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From Bonnie Henthorn

By Staff | Mar 26, 2014

Letter to the Editor:

I would like to take an opportunity to thank those who took the time to contact their West Virginia legislators about the many proposed bills up for consideration during this legislative session. There were some good and some bad results. Of particular interest to me, personally, were the following bills that relate directly to education:

SB420 This particular bill would have modified existing laws to allow the sharing and access of student data collected within the State Longitudinal Data System (SLDS), with other State and Federal agencies. Although this bill passed the Senate and made it out of the House Education Committee, after some legislative maneuvering, it ended with no support in the House Finance Committee. Therefore, this bill was not voted upon by the full House.

HB4316 (Student Data Accessibility, Transparency and Accountability Act) Among other things, this particular bill attempted to define and regulate the types of data that the state may collect on students within the public school system. After a few amendments with some protections regarding certain types of data (religious, political, financial, moral, biometric), the bill passed both the House and Senate and is awaiting the Governor’s signature.

As we look toward the 2014 elections, I encourage everyone to become more involved in political matters, be vigilant! Find out where the candidates stand on the issues and vote your conscience this action will ensure that policies are created that preserve our freedoms for generations to come.

Bonnie Henthorn

Candidate for Tyler County Board of Education