Three New Laws Approved Regarding Education

The Indiana General Assembly approved 161 new laws this year, many of which will become effective July 1. The changes in state law taking place this summer impact a variety of issues including education.

Senate Enrolled Act 267, or, “Erin’s Law,” requires the Department of Education to work in cooperation with the Department of Child Services and other organizations to provide public school systems with a curriculum to educate teachers, school personnel and children about child sexual abuse and how to report suspected abuse of students. The Department of Education will provide schools with education materials, response policies, and reporting procedures for grades two through five.

School busing fees are also impacted by a new law. House Enrolled Act 1134 prevents any school corporation from charging a fee to parents or students for transportation by bus to and from school. However, the law does allow a fee to be charged for busing to and from athletic, social, or other school-sponsored functions.

Another new law, Senate Enrolled Act 268, requires the Indiana Education Roundtable to create an advisory committee on early education. The committee will be comprised of experts and advocates from around the state to give insight as to the necessary steps to improve education for the children in Indiana. The new law would require members of the committee to provide professional and technical assistance to the Indiana Education Roundtable, a state board charged with ensuring that Indiana has world-class academic standards for student learning.