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SB5 vs The Budget

The Ohio House has just released their Substitute House Bill 153. It's contains many of the provisions found in SB5, and in some cases, provisions that are even worse. Here are some of the items that now appear in the budget bill.

Teacher Pay


Replaces the Executive provision with a provision that requires school districts, community schools, STEM schools, ESCs, and county DD boards, beginning in the 2013-2014 school year, to pay teachers according to a performance-based schedule,

Replaces the Executive provision with a provision that requires the schedule be based on a teacher's level of license, whether the teacher is "highly qualified" under federal law, and evaluation ratings.

Requires the schedule provide for annual adjustments based on evaluations.


The bill eliminates the salary schedules and steps in place for teachers and nonteaching employees and instead requires teachers to receive performance based pay.

The bill requires a board to measure a teacher’s performance by considering all of the following:

(1) The level of license (a resident educator license, professional educator license, senior professional educator license, or lead professional educator license) that the teacher holds;

(2) Whether the teacher is a ʺhighly qualified teacherʺ as defined in continuing law;

(3) The value‐added measure the board uses to determine the performance of the students assigned to the teacherʹs classroom;

(4) The results of the teacherʹs performance evaluations or any peer review program created by an agreement entered into by a board of education and representatives of teachers employed by that board;


Permits payment of additional compensation to teachers who agree to perform duties that the employer determines warrant additional compensation.


Teacher pay can be decided by any other criteria established by the board.

Both Budget and SB5:

Specifies that provisions on teacher pay prevail over collective bargaining agreements entered into on or after the provisions' (immediate) effective date.

Continuing Contracts for Teachers (Tenure)


Prohibits awarding a continuing contract (tenure) to a teacher who was initially licensed after January 1, 2011.Limits an employment contract with a classroom teacher entered into by a school district, community school, STEM school, or ESC on or after the provision's (90-day) effective date to a maximum of three years, and specifies that any subsequent contracts must be for terms of two to five years.


The bill abolishes continuing contracts for teachers, except for those continuing contracts entered into prior to the effective date of the bill. The bill instead requires classroom teachers to receive limited contracts.

A limited contract for a classroom teacher has a term of five years if the contract was entered into prior to the effective date of the bill.

The term of an initial contract cannot exceed three years if the contract is entered into on or after the effective date of the bill and for subsequent contracts the term is not less than two years or more than five years.

Teacher Evaluation


Repeals the requirement for the State Board, in consultation with the Chancellor of the Board of Regents, to establish guidelines for the evaluation of teachers and principals for optional use by school districts, and instead requires the state Superintendent, by December 31, 2011, to develop a framework for the evaluation of teachers.

Requires the Superintendent (1) to develop standards and criteria for teacher and principal evaluations that distinguish between four levels of performance: "highly effective," "effective," "needs improvement," and "unsatisfactory" and (2) to designate a standard of student academic growth that must be met to achieve each of the ratings.

Specifies that the framework require each evaluation to consider: (1) quality of instructional practice, (2) communication and professionalism, and (3) parent and student satisfaction.

Directs each school district, community school, STEM school, and ESC, by July 1, 2012, to adopt a teacher evaluation policy that utilizes the framework and that specifies the relative weight of each factor in (1) to (3) above and how each of those factors will be assessed.

Requires the policy be approved by the Superintendent.

Requires at least 50% of each teacher evaluation be based on student academic growth for students assigned to the teacher during the three most recent school years, except that if less than three years of data is available, permits the portion of the evaluation based on student performance to be reduced to 40%.

Requires student academic growth to be measured by value-added data derived from the state achievement assessments when applicable and by other assessments selected by the employer when not applicable

Requires the employer's teacher evaluation system to (1) use multiple measures of teacher's skills and students' progress, (2) be aligned with the Educator Standards Board's standards for teachers, (3) provide statements of expectation for professional performance, (4) require observation of the teacher on at least two occasions for at least 30 minutes each time, (5) assign ratings in accordance with the state Superintendent's standards and criteria, and (6) require the teacher to be given a written report of the evaluation results, including specific recommendations for improvements

Requires employers to evaluate each teacher annually.

Requires employers to use teacher evaluations to inform decisions about compensation, nonrenewal, termination, reductions in force, and professional development.

Specifies that if a teacher receives a rating of "unsatisfactory" for two consecutive years or two of three consecutive years, a rating of "needs improvement" for three consecutive years, or a combination of ratings of "needs improvement" and "unsatisfactory" for three consecutive years, the teacher loses a continuing contract if the teacher has one.

Requires employers to submit aggregate teacher and principal evaluation results to ODE. Grants civil immunity to the board of education (or other governing body), its members, and evaluators for conducting evaluations in accordance with the adopted policy


The evaluation on which a teacherʹs pay must be based is a new evaluation under the bill. No later than April 30, 2012, the Superintendent of Public Instruction must develop and submit recommendations for a framework for teacher evaluations to the State Board of Education.

The recommended framework must require all of the following:(1) At least 50% of each evaluation must be based on measures of student academic growth specified by the Department of Education.

When applicable to a teacher, those measures must include student performance on the assessments prescribed under continuing law and the value‐added progress dimension prescribed under continuing law.(2) Each evaluation must consider the following additional factors, but the recommendations cannot designate the weight of any factor or prescribe a specific method of assessing any factor:(a) Quality of instructional practice, which can be determined by announced and unannounced classroom observations and examinations of samples of work, such as lesson plans or assessments designed by the teacher;(b) Communication and professionalism, including how well the teacher interacts with students, parents, other school employees, and members of the community;(c) Parent and student satisfaction, which may be measured by surveys, questionnaires, or other forms of soliciting feedback.

Also, no later than April 30, 2012, the Superintendent must develop and submit to the State Board recommendations for a framework for the evaluation of principals. The framework must require at least 50% of each evaluation to be based on measures of student academic growth specified by the Department. When applicable to the grade levels served by a principalʹs building, those measures must include student performance on specified assessments and value‐added progress dimension. The framework for the evaluation of principals must be based on principles comparable to the framework for the evaluation of teachers but must be tailored to the duties and responsibilities of principals and the environment in which principals work.

Reduction In Force

These are less identical than the other provisions but have considerable overlap and pertain to the same sections of ORC.


Includes a provision that requires school districts, community schools, STEM schools, and ESCs to lay off teachers in order of their evaluation ratings, starting with teachers who receive "unsatisfactory" ratings first.

Includes a provision that prohibits giving preference in retention based on seniority.

Specifies that these provisions prevail over conflicting provisions of a collective bargaining agreement entered into on or after the provision's effective date.

Eliminates the requirement that, in rehiring tenured teachers when positions become available, the order of rehiring be based on seniority


With regard to teaching and non-teaching employees, the bill removes the authority of school districts and school district financial planning and supervision commissions to give preference to those employees who have greater seniority.

Teachers and non-teachers with continuing contracts receive preference under continuing law.

The bill states that after giving preference to continuing contracts, the board of a city, exempted village, local, or joint vocational school district is required to consider the relative quality of performance the principal factor in determining the order of reductions.

With respect to teachers, the board is required to measure the quality of performance by considering the level of license that the teacher holds, whether the teacher is considered a ʺhighly qualified teacher,ʺ the value‐added measure the board uses to determine the performance of the students assigned to the teacher’s classroom, the results of the teacher’s performance evaluation, and any other criteria established by the board.

Teachers and non-teaching employees whose continuing contracts are suspended by a city, exempted village, local, or joint vocational school district, however, have the right under continuing law to be brought back in the order of seniority.

Forbids school district decisions on reduction in force to be inhibited by a collective bargaining agreement.

This week in education cuts

All the school funding and budget cut news as reported from around the state this week.

Saturday 23rd, 2011

Sunday 24th, 2011
  • Even JTF takes a break!

Monday 25th, 2011

Tuesday 26th, 2011

Wednesday 27th, 2011

Thursday 28th, 2011

Friday 29th, 2011

Kasich looks funny on a horse

NBC4 had an excellent segment on Governor Kasich signing the bill that will bring Teach for America to Ohio.

It was this quote that causes us to pause.
"The cavalry is coming. They're going to ride on white horses with white hats in to our schools,"
This displays a level of contempt for teachers and public education that is hard to fathom. Maybe it's just a rhetorical flourish from a Governor known to misspeak often, but it does conjure up imagery that seems out of place.

If TFA are wearing "white hats", riding on "white horses", then who exactly are we supposed to assume are dressed in black? What exactly are the cavalry riding to the rescue of? The war on public education isn't going on in the classrooms, it's going on in the halls of the statehouse where legislators are busy slashing the budgets of public education.

The Governor seems to have called in the wrong cavalry and sent them to the wrong place.

Reference for the title here.

Canary in the community

Schools are the canary in the community, penned an astute letter writer from one of the countless Ohio communities with school levies on the May 3 ballot. What a perfect analogy. Yet unlike the canary in a coal mine, closely monitored as a harbinger of coming crisis, the fiscal condition of public schools in the state is ignored by policy makers who are unwilling to give the crisis an urgent response.

But the near financial collapse of some districts may force Columbus to reconsider its indifference. Until Gov. John Kasich's proposed budget yanked life-support funding from schools and left educators in budget-induced shock, people liked to pretend that the gasping canary in their midst wasn't that sick.

They assumed the cornerstone of the community could take even more abuse, get by with less, and still make quantum leaps in academic excellence. What a perfect illusion. But it worked for Mr. Kasich and Republican lawmakers, who took teachers down a few notches and cut school funding to ludicrous levels.

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