Legislature(2017 - 2018)SENATE FINANCE 532

03/29/2018 09:00 AM FINANCE

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Heard & Held
Moved CSSB 105(FIN) Out of Committee
SENATE BILL NO. 104                                                                                                           
     "An Act relating to the duties of the state Board of                                                                       
     Education and Early Development; and relating to                                                                           
     school curriculum."                                                                                                        
9:46:35 AM                                                                                                                    
Co-Chair  MacKinnon relayed  the  bill was  returned to  the                                                                    
committee  on  February  22, 2018.  Over  the  interim,  the                                                                    
Department of  Education and Early Development  went through                                                                    
a  process that  engaged community  members from  across the                                                                    
state on the Alaska  Challenge. The Senate Finance Committee                                                                    
called the bill back to  committee to have an opportunity to                                                                    
work  with the  commissioner of  education, the  department,                                                                    
and  other   stakeholders  to   try  to   provide  something                                                                    
beneficial  in the  form of  education -  the foundation  of                                                                    
education  being curriculum.  She invited  her staff  to the                                                                    
Vice-Chair   Bishop  MOVED   to  ADOPT   proposed  committee                                                                    
substitute  for  SB  104, Work  Draft  30-LS0786\Y  (Laffen,                                                                    
Co-Chair MacKinnon OBJECTED for discussion.                                                                                     
BRITTANY HARTMANN, STAFF,  SENATOR ANNA MACKINNON, discussed                                                                    
the  committee substitute  for SB  104. The  bill ultimately                                                                    
sought to  improve educational outcomes for  Alaska students                                                                    
by providing  them access to the  best curriculum available.                                                                    
The  committee substitute  was  the result  of  more than  a                                                                    
year's  worth  of  work  in  close  collaboration  with  all                                                                    
relevant  stakeholders  including   teachers,  state  school                                                                    
board    members,     DEED,    superintendents,    education                                                                    
associations, and more. There  were multiple ways to improve                                                                    
educational outcomes. After  doing much research, curriculum                                                                    
was found  to be one  of the  best ways to  achieve improved                                                                    
outcomes.  In  the  CS before  the  committee,  the  sponsor                                                                    
believed it  contained an excellent  pathway to  achieve the                                                                    
goal  of  improved outcomes.  She  read  from the  sectional                                                                    
analysis and the explanation of changes (copy on file):                                                                         
     Section 1 AS 14.07.030:                                                                                                    
          The Department may not require a school district                                                                      
          to review their curriculum more than once in a                                                                        
          10-year period.                                                                                                       
      Section 2 AS 14.07.165:                                                                                                   
           NEW: The  State Board  of Education  shall  review                                                                   
           the math and English Language Arts  curricula used                                                                   
           throughout the  state, every  5  years, to  ensure                                                                   
           the curricula  is  still  effective and  is  using                                                                   
           best practices.                                                                                                      
      Section 3 AS 14.07:                                                                                                       
           NOTE: This was section 2 in Version N                                                                                
           NOTE: * are sections that are repealed on  July 1,                                                                   
           Section 3  requires the State  Board of  Education                                                                   
           and  the   Department  of   Education  and   Early                                                                   
           Development to work together to find,  review, and                                                                   
           test the  best available  curricula and  the  best                                                                   
           practices  for  instruction  of  those  math   and                                                                   
           English/Language Arts  curricula.  The  department                                                                   
           may   provide   incentive   payments   to   school                                                                   
           districts   that   choose    to   implement    the                                                                   
           incentivized   curricula   and   best   practices.                                                                   
                (a) The  Board will  establish the  standards                                                                   
                and procedure  to review,  rank, and  approve                                                                   
                curricula for  school  districts  to  use  in                                                                   
                each grade level.                                                                                               
                (b) and  (c)  AMENDED:  The  Department  will                                                                   
                review curricula from  Alaska, other  states,                                                                   
                and other  countries  and identify  the  best                                                                   
                curricula for each grade  level and the  best                                                                   
                practices for teaching  each subject by  July                                                                   
                1, 2019.  If  the  identified  curricula  and                                                                   
                best practices  meets  certain  requirements,                                                                   
                the department  will submit  them for  review                                                                   
                by   the   board.   The   requirements   are:                                                                   
                appropriate,     compliance     with     non-                                                                   
                discrimination  standards   in   state   law,                                                                   
                aligned with state  standards, and result  in                                                                   
              improved academic achievement.                                                                                    
                NOTE: Section 2(c) in Version N was deleted.                                                                    
                (d) The  Board may approve  of the  curricula                                                                   
                submitted by the department.  If they do  so,                                                                   
                the Department will  then categorize the  two                                                                   
               curricula  as  "incentivized"  curricula  and                                                                    
               "designated    effective"   curricula.    The                                                                    
               incentivized  curricula  will   be  the  best                                                                    
               available and  will be the curricula  used in                                                                    
               the pilot  program. The  designated effective                                                                    
               curricula are  curricula that  the department                                                                    
               finds appropriate and effective.                                                                                 
               (e)  *AMENDED:   Establishes  the  three-year                                                                    
               pilot  program,  starting  in  the  2019-2020                                                                    
               year,   to  test   the  appropriateness   and                                                                    
               effectiveness    of     the    "incentivized"                                                                    
               curricula.  Schools can  apply to  be in  the                                                                    
               pilot  program  and   will  be  reviewed  and                                                                    
               approved  of  by   the  Department  based  on                                                                    
               capacity and readiness.  The Department shall                                                                    
               select five  schools, from those  that apply,                                                                    
               to receive incentive  payments to assist with                                                                    
               the  purchase   and  implementation   of  the                                                                    
               curricula and best  practices. The Department                                                                    
               must select districts  and their curricula as                                                                    
               follows,  in  order  to get  a  comprehensive                                                                    
               view of the best curriculum for all Alaska:                                                                      
                    a. Urban District  math                                                                                     
                    b. Rural District  math                                                                                     
                    c. Urban District  English Language                                                                         
                    d. Rural District - English Language                                                                        
                    e. Urban or Rural District  math or                                                                         
                   English Language Arts                                                                                        
               The  total  cost   of  the  three-year  pilot                                                                    
               program cannot exceed $10,000,000.                                                                               
               (f)  *AMENDED:  If  the pilot  program  shows                                                                    
               that adoption  of the incentive  curricula is                                                                    
               appropriate  and  effective,  the  department                                                                    
               may  make  available  to  all  districts  the                                                                    
               curricula  and  one-time  incentive  payments                                                                    
               starting  in  the  school year  beginning  in                                                                    
               2022  and  ending  in the  school  year  that                                                                    
               begins in 2024.                                                                                                  
               (g)  *Incentive  payments  are limited  to  a                                                                    
               school district's  ADM multiplied by  150 and                                                                    
                are subject  to  availability of  funding  in                                                                   
                (h). In order to get an incentive  payment, a                                                                   
                district must be ready and have the  capacity                                                                   
                to implement the  incentivized curricula  and                                                                   
                have not previously used the curricula.                                                                         
                (h) *Limits the  funding available to  school                                                                   
                districts   that   adopt   the   incentivized                                                                   
                curriculum, for  years 4-6,  to  $20,000,000,                                                                   
                plus any  unexpended  money  available  under                                                                   
                (i)  The   Department   shall   publish   all                                                                   
                curriculum used by  all school districts,  on                                                                   
                the Department's  website.  The  incentivized                                                                   
                curricula  and   the   designated   effective                                                                   
                curricula,  identified  by  the  Board,  will                                                                   
                also be published on the website.                                                                               
                (j) *AMENDED: The Department shall submit  an                                                                   
                electronic   report   to   the    legislature                                                                   
                providing information  on the  pilot  program                                                                   
                and the curricula  that each school  district                                                                   
9:53:02 AM                                                                                                                    
           NOTE:  The  report  requirement  was  changed   to                                                                   
         include information on the pilot program                                                                               
           (k) NEW: Requires school  districts to submit  the                                                                   
           relevant information  to  the department  that  is                                                                   
           needed for the department to carry out  its duties                                                                   
           under this section.                                                                                                  
           (l)  *All  payments  for  the  pilot  program  and                                                                   
           curricula  are   subject  to   appropriation.   If                                                                   
           insufficient funding  is available  to  distribute                                                                   
           payments to  all  school  districts  that  request                                                                   
           funding in a year,  the department may  distribute                                                                   
           payments to  the  remaining school  districts  the                                                                   
           following school year.                                                                                               
           (m)*NEW: If the applications for participation  in                                                                   
           the pilot  program are  insufficient  to meet  the                                                                   
           requirements  under  (e)  of  this  section,   the                                                                   
           department may select  five school districts  from                                                                   
          those  that   apply,  taking   into  consideration                                                                    
          geographical diversity.                                                                                               
          (n)   NEW:  Provides   for  the   continuation  of                                                                    
          incentive payments  after the pilot  program ends.                                                                    
          Incentive  payments  may  go to  school  districts                                                                    
          that use  curricula reviewed  and approved  by the                                                                    
          Board under AS 14.07.165(c).                                                                                          
          (o)  Defines "rural,"  "school district,"  "school                                                                    
          district's ADM" and "urban"                                                                                           
          NEW: AS 14.08.182                                                                                                     
          Establishes  the curriculum  improvement and  best                                                                    
          practices  fund,  which  consists  of  an  initial                                                                    
          $30,000,000  to fund  the first  six years  of the                                                                    
          curricula  incentive  program.  The funds  can  be                                                                    
          spent  without further  appropriation  and do  not                                                                    
     Section 4 AS 14.08.111:                                                                                                    
          Conforming  language requiring  a regional  school                                                                    
          board  to review  all textbooks  and instructional                                                                    
          materials at least once every 10 years.                                                                               
     Section 5 AS 14.14.090:                                                                                                    
          Conforming  language requiring  a school  board to                                                                    
          review all  textbooks and  instructional materials                                                                    
          at least once every 10 years.                                                                                         
     Section 6 AS 14.16.020:                                                                                                    
          Conforming language requiring  management of state                                                                    
          boarding  schools  to  review  all  textbooks  and                                                                    
          instructional  materials at  least  once every  10                                                                    
     Section 7 AS 14.30.285:                                                                                                    
          NEW:  The  department   shall  make  available  to                                                                    
          school   districts   an  electronic   system   for                                                                    
          managing student information  and tracking records                                                                    
          relating to individualized  education programs for                                                                    
          children with disabilities.                                                                                           
     Section 8 Repeals:                                                                                                         
          Repeals  sub-sections  (e),  (f). (g),  (h),  (j),                                                                    
          (l), and (m)  in AS 14.07.180 that  pertain to the                                                                    
           pilot program, it's incentive payments, and it's                                                                     
           reporting requirements.                                                                                              
           NOTE: This was previously Section 6 in Version N                                                                     
      Sec. 9 4 AAC 05.080(e):                                                                                                   
           Annuls the regulatory requirement of a local                                                                         
           school board having to evaluate their curriculum                                                                     
           every 6 years.                                                                                                       
           NOTE: This was previously Section 7 in Version N                                                                     
 Co-Chair MacKinnon  WITHDREW her OBJECTION.  There being  NO                                                                   
 further OBJECTION, it was so ordered.                                                                                          
 Co-Chair MacKinnon  invited department staff  to comment  on                                                                   
 whether the department was  supportive or neutral on the  CS                                                                   
 and to review the fiscal note.                                                                                                 
 MARCY HERMAN, LEGISLATIVE  LIAISON, DEPARTMENT OF  EDUCATION                                                                   
 AND EARLY  DEVELOPMENT,  was  available for  questions.  The                                                                   
 commissioner had  appeared before the  committee and  spoken                                                                   
 about the bill. She  relayed that the department had  worked                                                                   
 for about a year  on Alaska's Education Challenge and  since                                                                   
 January working on the bill with Co-Chair MacKinnon  and her                                                                   
 staff. She relayed that  Commissioner Johnson believed  that                                                                   
 curriculum was  one of the  levers that  the department  had                                                                   
 not pulled  in  increasing  student achievement.  She  noted                                                                   
 that  the  legislation  was  a  way  to  incentivize  school                                                                   
 districts to take  a look a  curriculum that the  department                                                                   
 and board would put forward and  to use the $150 per ADM  to                                                                   
 purchase  curriculum  and  materials  necessary  to  improve                                                                   
 student  achievement.   She   added  that   under   Alaska's                                                                   
 Education  Challenge,  there  were  30  to  40  stakeholders                                                                   
 meeting presently. She  deferred to  Mr. Prussing and  would                                                                   
 review the fiscal note after his statement.                                                                                    
 9:57:23 AM                                                                                                                   
 Senator von  Imhof  asked  Ms. Herman  to  briefly  describe                                                                   
 Alaska's  Education  Challenge.   Ms.  Herman  stated   that                                                                   
 Alaska's Education  Challenge  was  an  11-month  effort  to                                                                   
 consider how  to make  education better  in  the state.  She                                                                   
 discussed Alaska's poor  performance for  4th and 8th  grade                                                                   
 reading and  math. She  continued that  it was  Commissioner                                                                   
 Johnson's and  Governor Walker's idea  to get  the pulse  of                                                                   
 the state on  the best way to  go about improving  education                                                                   
for Alaska's students. Alaska's  Education Challenge came up                                                                    
with  three   guiding  principles:  safety   and  wellbeing,                                                                    
responsible   learning,   and    family   community   tribal                                                                    
compacting. The  group put forward 13  recommendations under                                                                    
the  guiding principles.  She reported  that the  department                                                                    
was working  with stakeholders and  a pier  organization for                                                                    
state chief  school officers  to determine  the department's                                                                    
capacity to take on some of  the work and how the department                                                                    
could  work   best  with   its  stakeholders   and  partners                                                                    
Senator  von Imhof  referenced the  passage of  Alaska State                                                                    
Standards  in   2012.  She   wondered  about   Ms.  Herman's                                                                    
statement that  curriculum had  not been  one of  the levers                                                                    
the  department   had  pulled.  She  was   incredulous  that                                                                    
curriculum had  not been addressed and  hoped the department                                                                    
could  explain the  reason it  had not  been addressed.  She                                                                    
mentioned  having   been  on  her  school   board  when  the                                                                    
standards  were   passed.  She  conveyed   that  immediately                                                                    
following the  passage of the  standards in 2012,  the board                                                                    
reviewed  its  curriculum.  She  wanted  the  department  to                                                                    
state, for  the record,  why it  did not  address curriculum                                                                    
until now.                                                                                                                      
PAUL  PRUSSING,  DIRECTOR,  DIVISION  OF  STUDENT  LEARNING,                                                                    
DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION AND  EARLY DEVELOPMENT, relayed that                                                                    
in state statute  the legislature gave its  authority to the                                                                    
local district.  Therefore, the department did  not have the                                                                    
authority  to mandate  what text  books  or curriculum  were                                                                    
used. The  bill provided a  framework for districts  to look                                                                    
at  their  curriculum  which alleviated  some  of  the  work                                                                    
districts would otherwise have to  do to adopt a curriculum.                                                                    
However, it did not mandate  the curriculum. He believed the                                                                    
intent of  the statute was  that authority was given  to the                                                                    
local boards.  He reported that  the state had  had programs                                                                    
in the  past, such as  Reading First  (part of the  No Child                                                                    
Left Behind Act), where grants  were given to districts that                                                                    
adopted specific  reading programs  with a goal  of assuring                                                                    
that all  kids were  proficient by the  end of  third grade.                                                                    
The grant  program ended but showed  some effective results.                                                                    
The  department had  pulled the  lever slightly  but not  to                                                                    
such an extent as reflected  in the legislation. He believed                                                                    
it was a good step forward.                                                                                                     
10:01:29 AM                                                                                                                   
 Senator von Imhof  appreciated that  the department did  not                                                                   
 have  the  authority  to   mandate  certain  curriculum   or                                                                   
 textbooks. She  commented that  when  the department  passed                                                                   
 state standards but failed  to show leadership, mandated  or                                                                   
 unmandated, of any type of aid to the 53 districts  that had                                                                   
 a wide variety of  financial support and struggles was  like                                                                   
 feeding them  to  the  wolves. She  thought  the  department                                                                   
 should have helped by  creating a curriculum available  (not                                                                   
 mandated) to  the  districts. She  asserted that  it  should                                                                   
 have happened  5 years prior.  She thanked  the sponsor  for                                                                   
 bringing the legislation forward.                                                                                              
 Co-Chair MacKinnon stated that she had tried to  advance the                                                                   
 notion of the bill for the previous 6 years. She had  sent a                                                                   
 letter  to   the   state   schoolboard  asking   for   their                                                                   
 recommendations on curriculum. She had also been  frustrated                                                                   
 believing that  the department  and the  state school  board                                                                   
 should have been supporting  districts to a greater  degree.                                                                   
 She opined that Alaska's  students were taking the brunt  of                                                                   
 the state's  failure  to provide  for their  education.  She                                                                   
 referenced constrained  budgets in the  past and  emphasized                                                                   
 that the bill before the committee had been  a collaborative                                                                   
 effort with DEED. She appreciated everything the  department                                                                   
 had done to support the current idea. The bill was  a Senate                                                                   
 Finance Committee  proposal  to  provide  a  foundation  for                                                                   
 school districts  and teachers  to have  support to  provide                                                                   
 best outcomes for students.                                                                                                    
 10:04:21 AM                                                                                                                  
 Co-Chair  Hoffman   remarked   that   in  defense   of   the                                                                   
 administration he  went back  in history  to understand  why                                                                   
 the committee was  addressing the  issue today. He  recalled                                                                   
 that prior to  SB 35 [Legislation passed  during one of  the                                                                   
 terms of Mr. John  Sackett: House of Representatives  (1967-                                                                   
 1970) and  Senate  1973-1986],  the state  used  to  operate                                                                   
 under the state operating school system (SOS).  He explained                                                                   
 that  the  SOS  was  where  the  state  dictated  to  school                                                                   
 districts what needed  to be done  and what criteria  needed                                                                   
 to be accomplished.  Senator Sackett  introduced SB 35  that                                                                   
 set up  the current  system  giving independence  to  school                                                                   
 districts to have  them decide what they  felt needed to  be                                                                   
 done. He was  not saying  that the system  was perfect,  but                                                                   
 from his experience, the  decisions regarding education  and                                                                   
 the  direction for  students  was  best  decided  by  school                                                                   
 boards that were elected independently of the legislature.                                                                     
Co-Chair Hoffman indicated school  districts had the mandate                                                                    
to present their case about what  needed to be done in their                                                                    
districts.  It  might  differ  from  what  might  happen  in                                                                    
Tuntutuliak  versus in  Anchorage  or in  Juneau. He  firmly                                                                    
believed  districts  needed  to make  the  decisions  around                                                                    
curricula and  direction of education. He  suggested that it                                                                    
might be appropriate to consider  provisions as presented in                                                                    
SB 104  on a demonstration  project to move forward.  He did                                                                    
not  want  to  criticize  the department  for  its  position                                                                    
because past  legislators had passed  laws that  were before                                                                    
the committee today.                                                                                                            
10:07:02 AM                                                                                                                   
Senator Stevens  had served  on his  local school  board and                                                                    
relayed the difficulty of establishing  a curriculum and the                                                                    
cost  associated   with  curriculum,  the  key   to  a  fine                                                                    
education for Alaska's  students. He was pleased  to see the                                                                    
legislation but had  a couple of concerns.  First, he wanted                                                                    
to confirm that the  districts supported the legislation. He                                                                    
also  expressed concern  about  how  the department,  having                                                                    
been  reduced significantly,  would supervise  the bill.  He                                                                    
wondered if  additional staff  was planned.  Instructing the                                                                    
department   to  implement   the   law  without   additional                                                                    
personnel would  be akin to  throwing the department  to the                                                                    
wolves and a great concern to him.                                                                                              
Mr. Prussing  stated that when  he reviewed the  fiscal note                                                                    
he  had  added  3  additional  staff;  2  content  education                                                                    
specialists and 1 associate to  help drive the work and keep                                                                    
things going. He  had been with the department  for 18 years                                                                    
and had  seen many personnel  reductions. Some of the  20 or                                                                    
more positions  that had been  cut were  content specialists                                                                    
that drove  curriculum work. When adopting  standards in the                                                                    
past,  the  department  had created  a  3-step  process:  an                                                                    
awareness   process,   a    transitional   stage,   and   an                                                                    
implementation  stage.   The  department  had   focused  its                                                                    
efforts in helping districts align  their curriculums to the                                                                    
new standards. The department also  worked with districts on                                                                    
measuring  students'   success  with  the   curriculum.  The                                                                    
Performance   Evaluation   for  Alaska's   Schools   (PEAKS)                                                                    
Assessment measured  only a thin  layer. The  department had                                                                    
assisted  districts  with  a formative  assessment  process.                                                                    
Most districts had adopted the  Measure of Academic Progress                                                                    
(MAP) test which  was given 3 times per year.  It provided a                                                                    
benchmark  for  teachers to  see  the  movement of  students                                                                    
through  the  curriculum.  He  stressed  the  importance  of                                                                    
 having 2 additional  content specialists.  In the past,  the                                                                   
 department had had 2  content specialists that had done  the                                                                   
 majority  of  the  work  and  had  had  a  great  impact  on                                                                   
 Senator Stevens  believed the  legislation moved  the  state                                                                   
 forward in curriculum development. He did not think  it took                                                                   
 away local control, as it  gave the districts the option  of                                                                   
 choosing whether  to participate.  Mr. Prussing  agreed  and                                                                   
 added that  it would be  important for  districts to  assist                                                                   
 the department in selecting the curriculum.                                                                                    
 10:10:25 AM                                                                                                                  
 Senator Olson  referenced his schooling  through the  Bureau                                                                   
 of  Indian  Affairs  System  in  Golovin,  Alaska,  and  his                                                                   
 experience watching the implementation  of the SOS  program.                                                                   
 At the time, Golovin was hesitant to participate in  the SOS                                                                   
 Program. He  applauded Senator Sackett's  efforts to  ensure                                                                   
 local control because it allowed for buy-in from  people who                                                                   
 were  very   concerned  about   their  children's   academic                                                                   
 performance. He  shared Senator  Stevens' concern  regarding                                                                   
 local control.                                                                                                                 
 Co-Chair  MacKinnon  stated   that  self-determination,   as                                                                   
 stated in the  constitution, was one  of her team's  primary                                                                   
 motivators in choosing the course of action outlined  in the                                                                   
 bill. School districts had  appeared before the  legislature                                                                   
 multiple times stating that  the lack of inflation  proofing                                                                   
 the base  student allocation or  removing energy  subsidies,                                                                   
 which at  one  time  the  state provided  through  $150  per                                                                   
 barrel oil,  created  challenges.  Her team  struggled  with                                                                   
 what to  do in  a  centralized way  to provide  benefits  to                                                                   
 communities, especially  to the  smaller rural  communities.                                                                   
 It was  her understanding  that many  of  the larger  school                                                                   
 districts were circling around particular curricula in  math                                                                   
 and language  arts and  they  were starting  to line  up  in                                                                   
 finding the best means  for student achievement. There  were                                                                   
 certain smaller  community school  districts that  had  less                                                                   
 opportunities than  the larger school  districts to  explore                                                                   
 curriculum. For this reason, she pursued finding  curriculum                                                                   
 as a basis. She was trying to find a way of  incentivizing a                                                                   
 rigorous process for the  state school board and to  provide                                                                   
 parents with electronic access of the curriculum  being used                                                                   
 across the  state.  She wanted  parents  to see  what  urban                                                                   
 areas in  the state might  be doing  differently than  their                                                                   
own  district   and  why.  She  thought   collaboration  was                                                                    
necessary, hence the reason for her introducing SB 104.                                                                         
Co-Chair MacKinnon  continued to discuss the  bill. The bill                                                                    
offered  a product  electronically  that  all districts  and                                                                    
parents could  see of  incentivized or  designated curricula                                                                    
that met  Alaska state standards.  School boards  could move                                                                    
into the designated standards and  adopt the state curricula                                                                    
without  that  same vigor  that  might  be invested  in  the                                                                    
review   and  adoption   process.  Parents,   teachers,  and                                                                    
administrators  would  be  able  to see  what  everyone  was                                                                    
doing, to see test results,  and to ask questions. She noted                                                                    
that  some  of  the  smaller  school  districts  were  doing                                                                    
tremendously  well  for their  students,  some  of whom  had                                                                    
scores that  exceeded some  of the  urban schools.  The bill                                                                    
before   the  committee   offered  collaboration   with  all                                                                    
Co-Chair  MacKinnon appreciated  consideration of  the bill.                                                                    
She wanted to hold the  bill until the following Tuesday and                                                                    
encouraged members to contact  their local school districts.                                                                    
She  stated  that there  was  a  large  fiscal note  of  $30                                                                    
million.  She estimated  that achievable  outcomes would  be                                                                    
necessary to pass the bill from committee.                                                                                      
10:16:57 AM                                                                                                                   
Senator  von Imhof  thought there  might  be some  confusion                                                                    
between  standards and  curricula.  She  also mentioned  the                                                                    
need for determining  the materials that would  be used with                                                                    
the curricula  and thought they  would be decided on  at the                                                                    
local district  level. She noted  that there  were districts                                                                    
in  Western  Alaska  that  used local  flora  and  fauna  in                                                                    
curriculum.   She  drew   attention  to   documents  "Parent                                                                    
Roadmap:   Supporting   Your   Child   in   Grade   Five   -                                                                    
Mathematics," and "Parent Roadmap:  Supporting Your Child in                                                                    
Grade  Three  -  English  Language Arts,"  (copy  on  file).                                                                    
Senator interjected that the document  Senator von Imhof was                                                                    
referring to was available online.                                                                                              
Senator  von  Imhof  continued  that  the  Anchorage  School                                                                    
District  created  the  document.  She hoped  the  State  of                                                                    
Alaska would generate a similar  document at some point. She                                                                    
referred to page  4 of the handout, which showed  one of the                                                                    
standards  for   5th  graders  in  math.   Students  had  to                                                                    
understand  how   to  divide   objects  into   equal  shares                                                                    
preparing  students for  the division  of fractions.  Page 3                                                                    
 listed curricula of  3 or 4  things a  teacher needed to  do                                                                   
 throughout the  year.  She posed  the question  about  which                                                                   
 textbooks and workbooks  should be  used. She asserted  that                                                                   
 such things  were part of  local control.  She talked  about                                                                   
 being on  the local  school board  when  the standards  were                                                                   
 changed. She relayed that  the process was expensive,  long,                                                                   
 and tedious. She  was hoping to see  the state do  something                                                                   
 similar to the example  she provided. Local control was  and                                                                   
 would always  be  available in  how the  individual  teacher                                                                   
 taught concepts. She  also hoped  that the department  would                                                                   
 take advantage  of  the resources  of the  Anchorage  School                                                                   
 10:20:44 AM                                                                                                                  
 Co-Chair MacKinnon referenced another component to the  bill                                                                   
 pertaining to  Individual Education Plans  (IEP)s. Her  team                                                                   
 had brought  the  idea  forward. The  section  on  recording                                                                   
 electronic data so  that parents could  review it came  from                                                                   
 the Alaska  Challenge  and  the  department  suggesting  the                                                                   
 information should  be  shared  in order  to  support  local                                                                   
 control. She invited Senator von Imhof to speak to the IEP.                                                                    
 Senator von  Imhof informed the  committee that  an IEP  was                                                                   
 available  to  any  student   in  Alaska  whose   collective                                                                   
 teachers  including  special  education  teachers,   general                                                                   
 teachers, and  parents  felt  it was  necessary  to  provide                                                                   
 extra special supports for  a student. Creating and IEP  was                                                                   
 time  consuming   and   extensive   and   was   created   in                                                                   
 collaboration with care givers, teachers, and parents.  If a                                                                   
 child or family  moved from one  district to another,  often                                                                   
 times the child's IEP  was not transferable  electronically.                                                                   
 It had to either be copied  and mailed or faxed one page  at                                                                   
 a time. Some of the smaller districts only had  10 megabytes                                                                   
 of capacity. The  worst case would be  for the new  district                                                                   
 to  have  to   do  a   completely  new  IEP.   One  of   the                                                                   
 recommendations  that  came  out  of  the  DEED  performance                                                                   
 review in 2016 was to suggest that all districts  around the                                                                   
 state went to  one standard  software for IEPs  paid for  by                                                                   
 the state.  Districts would  be alleviated  from paying  for                                                                   
 the software.  She thought the  idea made  good sense.  Many                                                                   
 districts  agreed  with  the  idea  of  having   a  standard                                                                   
 software. When a  child moved from  Bethel to Anchorage  the                                                                   
 IEP could  be  sent  electronically keeping  the  transition                                                                   
 much simpler and less disruptive.                                                                                              
 10:23:34 AM                                                                                                                  
Vice-Chair Bishop referenced his  experience as a legislator                                                                    
and working  for previous administrations.  He spoke  to the                                                                    
need  for  continuity.  He   mentioned  seeing  3  different                                                                    
administrations  and 3  different evaluation  tests. He  did                                                                    
not want to  see the goal post moved for  kids. He advocated                                                                    
choosing a  lane and staying  in that lane.  He acknowledged                                                                    
the  challenges  of  educating   children.  He  relayed  his                                                                    
personal  experience  as  a child  moving  from  one  school                                                                    
district  to  the  next.  He   brought  up  the  subject  of                                                                    
outcomes. He hoped that education  was preparing children to                                                                    
enter the  workforce and to  be a benefit to  society rather                                                                    
than a  burden. He wondered  how to measure success.  In his                                                                    
experience as  the Commissioner of  Department of  Labor and                                                                    
Workforce  Development his  department worked  with DEED  to                                                                    
put a  process in  place to track  an individual  after high                                                                    
school.  He reemphasized  the need  for consistency  for the                                                                    
sake of kids.                                                                                                                   
Co-Chair MacKinnon  supported Vice-Chair  Bishop's comments.                                                                    
She thought  everyone had  different abilities.  Some people                                                                    
blossomed outside  of school and  perseverance was  what was                                                                    
needed  to  continue  in  the   world.  She  wanted  a  good                                                                    
foundation for  Alaska. Math and  English were the  areas of                                                                    
focus in the bill.                                                                                                              
10:26:40 AM                                                                                                                   
Senator  Stevens agreed  with  Vice-Chair  Bishop. He  added                                                                    
that the goal  of education at the beginning  of the country                                                                    
was to create citizens of the state and country.                                                                                
Co-Chair MacKinnon stated she wanted  to bring the bill back                                                                    
up early in  the following week to move the  bill along. She                                                                    
emphasized she  wanted the fiscal  note prior to  moving the                                                                    
bill out of committee.                                                                                                          
Ms.  Herman   appreciated  the  passion  for   education  as                                                                    
expressed by  the committee.  The department  would finalize                                                                    
the  fiscal  note  and  submit   it  to  the  committee  for                                                                    
Mr. Prussing thanked the committee  for its hard work on the                                                                    
bill. He addressed Vice-Chair  Bishop's comments. He relayed                                                                    
that the  department was working  with Career  and Technical                                                                    
Education  (CTE)  through the  Carl  D.  Perkins Career  and                                                                    
Technical Education Improvement Act  in getting CTE teachers                                                                    
 trained to  teach math  within the  CTE program.  Vice-Chair                                                                   
 Bishop remarked  that  he  could spend  another  30  minutes                                                                   
 talking on the subject in a positive way.                                                                                      
 Co-Chair MacKinnon  asked  if  Ms.  Hartmann  could  address                                                                   
 Senator Olson's question regarding who her team  had reached                                                                   
 out to. Ms. Hartmann recalled  that when the bill was  first                                                                   
 heard  in  committee  the   previous  April  there  was   no                                                                   
 opposition from  school districts.  Recently, the  team  had                                                                   
 reached out  to  the Lower  Kuskokwim School  District,  the                                                                   
 Yukon-Koyukuk  School   District,   the   Anchorage   School                                                                   
 District, and the Fairbanks  School District. She had  heard                                                                   
 back from  all of them  and would  be happy  to share  their                                                                   
 information with everyone. She had also heard back  from the                                                                   
 Board of  Education's members, local  school district  board                                                                   
 members, rural  and urban  superintendents,  and the  Alaska                                                                   
 Council of School Administrators who were reviewing  the CS.                                                                   
 She reported  getting  good  word back.  Co-Chair  MacKinnon                                                                   
 asked if  it was positive  feedback versus  concerns on  the                                                                   
 bill. Ms. Hartmann responded, "yes."                                                                                           
 Senator Micciche  expressed  interest  in  hearing  feedback                                                                   
 from stakeholders  mentioned by  Ms. Hartmann.  He would  be                                                                   
 reaching out  to  his  local  district.  Co-Chair  MacKinnon                                                                   
 stated  that her  office  had  reached  out  to  his  school                                                                   
 district  to  testify.  They  were  not  available  but  had                                                                   
 reviewed the bill.                                                                                                             
 Senator Stevens addressed the issue of IEPs, and  his desire                                                                   
 to learn  more. He suspected  that some  districts might  be                                                                   
 concerned about  receiving  IEPs  that were  different  from                                                                   
 their own.                                                                                                                     
 SB  104  was  HEARD  and  HELD  in  committee   for  further                                                                   
 Co-Chair  MacKinnon  relayed  that  the  committee  had  not                                                                   
 scheduled a meeting for the following day. She  reviewed the                                                                   
 agenda for Monday's meeting.                                                                                                   

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
CSSB 104 Bill version Y.pdf SFIN 3/29/2018 9:00:00 AM
SB 104
CSSB 104 Sponsor Statement version Y.pdf SFIN 3/29/2018 9:00:00 AM
SB 104
CSSB 104 Sectional Analysis ver Y.pdf SFIN 3/29/2018 9:00:00 AM
SB 104
SB 105 - Senate Finance Q A.pdf SFIN 3/29/2018 9:00:00 AM
SB 105
SB 105 - Letters of Support.pdf SFIN 3/29/2018 9:00:00 AM
SB 105
CS SB 105 FIN wrok draft v N.pdf SFIN 3/29/2018 9:00:00 AM
SB 105
CSSB 105(FIN) - Summary of Changes.pdf SFIN 3/29/2018 9:00:00 AM
SB 105
SB 104 Von Imhof Document ParentRoadmap_ELA_3.pdf SFIN 3/29/2018 9:00:00 AM
SB 104
SB 104 Von Imhof Document - ParentRoadmap_Math_5.pdf SFIN 3/29/2018 9:00:00 AM
SB 104