The Minnesota State Legislature did double-duty this week as they caught up after a few snow days last week. 

On Monday, the House Education Policy committee met twice to discuss a number of bills, including House File 1589 which would create a teacher training pipeline for special education teachers. 

House File 1348 was also discussed on Monday. Authored by Rep. Brad Tabke (DFL - District 54A), the bill is sometimes known as the ESP Bill of Rights, and it would require that all districts provide health insurance to education support staff across the state, as well as a minimum starting salary and paid orientation and professional development opportunities. The bill would also appropriate funding for the noted district requirements. 

The House Education Policy committee also discussed House File 562 on Monday, which would ensure that special education teachers have the time in the day to complete the job’s required paperwork. It would also appropriate funds for this policy change. 

House File 827 was discussed. Authored by Rep. Heather Keeler (DFL - District 4A), the bill would modify the current requirements for teacher preparation time. In short the bill would require that teacher preparation be included in collective bargaining and, if it’s not included or agreed upon in collective bargaining agreements, the bill lays out a minimum standard for each district. Specifically the bill would require that teachers get 5 minutes of teacher preparation time for every 17 minutes of teaching. These teacher preparation blocks would have to happen in one or two blocks during the day. Exemptions would be allowed as agreed upon by the district and teacher representatives. The bill also lays out additional preparation time requirements. 

Here some of what’s on the calendar for next week: 

Legislative Calendar: March 6 - March 10 

  • On March 7th, the Senate Education Finance committee will take up Senate File 1881, which seeks to amend the state’s funding formula for general education. 
  • On March 7th, the Senate Education Finance committee will also take up Senate File 1318, which would - if passed - require that all non-licensed school workers receive health insurance. 
  • On March 7th, the House Education FInance committee will take up the “ESP Bill of Rights,” House File 1348, after its passage from the House Education Policy committee this week. 

Just a reminder that you can visit the Minnesota State Legislature weekly calendar to see what’s on the agenda for the various committees and floor sessions each week. Additionally, you can check that schedule each day to figure out what committees are available to be viewed virtually.