Posts by: Greg

When school resumes on January 5 for Dayton Public Schools (DPS), an out-of-state company will be in charge of placing substitute teachers (called “reserve teachers” in Dayton) in classrooms.  For Wisconsin-based Parallel Employment Group, the one million dollar contract they scored in Dayton is their first foray into Ohio and, sadly, does not appear to be their last.

This situation didn’t happen overnight, and it appears as though the strategy that Dayton is using to privatize services at the expense of union employees is self-created.  For years, the DPS administration has been under-hiring reserve teachers, keeping the pool of teachers too [...]

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With a November 20 payment of $165,192.47 from the Reynoldsburg School Board to infamous strike attorneys, Pepple & Waggoner, the final (direct) costs of the the 15-day work stoppage in the district now exceed $1.5 million, most of which went to Michigan-based strike management company, Huffmaster Crisis Response, Inc.

The sum of payments directly to Huffmaster (also dba Alternative Workforce, Inc.) amounts to $1.35 million:

The reality is that the cost would have been even higher had Huffmaster been able to fully meet the number of substitute teachers required/requested by the school district, but many schools [...]

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Ohio’s State Board of Education voted today to remove the requirement that districts employ education specialists in order to “give local districts flexibility” from “unfunded mandates”.

Instead of taking a stand for the value of nurses, counselors, social workers, library media specialists and the arts in education and pushing back against the Kasich administration’s funding cuts and increased testing mandates, the School Board voted to eliminate the “5 of 8″ rule from Ohio Administrative Code, setting the stage for the further decimation of these services in our schools.

It is appalling that the majority of the current members of Ohio’s [...]

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On Monday and Tuesday of next week, the State School Board of Ohio will convene again to vote on the “5 of 8″ rule that requires school districts to hire specialists in arts, music and physical education, along with librarians, guidance counselors, social workers, and nurses.  The board members who favor the change have called these requirements “outdated”.

Eliminating this change will actually open the door for school districts to avoid hiring qualified individuals in these positions.  Instead of having specialized arts educators in grades K-8, local school boards, in an attempt to cope with the Kasich Administration’s [...]

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Ohio’s House Education Committee Chair, Gerald Stebelton, had pushed for the minimum teacher salary schedule to be rendered moot when he quickly amended House Bill 343 recently.  While the committee rapidly passed that amended bill along partisan lines, support for the change apparently didn’t carry forward to the larger General Assembly.

In a flurry of events yesterday, Representative Andy Brenner backtracked on his support (after voting affirmatively as the Education Committee Vice Chair) for the bill and referred it from the full House to the House Rules and Reference Committee where the bill was “un”-amended and sent back to the [...]

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A recent email response from one of Ohio’s State School Board members called the “5 of 8″ rule “outdated” and stated that there are many other specialist positions that school must hire these days.  While it is true that there are many additional specialists that schools and districts need to employ these days than when the rule was created, the specialists that are mandated by this particular rule are uniformly critical to all children while other needs vary widely across the state.

In fact, I would make the case that the “5 of 8″ rule is outdated because it does not require all of the key [...]

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When outgoing Ohio Representative Gerald Stebelton introduced House Bill 661 to increase the annual salaries of Ohio’s elected officials, he missed a grand opportunity to put his money where his mouth is.  Stebelton has long decried the current standard pay scales that teachers typically follow, pushing a merit-based pay structure for school districts.  In his bill, however, Stebelton simply seeks to update the existing legislative pay structure for elected officials where everyone gets the exact same base pay regardless of their individual efforts.  It’s beyond hypocritical.

House Bill 661 isn’t likely all [...]

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Last week, the Ohio House Education Committee, led by Gerald Stebelton, moved to eliminate the minimum salary schedule requirements from state law via House Bill 343.  The bill passed out of the committee along straight party lines, with the approving Republicans stating that this move was designed to give local school districts flexibility in negotiating salary schedules, especially advocating for merit-based pay for teachers.

Committee chairman Gerald Stebelton, a Lancaster Republican, said the longstanding teacher pay scales that increase pay based on years of experience and degrees earned by a teacher, should no longer be required by the state. [...]

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Rarely do I come across a statistic about education that stops me in my tracks, but it happened to me first thing this morning.  The Columbus City School District puts out a “Fact of the Day” each morning and today’s especially caught my eye.

 

Think about that for a second.  4,500 children and youth experiencing homelessness in Columbus.  Even considering that Columbus is the largest school district in Ohio, that number is still staggering.  The concept of that number becomes even more interesting when we put it in perspective across the entire state.

Ohio has a [...]

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Tomorrow at 4:30 pm, the Ohio House Education Committee will reconvene at the Statehouse to consider, among other legislation, House Bill 343, which was quickly amended this past week to eliminate the minimum salary schedule for teachers from state law.

The specific amendment is AM3586 and was adopted by the committee along straight party lines.  The new bill is expected to be voted upon during tomorrow’s meeting.  You can read our post about this proposed change: Ohio House Wants To Eliminate Minimum Salary Schedule For Teachers

If you are able to [...]

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This past Tuesday, in a packed meeting room where individuals were set to provide testimony against the Ohio State Board of Education’s plan to drop the requirement that school districts hire licensed arts and physical education teachers, social workers, nurses, and counselors, Board President Debe Terhar abruptly changed the agenda at the very moment the testimony was to begin.  Her decision to push back the testimony by hours caused consternation among those who had taken time off from work and adjusted their schedules to follow the Board’s published agenda.

When her fellow board members tried to question her move, she proceeded [...]

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