State legislators have repeatedly said they really appreciate hearing from the folks back home when it comes time to consider a new bill.
So when the legislature begins debating a bill that will affect your child’s school and school community, will you know who to call?
You may live in one legislator’s district, but the school district might be split among many legislators.
Scroll down to see a chart of school districts. Choose a name, and you’ll see the names of legislators who represent folks who live in some part of that school district.
Every district has at least two members: one Representative and one Senator. Some districts have ten or more.
Whether you voted for that legislator or not, if some piece of that school district is represented by that legislator, he or she has a vested interest in what happens all across the district.
When you need to voice your opinion on a piece of legislation, call them all.
Regular Session Begins in Four Months
Rep. Terri Collins (R-Decatur), who serves as Chair of the House Education Policy committee, told WAFF-48 that she is hearing some who wish to defund the state department of education and that we should expect a lot of education-related bills to be considered. (Scroll down to view the full video.)
After moving $80 million from the Education Trust Fund (ETF) into the General Fund, Governor Robert Bentley told al.com that he plans to come after the rest of the Use tax for the General Fund.
In the same article, Bentley took a swipe at the education community when he said, “I don’t think now we need to back fill the dollars we take from the use tax. I had wanted to do that, and we needed the help of education to get the FICA reduction through the Legislation and they didn’t lift a hand to help us. Next year we will push to take the rest of it and that will give the General Fund another $125 million.”
Bentley also told al.com that he is going to take a “serious look” at combining the Education and General Fund budgets.
A week later, Bentley told The Daily Home he doesn’t want to take money from education.
In addition to those big ideas, we will likely see some of the education ideas that didn’t get far during the 2015 Regular Session.
And charter school and virtual school legislation could be tweaked as the details continue to be worked out.
This report from WAFF-48 in Huntsville gives a quick look at what’s ahead.
Legislative districts were matched up with school districts using maps on the Alabama State Department of Education web site. Please let me know if you find any errors.
Choose your school district to find out which representatives from the House and Senate are voting to represent the interests of your schools.
Educators tell me they rarely see legislators in their schools unless it’s part of a presentation or some other big deal. Wouldn’t it be great if they could just see the school as it is every day? Walk into classrooms, see what educators do? See the many faces of the children they represent?
If you’re so inclined, ask your legislator to visit your child’s school some time before the 2016 Regular Session begins.