More Exciting News for Fairfield!

May 8, 2024

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Dear Neighbor,

Tonight, at midnight the General Assembly will adjourn the 2024 legislation session! After months of hard work, in these final hours, I am happy to share with you that we have passed both in the House and Senate legislation to put implementation of the Racial Imbalance law on pause!

We've passed some incredible bills this year, and today, as Vice Chair of the Education Committee, I want to highlight some of the bills passed through the Education Committee alongside the wonderful Chair, Rep. Jeff Currey.

SB 154 - An Act Concerning Schools pauses the implementation of the racial imbalance law. I gave you an update on this bill a couple weeks ago, and I'm happy to report it was passed through the House of Representatives and the Senate!

The study component of the bill was cut by the Appropriations Committee (as a result of there being no budget adjustment this session). We have stripped the study from this bill and will continue to put implementation of the law on hold with the understanding that we will revisit funding the study in the next biennium.

I'm grateful for all the hard work from Rep. Currey and the State Dept. of Education this past year - their partnership and collaboration have been critical to this bill's success.

The second bill is HB 5436 - An Act Concerning Educator Certification, Teachers, Paraeducators, and Mandated Reporter Requirements.

This comprehensive bill makes it easier to become a teacher by simplifying our teacher certification process, streamlining the alternate pathways to certification, returning grade certifications to prek-6 and 4-12, updates mandated reporting requirements, and more. This is a comprehensive bill, and I encourage you to take a look if you have the chance.

The next bill is HB 5437 - An Act Concerning Education Mandate Relief, School Discipline and Disconnected Youth.

Among other things, this bill creates the Educator Professional Development Mandate Review Advisory Council, which will advise the legislature on the costs and effects of various mandates and where we can provide relief.

The final bill is SB 5 - An Act Concerning School Resources

This bill expands eligibility for the Care 4 Kids child care cost assistance program to include parents or guardians of children enrolled in Medicaid, makes changes so children enrolled in Medicaid can be eligible for Care 4 Kids, spaces out required  school indoor air quality HVAC inspections and evaluation, and more.

In the past few days, a phrase has been floating around at the Capitol: "Education is the great equalizer." And I could not agree more. Serving as the vice-chair of the Education Committee puts me in a position to shape the learning experience of the next generation of leaders, and I take that role extremely seriously, following a compassionate and data-driven approach to crafting legislation. It has been a pleasure working with Rep. Currey on delivering some critical bills for our school, and I look forward to continuing our work on this amazing committee.

I'm committed to ensuring your voice is heard. Please don't hesitate to call my office at (860) 240-8585 or email me if there's anything I can do for you. Be sure to follow @LeeperForFairfield on Facebook and Instagram to stay up-to-date on everything I'm doing at the Capitol.


Jennifer Leeper
State Representative


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