The final days of the Colorado Legislature brought many changes to SB 191, the teacher evaluation and effectiveness bill. Dozens of amendments were offered on the floor of the House Tuesday evening as the bill was debated for over four hours.
On Wednesday the bill had its final vote in the House and then the House version was accepted by the Senate. The Legislature adjourned Wednesday night and the bill will next go the Governor who is expected to sign it.
So many changes were made to the bill in the last week that CEA is still working on a summary of what the bill actually does. Meanwhile here’s what CEA President Beverly Ingle had to say about the passage of the bill.
“This bill has been much improved since it was introduced last month. Over 200 amendments were offered as the bill worked its way through the process. We are pleased with a number of the amendments that were added to the bill.
“Initially, the bill took a very complex set of topics and dealt with them in a broad and overarching manner which raised many concerns. Our 40,000 members were appalled by this attack on their profession and by the negative effects it would have on both teaching and learning.
“Our members sprang into action and made thousands of contacts with their legislators. They told heart-felt stories about their students and their classrooms. Because of their work calling attention to the problems in the bill, many amendments were offered and accepted. We were able to get a number of checks and balances into the bill that will make it more palatable for our members.
“CEA was successful in extending the timelines for the development and implementation of a new but unfunded statewide system. We also appreciate that much of the detail work in the law has been assigned to the Governor’s Council for Educator Effectiveness. From the beginning we have said that the Council should be allowed to do its work and report to the Legislature.
“The work of the Council will be very important. CEA will offer its assistance to the Council and help it successfully complete its many charges. And we will also examine the bill and the various education processes it impacts. We will do everything we can to make this work for our teachers and our students.”