                               
 DR. BUELL said there were many states that had that problem.                  
 Number 2025                                                                   
 MS. ENTWIFE said, if indeed it was true, she wouldn't want those              
 teachers teaching her grandchildren.  She said we need to find                
 those teachers who are indeed interested in meeting high enough               
 standards for the children of this state.                                     
 Number 2045                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE DYSON referred to her testimony that she was                   
 interested in seeing testing for teachers and said HB 145 appeared            
 to grandfather existing teachers.  He asked if the DOE would have             
 preferred this test for all teachers, rather than just incoming               
 Number 2062                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said last year's bill, HB 465, puts in place an                
 evaluation for teachers in the tenure review process.  He said                
 there is mechanism now for testing existing teachers.                         
 Number 2077                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE DYSON asked if there was a different test for                  
 existing teachers as opposed to incoming teachers.                            
 Number 2081                                                                   
 DR. BUELL said, the professional licensure task force has                     
 recommended, and the board has agreed, in order to go from the                
 initial level of licensure as a new teacher, who has spent a couple           
 of years in a teaching position having met initial standards, there           
 should be another set of assessments for people to obtain a                   
 standard license or a continuing license.  This license would, in             
 effect, be good for continuing years, with the belief that there is           
 maturation in any profession and that people should be able to meet           
 higher standards.  It is not the intention, at this point, of the             
 licensure task force to automatically grandfather in the work force           
 in the state, but to use the renewal process to have teachers                 
 address, through a professional development plan, particular                  
 standards that are in regulation and show that they have been met.            
 Over time the entire work force will have met the standards that              
 are in regulation.                                                            
 Number 2116                                                                   
 DR. BUELL said HB 465 does not require a state licensure system, it           
 requires a district evaluation system based on these standards.               
 Many teachers, licensed in the state, are not currently teaching.             
 Similarly there are many teachers that come from outside the state            
 who have been teaching for many years, but are not currently within           
 the districts that might be evaluating them based on those                    
 performance standards.  Assessments would need to be developed over           
 time that were appropriate for teachers already in the profession             
 and teachers already teaching in the state of Alaska.                         
 Number 2136                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE GREEN asked, if this law were enacted, if teachers             
 tenured out of the state would fall into the review we have for               
 existing experienced teachers or would they be required to take               
 this new test.                                                                
 Number 2155                                                                   
 DR. BUELL said the professional licensure task force addressed this           
 issue and has been worrying over it for the last couple of years.             
 The task force recognized that upwards of 80 percent of our                   
 teachers in Alaska come from other states and that will probably              
 always be true.  An assessment system would have to be devised to             
 evaluate experienced teachers coming in from other states.  The               
 task force looked to Colorado as the bell weather state in the                
 nation, Colorado requires a portfolio from people coming in to                
 teach from outside the state.  Oregon requires people, coming in              
 from outside the state, to take tests just the same way as everyone           
 else does or they can opt for an alternative method of submitting             
 a portfolio of evidence.  She said this is the direction that the             
 task force is leaning, they are not looking at taking people from             
 outside on faith while requiring a rigorous standard for people in            
 the state.                                                                    
 Number 2199                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said HB 145, as currently written, applies to Type             
 A teaching certificates in Alaska where a teacher, whether they are           
 a ten year experienced teacher or fresh out of college, would have            
 to take a competency exam.                                                    
 Number 2207                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER asked if the competency exam for teachers               
 would look at the types of things that students need to learn, but            
 might differentiate based on the students' ability to demonstrate             
 Number 2221                                                                   
 MS. ENTWIFE clarified that she did not intend to say that.  The               
 teachers certainly need to know, first of all, basic skills.                  
 Teachers should know and be able to do what we expect our                     
 graduating high school students to know and be able to do, these              
 are the basic skills.  Beyond that teachers should know how to                
 teach students that which we all agree students should know and be            
 able to do.  Different students may learn in different ways, so               
 elementary school teachers need to be able to teach elementary                
 school students as compared to teaching secondary students if they            
 are secondary school teachers.  They need to be able to teach math            
 if that is their area of endorsement or English if that is their              
 area of endorsement.  If they intend to teach special education               
 students, the teachers should know the specifics of teaching                  
 students with the kinds of disabilities with which they'll be                 
 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER clarified that there wasn't a reference to a            
 different evaluation system for different kids based on different             
 things other than special education.                                          
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said that sometimes there is a feeling that students           
 should be able to take tests in different fashions and added that             
 when they are able to fill out job applications differently than we           
 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER said this was precisely the point he was                
 going to make.                                                                
 Number 2265                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER said the task force has been working on this            
 issue for two years and asked why HB 145 had a fiscal note.  He               
 said if the DOE were to begin testing, requiring additional funds             
 to do so, then the money would have to be included in their                   
 existing budget.                                                              
 DR. BUELL said they would have brought a budget increment.                    
 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER understood that DOE would be doing this                 
 testing anyway and would have brought the program before the                  
 legislature for approval.  He asked if the fiscal note attached to            
 HB 145 addressed something beyond the scope of DOE.                           
 TAPE 97-13, SIDE B                                                            
 Number 0000                                                                   
 DR. BUELL said this competency testing requirement probably would             
 have come forth in regulation.  In the event that this would have             
 happened, a budget piece would have gone with it so as to implement           
 the program.                                                                  
 Number 0019                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER clarified that this budget fiscal note                  
 addresses implementing the program, not further developing it.                
 Number 0026                                                                   
 DR. BUELL said the first year addresses development.                          
 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER said the DOE would have done this testing               
 with the existing budget, but since the legislature is doing it now           
 with HB 145 it is going to cost $149,000 more for development.                
 Number 0056                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE GREEN said he understood that the costs are the                
 same.  If the costs are within HB 145, it is going to cost $149,000           
 the first year.  If it was included in the budget, then the budget            
 request would have been increased by $149,000.                                
 DR. BUELL said this was correct.                                              
 Number 0092                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said the budget would have asked for more money                
 because the task force tests are more elaborate than what HB 145              
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE referred to Representative Dyson's question and said           
 the law of supply and demand will apply.  If we raise our demands             
 of our teaching faculty, the supply might be impacted to those who            
 want to work for love and those who want to work for money.                   
 Number 0127                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE DYSON asked if the present certification and peer              
 review, on existing credentialed teachers, weeded out many                    
 Number 0146                                                                   
 MS. ENTWIFE said there are people who currently apply for                     
 certification in the state of Alaska that do not receive                      
 certification in the state of Alaska.  This certification is                  
 determined by whether or not you can complete a national standards            
 approved and regionally accredited educational program.  As we are            
 aware there are people who are able to put together the inputs, but           
 when it comes down to the proof of the pudding it doesn't taste               
 very good.  She said DOE is saying this teacher is good, but we               
 want to make absolutely sure that this person simply hasn't jumped            
 through the hoops.  This person can actually do, in a classroom               
 with live children, what they purport to be able to do.                       
 Number 0228                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said that takes it a step beyond what HB 145 would             
 do and that is why he said the DOE's budget request would be                  
 different.  Currently, to get a Type A teaching certificate you               
 have to be breathing and have graduated from college with an                  
 appropriate degree.  This bill would add one more screening device,           
 a teacher would have to pass this test.  After passing the test,              
 the local district would interview those people who have their Type           
 A certificate.  The district would then make the choice as to                 
 whether these teachers are appropriate for their teaching                     
 Number 0277                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE DYSON asked if the ongoing credentialling that is              
 given to teachers had ever been denied.                                       
 Number 0296                                                                   
 MS. ENTWIFE said in order to continue to be credentialled in this             
 state you must complete six semester hours.  If you have done this            
 successfully and make application, your credentials will be                   
 renewed.  If you make application and don't do that, you won't be             
 Number 0325                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said there is a teaching standards commission and a            
 number of people who have had their licenses taken away for                   
 incompetency and immorality, substantial noncompliance.  The                  
 district fires people and there are also people who lose their                
 license to teach in the state of Alaska because of immorality.                
 Number 0364                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE DYSON said he would be interested to know, on an               
 annual basis, how many teachers have not had their credentials                
 renewed because of incompetency.                                              
 Number 0380                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said other people could probably answer that                   
 question.  With the notion that we are not going to do an in-                 
 classroom on the job training which would be wonderful, but it is             
 not within the scope of HB 145 at this time.                                  
 Number 0385                                                                   
 DR. BUELL asked that in the committee's consideration of HB 145 it            
 be very clear which categories of teachers you are specifying.  She           
 said it is not clear upon reading the bill whether it focuses on              
 teachers new to the profession or new to the state.  She said she             
 would also ask the committee to add those teachers who may have               
 taught, but never have been credentialed anywhere else.  There are            
 private school systems that don't require credentialling.                     
 Number 0453                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE asked if HB 145 needed something more than Section             
 2, "Beginning on the effective date of this Act, a person is not              
 eligible for teacher certificate unless the person has taken and              
 successfully completed a competency exam".                                    
 Number 0480                                                                   
 DR. BUELL referred to the press conference when Representative                
 Bunde spoke and said HB 145 applied to preservice teachers.  If               
 that was the case, preservice teachers mean only those people who             
 have never taught.                                                            
 Number 0491                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said he meant those who have not received their Type           
 A teaching certificates.                                                      
 Number 0495                                                                   
 DR. BUELL asked about Type Bs, Cs, Ds, and limited certificates.              
 Number 0520                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said he wanted to limit this to Type A, he did not             
 want to get into counselors and vocational education teachers.                
 Number 0566                                                                   
 DR. BUELL clarified that anyone who is new to the profession and              
 wishes a Type C teaching certificate does not need to take such a             
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said this test would be limited to Type A.                     
 DR. BUELL said his intent is that any other certificates would not            
 need a test.                                                                  
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said he was willing to listen to arguments that                
 would suggest that, but at this point he would rather limit this to           
 Type A.                                                                       
 DR. BUELL said there are people who enter schools as Type Cs right            
 out of college, having never taught before or having taught in                
 another state.  They don't go through the Type A process first.               
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said those people would not be regular classroom               
 DR. BUELL said they would be speech pathologist, counselors,                  
 librarians.  She said these people are working with children.  She            
 said there are librarians, school nurses and counselors who are               
 standing up in front of a class and teaching a specific curriculum.           
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said Type A is his intent, it is preservice, for               
 teachers who have not received their Type A teaching certificate.             
 He said there is a minority of people who have received their Type            
 A certificate and have never taught.  He said they are not going to           
 try to catch all the fish in this net, just the majority.                     
 DR. BUELL clarified that if someone came into the state and wanted            
 to be a superintendent or a principal that it is not his intent to            
 have them take a test.                                                        
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said he would leave this question to the local                 
 Number 0629                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE PORTER asked if a B or a C would be called a teacher           
 Number 0639                                                                   
 DR. BUELL said yes they are called teaching certificates.                     
 Unfortunately the statute, that guides this area, defines anyone              
 with a Type A, B, C, limited certificate, or anyone who works with            
 kids without supervision, as a teacher.  It is a broad term in                
 statute.  In order to implement HB 145, the intent needs to be real           
 clear.  Occasionally a statute is passed and the language is                  
 unclear so something happens that was not intended.                           
 Number 0669                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE suggested in Section 1(b), "A person is not eligible           
 for a Type A teacher certificate", to tighten up the language.                
 DR. BUELL said this language would help clarify.  She said the                
 second thing that would be recommended is that HB 145 not be                  
 limited to a single test, almost no other state does a single test.           
 Other states do a basic skills test and then some type of content             
 area test.  Even for initial teachers, we would hope that having              
 tests would be a possibility.  She said a language change such as,            
 "examination or examinations test or tests", so that if the Board             
 of Education decides that it wants to require a multiple test, it             
 is an option under the statute.                                               
 Number 0722                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE referred to the sponsor statement, "a basic test for           
 primary grads and a test for subject endorsements in secondary".              
 He said he had some confidence in the Board of Education, but if it           
 would raise the level of comfort and understanding the language               
 could be changed to say, "pass the examination or examinations",              
 just put an "(s)" there.                                                      
 DR. BUELL said this would address all of the concerns.  She said              
 the Board of Education is looking at other states and trying to               
 develop multiple tests.                                                       
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said they might put something in the bill asking the           
 Board of Education to report back to the legislature.                         
 DR. BUELL said they would hope that any type of test would be                 
 standards based, to tie it to our standards in some way and so show           
 why it was that we asked people to do it.  The standards language             
 in there would fit with HB 465, since it speaks to performance                
 Number 0781                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE GREEN said if teachers came in from outside of the             
 state and if they don't have a Type A teaching certificate, then              
 they would need to take the test.  He asked if there would be                 
 reciprocity as there are in other professions.                                
 Number 0813                                                                   
 DR. BUELL said the state does not have any reciprocity in this                
 area.  It would create an unusual situation for the state because             
 to get a Type B in this state, you have to qualify for a Type A.              
 So the Type B's are de facto having to take the test to qualify for           
 a Type A in order to qualify for a Type B.  It is a quirk of the              
 regulations.  She said HB 145 will impact more people than just               
 those people asking for an initial certificate, if we have to use             
 literal interpretation of the regulations.                                    
 Number 0859                                                                   
 JOHN CYR, President, National Education Association-Alaska (NEA-              
 Alaska), said his organization represents over 10,000 education               
 employees across the state.  He said NEA-Alaska supports the use of           
 testing to measure professional knowledge and competency for those            
 who seek initial Type A certification to teach in Alaska.  We                 
 believe that testing teachers prior to certification is consistent            
 with last year's legislative mandate in HB 465, requiring a                   
 comprehensive system of teacher evaluation for experienced                    
 teachers.  Beginning this year, an evaluation procedure is in place           
 that has a list of standards which mandates for non-tenured                   
 teachers that they be evaluated twice yearly on those standards and           
 evaluations for tenured teachers on a yearly basis.                           
 MR. CYR said NEA-Alaska believes that preservice testing, or                  
 testing before certification, for Type A certification will bring             
 higher standards for teachers.  Preparation programs must be                  
 relevant to experiences in the needs of the classroom and the use             
 of testing should provide Alaska a wealth of information on how               
 well we are doing to prepare for Alaska's classrooms.  Institutions           
 that prepare students to teach in Alaska can use these test results           
 to identify the methodology and innovation to ensure that students            
 who become teachers are well trained and well prepared.                       
 Certification standards for new hires by the state must be                    
 rigorous.  The evaluation that teachers receive in the classrooms             
 by administrators, along with future efforts by the state Board of            
 Education, to improve teaching performance should move Alaska's               
 schools towards greater levels of excellence.                                 
 MR. CYR said NEA-Alaska supports the efforts by the DOE to develop            
 preservice and practice assessments and measures for new and career           
 teachers.  We believe that HB 145 will provide Alaska's school                
 districts a degree of assurance that applicants for teaching                  
 positions, who apply for an initial Type A certification, have                
 successfully completed a test designed to measure competency in               
 basic skills, professional knowledge or expertise in their area of            
 teaching specialty.                                                           
 Number 0998                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE DYSON asked if NEA-Alaska tracked the impact of                
 testing in other states.                                                      
 Number 1015                                                                   
 MR. CYR said they have not.  The organization has provided, to the            
 chair, the same basic information that the DOE has provided on the            
 types of tests and the areas of testing that has been done.  As far           
 as the impact on the numbers and what it has done, it is so                   
 subjective that data has not been collected.                                  
 Number 1036                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE DYSON said he had hoped that some states had done              
 this long enough that a correlation of students' performance with             
 wage packages and some of that data might be available.                       
 Number 1048                                                                   
 MR. CYR said there is so much that affects student performance such           
 as community demographics.  You can run a list of those kind of               
 things that affect performance.  Undoubtedly teacher preparation              
 plays some part of that, we all hope that it does.  To some extent            
 when you compare districts or states, you compare apples and                  
 oranges.  He said the proof will be what happens here in Alaska.              
 If and when testing is in place, we will be looking at a district's           
 hiring policy.  Whether teachers will be hired because of their               
 test scores and how well they do when an administrator evaluates              
 them.  He said HB 145 is not a silver bullet, but a comprehensive             
 thing that brings the level, raises the bar, on those people that             
 try to get into the profession.                                               
 Number 1115                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE DYSON said, in other conversations about education,            
 there has always been quite a bit of data about the standard of               
 living, education level of parents, socio-economic mix in a                   
 district and many other factors and how they correlate with student           
 performance.  He expressed surprise that there has been no data               
 tracking teacher certification and testing.                                   
 Number 1145                                                                   
 MR. CYR said there might be this data, but he has not seen it.                
 There is data that tracks the level of educational achievement                
 compared to salaries that are offered.  Districts that offer higher           
 salaries get teachers with masters and doctorate degrees, it is               
 consistent across the board.  Those districts have higher scores.             
 He questioned whether it is because they have teachers with higher            
 degrees or because of the demographics of the city.                           
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said the higher salaries in Alaska are probably                
 regulated by geographic considerations.                                       
 MR. CYR said the demographics are much different in those areas as            
 Number 1190                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE referred to a question earlier about the                       
 professional teaching practices commission and asked him if he was            
 aware of approximate number of people who lose their license to               
 teach each year.                                                              
 Number 1195                                                                   
 MR. CYR said he could provide an exact number by Thursday when the            
 committee met again.                                                          
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said there is a weeding out that occurs.                       
 Number 1210                                                                   
 REPRESENTATIVE KEMPLEN asked if all the members of NEA-Alaska were            
 uniform in their abilities.  He referred to teachers in more                  
 technical classes, such as machine shop or computer science, as               
 compared to someone who is teaching English or history.  He said              
 stories have been related about people who just wish to teach their           
 skill and are very competent in transferring their skill to their             
 students, but not necessarily good in other areas.  He asked how              
 they would fare under this type of approach.                                  
 Number 1286                                                                   
 MR. CYR said any of us, who have taken a college physics or                   
 chemistry class, might have had a professor who had great command             
 of field knowledge but could not teach.  There is a body of                   
 knowledge around teaching, whether you teach high school chemistry            
 or second grade reading.  There is an art or a science to teaching            
 and you need to know how to teach.  He said there is a whole set of           
 activities about how to deal in a classroom that especially comes             
 into play when you are talking about specialized classrooms such as           
 a special education classroom.  He said as he read HB 145, it                 
 allows the DOE to pick the assessment tool.  The department would             
 not just look at whether you had mathematics knowledge, but whether           
 or not you could teach math and will somehow be differentiated                
 around the area of endorsement.                                               
 Number 1373                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said this is the basic requirement for people who              
 get a Type A teaching certificate and said Representative Kemplen             
 might have been referring to people who would not be teaching in              
 the public school.  He said teachers in the schools need to be                
 teachers as well as mechanics.                                                
 Number 1413                                                                   
 MR. CYR said there are people with a Type D certificate who teach             
 vocational education classes and don't have a Type A certificate.             
 Those people have a single area of expertise such as welding                  
 teachers or shop teachers.  Those are not tenured positions, they             
 are reviewed annually by the administration and their teaching                
 skills are measured by the administrator.  He said HB 145 would not           
 speak to those positions.                                                     
 Number 1446                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE clarified that HB 145 is a prescreening device.  The           
 concerns about how people can function in the classroom are                   
 determined by the district that chooses to hire this person, the              
 bill is simply a prescreening device that adds a third requirement            
 needed to obtain a Type A teaching certificate.                               
 Number 1470                                                                   
 MR. CYR referred to page 1, line 15, "Beginning on the effective              
 date of the Act, a person is not eligible for a", and said he would           
 delete, "a", and put, "an initial Type A teaching certificate".  He           
 said this would meet the concerns that the language is too generic.           
 Number 1503                                                                   
 JUDITH SNOW-ROSANDER said she had some concerns with HB 145 because           
 people can get through testing but when they come in contact with             
 the students, the principal and others they show whether or not               
 they are quality teachers.  She said HB 465 would hopefully                   
 continue this evaluation of teachers.  Representative Dyson                   
 mentioned that we are all concerned about the quality of teachers,            
 yet we don't tie it into the most important thing which is to show            
 our children's success or failures.  There should be some way to              
 show that a teacher is good by showing the success of our children.           
 Teachers can pass all these tests, they can be tenured for 20 years           
 and our kids can still be failing.                                            
 Number 1577                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said HB 145 requires a test before you hire                    
 teachers, it is still the school board's job to make sure that the            
 teachers hired are the best you can get.  If they are falling down            
 on the job after they have been hired you can use HB 465 to get               
 them out.                                                                     
 Number 1594                                                                   
 MS. SNOW-ROSANDER asked how long the observation time will be.                
 Number 1600                                                                   
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said HB 145 does not include observation time.  This           
 bill says, during the initial licensure time, that people are                 
 licensed.  The school district will decide whether or not you want            
 to hire them.  There will be no gold star on them to say these                
 teachers are a quality product, you still have that choice to make.           
 The test says that they meet the minimum qualifications.                      
 CHAIRMAN BUNDE said the committee will not take any public action             
 on HB 145.  The bill will be brought up on Thursday for further               
 discussion, public testimony and to see if the committee is ready             
 to move the bill forward.                                                     
 There being no further business to conduct, CHAIRMAN BUNDE                    
 adjourned the meeting of the House Health, Education and Social               
 Services Standing Committee at 4:22 p.m.                                      

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