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House Acts to Extend Sunset Date of SESA

HB 87 continues Special Education Service Agency until 2021

Tuesday, April 2, 2013, Juneau, Alaska – The Alaska House of Representatives today passed legislation, by Representative Pete Higgins, extending the sunset date of the Special Education Service Agency (SESA) to June 30, 2021, and realigning it under the Alaska Department of Education and Early Development.

SESA was established in statute in 1986 to provide services to school districts around the state in fulfilling the requirements for the Federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.

“SESA services, whether they are delivered in person or via videoconference, mean that students are able to be educated in their own communities and not be forced to move due to lack of available expertise,” Higgins, R-Fairbanks, said. “This agency has an important role in the state and I’m glad that Legislative Audit recommended the renewal of it.”

This bill also places SESA solely under the Department of Education and Early Development. This allows for the department to provide direct oversight and submit future budget requests that will correct any deficiencies or short falls to funding.

The 2012 Legislative Audit found that SESA performs a valuable and unduplicated service to school districts and recommended the renewal of the program.

HB 87 passed the House unanimously and now moves to the Alaska Senate for consideration.

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