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Changes made in HB 7609 will be taking effect sooner than you think

Heading into the Fourth of July holiday weekend, the last thing on the minds of most children is school. Indeed, barbeques, parades and fireworks will always be infinitely more interesting to kids than thoughts about classes and homework.

While the same could perhaps be said of parents most years, this year may be somewhat different given all of the controversy surrounding the recent passage of House Bill 7069, the massive 274-page education package addressing such major issues as charter schools, funding and teacher bonuses.

As it turns out, those parents who have been closely following these major education issues over the last few months, as well as those who have been able to take a somewhat more relaxed approach should be aware that provisions of HB 7069 will be taking effect as soon as Saturday.

In other words, children will be seeing some significant changes in just a few months when they head back to school.

Some of these changes include:

  • Testing: In addition to dropping the Algebra 2 End of Course exam, which had high failure rates, more tests will now be administered by pencil and paper, and those administered in March or February will now be pushed to a two-week window in April.
  • Career classes: In response to complaints, state lawmakers dropped the requirement that middle schools must provide a class designed to teach children about colleges and careers. Schools now have the option of providing the course.
  • Recess: Prior to the passage of HB 7069 only 11 counties required recess. Now, all schools must offer at least 100 minutes of recess per week (20 minutes per day).
  • Sunscreen: Children will no longer be required to secure special permission to bring sunscreen to school.
  • Physical education testing: High school athletes already able to opt out of their two semesters of physical education owing to their completion of two seasons of varsity or junior varsity sports will no longer be required to take a written fitness test.

Consider speaking with an experienced legal professional if you are a parent or teacher with a pressing education law concern that simply can't wait until the start of the school year.

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