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2021 Special Session

Per-pupil formula increase, more training in E-12 education funding law

Spending per pupil will rise, prekindergarten offerings won’t shrink, and training opportunities for teachers and staff will increase under the omnibus E-12 education finance law.

Sponsored by Rep. Jim Davnie (DFL-Mpls) and Sen. Roger Chamberlain (R-Lino Lakes), the law effective July 1, 2021, except where noted, increases the general education basic formula by 2.45% for fiscal year 2022 and 2% for fiscal year 2023. That accounts for $462 million of the law’s $554.2 million in new biennial spending.

Other outlays will maintain the state’s 4,000 voluntary prekindergarten seats, at a cost of $45.9 million. Funding is also increased for special education, English language learning, and programs to encourage the recruitment and retention of teachers of color and Indigenous teachers.

The state’s teachers and staff will also receive more training in suicide prevention, non-exclusionary discipline and early literacy.

The greatest increases in 2022-23 biennial funding are:

• $462 million for the formula allowance increase to 2.45% for fiscal year 2022 and 2% for fiscal year 2023;

• $45.9 million to maintain existing voluntary prekindergarten seats;

• $10.4 million for special education cross-subsidy reduction aid;

• $10 million for the “Grow Your Own” program to recruit and prepare community members to enter teaching;

• $4.5 million for teachers of color mentoring and retention incentive grants;

• $4.5 million to the Department of Education for legal costs adjustment;

• $4 million in English learners cross-subsidy reduction aid through fiscal year 2025;

• $3 million to the Sanneh Foundation for low-performing and chronically absent students;

• $3 million for LETRS grants for programs helping students struggling with early literacy;

• $2.7 million operating adjustment for the Department of Education;

• $1.7 million for non-exclusionary discipline training for teachers;

• $1.5 million to Girls in Action for teachers of color training programs;

• $1 million for digital well-being grants; and

• $1 million for Math Corps (Art. 1, Secs. 9-10; Art. 2, Sec. 4; Art. 3, Sec. 7; Art. 5, Sec. 3).

Some of the law’s most significant policy changes will:

General education

• increase the general education basic formula by 2.45% for fiscal year 2022 and 2% for fiscal year 2023;

• supplement English learner revenue for four years with payments of an additional $2 million per year;

• extend the expiring voluntary prekindergarten seats for the next two years only; and

• amend statutes relating to absences for religious observance. (Art. 1, Secs. 1-5, 9)

Education excellence

• modify requirements for grants to establish or expand Advanced Placement courses and international baccalaureate programs;

• suspend implementation of certain academic standards until June 1, 2023; and

• award a grant to LiveMore ScreenLess to promote digital well-being. (Art. 2, Secs. 1-3)

Teachers

• incorporate provisions from the Increase Teachers of Color Act;

• require districts to establish mentorship programs and use staff development revenue for teacher mentorship;

• clarify and modify requirements for the American Indian teacher preparation program; and

• establish grants for Grow Your Own teaching preparation programs to develop a teaching workforce that more closely reflects a diverse student population. (Art. 3, Secs. 1-6)

Charter schools

• prohibit a charter school from engaging in corporal punishment; and

• effective July 1, 2022, modify the commissioner’s timeline and the authorizer’s requirements for corrective plans. (Art. 4, Secs. 1-2)

Special education

• create a process for schools to follow to amend students’ individual education programs in order to provide recovery services to students for services and time lost due to the COVID-19 pandemic;

• require the education and human services commissioners to consult with stakeholders to find strategies to streamline access and reimbursement for behavioral health services for children with an individualized education program or an individualized family service plan who are enrolled in Medical Assistance; and

• provide one-time funding directed at narrowing the special education cross subsidy. (Art. 5, Secs. 1-3)

Health and safety

• modify requirements relating to instruction to prevent suicide or self-harm; and

• require a district or charter school to have a seizure action plan. This provision is effective beginning with the 2022-23 school year. (Art. 6, Secs. 1-2)

Facilities

• require a school to notify staff, students and parents when the school receives notice of environmental hazards from the Department of Health or the Pollution Control Agency. (Art. 7, Sec. 1)

Nutrition

• add language to the school nutrition statutes to prohibit lunch shaming; and

• authorize the Education Department to recalculate school lunch payments to schools to reflect a school’s participation in alternative school meal programs during the 2020-21 school year. (Art. 8, Secs. 1-2)

Early education

• extend through fiscal year 2023 the 4,000 voluntary prekindergarten and school readiness plus seats that are set to expire; and

• prohibit a publicly funded preschool or kindergarten program from having a child use an individual-use screen without engagement from a teacher or other students, effective July 1, 2022, and exclude a child with an individualized family service plan, an individualized education program or a 504 plan from this requirement. (Art. 9, Secs. 1-3)

State agencies

• provide funding for state agencies, including the Department of Education, Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board, Minnesota State Academies, and Perpich Center for Arts Education;

• require all pre-K-12 education grants after July 1, 2022, to be aligned to Minnesota’s "World’s Best Workforce” and the federal government’s student accountability systems; and

• require grant recipients to use evidence-based practices and report their activities to the Department of Education and the Legislature, effective July 1, 2022. (Art. 11, Secs. 1, 3-7)

Forecast adjustments and other provisions

The law makes adjustments to fiscal year 2021 appropriations to match the February 2021 forecast data, matching the best estimates of the state aid required for each K-12 appropriation. And it appropriates money for community education and lifelong learning programs. (Art. 10, Sec. 1; Art. 12, Secs. 1-24)

2021 First Special Session: SSHF2*/SSSF23/SSCH13


New Laws 2021

Main About Search
HF0002* / SF0023 / CH13
House Chief Author: Davnie
Senate Chief Author: Chamberlain
Effective Dates: See chapter summary in the file link above.
* The legislative bill marked with an asterisk denotes the file submitted to the governor.