4.17.2013

S.B. 122 STUDENT LEADERSHIP SKILLS DEVELOPMENT BILL

            There were a lot of bills during the 2013 Utah Legislative General Session. However there was one bill that completely took my attention. That bill was the S.B. 122 Student Leadership Skills Development.  This bill was chief sponsored by Senator Aaron Osmond (R – South Jordan, District 10). The main goal of this bill was to establish a pilot program to develop students' behaviors and skills that enhance learning and success in a career.

src: www.cpre.org

           This bill was introduced for the first time during the session by Sen. Aaron Osmond on 11 February 2013. This bill requires the State Board of Education to contract with a provider, selectedthrough a request for proposals process, for a three-year pilot program to develop students' behaviors and skills that enhance a school's learning environment and are vital to success in a career; allows an elementary school to participate in the pilot program in accordance with rules of the State Board of Education that; require a school to provide matching funds and to participate in the pilot program for two years; and give preference to a Title I school or a school in need of academic improvement. [1]

                There are some points that I would like to highlight from this bill, namely:

(1) The State Board of Education shall contract with a provider, selected through a

request for proposals process, for a three-year pilot program to develop student behaviors and skills that enhance a school's learning environment and are vital for success in a career,

including:


(a) communication skills;

(b) teamwork skills;

(c) interpersonal skills;

(d) initiative and self-motivation;

(e) goal setting skills;

(f) problem solving skills; and

(g) creativity.


(2) A provider selected under Subsection (1) shall provide professional development and materials for teachers and other school staff and materials for students to develop the

student behaviors and skills described in Subsection (1).


(3) In selecting a provider under Subsection (1), the State Board of Education shall

consider evidence demonstrating the impact of a provider's professional development and

materials on:

(a) decreasing student disciplinary referrals and misbehavior; and

 (b) increasing student academic achievement.

(4) An elementary school may participate in the pilot program established under this

     section in accordance with rules of the State Board of Education.

(5) In selecting elementary schools to participate in the pilot program, the State Board

   of Education shall:

(a) require a school to provide matching funds in an amount equal to the value of the

professional development and materials provided to the school;

(b) require a school to participate in the pilot program for two years; and

(c) give preference to Title I schools or schools in need of academic improvement.

(6) (a) The State Board of Education shall make a report on the pilot program to the

Education Interim Committee by the committee's October 2015 meeting.

(b) The report shall include an evaluation of the pilot program's success in enhancing school's learning environment and improving academic achievement.[2]


            If we go back a little bit, we can see that the push behind this bill comes  from the Granite School District’s current success in promoting these type of educational programs – they have seen great, data driven, results and the costs are minimal; schools in Park City and St. George have also seen positive outcomes from these development programs.[3] Although this bill has been substituted on March 14 with S.B. 122 Substitute, the main goal of the bill has remained the same. The substitute bill was finally enrolled to Printing on 21 March 2013.

            There is no doubt that education is one of the most important things for human being, especially for our young generations. However, education is not only about reading, counting or writing. Education is also about leadership, social interaction, entrepreneurship, and emotional fortitude. That is way I believe that this bill is really important to prepare our young generation to enter their career and their future life.

             With an initial price tag of $240,000, I believe that this bill will be effective in helping students to develop their leadership skills, and ultimately to improve the quality of education and human resources in Utah as a whole.


[1] Utah State Legislature, "S.B. 122" 2013, (accessed March 24, 2013).

[2] Utah State Legislature, "S.B. 122" 2013, (accessed March 24, 2013).

[3] Curtis Haring, “ FLAGGED BILL : SB 122 – Student Leadership Skills Development, Sen. Osmod” 2013. (accessed March 24, 2013).


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