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Voters To Decide Fate Of Education Commission

Voters To Decide Fate Of Education Commission

Alabama voters will decide March 3, 2020, whether to replace the elected Alabama State Board of Education with an appointed Alabama Commission on Elementary and Secondary Education following final passage Friday of a proposed constitutional amendment. 

SB 397 by Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh, R-Anniston, calls for the nine-member commission to be appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Senate. It also would replace the state superintendent of education position with a cabinet-level secretary of elementary and secondary education. 

The commission would include at least one member from each Alabama congressional district. Members would serve no more than two consecutive six-year terms. The amendment requires the governor to ensure the commission reflects the geographical, gender and racial diversity of students enrolled in public K-12 education in the state.  

The commission would be charged with adopting “course of study standards that ensure nationwide consistency and the seamless transfer of students from within and outside of the state, in lieu of common core.” Additionally, the constitutional amendment charges the commission with adopting educator certification and professional development programs as well as comprehensive assessment and accountability systems.

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