Why Senator Hudak Voted No on SB 191

In her sole “no” vote on SB 191 in the Senate Education committee last week, Sen. Evie Hudak  (D-Westminster) voiced a number of concerns. Her first concern is the bill’s reliance on “gifts, grants and donations” to provide funding for the new system of standardized testing called for in the bill.

“Neither the state nor districts currently have assessments to determine students’ growth in every subject that is taught in every school – yet half of the new educator evaluation system is based on these assessments. The cost of creating such assessments has been estimated between $80 million and $140 million,” she writes on her blog.

Hudak  saw what CEA has seen for weeks: SB 191 is an unworkable reform measure that imposes unfunded mandates on our financially-strapped school districts. Our schools, and our students, can’t afford SB 191.

As Hudak so aptly writes, “The state has just reduced funding for schools by $260 million. With staff being laid off in schools, programs being eliminated, class sizes being increased, and schools being closed in some districts, I can’t see how spending money to write new tests is the wisest use of districts’ funds. The bill would also presumably require districts to pay for training for principals to perform the new evaluations, as well as a considerable amount of money for tracking all the new data. It’s an unfunded mandate and the wrong “solution” to the wrong “problem.”

Read Sen. Hudak’s blog post here, and remember to contact your state senators and representatives and tell them to say no on SB 191!

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