Final Wrap Up of the 218th Legislative Session: Education Bills

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By 12 Noon on Tuesday of this week, Governor Murphy had to act on hundreds of bills that were sent to him at the end of the session by both houses of the Legislature.  He signed about 80% of the measures on his desk. The ones he declined not to sign are considered “pocket vetoed” and are now expired. Many of the bills signed into law by the Governor were education-related bills:


  • S-2443 Requires school districts which participate in Statewide interscholastic sports programs to adopt New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association heat participation policy. Approved 1/9/2020 P.L.2019, c.293. Takes effect with the 2020-2021 school year. 
  • S-2494  Requires certain schools to establish emergency action plans for responding to serious or potentially life-threatening sports-related injuries. Approved 1/9/2020 P.L.2019, c.292. Takes effect immediately and is applicable to the 2020-2021 school year. 


  • S-2303  Requires establishment of Work and Learn Consortiums by certain educational institutions to establish certificate and degree programs identified in high labor-demand industries.  Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.403. Takes effect immediately
  • S-3065  Establishes youth apprenticeship pilot program in Department of Education. Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.418. Takes effect immediately.
  • AJR-180 Designates February in each year as “Career and Technical Education Month” in New Jersey. Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, JR-33. Takes effect immediately.


  • S-3327  Establishes Commission on Latino and Hispanic Heritage in DOE. Approved 1/13/2020 P.L.2019, c.321. Takes effect immediately.
  • S-3756  Requires limited purpose regional school districts to coordinate with constituent districts regarding school calendar and curriculum. Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.432. Takes effect immediately.
  • A-2183 “Music Therapist Licensing Act.” Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.471. Takes effect on July 19, 2020. 
  • A-4710 “Strengthening Gifted and Talented Education Act”; establishes school district responsibilities in educating gifted and talented students. Approved 1/13/2020 P.L.2019, c.338. Takes effect with the 2020-2021 school year. 
  • AJR-118 Designates April of each year as “Financial Literacy Month” in New Jersey. Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, JR-32. Takes effect immediately.


  • S-2527 Requires Department of Agriculture to promote school meal programs. Approved 1/13/2020 P.L.2019, c.307. Takes effect immediately
  • S-4200  Requires State to pay difference between federal allocation and total cost of reduced price breakfast or lunch; appropriates $4.5 million. Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.445. Takes effect on July 19, 2020. 


  • S-3330  Establishes pilot program in DCF to study the impact of child care services provided by community providers operating in public school facilities; requires community providers to meet certain criteria. Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.426. Takes effect immediately, but expires six months after the submission of the report.
  • A-4147  Requires school districts and nonpublic schools to conduct audit of security features of district buildings, grounds, and communication systems and to submit audit to NJ Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness and DOE. Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.478. Takes effect immediately and is applicable to the 2020-2021 school year. 
  • A-4151 Requires school security training for persons employed by public and nonpublic schools in substitute capacity and for employees and volunteers of youth programs operated in school buildings. Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.480. Takes effect with the 2020-2021 school year. 


  • S-1832  Establishes loan redemption program and tuition reimbursement program for certain teachers of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.401.  Takes effect immediately
  • S-3685  Establishes program to increase participation of underrepresented students in New Jersey’s science and engineering workforce. Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.431. Takes effect immediately.


  • A-4978 Prohibits online education services from using and disclosing certain information, engaging in targeted advertising, and requires deletion of certain information in certain circumstances. Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.494. Takes effect immediately, but remains inoperative until July 19, 2020. 


  • S-2564  Establishes “Restorative Justice in Education Pilot Program” in Department of Education. Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.412. Takes effect immediately.
  •  A-4150 Requires meeting between student and appropriate school personnel after multiple suspensions or proposed expulsion from public school to identify behavior or health difficulties. Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.479. Takes effect immediately.


  • S-2980  Provides that school district may not condition student enrollment in district on fact that MVC does not have name or address of parent or guardian on file.  Approved 1/13/2020 P.L.2019, c.310. Takes effect immediately
  • S-2982  Clarifies that child may not be excluded from public school based on membership in protected category under “Law Against Discrimination” or immigration status. Approved 1/13/2020 P.L.2019, c.311. Takes effect immediately.


  • S-1647  Prohibits use of coupons, price rebates, and price reduction promotions in sales of tobacco and vapor products.  Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.396.  Takes effect March 1, 2020
  • S-3265  Prohibits sale or distribution of flavored vapor products.  Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.425.  Takes effect April 20, 2020. 
  • S-4141  “Paul’s Law”; authorizes parent or guardian to request use of individualized health care plan for student with epilepsy or seizure disorder. Approved 1/9/2020 P.L.2019, c.290. Takes effect immediately.


  • S-721 Authorizes use of certain electric school buses.  Approved 1/21/2020 P.L.2019, c.384. Takes effect immediately


Governor Murphy declined to sign, or “Pocket Vetoed” the following bills.  Unlike a Conditional or Absolute Veto, there is no statement or explanation issued for a Pocket Veto.  It simple means the bill was not acted on the Governor before the end of the Legislative Session. More often than not, bills that are Pocket Vetoed are immediately reintroduced in the new Legislative Session, and we expect to see them again. 

  • S-691  Requires that if a school district satisfies 80% or more of the required NJ Quality Single Accountability Continuum standards in an area of district effectiveness under State intervention, the State must return that area to local control. Pocket Veto: 1/21/2020
  • S-2835 Requires public schools to administer written screenings for depression for students in certain grades. Pocket Veto: 1/21/2020
  • S-2897  Requires DCA to establish procedures for inspection and abatement of mold hazards in residential buildings and school facilities, and certification programs for mold inspectors and mold hazard abatement workers. Pocket Veto: 1/21/2020
  • S-3063 Provides tuition fee waiver apprenticeship courses. Pocket Veto: 1/21/2020
  • S-3770  Establishes “New Jersey Economic and Fiscal Policy Review Commission” to provide ongoing review of State and local tax structure, economic conditions, and related fiscal issues. Pocket Veto: 1/21/2020