Teacher Preparation Program and High School Pilot Bills Pass Out of House Committee

(Apr. 23) – The House Education committee approved two bills that will help provide more resources for Colorado’s teachers and students. 

“When I worked at Fort Lewis College, it was empowering to watch young people get excited about their profession,” said Rep. Barbara McLachlan, D-Durango. “However, I also saw some challenges arise, especially for future educators. This bill seeks to address those challenges, and will provide help and encouragement to educators so they can better assist students in their classroom.”

Rep. McLachlan is a former school teacher. 

SB19-190 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 of alternative teacher programs through a contract with the Department of Higher Education. 

This bipartisan bill passed was unanimously approved and it now heads to the House Appropriations committee. 

The House Education committee also approved SB19-216, sponsored by Rep. Shannon Bird, D-Westminster, which incentivizes for local education providers to provide innovative learning opportunities for high school students. 

“Our children deserve the very best that we have to offer them. A modern education will give the students of Colorado the preparation they need to grow to their full potential,” said Rep. Shannon Bird, D-Westminster. “This bill updates our laws, breaks down barriers and expands opportunities for students. It also helps ensure that Colorado’s smaller school districts have the resources they need to thrive.” 

The bill creates the high school innovative learning pilot program to support school districts, boards of cooperative services, and charter schools in providing innovative learning opportunities to students enrolled in grades 9 through 12. Each local education provider that is selected to participate in the pilot program can count high school students who participate in innovative learning opportunities as full-time pupils, for purposes of school finance. 

SB19-216 passed unanimously and now heads to the House Appropriations Committee. 

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