A Busy Week for ‘School Choice’ In New Hampshire

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It’s a busy week for school choice! The House Ways and Means Committee will vote on HB 632, the bill that seeks to repeal the Education Tax Credit (ETC) scholarship program, on Wednesday, March 13th, starting at 10:00am. They held two public hearings on the bill – Part 1 and Part 2. Please continue to contact the committee leading up their executive session. Calls are best, but emails are helpful. We have a tool that sends emails to the committee as well as your own state representatives; the message can be customized for additional impact. We also have a page about ETC scholarships that compiles relevant information on the background of NH’s program, how they work, constitutional issues, and media coverage – one-stop reading!

The House Education Committee has a couple important bills that will have votes this week, activity on a manifest educational hardship bill as well as a few chartered public school bills, plus a public hearing on SB 318, a bill in the Senate Ways and Means Committee, that would harm the ETC program. We are monitoring numerous bills this year and those include our analysis and commentary.

SCHEDULE

TUESDAY, MARCH 12, 2019: SENATE EDUCATION COMMITTEE, ROOM 103, LOB

Public hearings for the following bills

9:00 a.m. SB 267, relative to the release of student assessment information and data.

This bill requires the state Department of Education to provide the statewide assessment organization with students’ names and Unique Pupil Identifiers (UPIs). This is a violation of students’ privacy rights. This gives the testing company vast amounts of our children’s information as the UPI is the key to unlocking all the data. Current law, (more here)

TUESDAY, MARCH 12, 2019: HOME EDUCATION ADVISORY COUNCIL (HEAC) subcommittee at 3:30pm

Derry Public Library, 64 E Broadway in Derry

This is a subcommittee meeting to discuss proposed changes to Ed 315 as requested by the Commissioner. The public is welcome to attend. Read more about the subcommittee’s work in HEAC Reviews Ed Rule Changes.

 

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 13, 2019: SENATE WAYS and MEANS COMMITTEE, ROOM 101, STATE HOUSE

Public hearing for the following bill

9:15 a.m. SB 318, relative to donations to the education tax credit program.

This bill adds public-school projects to the Education Tax Credit (ETC) program. We might not be against utilizing state tax credits to fund public-school projects, but it does not fit in the nature, process, or intent of the Education Tax Credit Scholarship law which created the program for individual student tuition scholarships or homeschool scholarships.  (more here)

 

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 13, 2019: HOUSE EDUCATION COMMITTEE, ROOM 207, LOB

10:00 a.m. Executive sessions on the following bills

HB 375, relative to policies regarding chartered public schools.

This bill applies existing local district school statutes to chartered public schools. It includes laws that empower families with the ability to opt-out of health or sex education for religious objections; exemptions for objectionable material at the parents’ expense; refusals of participation in the statewide assessments; (more here)

 

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 13, 2019: HOUSE WAYS and MEANS COMMITTEE, ROOM 202, LOB

Executive session for the following bill

10:00 a.m. HB 632-FN, relative to the education tax credit.

The Education Tax Credit (ETC) scholarship program is facing multiple legislative attacks this term, of which HB 632 is one. This program is the only one of its kind to put educational opportunities within reach for low-income students across the Granite State.  (more here)

 

THURSDAY, MARCH 14, 2019: NH SENATE, Senate Chamber

The NH Senate will vote on the following bill

SB 277, relative to grants to chartered public schools

Committee recommendation – Ought to Pass with Amendment, vote 5 to 0

Position – YEA on OTP/A

This bill gives modest incremental increases of state funding to support our chartered public schools over the next couple of years. Our charter schools do not receive local tax-dollars and rely on state funds to operate.

Read more at School Choice for NH