Legislative showdown looms

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Thursday morning at 9 the House of Representatives will debate two controversial bills the administration is touting as education reform.

HB-974 relates to teacher tenure, pay-for-performance, and evaluations. HB-976 relates to the proposed school voucher system.

"The key now is will legislators have the courage to take very difficult votes," says National Black Alliance for Educational Options Chairman Howard Fuller, PhD, " These are issues that affect our children all over the country. I can tell you that these same issues are in Connecticut , New York, in my home state of Wisconsin."

House committee members passed the two bills out of committee last week.

This will be the first substantial debate of the 2012 session. It's been hotly contested since it was proposed.

Behind the scenes, some legislators have questioned the timing of the debate, pointing out that the LEAP test started this week and teachers are not apt to protest during test week.

Governor Jindal met Wednesday with religious leaders from around the state. They all support the governor's initiative to pay for kids to attend their schools.

A simple majority is all that is needed to move the legislation to the senate side. The Republicans control both chambers.

Copyright 2012 WAFB. All rights reserved.