Texas Governor Approves Bill Allowing Student Absences for Career Shadowing Days

Granger ISD Superintendent, Jeni Neatherlin, champions a longstanding advocacy for Senate Bill 68, a policy that enables students to visit a professional workplace to explore a career path before proceeding to college. Prior to this proposal, college days are available to kids, but opportunities to explore and understand careers are wanting.

In a recent interview, Neatherlin emphasizes the importance of having some form of plan about what’s next after high school. She reveals that the motivation to write the bill was inspired by her niece’s uncertainty about what to do after high school. SB 68 represents a significant opportunity for students to explore, understand and make informed decisions about their future careers.

Though this is not the first time that Neatherlin has advocated for the bill, it was an idea that failed some years ago. In previous sessions, Neatherlin presented the bill for consideration before representative Andrew Murr, but it didn’t come to fruition. The seasoned leader notes that failure is an inevitable part of the process, but it isn’t sufficient to deter her from trying again.

Neatherlin reveals that she couldn’t have done it alone – Granger ISD students came to her aid. She explains that she took three seniors from Granger ISD, who testified in front of the committee, and they were commended by Senator Creighton for their exceptional representation of the school. On May 24, Governor Greg Abbott signed Senate Bill 68 into law.

Starting from this academic year, two excused absences are available to students across the state of Texas for career shadowing days. Neatherlin exemplifies efforts in ensuring that students at Granger ISD are aware of this resource. This summer, she’s been working hard with teachers and counselors to spread the word and educate the students.

In summation, SB 68 represents a monumental development for the educational system of Texas, ensuring that students can have access to career shadowing to explore their career paths and make choices that affect their future. The influence of Granger ISD in obtaining this bill’s passage demonstrates that with collaboration and collective advocacy, it is feasible to make significant progress and impact change.

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