Advocacy and Legislation

For those of you that missed our amazing meeting in Decatur with Senator Arthur Orr and Nancy Johnson, below is an article from the Decatur Daily and a condensed version of what was said at the meeting.

Senator Orr said his bill was modeled upon a bill that was from Delaware. He said the bill would allow school systems to apply for grants for innovative and creative programs for gifted children. The money for the grants will only be available if there is extra money available in the Education Trust Fund. Senator Orr told us that the legislature is trying to repay the Education Trust Fund Rainy Day Account and that there will be no money available for this grant program until the 2015-2016 school year. Senator Orr's bill is SB-118.

Senator Orr also shared with us another bill that could have an impact on Gifted Eduaction. This bill is the Unfunded Mandate Bill that makes it illegal for the legislature to require something of school systems and not fund it. If this bill, which is a constitutional amendment, passes the legislature it will go to the public for a vote in November. There are obvious questions that need to be answered concerning this legislation. What does this mean for gifted education? Gifted is mandated in the Alabama Administrative Code, but is not funded in the Education Trust Fund. Please keep up to date with what is going on in our legislature and be ready to contact our local legislators to help protect and promote gifted education.

Nancy Johnson expertly handled questions parents and teachers had about the future of Gifted Education and how the information we heard from Senator Orr could impact our gifted children. 

Part of the purpose of SAGC is advocating for gifted students. Be looking for a letter that you can send to legislators to ask them to support gifted education.

The Alabama Legislature is back in session and now is the time for gifted advocacy. We need parents to contact their legislators through social media, phone calls, or an old fashion letter and advocate for Alabama's gifted. This link will take you to the Alabama Association of Gifted Children's handbook for gifted advocacy. There are lots of great resources in this handbook that you can use to make a difference for your gifted child.

State Senator Arthur Orr has written a bill that would authorize the State Department of Education to provide start up grant money for school systems to develope new educational programs for gifted and talented children. To read this legislation click here.