Legislative Update 1/28/21

28 Jan 2022 7:27 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

ISSWA Backs National Certification Recognition in Iowa

Iowa lawmakers are being asked to create a national board certification recognition program for school social workers, school counselors and school psychologists similar to the current program for classroom teachers.

The recognition program would provide a cash “bonus” for school social workers, school counselors and school psychologists who receive certification from an accredited national professional organization.

Please contact the key members of the Education Appropriations Subcommittee (listed below) and urge them to:

  • Establish a “national board certification recognition,” that mirrors the current teacher program, for school social workers, school psychologists and school counselors.

  • The program for teachers is in code section 256.44

  • For FY 2023, increase the Student Achievement and Teacher Quality Program appropriation by $25,000, with the new funds designated for school social workers, school psychologists and school counselors.  The funds would be made available on the same basis as the current teacher program.

Contact:

Rep. Dave Kerr - david.kerr@legis.iowa.gov

Rep. Garrett Gobble - garrett.gobble@legis.iowa.gov

Rep. Tracy Ehlkert - tracy.ehlert@legis.iowa.gov

Sen. Chris Cournoyer - chris.cournoyer@legis.iowa.gov

Sen. Jesse Green - jesse.green@legis.iowa.gov

Sen. Jackie Smith - jackie.smith@legis.iowa.gov


Bills of Interest:

(HF - House File, HSB - House Study Bill, SF - Senate File, SSB - Senate Study Bill)

SF 2025 - School Bathrooms (M) - This bill requires elementary and secondary public and nonpublic schools to designate and allow the use of multiple occupancy toilet facilities only by persons of the same biological sex. The bill prohibits a person from entering a school single and multiple occupancy toilet facility that does not correspond with the person’s biological sex. The bill provides that such designations and prohibitions do not 6 constitute unfair or discriminatory practices in violation of the Iowa civil rights Act.

Subcommittee; Sinclair, Quirmbach and Rozenboom


SF 2024 - Gender Identity Curriculum (M) - This bill establishes that the curriculum utilized by a school district or accredited nonpublic school in accordance with the state’s educational standards for elementary students shall not include instruction relating to gender identity. However, the prohibition does not apply to the curriculum provided to a student enrolled in grades one through six if the school district or accredited nonpublic school obtains the prior written consent of the student’s parent or guardian. If a school does not obtain a parent’s or guardian’s written consent, the student may opt out of instruction relating to gender identity. Gender identity, for purposes of the bill, means a gender-related identity of a person, regardless of the person’s assigned sex at birth.

Subcommittee; Sinclair, Quirmbach and Rozenboom


SF 2003 - At Risk Student Funding (M) - This bill modifies the maximum modified supplemental amount calculation (funds for a school district’s program for at-risk students, secondary students who attend alternative programs and alternative schools, or returning dropouts and dropout prevention) for fiscal years beginning on or after July 1, 2022, but before July 1, 2026, by increasing the 2.5 percent ratio figure by .5 percent each fiscal year until the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2026, and each fiscal year thereafter, when the maximum ratio percentage is set at 5 percent for all school districts.

Approved by subcommittee


SF 168 - Nonpublic School Special Services (M) - This bill requires that certain services and support that an area education agency (AEA) must provide to a nonpublic school student must, if the parent or guardian of the student receiving the services grants permission, be provided on the nonpublic school premises.

Subcommittee: Cournoyer, Giddens, Johnson


SSB 3003 - Mental Health Professional Loan Program (M) - This bill establishes the mental health professional loan repayment program within the college student aid commission. The bill provides that the commission is to administer the mental health professional loan repayment program for purposes of providing loan repayments for mental health professionals who agree to practice in an eligible practice area.

The bill limits the annual amount of loan repayment a mental health professional may receive to $8,000 for an eligible loan. The bill provides that the total loan repayments from the commission to a mental health professional shall not exceed $40,000.

“Mental health professional” means a non prescribing individual who holds at least a master’s degree from an eligible institution in a mental health field, including  psychology, counseling and guidance, social work, marriage and family therapy, or mental health counseling.

Approved by subcommittee


HF 2151 - BOEE Fingerprint Submission (M) - Current law requires all initial applicants for BOEE licensure to submit a completed fingerprint packet and requires the BOEE to use the packet to facilitate a national criminal history background check. The bill requires the BOEE to allow all initial applicants to submit the completed fingerprint packet electronically.

Referred to State Government


HF 2146 - BOEE Makeup (M) - Current law provides that the BOEE consists of members. This  bill adds two ex officio, non voting members to the BOEE. The bill requires the President of the Senate to appoint one of the ex officio, non voting members from the Senate education Committee. The bill also requires the Speaker of the House to appoint the other ex officio, non voting member from the House Education Committee. The bill provides that the ex officio, non voting members serve a one-year term.

Referred to State Government


HF 2137 - MH Professional Loan Repayment Program (F) - This bill establishes a mental health practitioner and mental health professional loan repayment program, and provides an appropriation. The bill requires the Iowa Student Aid Commission to establish a mental health practitioner loan repayment program for the purposes of providing loan repayments for mental health practitioners who agree to practice in service commitment areas for at least five years and meet the requirements of the program. “Mental health practitioner” means a psychiatrist, a psychologist, a mental health professional, a physician assistant practicing under the supervision of a psychiatrist, or a psychiatric advanced registered nurse practitioner. “Mental health professional” means an individual who holds at least a master’s degree from an eligible institution in a mental health field, including psychology, counseling and guidance, social work, marriage and family therapy, or mental health counseling. Note: this bill may need a technical corrections amendment.

Passed committee and referred to Appropriations


HF 2040 - Covid Vaccination Not Required For School (M) - This bill prohibits requiring an immunization against COVID-19 for a person to be enrolled in any licensed child care center, elementary or secondary school, or postsecondary school in Iowa prior to July 1, 2029, notwithstanding whether a person’s attendance is in person or virtual.

Subcommittee; Stone, Gaines and Wheeler


HF 2008 - At Risk Student Funding (M) - This bill modifies the maximum modified supplemental amount calculation (funds for a school district’s program for at-risk students, secondary students who attend alternative programs and alternative schools, or returning dropouts and dropout prevention) for fiscal years beginning on or after July 1, 2022, but before July 1, 2026, by increasing the 2.5 percent ratio figure by .5 percent each fiscal year until the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2026, and each fiscal year thereafter, when the maximum ratio percentage is set at 5 percent for all school districts.

Approved by subcommittee


HSB 531 - MH Bed Expansion (M) - This bill appropriates to the Department of Human Services for FY 2022-2023 an amount necessary to expand the bed capacity of the Mental Health Institute at Cherokee by an additional 12 adult beds and 6 adolescent beds, and to expand the bed capacity of the Mental Health Institute at Independence by an additional 20 adult beds and 8 adolescent beds.

Subcommittee: Fry, A Meyers and Brown-Powers


HSB 527 - Counselor, Therapist or School Employee Exploitation (F) - The bill adds a person employed by, performing volunteer services for, or providing contract services to a nonpublic elementary or secondary school or charter school to the definition of “school employee”.

The bill adds a person currently enrolled in or attending a charter school, or a person who was a student enrolled in or attending a charter school within 30 days of any sexual exploitation by a school employee in violation of Code section 709.15(3) to the definition of “student”.

Approved by subcommittee



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