June 30, 2021

Education Legislation in Arizona

Right to Refuse Bills

K-12 and Higher Education Budget:

Higher Education Budget:

In higher education, the passage of SB 1453 created more opportunities for students to access affordable options by allowing community college districts to provide four-year baccalaureate degrees in in-demand industries.

And the education budget that was passed promotes accessible higher education with the following policy changes:

  • Prevents the Arizona Board of Regents, a public university, or a community college from requiring students to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, to undergo testing, or wear face coverings in order to participate
    in in-person instruction.
  • Creates the Return to Work Program, which provides scholarship funds to students who are getting off
    unemployment benefits and committed to working part-time while taking classes.
  • Financially assists low-income Arizona residents by establishing the Arizona Promise Scholarship

The K-12 Education Budget:

Reconciliation Bill, HB2898, contained numerous provisions to benefit Arizona’s students and families, such as:

  • Ensures schools will not be able to require students to receive a COVID-19 vaccine or wear a mask to
    return to in-person learning.
  • Protects students by banning the teaching of critical race theory and holding teachers and school systems
    accountable for any violations of this law.
  • Makes it a misuse of public funds for teachers or school personnel to use public resources to organize any
    activity that would prevent a public school from operating.
  • Makes several policy changes to the Empowerment Scholarship Account (ESA) program:
    • Clarifies that kindergarten students in an online school are eligible for an ESA if they otherwise qualify for the program.
    • Lessens the amount of time a student must attend a public school before switching to an ESA from 100 days to 45 days.
    • If a student qualifies for free- or reduced-price lunch and resides within a D or F district, that student does not need to attend a public school before applying for an ESA.
  • Creates a transportation innovation grant program that allows school systems to try modern and creative
    transportation options to make more school choice options available to more families.
  • Provides fourth-year funding for Career and Technical Education District students who continue in a
    program that leads to in-demand jobs with good wages.

Efforts to Subvert the Legislature and Recent Laws

In a last ditch effort to put the teachers’ union ahead of our kids…. again, the Arizona teacher’s union is circulating a petition to allow discrimination and to coerce parents into forcing their children to participate in human trials of the experimental injection, which has unknown health risks that could far exceed any dangers posed to them by COVID.