House Ed. Committee Poised to Stifle Voice of Voters: SB1313

The first effort to strip our duly elected Superintendent of Public Instruction (SPI) of powers was during the Legislature's last session.  Thankfully, HB2184 was held in the House.  The second whack at our eleted SPI was brought forward this session by Sen. Jeff Dial, via SB1416.  

SB1416 has been held by Speaker of the House David Gowan, until very recently, when he caved under pressure from Governor Ducey.  Gowan is currently running as a "conservative" for U.S. Representative in CD1.  Is "caving under pressure" a trait you seek in a U.S. Congressman?  

SB1416 has now morphed into an even uglier SB1313, championed by Rep. Paul Boyer, known for his disdain for parental authority in matters relating to the education of their children.  See Rep. Paul Boyer Won't Allow Parental "Opt Out" Bill to be Heard! , Boyer Blocking Parental Choice, Privacy Bills , and Boyer Tries To Dodge Public On SB1313, Education Overhaul  

See below for a Summary of SB1313 by Vicki Alger, Ph.D.

Very simply, THIS BILL MUST BE STOPPED!

The House Education Committee will meet on Wednesday, March 16, at 2:00 PM, to vote on SB1313.  Click HERE for the agenda.  Please call, visit, use the RTS (virtual Request to Speak), email the following Committee members as soon as possible!

Rep. Boyer: Chairman                         PBoyer@azleg.gov          602-926-4173
Rep. Lawrence: Vice-Chairman           JLawrence@azleg.gov   602-926-3095
Rep. Bolding                                        RBolding@azleg.gov      602-926-3132|
Rep. Coleman                                      DColeman@azleg.gov    602-926-3160
Rep. Norgaard                                     JNorgaard@azleg.gov    602-926-3140
Rep. Otondo                                        LOtondo@azleg.gov       602-926-3002
Rep. Thorpe                                        BThorpe@azleg.gov       602-926-5219

Summary of SB1313 by Vicki Alger, PhD, author of FAILURE: The Federal "Misedukation" of America's Children (forthcoming)

Arizona is one of just 13 remaining states with an elected Superintendent of Public Instruction. Representative Boyer’s bill guts this office as well as the will of the people. The last thing our lawmakers should be doing is taking away our vote and our voice.  In its 74-page amendment, SB1313 puts the SBE (State Board of Education) in charge of investigating allegations of immoral/unprofessional conduct of certificated persons, including subpoena power, formerly the responsibility of the SPI (Superintendent of Public Instruction).  (Editorial note:  The SBE recently botched 30% of teacher discipline investigations. See Teachers with discipline problems slip through Arizona, national databases and Banned Oregon teacher has valid teaching certificate in Arizona.) 

In page after page the SBE sets rules and policies, but makes the SPI and the Arizona Department of Education (ADE) responsible for carrying them out.  On page 22, you will see "School compliance and recognition; accreditation; audits."  ADE functions in this area are now subject to review and approval of SBE.  Is this how the Governor plans to eliminate the Auditor General’s Dollars to the Classroom report and “redesign…Annual Financial Reports” including the Superintendent’s Annual Financial Report—the only two credible fiscal reports the public has about how public school funding is spent? See Gov. Ducey’s “Classrooms First Initiative Council Preliminary Framework,” Sept. 22, 1015, p. 16.   

On page 25, the SPI no longer is allowed to direct the work of all employees of the board, nor are they considered employees of the department of education.  

On page 25, the SBE makes SPI responsible for reporting the cost of contracting for the purchase, distribution, and scoring of the proficiency examinations prescribed in Section 15-203, Subsection A, paragraphs 16 and 17. [Recall, the SBE failed to fulfill its legal requirement back in 2010 when it adopted Common Core!]

Page 59, Dismissal of certificated teacher; due process- Whenever the SPI presents a statement of charges for dismissal based on immoral or unprofessional  conduct, the governing board may adopt a resolution that a complaint be filed with the State Board of Education, no longer the ADE

Page 60, Alternative teacher development program- SBE sets rules and policies but makes ADE responsible for program administration.

Page 62, Alternative teacher development program- SBE makes ADE responsible for preparing the program report, which SBE approves and submits.

Page 62, Identification of English language learners- SBE sets rules and policies but makes ADE responsible for program administration.

Page 63, Identification of English language learners-SBE, no longer ADE, sets test scores to determine proficiency.

Page 63, Reevaluation of former English language learners – SBE sets rules and policies but makes ADE responsible for program administration.

Page 64, Office of English language acquisition services-this ADE office is now subject to the review and approval of SBE.

Page 73, Uncollected property tax; property tax loss;  supplemental state aid- SBE approves but makes ADE responsible for payments.

Page 74, Uncollected property tax; property tax loss;  supplemental state aid- SBE approves but makes ADE responsible for deductions.