State Government Issues

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ODACS Legislative Update, 2017 Session

Following is a summary of some bills that ODACS followed during the 2017 session.

Childcare

SB 1239 - Restructuring of Virginia's Child Care Licensure Exemption Code

SB 1239 would have overhauled the current list of child care licensure exemptions in Virginia Code.  Among the changes was a new list that defines certain kinds of child care as not being child day centers; included in this new list are church ministries such as Sunday school and church nurseries.  The bill also includes several changes for Religious Exempt daycares.  ODACS has spent much time negotiating the details of these changes and trying to ensure that the bill does not give DSS any new regulatory authority over our ministries.  On May 4, 2017, Governor McAuliffe vetoed SB 1239.  A formal statement from ODACS, responding to the Governor's veto, will be published soon.

ODACS supported SB 1239.

Veto Press Release from the Office of the Governor

ODACS Response to Governor's Recommendations

Chart - Virginia Childcare Safety Gap

Chart - Virginia Childcare Center Child Abuse Data

 

HB 1568 and SB 897 - New Requirements for Virginia Daycares, as Conditions for Receipt of Federal Funding

HB 1568 and SB 897 place new background check requirements on Religious Exempt daycares, as a condition for receipt of federal funding by other daycares, despite the fact that our daycares have no desire to receive federal funding.  The pretext for such executive and bureaucratic overreach is child safety, even though no safety problem has been identified in Religious Exempt Centers.  ODACS contends that Relgious Exempt daycare centers are among the safest in Virginia, if not the safest!

ODACS Opposed HB 1568 and SB 897.

Sample Letter to Delegate or Senator

Sample Talking Points

Proposed Amendments to HB 1568

ODACS Committee Testimony on HB 1568

Excerpt from Federal Government Rules, Discussing Bureaucratic Overreach

Chart - Virginia Childcare Center Safety Gap

Chart - Virginia Childcare Center Child Abuse Data


Washington Post Article, Advocating Stronger Standards in Child Day Homes

Blog Post, Addressing Incorrect Claims in the WP Article

Washington Post Article, Documenting Tragic Deaths in Licensed and Unlicensed Virginia Daycares

2015 Session - School Choice

SB 905 - New Requirement for the Education Improvement Scholarship Tax Credit

SB 905 would have given the Board of Education authority to approve any achievement test used by a non-accredited private school to demonstrate the success of students benefiting from the program.  ODACS OPPOSED

ODACS Talking Points

Sample Letter

ODACS Achievement Test Results, 2014

Friedman Foundation Pamphlet - The ABCs of School Choice

Education Choice Web Site

 

Graduation Requirements, Definition of High School Credit, and Other State Standards

While private schools in Virginia are not legally bound to the same graduation requirements as public schools, Christian schools should be aware of changes in state requirements and understand how their own requirements compare.  AACS accredited schools must meet the state's graduation requirements.  Use the following links to learn more.

Current Virginia Standards of Accreditation

Current Guidance Document for SOA

Department of Education, SOA Web Site

Other Resources

FREE BROCHURE from CLA - Pastors, Pulpits, and Politics

Immunization Requirements

Immunization Reporting Web Site

(Note:  You may contact either ODACS or VDH to obtain the password for the reporting website.)