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End of 2020 Legislative Update

January 13, 2021

End of 2020 Legislative Update

At the end of December, the Michigan Legislature concluded its 2019-20 session. Many bills were passed during its post-election session, with some bills affecting how your school will operate. Significant bills that affect public education are:

  • Work permits. This new law, Public Act 323 of 2020, makes it easier for students to apply for work permits by eliminating the requirement that the student applies in-person. This takes effect on March 24, 2021.
  • Epi-pen liability. This new law, Public Act  320 of 2020, limits the liability for any school employee who in good faith administered an epinephrine auto injector. This law took effect on December 29, 2020.
  • Address confidentiality program. A package of new laws, Public Acts 301 and following of 2020, create a new address confidentiality program to be administered by the Department of the Attorney General to allow individuals  who, if the address to be made confidential were disclosed, would face increased risk of being threatened or physically harmed by another person or that the subject was a victim of domestic violence, stalking, human trafficking, or sexual assault, to designate a different address for their contact information. Schools would be prohibited from disclosing a confidential address of a student if the student or their parents/guardians are part of the program. The main bill in the package took effect on December 29, 2020, with requirements on schools first taking effect on June 27, 2021.
  • Re-employment of retirees. This law, Public Act 267 of 2020, makes some amendments to the state education employees’ retirement system, MPSERS, to make it easier for some retirees to return to service in public schools in critical shortage areas and as substitute teachers. It took effect on December 29, 2020. 
  • Dental screenings. This law, Public Act 261 of 2020, amends existing hearing and vision screening requirements for students who enroll for the first time in a public school to require the Department of Health and Human Services to create a dental and oral assessment program. This program would first take effect for the 2021-22 school year.

School boards and leaders should consult your board policies service or board attorney, as applicable, about how these changes in state law will affect your school.

The 2021-22 legislative session formally convened on January 11. Governor Gretchen Whitmer will deliver the State of the State address on January 27, with her budget recommendation expected to be delivered a few weeks thereafter. The Charter Schools Office will provide regular updates as needed.

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Page last modified January 13, 2021