– The state House on Thursday unanimously passed legislation authored by state Rep. Jim Struzzi (R-Indiana) that would continue teacher hiring practices for schools which were enacted during the COVID-19 pandemic. House Bill 27
may now be taken up by the state Senate.
“Many of the answers to challenges we faced during the pandemic have actually turned out to be things we in fact could have been doing all along,” Struzzi said. “In this case, my House Bill 27 would extend hiring practices that have already sunset and put them into statute.”
House Bill 27 extends certain provisions dealing with teacher shortages that expired at the end of the 2022-23 school year. Struzzi’s legislation would make them permanent.
“Act 91 of 2021
gave schools flexibility regarding the shortage of day-to-day substitute teachers,” added Struzzi. “It dealt with employing annuitants, prospective teachers and graduates of educator preparation programs as substitutes, something we should continue to do since the shortage still exists.”
House Bill 27 includes safeguards to limit the number of days student teachers would be permitted to serve in that capacity and not take away from their supervised student teaching experience. It also expands opportunities for individuals who have temporary teaching certificates and substitute teaching permits, in addition to anyone who serves as a classroom monitor.
Questions about this or any legislative issue should be directed to Struzzi’s Indiana district office at 724-465-0220.