SB1569

  • Crowe supports new law to assist schools with pandemic challenges

    crowe 060319MARYVILLE – As part of the state’s response to COVID-19, State Senator Rachelle Crowe (D-Glen Carbon) supported legislation to help school districts address the challenges created by the pandemic, signed into law Thursday by the governor.

    Senate Bill 1569 makes a number of changes that help schools adjust to remote learning and other challenges imposed by the pandemic, including:

    Allowing for the creation of remote learning days and remote learning plans,

    Allowing for a combination of remote learning and in-person instruction,

    Suspending clock hour requirements when a disaster is declared,

    Affirming graduation modifications granted to Spring 2020 graduates, and

    Allowing mandated exams to be completed remotely.

    “No one can predict our circumstances in the fall. This law allows school districts to adapt,” Crowe said. “It should help educators find new ways of educating students through e-learning.”

    Because teacher evaluations for the 2020-2021 school year have been paused due to COVID-19, the measure extends teacher license renewals by one year.

    The legislation also extends a law allowing retired teachers to return to the classroom as substitutes for up to 120 paid days or 600 paid hours without impairing their retirement status.

    “Illinois’ teacher shortage continues to affect communities throughout the state,” Crowe said. “Recognizing the ongoing struggle for downstate school districts to staff qualified teachers, this initiative protects retired teachers’ benefits while allowing them to serve as long-term substitutes.”

    Finally, the legislation also makes it easier for college students who receive financial assistance through the Aspirational Institutional Match Illinois Grow Higher Education Grant Pilot Program, also known as AIM HIGH, to retain their aid for the duration of their four years of undergraduate studies.

    AIM HIGH provides financial assistance to eligible low-income students who attend one of the state’s 12 public universities. Under the measure, the income of a student when entering the program will be the income of the student for the life of the program.

    Senate Bill 1569 is effective immediately.

  • Belt supports new education package to help teachers and students through the COVID-19 crisis

    belt 050819EAST ST. LOUIS – To help schools overcome obstacles caused by COVID-19, State Senator Christopher Belt (D-Centreville) supported a new package of legislation containing numerous measures to provide teachers and students with the tools they need to adapt during the current health crisis.

    “Students have been deprived of many milestones, like proms and graduations, and remote learning hasn’t been an easy transition for kids or teachers,” Belt said. “This education package is an effort to provide schools with the resources they need to get through this difficult period.”

    The education package contains a number of measures to help students and teachers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, including a one-year extension for educator license renewals, so teachers don’t have to go through the renewal process while working remotely. 

    The legislation also allows mandatory tests to be taken remotely to enable students to take college readiness exams without risking their health. 

    Certain provisions relate to higher education during the pandemic. Under the new law, any grade of “pass,” “credit” or “satisfactory” during the public health emergency is transferable and will fulfill prerequisite requirements for more advanced college courses. 

    It also modifies income requirements for the state's AIM HIGH education grant program, saying a student’s income when they enter the program will remain their income for the duration of their inclusion in the program.

    Senate Bill 1569 was signed into law Thursday.  

  • COVID-19 response package for education signed into law

    bennett 052419SPRINGFIELD — State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) lent his support to a comprehensive education package that was signed into law Thursday. It addresses the unique challenges facing the state’s education system due to COVID-19. 

    “When the COVID-19 pandemic began, schools shifted to remote learning, leaving teachers, students and families to face unfamiliar challenges for the remainder of the spring semester,” Bennett said. “This package offers them support during an unprecedented time and ensures students will get the best education possible – whether it be online or in-person.”

    The education package does a number of things to help students and teachers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, including extending educator license renewals for one year, so teachers don’t have to go through the renewal process while working remotely. 

    Additionally, for public college and university students, any grade of “pass,” “credit,” or “satisfactory” during the public health emergency is transferable and will fulfill prerequisite requirements for more advanced courses. 

    The legislation – Senate Bill 1569 – was signed into law Thursday and takes effect immediately.

  • Bertino-Tarrant’s education package signed into law

    Sen. Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant

    PLAINFIELD — The state’s education package spearheaded by State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood), which will provide assistance and relief to teachers and schools that were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, became law today.

    “Teachers and students are dealing with a situation they could have never planned for, so it’s our responsibility to ensure they get the support they need,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “Our educators must be equipped with the right tools to give students a quality education — even if they do so from a distance.”

    The education package does a number of things to help students and teachers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. It includes extending educator license renewals for one year, so teachers don’t have to go through the renewal process while working remotely. It also allows for mandatory tests to be taken remotely, so students don’t have to risk getting sick in order to take an exam they need to apply for college.

    Additionally, relating to higher education, any grade of “pass,” “credit,” or “satisfactory” during the public health emergency is transferable and will fulfill prerequisite requirements for more advanced courses.

    “Students who worked hard on their classes during unprecedented circumstances should not have to sacrifice that work because they didn’t get a typical letter grade,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “Allowing students who have completed the coursework to get the credit is a commonsense practice.”

    It also modifies income requirements for the state's AIM HIGH education grant program, saying a student’s income when they enter the program will remain their income for the duration of their inclusion in the program.

    “Investing in our children is one of the best investments we can make,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “I’m proud to have carried this package through the Senate and onto the governor’s office.”

    The education package — found in Senate Bill 1569 — was signed into law June 18 and takes effect immediately.

  • Bertino-Tarrant’s education package passes Senate

    education 052020

  • Bennett votes in favor of education package

    Sen. Scott BennettSPRINGFIELD Students and educators have faced tremendous barriers with COVID-19, which has impacted every classroom in Illinois. State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) recognized the challenges they face and favorably voted for an education package to make a high quality education available for students at all levels, whether it be in-person or remotely.

    “It is imperative we continue to invest in our education system, especially in these unfortunate times,” said Bennett, a member of the Senate Higher Education Committee. “I have always prioritized education during my time in the General Assembly, and I believe people will need higher education and job training more than ever after this pandemic.”