The LOOK Bill passed the House on June 7, 2017 in a vote of 152-2, and passed by the Senate unanimously on July 27. The two versions of the bill were referred to conference committee and the following legislators were appointed to the committee: Rep. Alice Peisch, House co-chair of the Education Committee, Rep. Frank Moran and Rep. Kimberly Ferguson, along with Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz, Senate co-chair of the Education Committee, Sen. Sal DiDomenico, and Sen. Patrick O’Connor.
There will be a hearing on the Seal of Biliteracy bills before the Joint Committee of Education Tuesday, June 27, 2017, 10 am, Room A2 at the Massachusetts State House,
Be prepared to testify on behalf of …
- S.311 An Act to promote global trade and economic development through biliteracy (Sponsor: Senator Karen Spilka)
- H.285 An Act to promote global trade and economic development through biliteracy (Sponsor: Representative Kay Khan)
- H.2045 An Act relative to the state seal of biliteracy (Sponsor: Representative Bradley Jones)
We are seeking testimony in favor of the bills, either in person or in writing. Submit written testimony to the committee co-chairs:
- Representative Alice Peisch: Alice.Peisch@mahouse.gov
- Senator Sonia Chang-Diaz: Sonia.Chang-Diaz@masenate.gov
GUIDANCE FOR ORAL TESTIMONIALS
Testimonials that tell a story about individuals are very powerful. Focus on what you know and care about. Think about what you know and have experienced and present your concerns and ideas for better solutions. (Possible Topics: Pathway Awards, Seal of Bilitearcy Pilot experience, personal experience learning a second language, personal experience using two or more languages in your job or career, personal experience as a student in a language learning program.) You have so much to offer policy conversations without having to be a data or policy expert. Plan to speak for no more than 3 minutes.
GUIDANCE FOR WRITTEN TESTIMONY
You can submit written testimony to the Chairs of the committee and cc: your State Senator and State Representative. Here is the list of names for the Joint Education Committee Chairs and members. Bring a written copy of our testimony to leave with the committee, as well. You can bring just one copy of testimony, and the staff will make copies for the Committee files, or you can bring enough for all committee members (~20) if you prefer. You can bring other visual handouts to attach with your testimony, too.
- Limit the text to 1.5 pages
- Include your name, address, where you work or study, what you do for work,
- State “I am ….
- State I am in favor of the bill S311, H285, H 2045 and this is why.
- Pick one action point listed in the Seal of Biliteracy Talking Points and speak to that.
- State “I recommend that bill S311, H285, H 2045 should be passed.
See the Seal of Biliteracy page for resources and fact sheets.
LET US KNOW YOU ARE TESTIFYING
Please use the Contact Us page if you plan to testify or send testimony, and send us an electronic copy of your testimony so that we can post them on the Coalition blog site.
June 7, 2017 – The Language Opportunity Coalition applauds the Massachusetts House of Representatives for passage of legislation that brings meaningful reform to our education system for the way we teach English learners. The legislation passed today by the House will make important changes to the laws that govern educators in Massachusetts, giving school districts increased flexibility to make sure that the English language instruction programs they offer are those that work best for their district’s students. We are grateful to the Speaker and House leadership for prioritizing these important changes so early in the legislative session.
While no legislation is perfect, we firmly believe that the House passed language takes a critical first step in addressing the issues of our current system. We look forward to working with members of the Senate as this legislation now moves on to their branch.
We are truly grateful to the leadership of the Speaker, the Education Chair and Education Committee, and our legislative champions Representative Jeffery Sanchez and Representative Tony Cabral for taking such a strong stance on this critical issue and ensuring that English Language Learner reform is one of the first issues the legislature tackles this legislative session.
The Language Opportunity Coalition urges you to support two bills filed in the Massachusetts legislature:
The Language Opportunity Coalition is proud to announce that two exciting bills have been filed for the 2015-2016 Massachusetts legislative session:
“An Act to Establish a State Seal of Biliteracy” (HD 1698/SD 1012), filed by Senator Karen Spilka and Representative Kay Khan
“An Act relative to Language Opportunity for Our Kids (LOOK)” (HD2211/SD743), filed by Senator Sal DiDomenico and Representative Jeff Sanchez.
We now believe we can gather the support we need to be successful this upcoming legislative session. However, we need your help!
We want to ensure that as many State Senators and State Representatives as possible sign on to these bills as co-sponsors. The deadline for co-sponsorship is Friday, January 30th, 2015.
We are asking you to make two phone calls or send two emails TODAY in support of these bills.