Today, the Senate Education Committee continued its page-by-page review of Superintendent Tom Luna’s plans to overhaul education. The bills are now numbered Senate Bill 1108 (the union-busting bill), Senate Bill 1109 (the bill to increase class sizes and eliminate up to a thousand Idaho education jobs over the next two years), and Senate Bill 1110 (the new pay-for-performance bill). However, Chairman John Goedde (R-Coeur d’Alene) said late this afternoon he will reintroduce a bill tomorrow because the bill now known as S1109 duplicates the pay-for-performance material also in S1110.
The committee directed many questions today to Jason Hancock of the State Department of Education. The meeting lasted two-and-a-half hours, and the page-by-page review will continue tomorrow. Goedde told the Eye on Boise news blog that the committee’s debate on the bills probably won’t happen tomorrow, but it could be Thursday.
In other news, the House Education Committee is expected to take testimony Wednesday on House Bill 104, one of the other anti-union bills now before the Legislature. The bill, authored by freshman Rep. Reed DeMordaunt (R-Eagle), would prohibit school districts from using public money to pay union leaders or pay for release time for educators to attend union-related events such as Delegate Assembly. The committee meets at 9 a.m. in Room EW41 of the Statehouse.
The overwhelming majority of IEA local presidents are volunteers, but a handful of Idaho educators work full time on behalf of educators in the state’s largest districts under arrangements bargained by their locals. The IEA opposes H 104 because it takes away local control.
The bill would also prohibit schools districts from compensating employees who, upon request of an administrator or voluntarily, perform duties at school not associated with their position. For example, under this proposal, teachers assisting in cleaning the cafeteria after lunch or custodians supervising students at recess could not be compensated for that extra work.