The Senate Education Committee approved legislation Monday that allows students with disabilities to receive an automatic special education transfer after they have been granted school transfers for three consecutive years. The transfer will become permanent and automatically renew each year.
House Bill 2518, authored by State Senator Sean Burrage, D-Claremore, and Rep. Ben Sherrer, D-Chouteau, now goes to the full Senate for approval.
“These transfers are currently subject to approval each year and I feel that it is especially important for these children to have stability from year to year. We have a responsibility to give all Oklahoma children an opportunity to succeed. This will help ensure the security that is needed to for these students to thrive academically and reach their true potential,” Burrage said. “Research shows us that continuity helps special needs students grow and flourish.”
Sherrer said there have been situations in which a child has been granted a special education transfer for several years and then the receiving district denied the renewal of the transfer.
“In these situations, it caused a great deal of upheaval and difficulty for the child who had to change schools, teachers, classmates, and surroundings after having been there for many years,” Sherrer said.
Burrage said the bill would provide for the automatic renewal of transfers after the third year and would also require the student’s resident school district to continue tuition payment to the school that the student transferred to.