December 11, 2023

The Fry Times

Teacher Empowerment Act designed to protect teachers from classroom violence advances

On Wednesday the House approved a bill aimed at empowering teachers to retake control of their classrooms. The House has heard from many teachers across the state about the struggles they face in the classroom regarding behavioral issues in students, a lack of support from administrators, and trainings that take time away from their basic teaching responsibilities. House Study Bill 206 was put together to help address those problems. The bill is just the start of giving classroom control and personal safeguards to teachers. The bill is not in its final form and changes should be expected before any debate in the House. But the conversation will continue as funnel week ends.

The bill includes:

  • The ability of the state ombudsman to investigate complaints received by licensed practitioners related to violence in the classroom.
  • The district must provide the legal authority (Iowa Code section or rules adopted by the State Board or the BOEE) that requires the employee to participate in the professional development programs.
  • The district must provide notice of teacher immunity in regards to coming in physical contact with at student.
  • Teacher must notify the parent/guardian within 24 hours if they witness student injury.
  • Teacher whistleblower protection.
  • Lays out a 3 strike system for student discipline. First offense, meet with school counselor and one day of in-school suspension. Second offense, meet with school counselor and 5 days of in-school suspension. Third offense, expel student from that class and if in high school, not receive credit for that class.

Forum Schedule

Senator Sinclair and Representative Fry will once again be hosting Legislative Forums in the District during the 2023 Legislative Session.

The next set of forums will be:

March 24, 2023

8:00 am - Corydon, IA at the Corydon Farm Bureau

10:00 am - Chariton, IA at the Chariton Farm Bureau

12:00 pm - Osceola, IA at the Lakeside Casino

2:00 pm - Leon, IA at the Leon Community Center

Rep. Joel Fry

House District 27