Education News for 05-09-2013

State Education News

  • Voters OK’d 60 percent of levies for schools (Columbus Dispatch)
  • Ohio voters approved 60 percent of 137 local tax requests for schools on Tuesday…Read more...

  • Just 7 percent of voters go to polls in central Ohio (Columbus Dispatch)
  • Tuesday was far from a proud day for democracy in central Ohio. It also was a costly one in terms of citizen participation…Read more...

  • State takeover closer after levy defeat (Dayton Daily News)
  • State fiscal watch is imminent for Fairborn City Schools following voter rejection Tuesday of an 11.7-mill emergency levy by a 2-to-1 margin…Read more...

  • Senator Looking For $100 Million In Budget To Support Preschool Vouchers (Gongwer)
  • Sen. Peggy Lehner (R-Kettering) said Wednesday she hopes to amend the budget to add $100 million for a new voucher program to cover preschool costs for three- and four-year- olds…Read more...

  • Liberty schools hopeful about teacher negotiations (Youngstown Vindicator)
  • State officials are hoping contract negotiations with the Liberty teachers union will save the school district “hundreds of thousands of dollars.”…Read more...

Local Education News

  • Conneaut BOE, City Council building deal in jeopardy (Ashtabula Star-Beacon)
  • A possible partnership between the city of Conneaut and its school district to share use of a commercial building is in jeopardy over the cost of rehabilitating the structure…Read more...

  • Cleveland school district and teachers union reach agreement on Cleveland Plan details (Cleveland Plain Dealer)
  • The Cleveland Metropolitan School District and Cleveland Teachers Union have reached a tentative agreement on how the two will work together to implement…Read more...

  • Huber schools continue staff reduction plan (Dayton Daily News)
  • The Huber Heights school board will continue implementation of more than $6 million in cuts by reducing 34 support staff…Read more...

  • Avon schools prepare to go wireless (Lorain Morning Journal)
  • Students can ready their Ipads and other Wi-Fi capable devices as Avon schools prepare to go wireless…Read more...


  • Minority decides for the majority (Columbus Dispatch)
  • A look at Tuesday’s primary-election results shows that many important races and issues were decided by only a handful of the people…Read more...

  • School spirit (Findlay Courier)
  • Most would agree there's no better investment in the future than education. But by cutting funding in recent years, state government has shifted more of the burden of operating public schools to taxpayers and property owners…Read more...

Done deal in Cleveland?

Deal reached.

The compromise struck by the mayor and union after several weeks of marathon negotiations, will bring major changes to the contract rules governing teacher assignments, seniority, pay, evaluation, layoff and recall that give the district more flexibility as it tries to improve schools.
Jackson, district officials and CTU representatives all said today that they negotiated an agreement on the plan because it will provide a better education for students.

As CTU President, David Quolke said, "This agreement is a testament to the idea that when collective bargaining trumps conflict, progress can be made that helps the children of Cleveland."

Frank Jackson got into this mess because he didn't show respect to the teachers in his school district, and didn't trust the collective bargaining agreement. He famously avoided involving educators in his reform plan because

Mayor Jackson said he did not talk to the union before coming up with his latest plan because he wanted to avoid further delay.

"We need to get something done," he said. "We've been in perpetual discussion about a lot of things. Our sense of urgency is such that something has to happen in a systemic way and it has to happen now."

How much delay was caused? A week? Maybe 2? If he had of respected the teachers and the process, imagine the good will that would have been garnered, instead of the acrimony.

If the defeat of SB5 wasn't a strong enough message, maybe politicians will look at this example and finally realize that collective bargaining and collaboration will get you far further, much faster than a my way, or the highway approach.

This should cause some pause for thought however

The plan has also gained wide support from business and political leaders in the city, with Cleveland City Council voting this week to endorse the plan and the cities' charitable foundations and the chamber of commerce, the Greater Cleveland Partnership, helping to write it and sitting in on negotiations with CTU.

Under what statute does the Greater Cleveland Partnership get to sit in on negotiations between public employees and their government employer? The GCP was front and center supporting the Governor's efforts via SB5 to dismantle worker protections, and they were instrumental in adding the union busting measures into the "Cleveland plan" too. Now a deal is done - let's see them step up to the plate and fund efforts to pass a much needed levy. That, after all, is still the biggest crisis facing Cleveland Municipal Schools.

Teachers sacrifice and prove SB5 is not needed

Example 86734 that SB5 is not needed comes in the form of news that Delaware teachers, through the collective bargaining process, aggreed to a no-raise contract next year.

The 330-member Delaware City Teachers Association won't get raises in base pay or increases for longevity or additional education, saving the district $340,000 in the one-year deal.

Without the pay freeze approved by teachers, six additional positions would have been eliminated, Superintendent Paul Craft said. Already, the district will lose 23 positions as part of $2.5million in cuts the board made final on Monday night. Six of those jobs probably will be cut through layoffs; the rest were through attrition.

"It's a real sacrifice and a real acknowledgment of the challenges that we face, that the teachers were willing to sign a contract to give up what has always been part of the contract," Craft said of the step and education increases.

Example 86735 that teachers continue to demonstrate sacrifice for their communities comes form Worthington

Worthington teachers agreed today to replace their contract for the 2011-12 school year with a three-year pact that would include a freeze on raises, including some step increases, which are awarded for education and experience.
"Our teachers recognize that the state budget cuts will have a devastating effect on our school district," Mark Hill, president of the Worthington Education Association, said in a statement. "We wanted to demonstrate that we want to be part of the solution."
"This agreement is unprecedented," Superintendent Melissa Conrath said in a statement. She said that Worthington teachers "want to contribute to a solution that will ensure the long-term sustainability of the district."

Under the agreement, teachers also would pick up any additional costs of health insurance in 2014. They contribute 14 percent toward their insurance premiums.

If SB5 were to pass and eliminate the ability to collectively bargain, unprecedented deals like this would not be possible. Why break what is clearly proven to be working time and time again, all across the state?

Cincinnati Public Schools is first in Ohio to test merit pay

Without the need for SB5 provisions, but with the cooperation and agreement of teachers, Cincinnati Public Schools will become the first in Ohio to trial merit pay for teachers

CINCINNATI - After years of discussion and argument, it appears Cincinnati Public School teachers have agreed to a new system to tie pay closely to student achievement and growth.

CPS administrators announced early Wednesday morning that an agreement had been reached with the district's 2,400 teachers for a brand new pay system.

It will be the first in Ohio and one of the few in the nation to directly link teacher pay to how well their students do in class and on tests.

The Cincinnati Federal of Teachers will be hosting a Q&A session at Mayerson Banquet Room on June 1, 2011, from 4:30 - 6:00.

Here's the summary of the new evaluation and the negotiation summary

CPS Teacher Evaluation