Mt. Vernon Community School Corporation (MVCSC) recently hosted a very productive legislative breakfast with Speaker Brian Bosma, Senator Michael Crider, and Representative Bob Cherry. MVCSC’s board members, administration, and many representatives from public schools enjoyed breakfast while engaging with our local legislators. School districts in attendance also included Eastern Hancock, Greenfield, Southern Hancock, as well as representatives from South Madison, Shelby Eastern, and Warren Township Schools.
During the breakfast, topics regarding Indiana’s education system were discussed. Some of the fruitful discussions included: new money that is being put towards the Teacher Retirement Fund (TRF), current legislation that if passed would give districts the option to remove state assessments from teacher evaluations, to “hold harmless” schools’ accountability grades due to the new iLearn test, as well as potential flexibility in teacher licensure requirements.
A house bill is being introduced which no longer penalizes schools with the cut of Average Daily Membership (ADM per student tuition from the state) dollars for students who graduate mid-school year. The legislators shared that this bill is receiving a lot of support. For example, Mt. Vernon has 41 December graduates which would equate to a loss of $131,000 in ADM this school year. MVCSC Superintendent Dr. Parker shared he would have appreciated being able to have those funds at the bargaining table with the teachers.
Senator Crider talked briefly about his focus on mental health initiatives around the state. One bill he is introducing establishes a Behavioral Health Commission to track funds and to make sure we are receiving the most federal dollars possible for mental health initiatives.
Several representatives from different school districts made sure to thank the legislators for their hard work and effort that has been put into furthering the advancements in education. Mt. Vernon Community School Corporation would also like to thank Speaker Bosma, Senator Crider, and Representative Cherry for taking the time out of their day to have a very productive conversation with education leaders at the Legislative Breakfast. MVCSC wishes Speaker Bosma the best of luck as he approaches retirement; his connection with Mt. Vernon Schools has been greatly appreciated!