Posts by: Greg

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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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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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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The Ohio Department of Education released the state test results Friday, so we feel obliged to tell you that once again, Ohio’s public school districts significantly outperformed their charter school “competitors”.  We’re growing tired of beating this dead horse…

We’ll be breaking down the numbers in more detail in the coming weeks, but here are some lowlights:

Of the 3,274 school buildings that received a Performance Index Score (a composite of standardized test performance), 228 of the 281 charter schools ranked in the bottom 25%.  To explain that another way, 81% of Ohio’s rated charter schools that fell in the [...]

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In the ongoing and disheartening contract negotiations between the Reynoldsburg Board of Education and the Reynoldsburg Education Association (REA), tensions have reached a fever pitch.

On Sunday, the teachers’ union presented the school board’s latest contract proposal to the membership and 97% voted to reject the offer.  The following morning, REA filed a 10-day strike notice with the State Employee Relations Board (SERB).

While the proposal, according to the Columbus Dispatch, purportedly contained salary increases for many teachers, the union has continued to state that these negotiations are not about money, but are about improving [...]

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The Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT) is the largest charter school in the state of Ohio.  The online school is easily the largest charter school in Ohio, is larger than the vast majority of Ohio’s traditional school districts, and received nearly $100 million in state taxpayer dollars last school year.

On the latest report cards released by the Ohio Department of Education, ECOT continues to rank below all of the 8 large urban schools that are often-criticized by legislators and in the media for their “sub-par” performance.

That hasn’t stopped ECOT’s founder, William Lager, from [...]

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The Reynoldsburg Education Association (REA) released a statement today about the state of their negotiations with the School Board and Administration:

“This is the latest disappointing action taken by the Board. It’s a shame that rather than focus their energies on reaching a fair agreement that addresses reasonable class sizes and unprecedented teacher turnover, the Board chose instead to file a charge against us today. I can only imagine what our district would look like if the Board spent it’s time working with the teachers in the best interest of high quality public education, rather than finding new ways to attack us and negotiate [...]

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Since charter (“community”) schools began in Ohio in 1998, they have continued to increase in number, taking an ever-growing amount of funding away from Ohio’s real community schools – public school districts.  99% of Ohio’s school districts lose state funding to charter schools every year — charters that are grossly underperforming their public school counterparts.

If you want to help stem the tide of charter school expansion in Ohio, it’s important to look at the past.  Look at this chart that shows the number of charter schools in Ohio since 1998.

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Little progress has been made in the Columbus suburb of Reynoldsburg since the School Board there made their first contract proposal back in May.  After making the absurd initial demands, the School Board engaged in a strategy of negotiating in public to try and drum up support from the community by painting the teachers in a bad light.

Meanwhile, the Reynoldsburg Education Association (REA) continued to try to negotiate with the School Board while the existing contract expired in July.  As the school year approached, the union took the official step of voting to authorize their leadership to issue a 10-day [...]

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A few months ago, Chris Roberts, a young teacher in Northeast Ohio, received an email through StudentsFirst recommending that he sign up for their Teachers for Transformation Academy.  He signed up for their mailing list a few years ago because he was initially attracted to the StudentsFirst talking points.  A self described libertarian-leaning Republican, Chris was intrigued and decided to apply for the position.  After some recent phone interviews, Chris was offered the position of Ohio’s Teacher for Transformation Fellow along with an attractive $5,000 stipend – a very nice paycheck for the young teacher and father of three.

As the fourth-year teacher researched into [...]

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