Today is the first day the Alabama lawmakers can pass any bills for the new session. One bill that has been getting a lot of buzz is the School Flexibility Act. Similar bills have been introduced in both the House and Senate.
Representative Chad Fincher is sponsoring the bill in the House. He says it will allow local school boards to have more flexibility when it comes to governing their school districts. The bill is aimed towards struggling school districts. Those school boards can submit a plan to the state school board asking for a waiver from certain state standards. The State School Board can approve or deny the plan. If the plan is approved, that school system will have a designated amount of time to show improvement in school scores and other measured standards.
Representative Fincher says his bill has gained support with the state school board and state school superintendent.
"I feel like the local school boards, local superintendents, the parents and teachers know what's best for their students, not Montgomery. I don't know what's best for Birmingham because I'm from the Mobile area," said Fincher.
Fincher says the largest group opposing his bill is the Alabama Education Association. He says they are saying it will allow charter schools in Alabama.
Fincher denies that claim, saying any potential changes would have to first be approved by the state school board.
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