Hello, I am Hayley Baccaire. I just went to a hearing on House bill 5696, which was heard by the Health, Education and Welfare committee (HEW). The proposed bill is for school districts and serves two purposes. The first is to identify how many students are classified as having a disability, such as deafness, autism or other disabilities. This census would be sent to the RI Department of Education and stored with statewide data on students with disabilities. The second purpose of the bill is to establish a contact person who coordinates 504 plans and IEPs. Pros and cons were discussed. The pros were that we would be able to know how many students are mainstreamed, which district they would be in, and have a sense of accommodations delivered. This could lead to focused staff trainings, and coordinated community services. In opposition, one con could be that if it is passed as a law instead of a RIDE policy, it could bring an opportunity for folks to sue the school districts for not complying. The bill was moved to further study to allow for amendments. We will see if the bill passes or not. Thank you!