The fate of the teacher pay raise rests with the Mississippi House. Word is that passage of the teacher pay raise is being caught up in negotiations over the unvetted tax swap being pushed by the House leadership. Our teachers have gone to the mat for us, working overtime under extremely difficult conditions to keep our children learning during the pandemic, and they do not deserve to be used as political pawns. Legislators should pass a stand-alone teacher pay raise bill that is not tied to any other issue.
ASK YOUR REPRESENTATIVE TO PASS THE TEACHER PAY RAISE INDEPENDENT OF ANY OTHER ISSUE
All of the legislation we support has survived today’s deadline in one form or another. The bills that remain alive are:
Teacher Pay Raise
HB 852: going to House for concurrence or conference – $37,000 starting salary for teachers with two years of experience and less ($1,110 raise); $1,000 pay raise for other certified teachers and assistant teachers (increases base salary for assistants from $14,000 to $15,000)
SB 2267: going to Senate for concurrence or conference – teacher license reciprocity with other states
HB 1179: going to House for concurrence or conference – Winter and Reed Teacher Loan Repayment Program
SB 2149: passed Senate and House, going to governor for his signature – holds districts harmless for average daily attendance for school funding purposes
SB 2664: going to Senate for concurrence or conference – amends curriculum and reporting criteria for Early Learning Collaboratives and increases per-student funding for Early Learning Collaboratives to minimum of $2,500 for full day and $1,250 for half day
HB 1123: going to House for concurrence or conference – amends curriculum and reporting criteria for Early Learning Collaboratives
HB 754: going to House for concurrence or conference – aligns state statute with federal law; makes clarifications regarding determination of eligibility for 504 plan
HB 1301: going to House for concurrence or conference – provides for WorkKeys assessment to be administered to students who elect to take it
SB 2798: going to Senate for concurrence or conference – encourages new investment in broadband
Other bills we are watching (these appropriations and revenue bills have no committee deadline):
HB 1439: awaiting action in Senate Finance Committee – makes sweeping changes to state’s revenue system without adequate vetting; could eliminate 1/3 of General Fund and trigger massive budget cuts to public education OPPOSE
HB 1387: awaiting action in Senate Appropriations Committee – appropriation for pre-k through grade twelve; placeholder language funds public education at Legislative Budget Committee recommended levels and will be updated following revenue estimate revision later in session WATCHING
We will notify you of urgent action needed on any of these important bills. In the meantime, you can keep up with their statuses on the bill tracker page of our web site.
REAL TALK this week: Don’t forget to register for our final REAL TALK event of this series! It will be tomorrow, Thursday, March 11 at 5:30 p.m. on Zoom and will feature House and Senate Education Committee Vice-chairs Sen. David Blount and Rep. Kent McCarty. You can submit questions for our speakers before the event by replying to this email, or you can drop them in the chat during the event tomorrow.