2016 Indiana General Assembly

Pictures of Money / https://www.flickr.com/photos/pictures-of-money/

As enrollment drops in the state’s rural schools, educators are left with a big challenge – find money to teach the kids who remain.

Indiana Public Broadcasting’s Peter Balonon-Rosen takes us back to a small northern Indiana school district where administrators spent the final day of the academic year scrambling to figure out how they will manage when classes resume in the fall.    

State of Indiana / http://www.in.gov/fssa/hip/

During this year’s legislative session, Indiana lawmakers voted to codify – or put into law - the state’s health insurance program for low income Hoosiers, also known as HIP 2.0.

Indiana Public Broadcasting’s Jill Sheridan reports the move helps solidify key parts of the program, but it may also pose restrictions. 

ISTEP Panel: How Will New Test Help Students, Teachers?

Jun 16, 2016
NYC Department of Education / http://schools.nyc.gov/default.htm

The panel re-writing the state’s school standardized assessment met for the second time Tuesday.

However, members are unsure of their vision for the test.

The panel has the power to decide the new test’s format, technology, vendor and many other factors.

But Tuesday’s meeting discussion focused on something different-  the goal of the test.

Many of the educators on the panel said they didn’t want to move forward with technical decisions until they knew exactly how this test is expected to help the state and teachers.

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The 22-member panel tasked with developing a new standardized assessment test to replace the ISTEP will begin meeting soon.

Lawmakers mandated the ISTEP rewrite during the 2016 legislative session.

The panel has the ability to change the format of the test, the school accountability measures, and how often and when it can be administered.

dhendrix73 / https://www.flickr.com/people/dhendrix/

During the past decade, school districts across the state have cut bus routes to save money, meaning getting to and from school is a much bigger chore.

A bill that passed the state Senate aims to free up local tax dollars to help fill the transportation void in many school districts.

But StateImpact Indiana’s Claire McInerny reports the bill won’t solve bigger funding problems.

Gretchen Frazee / http://indianapublicmedia.org/news/

The abrupt death of legislation aimed at balancing religious freedom with gay, lesbian and bisexual civil rights left many civil rights advocates surprised, disappointed and pointing fingers as they sought to assign blame.

Indiana Public Broadcasting’s Drew Daudelin reports that finger-pointing could have a ripple effect on this year’s elections as people on all sides of the issue begin looking ahead to the May primary and November general elections.

Jessica Lucia / https://www.flickr.com/photos/theloushe/

Both the Indiana House and the Senate overwhelmingly approved bills that would block someone convicted of a drug crime from buying certain cold medicines without a prescription. 

The legislation restricts access to pseudoephedrine, a key ingredient in the most common recipe for methamphetamine.

Brandon Smith / http://www.ipbs.org/

The Indiana Senate killed a bill Tuesday that would have protected lesbian, gay, and bisexual Hoosiers from discrimination.

The final version of the bill did not protect the transgender community. 

The proposed measure had 27 potential amendments filed on the Senate floor. 

But none of them were publicly discussed after Senate Republican leadership opted not to call the bill to the floor for a vote.

Jessica Lucia / HTTPS://WWW.FLICKR.COM/PHOTOS/THELOUSHE/

While Indiana lawmakers are considering different ways to reduce production of methamphetamine, police officers across the state are doing what they can to get the producers of the highly addictive drug off the streets.

To better understand the problem of policing meth, Indiana Public Broadcasting’s Leigh DeNoon takes us on a ride along with an Indiana State Police meth suppression team.