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After 2018 teacher strikes, here’s what’s in the works for education policy so far

Posted at 2:20 PM, Jan 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-07 20:28:20-05

DENVER- During the 2018 legislative session, teachers all across the state traveled to the state capitol to protest teacher pay, among other concerns related to the classroom.

For some districts, the strike didn’t stop at the capitol either.

Pueblo District 60 teachers walked out of the classroom for a full school week, ultimately resulting in changes from the school board when it comes to teacher pay and incentives.

With a new legislative session already underway, more than a dozen bills have already been introduced.

Some of these new bills focus on teacher pay, including a bill offering bonuses for ‘highly effective’ teachers- introduced by Senator Paul Lundeen (R- Monument).

‘We’re very excited that our new Governor has put forward the idea of full day Kindergarten, ‘said Phyllis Robinette, President of the Pikes Peak Education Association and a 2nd grade teacher at Palmer Lake Elementary.

Robinette was among the thousands of teachers that protested at the capitol last year.

As an educator for 33 years, she says she’s seen so much over the years and change needs to happen to give teachers and students the resources they need to succeed.

While not introduced yet, first- year Representative Bri Buentello of Pueblo told News 5 at the opening day of the legislature, she’ll be introducing three bills related to education.

As someone who lives in rural Pueblo, Buentello says she wants to make that a priority: giving students in rural districts more resources.

‘With Amendment 73, I’m glad that our legislators say they need to consider funding, we need to do it differently,’ said Robinette.

As ballot measures like Amendment 73 failed with voters in November, lawmakers will have to continue to look at ways to fund education.

House Education Bills 

HB19-1002: Leadership Professional Development for School Principals 

HB19-1008: Include Career And Technical Education In Building Excellent Schools Today Program

HB19-1016: Basic Skills Placement Tests For High School 

HB19-1017: Kindergarten Through Fifth Grad Social And Emotional Health Act

HB19-1032: Comprehensive Human Sexuality Education

HB19-1036: Annual Stipends For Certified School Professionals 

HB19-1053: Computer Science Courses Offered In Schools

HB19-1055: Public School Cap Construction Financial Assistance

Senate Education Bills

SB19-003: Education Loan Forgiveness Program

SB19-009 Financial Incentives For Rural Educators

SB19-010: Professional Behavioral Health Services For Schools

SB19-025: Information To Students Regarding Safe Haven Laws

SB19-039: Interdistrict Transportation of Students

SB19-022: Bonuses For Highly Effective Teachers

SB19-033: Automatic Law Waivers For School Districts