The 2014 Legislative session entered its second week with very little controversy; however, that could change Wednesday, District 10 Rep. Gene Reynolds said.
"That's when this big Common Core thing kicks off," Reynolds said, referring to the Common Core educational standards addressing what students should learn in reading, writing and math. "Last week was sort of a sparring week. But the Common Core
Coalition is trying to attach the Common Core issue to everything that comes up."
Reynolds, who is on the House Education Committee said four bills will be brought before that panel for discussion Wednesday.
"They deal with prior sealed data," he said. "I feel like they'll pass, but this will be a good test for how strong the anti-Common Core Coalition is against (state superintendent) John White and the others. It will be an interesting battle."
One of the bills to which Reynolds referred is House Bill 946, authored by John Schroder, a Republican from Covington. The bill prohibits the collection of personally identifiable information on students, as well as the transmittal or sharing of student information. It also provides penalties for violations, including six months in prison and/or a fine of $10,000.
"I'm for privacy but you have to have some generic data with no names or anything to come up with some ideas about where you are and where you're going with education," Reynolds said. "We've been doing that for years with test scores. We just didn't put any names in it."
With some changes, Reynolds said he will support the bills, but he said he expects the true Common Core bills to be debated in the next couple of weeks.
So far, one textbook bill in the Senate passed out of committee with amendments that would shift textbook selection to the local systems.
"This bill was supported by the School Board Association and the Superintendent's Association," Reynolds said. "It requires the state education department to review instructional materials in English, math, science and social studies to decide whether they meet state educational standards."
The House Education Committee looked at three bills last week. Two concerned the Board of Regents selection process. One was a proposal to put qualification requirements on the people a governor can appoint to Louisiana's higher education, but
Reynolds said members have not yet agreed on what those requirements should be.
The other bill about rules for extracurricular events on college campuses passed.