STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1228
RE: S.B. No. 1271
Honorable Scott K. Saiki
Speaker, House of Representatives
Thirty-First State Legislature
Regular Session of 2021
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Education, to which was referred S.B. No. 1271, S.D. 2, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO EARLY LEARNING,"
begs leave to report as follows:
(1) Establish an Early Childhood Educator Stipend Program, to be administered by the Executive Office on Early Learning, to address the shortage of qualified early childhood educators in Hawaii;
(2) Require stipend fund repayments for the Early Childhood Educator Stipend Program to be deposited into the Early Learning Special Fund; and
(3) Authorize the Executive Office on Early Learning to use a collection agency to secure a commission owed from a debtor.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Executive Office on Early Learning, Early Learning Board, State Public Charter School Commission, Democratic Party of Hawai‘i Education Caucus, Early Childhood Action Strategy, Hawai‘i Children's Action Network Speaks!, Kaulanakilohana, and Parents and Children Together. Your Committee received testimony in support of the intent of this measure from the Department of Human Services and University of Hawai‘i at Manoa College of Education.
Your Committee finds that the need for quality early care and education far exceeds the amount of available and qualified early childhood educators. Your Committee further finds that preschool teachers are amongst the lowest paid occupations. This measure will assist with workforce development and support those individuals seeking to become high‑quality early childhood educators, thereby moving the State toward reaching its goal of increasing access to high‑quality early learning programs.
Your Committee notes that, per the testimony provided by the Executive Office on Early Learning and the Early Learning Board, the plan to provide funding for the establishment and implementation of the Early Childhood Educator Stipend Program is to leverage private sources of funding until the State is able to get through the COVID-19 pandemic.
Your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Changing its effective date to July 1, 2051; and
(2) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity, consistency, and style.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Education that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 1271, S.D. 2, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 1271, S.D. 2, H.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Finance.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Education,
JUSTIN H. WOODSON, Chair