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Young Utahns need to know about consent and sexual violence in a real-world way, panel says

Utah education news -

Romeo Jackson believes the best way to teach young people about consent and sexual violence is to put the concepts in a context they can understand. For example, they need to understand how consent might be sought and given in a crowded club when both people are drunk, said Jackson, a graduate student in the University of Utah’s Department of Educational Leadership and Policy. “I think we need to then fit our conversations into what students are actually doing and experiencing in their lives so ...

Resurrected school truancy bill dies again in the Utah Senate

Utah education news -

Utah Senators gave a decisive vote of opposition on Monday to a bill that failed the chamber last week but was kept alive through legislative maneuvering. The Senate voted 13-16, short of the majority needed to approve SB115, which sought to end the criminal penalties for parents of truant children. While truancy citations are rare, and typically used to compel school attendance and dialogue with administrators, bill sponsor Sen. Jacob Anderegg, R-Lehi, said contempt of court and other complic...

Struggling students forced to wait as Utah's public colleges don't have enough therapists

Utah education news -

David Bush can’t pinpoint the exact reason, but he’s seen more students than ever before in Utah State University’s counseling center asking for help. It could be that the stigma associated with mental illness is dissipating. It could be that higher expectations have led to more stress and anxiety. Or it could even be that instant access to news is overwhelming and unsettling, said Bush, director of USU’s Counseling and Psychological Services. But whatever the reason, USU’s counselors are bei... <iframe src="http://www.sltrib.com/csp/mediapool/sites/sltrib/pages/garss.csp" height="1" width="1" > </frame>

Senate panel clings to school grading despite push to end practice

Utah education news -

A brewing showdown over school grading may have ended Friday, when the Senate Education Committee voted to stop a bill from reaching the Senate floor that would end the controversial practice of awarding letter grades to schools. Both the House and Senate have passed legislation aimed at reforming school grading — HB241 and SB220, respectively. But while both proposals would broaden the performance areas used to measure school quality, HB241 would end the practice of assigning a single letter ... <iframe src="http://www.sltrib.com/csp/mediapool/sites/sltrib/pages/garss.csp" height="1" width="1" > </frame>

Senate combines property tax freeze, school funding equalization proposals

Utah education news -

Senators played matchmaker on Friday, joining a bill to raise money for education with a dormant proposal to equalize school district funding. The Senate gave a preliminary vote of 26-0 to SB255, which would freeze the statewide property rate and capture roughly $21 million for schools — and potentially more each year — through inflation. But before that vote, the bill was substituted to include elements of SB80, which aims to supplement school districts with low property tax yields by creating... <iframe src="http://www.sltrib.com/csp/mediapool/sites/sltrib/pages/garss.csp" height="1" width="1" > </frame>

'I sure hope we weren't wrong': Utah school board questions decision to not immediately shut down Vineyard charter school

Utah education news -

The Utah Board of Education had its first opportunity on Thursday to weigh in on the allegations of misconduct at Franklin Discovery Academy. The Vineyard charter school was given probationary status over the weekend by the state charter school board in response to concerns over student safety, financial impropriety and teacher licensing. But at least one school board member questioned why Franklin Discovery was given until June to address those issues, rather than being immediately shut down. ... <iframe src="http://www.sltrib.com/csp/mediapool/sites/sltrib/pages/garss.csp" height="1" width="1" > </frame>

'Good teachers deserve to be rewarded': Bonus bill sails through Senate committee

Utah education news -

A proposal to pay high-performing teachers extra to work in high-poverty schools is headed to the Senate after a warm committee reception on Thursday. HB212 narrowly cleared the House Education Committee last month — ahead of a 51-23 vote in the House — but the Senate Education Committee gave the bill unanimous support, bolstering its odds of passage in the final days of the legislative session. “This may not be everything but it’s a little,” said Sen. Howard Stephenson, R-Draper. “It has the ...

Senate approves lifting ban on 'advocacy of homosexuality' in Utah schools

Utah education news -

The Utah Senate gave near-unanimous approval on Wednesday to ending a state ban on the advocacy of homosexuality in public school sex education courses. Senators voted 24-1 in favor of SB196, which replaces the homosexuality language with a restriction against advocating “premarital or extramarital sexual activity.” Utah law already restricts sex education to a format focused on abstinence and marital fidelity. But Adams has described SB196 as adding “belts and suspenders” to the law, while al... <iframe src="http://www.sltrib.com/csp/mediapool/sites/sltrib/pages/garss.csp" height="1" width="1" > </frame>

High school sports association gets another outside mandate -- this time from Utah lawmakers

Utah education news -

A simmering debate over Utah prep sports reached the Legislature on Wednesday, with a House committee approving new requirements for the Utah High School Activities Association. Members of the House Education Committee voted 11-2 in favor of HB413, which places the association under Utah’s open meetings and records laws and cuts the group’s governing body in half, from 32 members to 15. During the fall and winter, the Utah Board of Education approved and later delayed implementation of a polic...

Senate panel OKs property tax freeze to fund schools

Utah education news -

Members of the Senate Education Committee approved a bill Tuesday that would boost school funding through a statewide property tax rate freeze. Current law requires tax rates to remain revenue-neutral by adjusting down as property values increase. But Sen. Howard Stephenson, R-Draper, an architect of and advocate for Utah’s “Truth in Taxation” laws, said taxing entities are expected to raise rates and capture inflation every five to eight years. Except for a $75 million increase in 2015, he sa...

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