Leadership Statement on Education First

STATEMENTS

 Greg H. Hughes, Speaker of the House, Utah Legislature

“From the beginning of the session, the House has been committed to making strides in improving public and higher education. We take education funding very seriously as we always have and our commitment to adequately funding education has never been stronger. I think that you will not find a lawmaker in either house who doesn't feel the urgency and the importance of funding public education adequately.

“During this session we have considered more targeted education bills than anytime in the past including:

·       H.B. 277 – Personalized Learning and Teaching Amendments. This bill aligns with the Education First’s Public Education second objective supporting strategies that improve technology in the classroom as well as professional development training for teachers to effectively implement the technology.

·       H.B. 182 – Concurrent Enrollment Education Amendments. This bill aligns with Education First’s Higher Education objective two that promotes increases high-wage, high-demand workforce needs.

·       SB 51 – Teacher Leader Role – This bill aligns with Education First’s Public Education objective two that promotes professional learning communities.

·       SB 67 – Partnerships for Student Success—This bill aligns with Education First’s Public Education objective two that promotes innovative public-private partnerships to support school readiness and success for at risk students. 

·       SB 101 – High Quality School Readiness Program Expansion—This bill aligns with Education First’s Public Education objective two that advocates for voluntary preschool, community schools, and other innovative public-private partnerships. 

·       SB 103 – Strategic Workforce Development -- This bill aligns with Education First’s Public Education second objective for higher education as an initiative to increase participation and completion rates of underserved higher education students. 

·       SB 109 and SJR 12 – School and Institutional Trust Lands Amendments -- This bill aligns with Education First’s Public Education overall goals to increase targeted funding growth to increase academic performance.

·      S.B. 8 – State Agency and Higher Education Compensation Appropriations – This bill aligns with Education First’s Higher Education goal for enhanced compensation and healthcare.

“Overall, we are slated to increase public education funding by $440 million including $90.7 million in enrollment growth. I believe this session is a success for both public and Higher education”

Wayne Niederhauser, Senate President, Utah Legislature

“The three most important responsibilities of the Utah Legislature are infrastructure, infrastructure, and infrastructure.  We need to provide for the transportation, water, recreation, clean air, and - most importantly - the education infrastructure needs of a skyrocketing economy and population. Like our pioneer ancestors, we need to plant fields that future generations will harvest. We need to plan carefully and invest wisely.  

“Our actions now will be very consequential in the years to come. Education First has presented us with a visionary initiative, and the legislature now needs to do a deep dive into the possibilities. I am committed to work over the interim to determine the best path forward on our public education investment.”