DES MOINES, Iowa — Education was discussed by leaders of both parties at the Iowa Statehouse before the session. Early on in the general assembly, there has been a lot of education-related bills being introduced.
Several bills were discussed in subcommittees on Tuesday, both in the House and the Senate. One is Senate Study Bill 3046. It was recommended by the Senate Subcommittee for passage on Tuesday. It looks to expand students who enroll part-time during the academic year so they would be eligible for the Future Ready Iowa skilled workforce Last-Dollar Scholarship fund.
Another bill, Senate Study Bill 3048, relates to schools that are registered with the college student aid commission must comply with refund policies in Code section 714.23. There would also be penalties for the entities that don’t comply with that specific code. That bill as recommended passage to the Senate Education Committee.
In the House Education subcommittee, House File 2009 would authorize school districts to use revenue from tax levies to hire school resource officers. Similar legislation had been brought up in the past and got support from both political parties. But this time in the subcommittee it was voted to “indefinitely postpone.” The sponsor of the bill hopes this will be reconsidered.
“I guess I am not surprised,” said State Rep. Brian Lohse (R) from Bondurant. “But I hope for the sake of kids, for the sake of teachers and for the sake of school boards they are granted that flexibility. SROs are an important piece.”
The flexibility granted to school boards, in Lohse’s opinion, would be able to keep the general funds focused on hiring and retaining better teachers.