FRANKFORT — A couple of bills relating to Kentucky schools have passed through the state’s House of Representatives and Senate. If Gov. Bevin signs these bills, they will officially become law.
House Bill 520 authorizes public charter schools in Kentucky. Primarily, charter schools receive government funding but operate separately from the public school system in which they are located. HB 520 passed through the Senate with a vote of 23 to 15. The Senate made amendments to the bill. Therefore, HB 520 returned to the House for review. On March 15, the House of Representatives approved the amended version of HB 520 and sent the bill to the Governor’s desk.
House Bill 471 deals with state funding for public schools. Among the many measures covered by the bill are teacher retirement, transportation and general operating funds for schools. This is a standard bill that basically assures the budget for the school system is in place. Other projects, such as veterinary and optometry education, will also receive funds through this bill. HB 471 is unique because it will pave the way for state funding of charter schools, although the specifics of charter school funding remain undetermined. Kentucky’s Senate amended the bill and passed it with a vote of 24 to 14 on March 15. The amended version returned to the House of Representatives for review, where it passed with a vote of 61 to 34. The bill now awaits Gov. Bevin’s signature.
Sam Neace can be reached at 606-629-3243 or on Twitter @HazardHerald.