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Thursday, January 4, 2024



The Georgia General Assembly will convene Monday morning, January 8, 2024.  The voucher bill that GAE and others defeated this past session could be the first item on the agenda on the first day of the session.

The bill, SB 233, was defeated in the final hours of the final day of the 2023 session, 85 votes for and 89 votes against.  However, a procedural move - a motion to reconsider - apparently carries over to 2024 making the bill eligible for another vote as early as Monday.

Please contact members of the Georgia House of Representatives immediately telling them you oppose SB 233.  The link above will take you to GAE's two-click system for e-mailing legislators.

Also, please share this call to action with your colleagues and others who care about our students and improving the public schools they attend.

Listen to GAE's radio ads opposing the re-direction of taxpayer dollars from our public schools to pay for the private schooling of others.
Radio Ad 1
Radio Ad 2

TIME IS ESSENTIAL.  PLEASE email legislators right away.

For more information on how taxpayer-funded, private school subsidies
harm the 1.75 million students in our public school, click here.

Redistricting Update

In October, a federal judge ruled that congressional and legislative districts in Georgia, drawn after 2020 census and implemented in 2022, diluted Black voting strength and ordered the Georgia General Assembly to create new maps for the 2024 elections.

In a 516-page decision, the judge said legislators needed to create
one new Black-majority congressional district, two new Black-majority state Senate districts, and five new Black-majority state House of Representatives districts.

As a result, the legislature met in a special session that began on November 29 to pass new maps that would comply with the judge's order.

On December 28, the judge ruled the new maps, drawn by the Republican legislative majority, did comply with his order.  A challenge to his ruling by Democrats may be forthcoming.

Kemp's Christmas Bonus

Days before Christmas, Gov. Brian Kemp announced that 196,000 educators and school support staff across the state would receive holiday bonuses of $1,000 each.

Bonuses should be received in January.
Lisa Morgan presents Chairman Gerald Greene, a former GAE member and Republican from Southwest Georgia, with GAE's "Friend of Public Education" award (above).
GAE'S ESP pension bill
expected to move forward
GAE president Lisa Morgan and lobbyist Joe Fleming recently met with State Sen. Larry Walker of Perry to discuss legislation to eliminate the existing cap on retirement benefits for school nutrition workers, bus drivers, custodians, and maintenance personnel.

Educators in these job categories are not a part of the Teachers Retirement System (TRS) but comprise the membership of the Public School Employees Retirement System (PSERS).  About 52,000 educators, active or retired, are members of the PSERS.

The average monthly benefit per individual is $290 a month, calculated by multiplying $16.50 by years of service.  The $16.50 multiplier is currently capped by law.

Walker's bill, SB 105, would eliminate that cap altogether and establish a minimum of $17.

At the meeting, Lisa Morgan presented Chairman Walker with a "Friend of Educational Support Professionals" award (below) for his diligence in pushing this legislation forward.
GAE backs bill to compensate student teachers

GAE met with Rep. Carolyn Hugley of Columbus who is the sponsor of HB 148, to provide compensation for student teachers.  Unlike many other states, Georgia provides no financial support for student teachers who are enrolled full-time in college and working full-time in our public schools.

Skylar Nunley, UniServ Director and coordinator of GAE's Aspiring Educators program, and Joe Fleming, GAE lobbyist, met with the sponsor to discuss strategies to pass the legislation.  Pictured are, left to right, Breonna Robinson, Rep. Carolyn Hugley, Demetrius Dove, Skylar Nunley, Donyè Wright, and Amara Jackson, The student represent Clark Atlanta and Clayton State University.

Last year's Day at the Capitol broke all previous attendance records.  Let's make this year's even bigger.  Register today.

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