The Reynoldsburg School Board and Superintendent are playing fast and loose with the taxpayer’s dollars.  According to an analysis of the district’s contracts with Huffmaster, yesterday’s wasted day of education cost Reynoldsburg residents at least $375,000.  This cost includes all of the planning and preparation leading up to the chaotic day along with the cost of paying the “teachers” who, according to numerous reports, performed poor-quality babysitting services.

By contrast, and according to teacher salary data reported by the district to ODE for last year, the typical one-day cost of teacher salaries is less than $110,0oo.  At less than [...]

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After the first day of the teacher’s strike in Reynoldsburg, a strike provoked by Superintendent Tina Thomas-Manning and the school board’s unwillingness to budge in negotiations focused on improving the learning conditions for the community’s children, Thomas-Manning declared that it was “a successful day”.

Huh.

Here are some local news headlines from the superintendent’s “successful day”:

Fights cause lockdown at Reynoldsburg school as teachers strike” – Columbus Dispatch

Reynoldsburg Teachers Take To Picket Line, Students Claim There Is Chaos In Classrooms” – WBNS-10tv

Fights reported inside Reynoldsburg Schools: Students say substitute teachers can’t [...]

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The Harvard Business School released is third annual survey on U.S. Competitiveness this month, and it is appointment viewing for anybody who wishes to speak with any degree of authority about the American economy, so don’t expect it to make it to John Kasich’s bedside reading table any time soon.

The report highlights something quite remarkable about the “recovery” of the American economy, or what the researchers call a troubling divergence: “Large and midsize firms have rallied strongly from the Great Recession, and highly skilled individuals are prospering. But middle- and working-class citizens are struggling, as are small businesses.”

This [...]

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In 2012, Ohio legislators amended state law to include a provision to implement a “Pilot program for Columbus City School District” in Senate Bill 316.  Under this provision, parents can “take over” a school’s operation.  This is also known nationally as a “parent trigger” provision and Ohio’s version is detailed in Ohio Revised Code 3302.042.

A second line of the statute reads “The pilot project shall commence once the department of education establishes implementation guidelines for the pilot project in consultation with the Columbus city school district.”

This week, John Kasich’s Ohio Department of Education apparently plunged forward and established their own guidelines for this [...]

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Charles and David Koch are two of the richest people in the country. Together, they are worth $86 billion and have built a political empire that makes the political machines of the early 20th century look small. Their secretive network of billionaires and millionaires dump millions of dollars in our elections, launching thousands of attack ads against candidates who do not adhere to their specific, controversial agenda. In the 2014 election cycle alone, the Kochs’ secret network of dark money groups are expected to spend nearly $300 million. The candidates they help elect become beholden to the Kochs’ special interests, [...]

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We’ve been covering the devastating impact of the Reynoldsburg School Board’s refusal to listen to the community’s feedback as they have been involved in “negotiations” with the district’s professional educators.  The story has gained national attention for the Board’s staunch insistence to implement changes to the teachers’ contract that are direct from the Michelle Rhee and John Kasich playbooks.  With a strike looming for tomorrow, the Reynoldsburg Education Association‘s negotiation team entered a final session with the school board and superintendent today at 1:00 to try and come [...]

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John Kasich has apparently found his comfort zone for re-election in a kind of political pantomime in which he is silently acting out his role to the voters in paid-TV imagery while his narrators assure you that he means well in everything he sets out to do for you.

So until election day we will be served with body language and thoroughly encrypted feel-good messages without him really showing up as a real person. (Exception: When the governor, anticipating a generous contribution, called upon God to bless Sheldon Adelson, the Midas-like casino owner. Those are the moments that don’t [...]

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The documentary Pay 2 Play, opening September 26 in Columbus and Cincinnati, brings us back to Ohio’s outlandish Noe/Coingate scandal to tell the tale of quid pro quo.   Described by filmmaker John Wellington Ennis as capturing “the grand opera of Ohio politics,” the 2005 scandal highlights everything that is wrong with our system.  How political connections and campaign contributions led to the state of Ohio investing in beanie babies continues to be jaw-dropping.

To remind us all that we aren’t just talking about corruption from years ago, in the film the man described by senior columnist Tom Suddes as [...]

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Each week Terry Casey gets quoted in the papers and appears on local political talk shows promoting John Kasich and GOP policies without disclosing that he works for John Kasich as a Kasich-appointed state board member, or that he is paid tens of thousands of dollars each year by Ohio Republican organizations.  Can we get some disclosure here, people?

Just today, 10TV quoted Casey attacking Ed FitzGerald.  And this past weekend, Casey was a guest on the local political show the Spectrum on NBC 4 defending Mike DeWine’s handling of the shooting case in Beavercreak.  In both cases Casey was simply identified [...]

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In the course of Wednesday’s press conference held at Ohio Democratic Party headquarters in downtown Columbus, party Chairman Rep. Chris Redfern didn’t mince words about what he said has been an evolving story of what Gov. Kasich and top echelon members of his staff knew about Ben Suarez, a wealthy Republican benefactor whose quid-pro-quo “pay to play” relationship with Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel and Gov. Kasich emerged during a trial about political favors asked for by the Canton businessman and subsequently delivered by Mandel and Kasich.

Stern-faced and speaking in a slow deliberate manner, Mr. Redfern repeatedly [...]

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