Gongwer News Service: Most of House's K-12 finance plan adopted
In the final days of June, the Ohio Senate and House of Representatives reached agreement on the state biennial budget bill meeting the June 30 deadline for passage. Read more
House debates racism education bill
In June, the Ohio House State and Local Government Committee began deliberation on legislation (H.B. 322) on the controversial issue of what some refer to as “critical race theory.” Read more
U.S. Supreme Court rules in favor of free speech
The United States Supreme Court recently issued its ruling in Mahanoy Area School District v. B.L., or what has become known as “the cheerleader case,” which was discussed during Buckeye Community Hope Foundation’s (BCHF) May 25 legal update seminar. Read more
BCHF’s 2021 Leadership Summit examines culturally responsive schools
Buckeye Community Hope Foundation’s (BCHF) 2021 Leadership Summit was held on June 10 and 11 with over 100 school leaders in attendance. The Summit theme, The Courageous School: Reclaiming Student Learning Through Culturally Responsive Education was interwoven through general and breakout sessions during the two days. Though the conference was held virtually via Zoom, school leaders had time to plan with their school teams and collaborate with leaders from other schools.
Features of the Summit included a keynote presentation by Twana Young, who emphasized that all educators leave a legacy for their students, positive or negative. Young demonstrated how both mindset and planning can build relationships and lead to successful academic achievement. Dr. James Harris spoke on Supporting Student Mental Health, highlighting the role of consistent routines and procedures, as well as advocacy on behalf of students in need. Demia Kandi gave A Student’s Story that illustrated how students are marginalized by unchecked biases, lack of representation and gaslighting. She said the role of “a champion” may be the critical factor in student success in schools.
Leaders participated in sessions on frameworks for culturally responsive education, literacy, support systems, and activities and examples. Leaders were able to engage in breakout sessions to discuss plans they have for the coming school year. Ideas generated at the Summit will be the basis for professional development opportunities in the coming 2021-2022 school year.
House education bills advance to Senate
In June, the Ohio House of Representatives passed two education bills – one removing a mandate and the other imposing one – and sent them on to the Senate for further deliberations.
Bipartisan H.B. 105, sponsored by Representatives Scott Lipps (R-Franklin) and Brigid Kelly (D-Cincinnati), would require all public schools to provide annual age-appropriate instruction on child sexual abuse prevention for kindergarten through grade six students, and sexual violence prevention for students in grades seven through 12.
House Bill 82, sponsored by Representatives Jon Cross (R-Kenton) and Don Jones (R-Freeport) would eliminate the existing requirement that schools administer ACT or SAT tests to students in their junior years. Under the bill, the state would continue to fund the assessments for students who choose to take them.
Governor signs fourth COVID-relief bill
Early June, Governor Mike DeWine signed legislation (H.B. 170) into law -- the fourth piece of legislation to allocate more than $2 billion from the federal CARES Act and Consolidated Appropriations Act.
The bill will provide more than $787 million for schools to use in support of low-income and other vulnerable students, for expanded mental health services and technology for remote learning, and to purchase cleaning supplies. The funds are also intended to support initiatives – like after school and summer programs – to help students who have fallen behind academically due to the COVID pandemic.
Senate passes report card overhaul bill
By a bipartisan vote of 31-1, the Ohio Senate passed legislation (S.B. 145) to overhaul Ohio’s school and district report cards to feature five graded components and a five-star rating system.
According to Senator Andy Brenner (R-Powell), who chairs the Senate Primary and Secondary Education Committee and sponsored the bill, the proposed new report cards will result in “a simpler and more easily understood report card.”
Brenner characterized S.B. 145 as passed by the Senate – which now moves to the House for further consideration -- as a compromise between his bill and a report card reform bill introduced in the House (H.B. 200) that reflects significant stakeholder input.
Ohio Supreme Court rules against district in firearms case
The Ohio Supreme Court has ruled against a Butler County school district’s policy allowing staff to carry firearms in schools without extensive training or experience. The seemingly never-ending case was resolved by a divided court, with Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor joining the three Democrat justices in ruling that the school district’s policy violates Ohio law which requires armed staff to complete approved basic peace officer training or have 20 years of experience in law enforcement.
Efforts to change the law to allow staff to be armed without meeting the current training or experience requirements through legislation continue.
House Speaker Bob Cupp (R-Lima) weighed in.
“Now that the Supreme Court has decided and we know how the law reads to independent judges, you’ll probably see some movement on that bill,” Cupp said in reference to H.B. 99. He believes it’s best to allow school districts to make decisions regarding the arming of staff.
Third grade reading promotion score considered
At its June meeting, the State Board of Education’s Teaching, Leading and Learning Committee voted unanimously to maintain the current “proficiency” score of 683 for the English language arts assessment, allowing for consideration by the full board in July.
District 1 board member Diana Fessler questioned why the score was not being increased annually as required by state law until it reflects true proficiency, or between 700 and 724. Ohio Department of Education staff responded that the score, as approved by the board for the 2019-2020 school year, has not been used for promotion of students to fourth grade because of the COVID-19 pandemic and its significant impact on K-12 education.
Industry-recognized credentials guide available
The Industry-Recognized Credentials Guide and other related resources are now available to assist schools in discussing the key elements of credentials and identifying credentials that help students acquire and leverage the skills needed for quality in-demand jobs that meet the needs of the business community.
Access the resources online at: Credentials Guide
New School or Replication of a High Performing Charter School
Please review all application materials listed below for applicants wishing to open a school for the 2022-2023SY. If you have any questions, please contact Jennifer Schorr at email@example.com or call (614) 942-2002.
Application Informational Webinar
Below is a link to our recorded New/Replicating Applicant Informational Webinar recorded on May 11, 2021.
Workshops and Events
MARK YOUR CALENDARS!