Education 2017-2018

The Senate Education Committee met on Tuesday, May 22, 2018, to Consider the following legislation:

H.B. 564 (Boback) – Would require school entities develop civics tests and administer them to students. The bill was Reported as Amended unanimously.

  • Amendment A07163 (Eichelberger) – Would require the department develop and make available to schools certificates of recognition for students that receive perfect scores, not passing scores, on their civics assessments. The amendment passed unanimously.

S.B. 2 (DiSanto) – Would provide for the creation of Education Savings Accounts, which would enable students to choose educational opportunities outside of their resident school districts. The bill was Reported as Amended by a vote of 7:5.

  • Amendment A06867 (DiSanto) – Would provide for technical changes to further clarify the bill’s intent. It added a definition of “State Achievement Test,” referring to the PSSAs and Keystone Exams, clarified the eligibility parameters to qualify for an education savings account and specified the period for account applications, renewals and notification by the department of approved program applications. The amendment passed by a vote of 7:5.
  • Amendment A07165 (Williams) – Would provide for a school voucher program in the state. The amendment failed by a vote of 10:2.

S.B. 1032 (Dinniman) – Would require the State Board of Education provide fiscal documents to the House and Senate Majority and Minority Education Committee Chairpersons for Keystone Exam-related and other regulations.  The bill was Reported as Amended unanimously.

  • Amendment A07164 (Dinniman) – Would require the Secretary of Education provide fiscal documents to the House and Senate Majority and Minority Chairpersons for regulations. Updated fiscal statements, or fiscal notes prepared by the Office of the Budget, would be required for final-form regulations.

S.B. 1159 (Aument) – Would allow for the creation of a central student record repository for private licensed school students.  The billwas Reported as Committed unanimously.

 S.R. 322 (Aument) – Would direct the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee to study standardized testing in the state.  The resolution was Reported as Committed unanimously.


The Senate Education Committee met on Tuesday, April 24, 2018, to Consider the following legislation:

S.B. 1104 (Aument) – Would provide for changes to the state’s vocational education certification qualifications and requirements.  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.

S.B. 1142 (Browne) – Would provide for the creation and implementation of the Safe2Say Program, an anonymous system of reporting unsafe, potentially harmful, dangerous, violent or criminal activities, or the threat of such activities, in schools.  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.


The Senate Education Committee met on Monday, April 23, 2018, to Consider the following legislation:

S.B. 1136 (Brooks) – Would include part-time local police in adjacent municipalities as allowable police units with which a school may establish a cooperative service agreement. The bill was Reported as Committed by a vote of 12:0.

H.B. 679 (Ortitay) – Would require the department to create an online course database for students in schools and home education programs. The bill was Reported as Committed by a vote of 11:1.

H.B. 857 (Zimmerman) – Would provide for online schools to be included in the oversight and regulatory responsibilities of the State Board of Private Academic Schools, including licensing requirements. The bill was Reported as Committed by a vote of 11:1.


The Senate Education Committee met on Monday, January 29, 2018, to Consider the following legislation:

H.B. 1305 (Rapp) – Would require training for teachers, who provide secondary transition services to students in grades eight through twelve (or age 14 or older).  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.

H.B. 1653 (Quigley) – Would allow college students to receive state scholarships for programs in which more than 50% of the coursework is online.  This would only apply to schools headquartered and domiciled through incorporation or charter in PA.  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously

S.B. 776 (Tomlinson) – Would provide for a two-year extension to the Dyslexia and Early Literacy Intervention Program.  Amendment A05613 would expand the program from three to eight schools and allow schools with up to 15,000 enrolled students to be eligible for the program.  The bill was Reported as Amended unanimously.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Tuesday, December 12, 2017, to Consider the following legislation:

S.B. 2 (DiSanto) – Would create Education Savings Accounts, which would provide funding for students to attend schools outside their resident school districts.  The bill was not Considered by the Committee.

S.B. 955 (Vulakovich) – Would establish the Community College Secondary Education Fire Training Pilot Program to increase the number of individuals trained in firefighting.  This bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.

S.R. 248 (Eichelberger) – Would request alternative graduation assessments to the Keystone Exams.  It was amended to remove reference to the Keystone Exams and alternative assessments as Federal accountability measures and to require alternative assessments meet certain criteria provided for by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and the Every Student Succeeds Act. The resolution was Reported as Amended unanimously.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Tuesday, October 24, 2017, to Consider the following legislation:

H.B. 1448 (Cutler) – Would place requirements on the PA Department of Education, PHEAA and colleges and universities to provide for transparency and accountability in student selection of colleges and academic majors.  The legislation was Reported as Committed by a vote of 11:0, 1(NV).

S.B. 2 (DiSanto) – Would create Education Savings Accounts, which would provide funding for students to attend schools outside their resident school districts.  A technical amendment was offered to clarify eligibility requirements for program applicants and specify program application time periods.  The bill and amendment were Considered, but due to a procedural point made on a proxy, all votes were voided.  Both the bill and amendment remain in committee at this time.

S.B. 521 (Killion) – Would provide for cardiopulmonary resuscitation instruction for high school students.  The legislation passed unanimously.

S.B. 540 (Mensch) – Would allow a student’s participation in a musical performance with veterans to serve as an acceptable excuse for school absence.  The legislation passed unanimously.

S.R. 228 (Eichelberger) – Would provide for a Global Education Task Force in Pennsylvania.  The resolution was Reported as Amended by a vote of 11:1.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Monday, June 20, 2017, to consider the following legislation:

H.B. 178 (Day) – Would provide for fire and security drills to be held in school buildings and buses of school entities. This legislation was Reported as Committed by a vote of 12:0.

S.B. 756 (Dinniman) – Would end the Keystone Exams in PA, establish a task force to evaluate the PSSAs and provide for a teacher rating system.  This legislation was Reported as Amended by a vote of 8:4.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Tuesday, January 31, 2017, to consider the following legislation:

S.B. 227 (Eichelberger) – Would provide for a school board to give notice of its intentions to renew a superintendent or assistant superintendent’s contract within 90 days of the contract’s expiration.  If the board would fail to meet this requirement, the bill would provide for a one-year contract extension.  This legislation passed by a vote of 11:1.

S.B. 229 (Eichelberger) – Would eliminate a school employee’s statutory right to sick, bereavement and sabbatical leave.  This legislation passed by a vote of 7:5.

The Senate Education Committee met on Tuesday, April 24, 2018, to Consider the following legislation:

S.B. 1104 (Aument) – Would provide for changes to the state’s vocational education certification qualifications and requirements.  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.

S.B. 1142 (Browne) – Would provide for the creation and implementation of the Safe2Say Program, an anonymous system of reporting unsafe, potentially harmful, dangerous, violent or criminal activities, or the threat of such activities, in schools.  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.


The Senate Education Committee met on Monday, April 23, 2018, to Consider the following legislation:

S.B. 1136 (Brooks) – Would include part-time local police in adjacent municipalities as allowable police units with which a school may establish a cooperative service agreement. The bill was Reported as Committed by a vote of 12:0.

H.B. 679 (Ortitay) – Would require the department to create an online course database for students in schools and home education programs. The bill was Reported as Committed by a vote of 11:1.

H.B. 857 (Zimmerman) – Would provide for online schools to be included in the oversight and regulatory responsibilities of the State Board of Private Academic Schools, including licensing requirements. The bill was Reported as Committed by a vote of 11:1.


The Senate Education Committee met on Monday, January 29, 2018, to Consider the following legislation:

H.B. 1305 (Rapp) – Would require training for teachers, who provide secondary transition services to students in grades eight through twelve (or age 14 or older).  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.

H.B. 1653 (Quigley) – Would allow college students to receive state scholarships for programs in which more than 50% of the coursework is online.  This would only apply to schools headquartered and domiciled through incorporation or charter in PA.  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously

S.B. 776 (Tomlinson) – Would provide for a two-year extension to the Dyslexia and Early Literacy Intervention Program.  Amendment A05613 would expand the program from three to eight schools and allow schools with up to 15,000 enrolled students to be eligible for the program.  The bill was Reported as Amended unanimously.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Tuesday, December 12, 2017, to Consider the following legislation:

S.B. 2 (DiSanto) – Would create Education Savings Accounts, which would provide funding for students to attend schools outside their resident school districts.  The bill was not Considered by the Committee.

S.B. 955 (Vulakovich) – Would establish the Community College Secondary Education Fire Training Pilot Program to increase the number of individuals trained in firefighting.  This bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.

S.R. 248 (Eichelberger) – Would request alternative graduation assessments to the Keystone Exams.  It was amended to remove reference to the Keystone Exams and alternative assessments as Federal accountability measures and to require alternative assessments meet certain criteria provided for by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and the Every Student Succeeds Act. The resolution was Reported as Amended unanimously.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Tuesday, October 24, 2017, to Consider the following legislation:

H.B. 1448 (Cutler) – Would place requirements on the PA Department of Education, PHEAA and colleges and universities to provide for transparency and accountability in student selection of colleges and academic majors.  The legislation was Reported as Committed by a vote of 11:0, 1(NV).

S.B. 2 (DiSanto) – Would create Education Savings Accounts, which would provide funding for students to attend schools outside their resident school districts.  A technical amendment was offered to clarify eligibility requirements for program applicants and specify program application time periods.  The bill and amendment were Considered, but due to a procedural point made on a proxy, all votes were voided.  Both the bill and amendment remain in committee at this time.

S.B. 521 (Killion) – Would provide for cardiopulmonary resuscitation instruction for high school students.  The legislation passed unanimously.

S.B. 540 (Mensch) – Would allow a student’s participation in a musical performance with veterans to serve as an acceptable excuse for school absence.  The legislation passed unanimously.

S.R. 228 (Eichelberger) – Would provide for a Global Education Task Force in Pennsylvania.  The resolution was Reported as Amended by a vote of 11:1.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Monday, June 20, 2017, to consider the following legislation:

H.B. 178 (Day) – Would provide for fire and security drills to be held in school buildings and buses of school entities. This legislation was Reported as Committed by a vote of 12:0.

S.B. 756 (Dinniman) – Would end the Keystone Exams in PA, establish a task force to evaluate the PSSAs and provide for a teacher rating system.  This legislation was Reported as Amended by a vote of 8:4.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Tuesday, January 31, 2017, to consider the following legislation:

S.B. 227 (Eichelberger) – Would provide for a school board to give notice of its intentions to renew a superintendent or assistant superintendent’s contract within 90 days of the contract’s expiration.  If the board would fail to meet this requirement, the bill would provide for a one-year contract extension.  This legislation passed by a vote of 11:1.

S.B. 229 (Eichelberger) – Would eliminate a school employee’s statutory right to sick, bereavement and sabbatical leave.  This legislation passed by a vote of 7:5.

The Senate Education Committee met on Tuesday, April 24, 2018, to Consider the following legislation:

S.B. 1104 (Aument) – Would provide for changes to the state’s vocational education certification qualifications and requirements.  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.

S.B. 1142 (Browne) – Would provide for the creation and implementation of the Safe2Say Program, an anonymous system of reporting unsafe, potentially harmful, dangerous, violent or criminal activities, or the threat of such activities, in schools.  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.


The Senate Education Committee met on Monday, April 23, 2018, to Consider the following legislation:

S.B. 1136 (Brooks) – Would include part-time local police in adjacent municipalities as allowable police units with which a school may establish a cooperative service agreement. The bill was Reported as Committed by a vote of 12:0.

H.B. 679 (Ortitay) – Would require the department to create an online course database for students in schools and home education programs. The bill was Reported as Committed by a vote of 11:1.

H.B. 857 (Zimmerman) – Would provide for online schools to be included in the oversight and regulatory responsibilities of the State Board of Private Academic Schools, including licensing requirements. The bill was Reported as Committed by a vote of 11:1.


The Senate Education Committee met on Monday, January 29, 2018, to Consider the following legislation:

H.B. 1305 (Rapp) – Would require training for teachers, who provide secondary transition services to students in grades eight through twelve (or age 14 or older).  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.

H.B. 1653 (Quigley) – Would allow college students to receive state scholarships for programs in which more than 50% of the coursework is online.  This would only apply to schools headquartered and domiciled through incorporation or charter in PA.  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously

S.B. 776 (Tomlinson) – Would provide for a two-year extension to the Dyslexia and Early Literacy Intervention Program.  Amendment A05613 would expand the program from three to eight schools and allow schools with up to 15,000 enrolled students to be eligible for the program.  The bill was Reported as Amended unanimously.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Tuesday, December 12, 2017, to Consider the following legislation:

S.B. 2 (DiSanto) – Would create Education Savings Accounts, which would provide funding for students to attend schools outside their resident school districts.  The bill was not Considered by the Committee.

S.B. 955 (Vulakovich) – Would establish the Community College Secondary Education Fire Training Pilot Program to increase the number of individuals trained in firefighting.  This bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.

S.R. 248 (Eichelberger) – Would request alternative graduation assessments to the Keystone Exams.  It was amended to remove reference to the Keystone Exams and alternative assessments as Federal accountability measures and to require alternative assessments meet certain criteria provided for by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and the Every Student Succeeds Act. The resolution was Reported as Amended unanimously.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Tuesday, October 24, 2017, to Consider the following legislation:

H.B. 1448 (Cutler) – Would place requirements on the PA Department of Education, PHEAA and colleges and universities to provide for transparency and accountability in student selection of colleges and academic majors.  The legislation was Reported as Committed by a vote of 11:0, 1(NV).

S.B. 2 (DiSanto) – Would create Education Savings Accounts, which would provide funding for students to attend schools outside their resident school districts.  A technical amendment was offered to clarify eligibility requirements for program applicants and specify program application time periods.  The bill and amendment were Considered, but due to a procedural point made on a proxy, all votes were voided.  Both the bill and amendment remain in committee at this time.

S.B. 521 (Killion) – Would provide for cardiopulmonary resuscitation instruction for high school students.  The legislation passed unanimously.

S.B. 540 (Mensch) – Would allow a student’s participation in a musical performance with veterans to serve as an acceptable excuse for school absence.  The legislation passed unanimously.

S.R. 228 (Eichelberger) – Would provide for a Global Education Task Force in Pennsylvania.  The resolution was Reported as Amended by a vote of 11:1.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Monday, June 20, 2017, to consider the following legislation:

H.B. 178 (Day) – Would provide for fire and security drills to be held in school buildings and buses of school entities. This legislation was Reported as Committed by a vote of 12:0.

S.B. 756 (Dinniman) – Would end the Keystone Exams in PA, establish a task force to evaluate the PSSAs and provide for a teacher rating system.  This legislation was Reported as Amended by a vote of 8:4.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Tuesday, January 31, 2017, to consider the following legislation:

S.B. 227 (Eichelberger) – Would provide for a school board to give notice of its intentions to renew a superintendent or assistant superintendent’s contract within 90 days of the contract’s expiration.  If the board would fail to meet this requirement, the bill would provide for a one-year contract extension.  This legislation passed by a vote of 11:1.

S.B. 229 (Eichelberger) – Would eliminate a school employee’s statutory right to sick, bereavement and sabbatical leave.  This legislation passed by a vote of 7:5.

The Senate Education Committee met on Monday, January 29, 2018, to Consider the following legislation:

H.B. 1305 (Rapp) – Would require training for teachers, who provide secondary transition services to students in grades eight through twelve (or age 14 or older).  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.

H.B. 1653 (Quigley) – Would allow college students to receive state scholarships for programs in which more than 50% of the coursework is online.  This would only apply to schools headquartered and domiciled through incorporation or charter in PA.  The bill was Reported as Committed unanimously

S.B. 776 (Tomlinson) – Would provide for a two-year extension to the Dyslexia and Early Literacy Intervention Program.  Amendment A05613 would expand the program from three to eight schools and allow schools with up to 15,000 enrolled students to be eligible for the program.  The bill was Reported as Amended unanimously.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Tuesday, December 12, 2017, to Consider the following legislation:

S.B. 2 (DiSanto) – Would create Education Savings Accounts, which would provide funding for students to attend schools outside their resident school districts.  The bill was not Considered by the Committee.

S.B. 955 (Vulakovich) – Would establish the Community College Secondary Education Fire Training Pilot Program to increase the number of individuals trained in firefighting.  This bill was Reported as Committed unanimously.

S.R. 248 (Eichelberger) – Would request alternative graduation assessments to the Keystone Exams.  It was amended to remove reference to the Keystone Exams and alternative assessments as Federal accountability measures and to require alternative assessments meet certain criteria provided for by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and the Every Student Succeeds Act. The resolution was Reported as Amended unanimously.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Tuesday, October 24, 2017, to Consider the following legislation:

H.B. 1448 (Cutler) – Would place requirements on the PA Department of Education, PHEAA and colleges and universities to provide for transparency and accountability in student selection of colleges and academic majors.  The legislation was Reported as Committed by a vote of 11:0, 1(NV).

S.B. 2 (DiSanto) – Would create Education Savings Accounts, which would provide funding for students to attend schools outside their resident school districts.  A technical amendment was offered to clarify eligibility requirements for program applicants and specify program application time periods.  The bill and amendment were Considered, but due to a procedural point made on a proxy, all votes were voided.  Both the bill and amendment remain in committee at this time.

S.B. 521 (Killion) – Would provide for cardiopulmonary resuscitation instruction for high school students.  The legislation passed unanimously.

S.B. 540 (Mensch) – Would allow a student’s participation in a musical performance with veterans to serve as an acceptable excuse for school absence.  The legislation passed unanimously.

S.R. 228 (Eichelberger) – Would provide for a Global Education Task Force in Pennsylvania.  The resolution was Reported as Amended by a vote of 11:1.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Monday, June 20, 2017, to consider the following legislation:

H.B. 178 (Day) – Would provide for fire and security drills to be held in school buildings and buses of school entities. This legislation was Reported as Committed by a vote of 12:0.

S.B. 756 (Dinniman) – Would end the Keystone Exams in PA, establish a task force to evaluate the PSSAs and provide for a teacher rating system.  This legislation was Reported as Amended by a vote of 8:4.


The Senate Education Committee held a meeting on Tuesday, January 31, 2017, to consider the following legislation:

S.B. 227 (Eichelberger) – Would provide for a school board to give notice of its intentions to renew a superintendent or assistant superintendent’s contract within 90 days of the contract’s expiration.  If the board would fail to meet this requirement, the bill would provide for a one-year contract extension.  This legislation passed by a vote of 11:1.

S.B. 229 (Eichelberger) – Would eliminate a school employee’s statutory right to sick, bereavement and sabbatical leave.  This legislation passed by a vote of 7:5.

Senator Andy Dinniman

Senator Andy Dinniman

Committee Chair