Education News for 01-18-2012

State Education News

  • School funding formula likely coming in 2013 – AP (Dayton Daily News)
  • A key state legislative leader predicted Tuesday that a new approach to paying for Ohio’s public schools will not be complete until 2013, leaving school districts across the state to grapple with their budgets in the absence of a predictable school funding formula. Lawmakers scrapped the existing “evidence-based model” of school funding advanced by former Gov. Ted Strickland in the two-year state operating budget passed in June. The formula was sweeping but lacked the funding to be carried out. Read More…

  • Ohio official: State, schools to raise bar for students – Zanesville Times Recorder
  • The minimum is not going to cut it as students embark on the real world. State Superintendent of Public Instruction Stan Heffner wants to help raise the bar and set new standards for Ohio's public school children to meet in the next few school years. Beginning with the 2014-15 school year, some changes include new learning standards and course content in the areas of English, math, science and social studies; and new tests to be performed online and not with pencil and paper. Read More…

  • New Ohio School Funding Formula Likely Delayed Until 2013 – State Impact Ohio
  • Ohio House Speaker Bill Batchelder, R-Medina, flanked by members of the House GOP caucus, previews the party’s 2012 agenda at a Jan. 17 statehouse press conference. Ohio schools should not expect any signifcant changes in their state funding for at least another year. Schools faced major state funding cuts for the current and next school year under a funding model Ohio lawmakers enacted in June. That funding model was supposed to be temporary. But on Tuesday House Republicans announced that they plan to hold a year of hearings on the topic. Read More…

  • Ohio education czar leaving post – Columbus Dispatch
  • Gov. John Kasich’s education czar is leaving the administration to return to the private sector. Robert D. Sommers’ last day on the $109,990-a-year job will be Jan. 31. He plans to open an education-consulting business. Shortly after taking office last January, Kasich named Sommers as director of the Governor’s Office of 21st Century Education. A few months later, Sommers was one of three finalists for the state superintendent’s post but withdrew, saying he had been advised that Ohio’s ethics laws prevented him from taking the job. Read More…

Local Issues

  • Some lament Beavercreek school district’s reduced bus service – Dayton Daily News
  • The Beavercreek school district’s reduced busing services went into effect Tuesday, leaving some parents and students to lament the lost convenience. “There’s just more traffic,” said Cierra Young, a sophomore who rode the bus to and from school each day. “It’s taking everyone about 15 to 20 minutes longer.” Read More…

  • Schools combat childhood obesity – WTOV-9
  • Childhood obesity is a concern all across the nation, but especially in the valley, with studies placing Ohio and West Virginia in the top 15 for childhood obesity. With this week being National Healthy Weight Awareness week, NEWS9 visited one local school to see how they try and combat the problem. Read More…

  • Buses roll, Little Miami Schools can hire again – Cincinnati Enquirer
  • After years of no service for hundreds of students, buses will roll again Monday at Little Miami Schools, state officials overseeing the insolvent district said Tuesday evening. And for the first time in three years, the district will be allowed to rehire a part-time curriculum director as it enters the state testing period this spring. Read More…

  • Columbus schools tax-advisory panel mostly corporate executives – Columbus Dispatch
  • A CEO-studded group of business leaders dominates the list of people who will recommend whether, when and by how much Columbus City Schools residents’ taxes could go up. Superintendent Gene Harris delivered eight names to the Board of Education last night. Six of those are business leaders. Read More…

  • Therapy dogs give young readers patient, nonjudgmental audience at libraries – Columbus Dispatch
  • Clutching the pages of Baby Max and Ruby, 5-year-old Maariya Imtiyaz was focused, stumbling only on words new to her: wiggly, giggly and blackberry.

    With each new page, she raised her head to make sure that her audience — a 165-pound, 4-year-old English mastiff named Moose — was still with her. With each page, her cautious smile grew into a confident grin. Read More…

  • Garfield Heights Shortens School Day, Parents Blame Voters – Fox 8 Cleveland
  • Parents, staff and children in the Garfield Heights School District are getting a hard lesson in economics.
    "I don't think it's good for the children," one parent said as she picked up her son from school.
    As of Tuesday, programs like elementary music, art and physical education are gone and libraries are closed. Read More…

We're not saying it is hypocritical, but

We're not saying it is hypocritical, but when you pass legislation saying that teachers are to be evaluated on their ability to do the job, then you turn around and hire your own partisan political appointees for a job they have no experience to do, it does make one wonder.

After a months-long search for someone with regulatory experience to ride herd on Ohio’s four casinos, a state panel yesterday chose someone with none.

Matt Schuler, chief of staff for the Republican president of the Ohio Senate, was appointed executive director of the Casino Control Commission. Commission members recruited the 44-year-old Gahanna resident after having trouble enticing regulators from other states to take a similar job in Ohio.

Maybe Mr. Schuler ought to at least take a test?

Matt Schuler was recently at the center of the controvesy over Senate staff getting massive retroactive pay rises.

Every member of senior staff in our caucus was approached about leaving, and we almost lost several other key staff members, Niehaus said. "It became obvious when I heard what some of the offers were that they were in part leaving because of money, so I asked our chief of staff, Matt Schuler, to do a review of salaries."

We guess after his salary review Matt Schuler decided he needed a wee bit more, but even that doesn't appear to be enough as he's now headed for the door to collect what is expected to be a windfall salary of $146,286. He may want to talk to his wife, school board member Jill Schuler. Mrs. Schuler has been a very vocal proponent of "sared sacrifice"

Board member Jill Schuler said she struggles with placing the tax request on the ballot unless all employees make a commitment. She cited no flexibility with personnel costs that make up 80 percent of the district's budget.

"The sacrifices some are making need to be made by the whole," Schuler said.

Like we said, We're not saying it is hypocritical, but...

OSBA Refutes Education Matters Report

A short while ago we brought to your attention a report by Ohio Education Matters that claimed their study revealed Ohio School Districts could save over $1 billion in non-instructional spending. At the time we thought that "Some of the extrapolations seem excessive".

It appears the Ohio School Board Association thought so too, and they commisioned a report to look at these findings.

On a related matter, our three organizations spoke out yesterday criticizing a recent study that claims schools are overlooking significant savings. An analysis prepared by Education Tax Policy Institute (ETPI) consultants refutes the report by Ohio Education Matters and the KnowledgeWorks Foundation claiming schools are leaving over $1 billion on the table because they are inefficient.

We commissioned the analysis by ETPI because we were skeptical of the validity of the “Benchmarking Ohioʼs School Districts: Identifying districts that get more for their money in non-instructional spending” report published by Ohio Education Matters, a subsidiary of KnowledgeWorks.

Here's their report

Analysis of Ohio Education Matters Benchmarking Report