Texas legislators and legislators-elect shouldn't be described as having been lazy in the period leading up to their formal session that begins Jan. 8, but they are running decidedly behind where they were two years ago in pre-filing bills.House and Senate members have filed 445 bills so far for the 83rd Legislature, whereas at this point before the 82nd session they had filed 752. That said, there are some interesting bills in the current pre-filed pile.Setting aside the cynical judgment that fewer proposals for new or remodeled laws is a good thing, there's another reason not to worry about the slower pace. Lawmakers pre-file bills for a number of reasons, which may include getting a little attention or symbolically re-filing a pet bill that everyone knows will never see the light of day.Most of the really serious filing comes after the session starts.Pre-filed bills for the last legislative session matched this year's to-date number by mid-November of 2010, almost two months before the session began. But only about 20 percent of those bills received final passage, which compares to an approval rate of about 24 percent for the entire body of bills for the session.Primary and secondary education receives a lot of attention during every regular legislative session, and it looks to be one of the hottest topics of the coming session . About 15 percent of the bills filed so far fall into that category.Other education bills have been discussed but not yet filed, including one by Sen. Dan Patrick, R-Houston, that he says would provide tax credits for companies that donate money to send some public school students to private schools. Patrick, the chairman of the Senate Education Committee, has said he is still working out the details.Some highlights from the pre-filed list on public education issues:Rep.-elect Jonathan Stickland, R-Hurst, has filed HJR 45, a proposed constitutional amendment that would prevent any state or local regulation of private schools. That would mean students moved from public schools to private schools under Patrick's state tax credit could not be required to take state tests or otherwise meet state standards.Under HB 223 by Rep. Dan Huberty, R-Houston, school board members or superintendents who are licensed to carry handguns could bring their guns to school board meetings without fear of prosecution under a state law that bans other people with guns from those meetings.Several lawmakers have filed bills to erase or modify the Education Code provisions that says scores on high school end-of-course exams should count for 15 percent of a student's grade in that course.Rep Lois Kolkhorst, R-Brenham, has filed two bills regarding radio-frequency ID badges in schools. HB 101 and HB 102 say schools may not require students to wear the badges. HB 101 would allow voluntary use.HB 219 by Rep. James White, R-Hillister, says school districts may not provide free education "to persons not lawfully present in the United States" and that the comptroller should request reimbursement from the federal government for any such costs.Rep Mike Villarreal, D-San Antonio, has filed HB 96 to provide all-day kindergarten for some children.HB 308 by Rep. Dwayne Bohac, R-Houston, says school districts may teach students about "winter celebrations" including Christmas and Hanukkah, that students and teachers may greet each other with "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Hanukkah" and that schools may have religious scenes or symbols on campus so long as those from more than one religion are displayed together.