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Media Literacy

Media literacy requirement, animal products banned under the latest draft laws signed by Pritzker


SPRINGFIELD – Illinois public high schools soon have to teach students how to access and rate various types of news and social media that they see online and elsewhere as part of their regular curriculum.

This was one of 53 bills that Governor JB Pritzker signed on Friday, bringing the total number of bills signed by the current General Assembly so far this year to 97.

House Bill 234 provides that from the 2022-23 school year, all public high schools will offer a media literacy class that includes instructions on how to access information and assess the trustworthiness of its source; Analysis and evaluation of media messages; Creating media news; Assess how media messages trigger emotions and behavior; and social responsibility.

The state school board has the task of preparing and distributing teaching materials and providing the educators with professional learning opportunities.

The bill was sponsored by Rep. Elizabeth Hernandez, a Cicero Democrat, and Senator Karina Villa, a West Chicago Democrat. It passed both chambers largely according to party lines: 68-44 in the House of Representatives and 42-15 in the Senate.

Another new law makes it illegal to import into Illinois to sell body parts or products from a long list of endangered and exotic species.

Illinois, like many states, has long banned the importation of ivory and rhinoceros horns. Under House Bill 395, the list of animals whose parts or products may not be imported is expanded to include cheetahs, elephants, giraffes, great apes, hippos, jaguars, leopards, lions, monk seals, narwhals, pangolins, rays and sharks. Rhinos, sea turtles, tigers, walruses, whales, or any other species listed in the Convention on International Trade or listed as threatened or endangered under U.S. Endangered Species Act.

The bill was sponsored by Rep. Martin Moylan, a Des Plaines Democrat, and Senator Linda Holmes, an Aurora Democrat. It happened House 113-1 and Senate 57-0.

Illinois residents applying for admission to state public colleges and universities will no longer be required to submit SAT or ACT results as part of their application starting January 2022.

House Bill 226, known as the Higher Education Fair Admissions Act, requires all public higher education institutions to have an “optional exam” policy for admission, which means they may not require students to have standardized test scores, but they can allow students to do so if you choose.

The bill was sponsored by Rep. LaToya Greenwood, a Democrat from East St. Louis, and Senator Christopher Belt, a Democrat from Cahokia Heights. It passed House 109-8 and Senate 45-9.

Student athletes in both public and non-public schools are allowed to change their sports or team uniforms for reasons of modesty according to their religion, cultural values ​​or modesty preferences.

House Bill 120, sponsored by Rep. Will Guzzardi, a Chicago Democrat, and Senator Laura Murphy, a Des Plaines Democrat, provides that modifications can include things like hijabs, vests, or leggings. However, any modifications must not impair the movement of the student or pose a safety risk to the student or other athletes or players. There are also limits to how headgear can be modified.

Students wishing to change their uniforms are responsible for all additional costs unless the school pays for the costs.

Drivers passing school zones have to slow down a little earlier on school days due to another law signed by Pritzker.

House Bill 343 of Rep. Mark Batinick, a Plainfield Republican, and Senator Meg Loughran Cappel, a Shorewood Democrat, provides for special speed limits in schools to start at 6:30 a.m. instead of 7 a.m. The new law comes into force immediately.

Both chambers passed the bill unanimously.

High school graduates under the care of the Department of Child and Family Services can rest assured that they have completed the Student Financial Aid Application when they are ready to apply to college.

Senate Bill 63, composed of Sen. Robert Peters and Rep. Curtis Tarver, both Chicago Democrats, calls for DCFS to ensure, beginning in 2022, that every Illinois adolescent entering their senior year of high school receives a free student grant application of the federal government or application for state study grants by November 1st of the last academic year at the latest.

Both chambers passed the bill unanimously.

And children who run lemonade stands no longer have to worry about approval.

Senate Bill 119, written by Senator Patrick Joyce, a Democrat from Essex and Rep. Anthony DeLuca, a Democrat from Chicago Heights, provides that neither the Department of Health nor a local health department or district can regulate the sale of soft drinks or mixed beverages by a person under the age of 16.

The new law was named “Hayli’s Law” after a 12-year-old girl whose Kankakee lemonade stand was closed by local officials, according to an article on the Illinois Senate Democratic website.

Both chambers passed the bill unanimously.


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