(KLTV) - A bill named in honor of a Kilgore student who died after having a seizure is headed to the governor’s desk.
The Texas House and Senate voted unanimous approval today on a bill that mandates seizure response training for all public school employees.
Rep. Travis Clardy authored HB 684, a bill known as “Sam’s Law” and named it in honor of Samantha Watkins, a Kilgore student who died in December 2016 following a seizure.
Once signed, the law will take effect September 1, at the start of the next school year.
Both houses had already passed separate versions, so the differences in wording had to be ironed out by a conference committee before it was voted on again today. The bill narrowly beat the midnight deadline for a chance to become law. Monday is known as “Sine Die,” in Austin - the last day of the state’s regular legislative session.
Sheri Dudo, a former teacher and founder of the Purple Warriors of Texas epilepsy advocacy group, and Barbara Watkins, a teacher and Sam Watkins’ mom, worked with Clardy to raise awareness of the need for training Texas public school staff members. Sam’s Law will be delivered to the governor’s office to await Gov. Greg Abbott’s signature. Once signed, it becomes law.