The state of Ohio has been hit hard this winter, resulting in schools having to cancel a higher-than-usual number of days of instruction. Many districts (about a third according to the Toledo Blade) have already used up the state-allowed number of snow (or calamity) days and have reached the point where they will be required to make up those days at the end of the year.
To that end, Governor Kasich announced yesterday that he was going to instruct the General Assembly to enact a one-time exemption for this school year that would provide schools an extra four [...]Full Story... →
Over the past couple of days, we’ve shared with you the wealth of research that links the retention of students to an increased risk of dropping out of school; research that contradicts the mandatory retention requirement of Ohio’s Third Grade Reading Guarantee law. In these posts, we’ve asked you to contact our state legislators to advocate on behalf of Ohio’s children. It is important that we take action because others who should be doing so have failed to do so.
At the top of that list is Ohio’s Superintendent of Public Instruction, Richard Ross. Ross was [...]Full Story... →
Primum non nocere is a Latin phrase most commonly associated with the medical profession. The phrase translates to “first, do no harm”. Ohio’s legislators would do well to adopt this concept when considering the laws about education.
As we first wrote yesterday, research studies show that the mandatory retention component of Ohio’s Third Grade Reading Guarantee law will do irreparable harm to thousands of children by increasing the likelihood that they will drop out of school later on. Since this evidence contradicts the intended outcome of the law, we must push the Ohio General Assembly to immediately amend the law to [...]Full Story... →
I’ve written a lot of posts over the past three years, but none have ever struck me with the sense of urgency that this one has and I have a special request that is completely out of character for me to ask: please share this post intentionally and widely. The futures of thousands of Ohio’s young children are at stake. We need the General Assembly to take action immediately to enact emergency legislation to amend Ohio’s Third Grade Reading Guarantee law to protect our children. Read on to understand why.
The Kasich Administration’s Third Grade Reading Guarantee law has the [...]Full Story... →
Four years ago, Ted Strickland was entering his final year as Ohio’s governor, and things were rough. The nation was in the midst of a horrible recession and the economy was struggling in many ways that were having an adverse effect on Ohio’s education system.
On top of that, Strickland had implemented legislative changes that had received mixed reviews by the education community and, by all accounts, had turned many teachers against him.
Looking back, we can recognize the complexity of many of the issues of the time. As you likely remember, jobs were being lost nationwide and Ohio was [...]Full Story... →
Ohio Senate Bill 229, a bill designed to modify the new teacher evaluation system in Ohio, has disappeared in the Ohio House. Despite passing 33-0 in the Senate, House Education Committee Chairman Gerald Stebelton is ignoring the bill and has yet to allow it to be introduced for hearings on his committee.
Senate Bill 229 would provide some much needed relief to Ohio’s principals who are being run ragged trying to keep up with the onerous processes required by the Ohio Teacher Evaluation System (OTES) and better allow them to be the instructional leaders in Ohio’s [...]Full Story... →
Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve been exposing the astounding misuse of taxpayer dollars by Ohio’s largest charter school, Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT). The original founder of ECOT, William Lager, created private companies to provide various services to ECOT from it’s inception; companies that have now been paid over $100,000,000 since the school first began operations. While we knew that Lager has had the expendable income to be able to donate over $200,000 annually to political campaigns, we did not have specific details about how much Lager himself was receiving in compensation and just [...]Full Story... →
To hear U.S. News & World Report contributing editor Peter Roff tell it, candidate for Ohio Governor, Ed Fitzgerald, and all of Ohio’s Democrats, for that matter, are despicable individuals who are inappropriately “exploiting” an Ohio law that permits individuals to take a $50 tax credit for donating that amount to political candidates. Apparently, Fitzgerald had the nerve to send out a “humdinger” of an end-of-year fundraising email asking for donations and informing those on his email list of their ability to take the tax credit under Ohio law.
This simple action infuriated Roff and he apparently had no [...]Full Story... →
On Sunday evening, the President of the Ohio Senate, Keith Faber, sent out an email that included a video that appeared to be an interview in which he talked about the Senate’s “successes” in 2013 and looked ahead to 2014. Here is the email I received:
This is the type of email I would ordinarily just delete, but the first sentence after the embedded video caught my eye and I decided I had to click through to watch the Youtube video. The sentence lists “…reforming the Medicaid system…” as a success for Faber [...]Full Story... →
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 over $88 million in state funding last school year. This year that amount is expected to jump to over $92 million.
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.
For [...]Full Story... →
I’m an unmarried man in the state of Ohio. Regardless of my religious beliefs or affiliation, if I want to get married, I have no choice but to rely on the government to make it happen. In Ohio, as in most states, marriage is a designation granted by the government after paying the appropriate amount of money, NOT a religious arrangement.
If marriage was ever considered a partnership between one man and one woman and the Church had control over such an arrangement, then I would simply find a woman (with her consent), walk into a church, find a priest, [...]Full Story... →