For the second year in a row, legislation mandating schools in high poverty areas to offer a healthy breakfast to hungry children has stalled in the legislature. Last year, the bill came very close, but was unable to make the final hurdle. The same thing happened again this year, only this time, the House and Governor's budget actually funded the issue in a line item only to have the Senate version fall short.
Although it appears to have bipartisan support in the Senate, the line item did not appear in the Senate version of the budget and the bill died in the Senate Education Committee. The PTA will continue to push for the bill, especially if we go into legislative overtime due to the budget.
The outlook for Social and Emotional Learning is brighter since it was funded in all three budgets. However, the underlying bill became entangled in a last minute political crossfire between the House and Senate and did not get passed out of the House in time for the legislative cutoff. It is possible, however, if the legislature goes into special session that both bills may revive. Until that time, SEL advocate Sarah Butcher is working with members of the House and Senate on proviso language that incorporates some of the bill requirements into the operating budget.