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Thursday, January 26, 2023 - Legislative Day #8


GAE President Lisa Morgan visits with new House Education Committee chair Chris Erwin, R- Homer, following an organizational meeting of the committee this afternoon.

Rep. Erwin is the former school superintendent of the Banks County School System, having served in that position for eleven years.  He also served as an administrator in Carroll and Henry counties.  In 2013, he was named Georgia Superintendent of the Year.

The House Education Committee met this afternoon for its first meeting of the new session.  The new committee chairman is Chris Erwin, from northeast Georgia.

At the meeting, the committee members adopted rules for the operation of the committee and confirmed Erwin's selection of chairs for the two subcommittees that have been established, the Policy Subcommittee and the Curriculum Subcommittee.

Erwin appointed freshman Rep. Scott Hilton, R-Peachtree Corners, as chair of the Policy Subcommittee and freshman Rep. Bethany Ballard, R-Warner Robins, as chair of the Curriculum Subcommittee.

No legislation was considered today.

Next week at the Georgia Capitol

The Georgia General Assembly will be in session Monday through Thursday of next week.  Friday will be the 12th legislative day.

A joint meeting of the House Retirement and Senate Retirement committees has been scheduled for next Tuesday, January 31, at 2 p.m. in 606 Coverdell.  The agenda includes an overview of the Teachers Retirement System (TRS), the Public School Employees Retirement System (PSERS), and the Employees Retirement System (ERS).  The meeting will be broadcast at https://vimeo.com/showcase/8972626?autoplay=1.  No specific legislation is be considered.

Make a difference in public education.  Introduce yourself to your state legislators today!

As a voter, an educator, and constituent, your legislators value your input.  Your lobbyists at the state Capitol are effective but they are no substitute for the views of a legislator's knowledgeable and engaged constituents.

As a hometown educator - a member of your local community with first-hand experience in public schools - it is critical for your legislators to hear and understand your perspective on education issues.

Take a moment to send a quick note to your representative in the Georgia House and your Senator.  Thank them for their service.  Make yourself available to him or her as a resource on issues affecting our schools, educators, and students.  Set up a meeting with them.  Invite them to your school.

A sample letter is included for you to use as a guide, but your own words and your own experiences will be most effective.  Introduce yourself.  Who are you, where do you work, what is your role in public education?  What are your aspirations for your students?

Your note will be forwarded automatically to your specific individual legislators.  Once you hit "submit," take a moment to note the names of your Representative and Senator if you did not already know them.

As the legislative session moves forward, you will want to follow up with your legislators on issues like TKES/LKES reform, public education funding, educator recruitment and retention, and many other issues that will come up, and GAE will provide you the information you need to do so.
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All who value public education in our state will thank you.


Fifth special election scheduled
for vacant legislative seat

State Rep. Mike Glanton, D-Jonesboro - a longtime member of the House Education Committee - has resigned his seat.  A special election to determine his replacement has been scheduled for March 21.  Candidates wishing to run must qualify by Friday, February 3 by 1 p.m.

Four other state legislative vacancies will be filled by elections next Tuesday, including in House District 119 in Barrow County.  In that race, GAE has endorsed Bill Ritter, former chairman of the Barrow County School Board.  Early voting ends Friday!

Next Legislative Alert will be Monday, January 30

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