Rep. McLachlan is chair of the House Education committee and is a former school teacher

(May 10) – Gov. Polis signed a pair of bills today at Overland High School that is lauded as the one of the best school finance acts in recent memory and also provide resources to help with rural teacher retention.

“This is one of the best school financing acts the people of our state have seen. It will affect every student in the state’s 178 P-12 school districts,” said Rep. Barbara McLachlan, D-Durango. “We worked across the aisle to invest in Colorado’s future this session and that’s what this bill does.”

SB19-246 buys down the budget stabilization factorby $100 million, increases average statewide per pupil funding by $357 per pupil; invests an additional $20 million into rural schools, $22 million for special education, $3 million for high-school dropout intervention efforts and $1 million to expand access to physical education courses.

The bipartisan bill was also sponsored by Rep. James Wilson, R-Salida, Sen. Paul Lundeen, R-Monument. and Sen. Nancy Todd, D-Aurora, and was approved unanimously in the House and Senate.

The Governor also signed SB19-190 that will create the “Growing Great Teachers Act” to prepare more Coloradans for the experience of teaching in our public schools. This bill would allow institutions of higher education to offer approved educator preparation programs through a contract with the Department of Higher Education.

“We can now ensure that all teachers who are trained in Colorado are taught best practices through mentorship. Across the board, every department and every teacher should be taught best practices,” said Rep. Barbara McLachlan, D-Durango. “As teachers, we all know what best practices are for teaching, but it’s often not shared with new, incoming teachers. Through this bill, we can have really a great education for our kids that is consistent across the board no matter which Colorado school you graduate from.”

This bipartisan bill was also sponsored by Rep. Wilson, Sen. Todd and Sen. Bob Rankin, R-Carbondale. It was approved unanimously in the Senate and with a vote of 49-16 in the House.

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