by Michelle Faust
(Ohio Public Radio Reporters Kabir Batia and Jerry Kenney contributed to this story.)
The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) is the new federal education law that replaces No Child Left Behind. The legislation gives states their own say in how they implement ESSA with input from their communities. The Ohio Department of Education recently held 10 stakeholder meetings across the state to get the public’s views on education.
Governor John Kasich addresses economic develoment conference at Cleveland's convention center [photo: Mark Urycki/ ideastream]
Governor Kasich wants Ohio students to get some work experience while still in high school. Speaking at a conference in Cleveland Tuesday Kasich questioned whether schools are training kids for 21st century jobs.
The state’s largest online charter school is crying foul after the education department released a report showing it fell short of its estimated attendance by more than 50%. But a top education lawmaker says Ohio taxpayers deserve to know what their money is going towards.
A review of the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow found that more than half of the students enrolled in the school didn’t do enough work to qualify as full time.
The state education department says Ohio's largest online charter school severely over-reported how many students actually attended class full time. But the school says the state's report is a slap in the face to a pending court battle.
The state says only 40% of the more than 15,000 students enrolled at the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow spent enough time learning during the day to qualify as full-time students.
Although the Lame Duck Legislative Session doesn’t begin until after the November election, the Ohio Senate Education Committee is scheduled to reconvene Tuesday.
Education Committee Chair Peggy Lehner says a truancy bill is her highest priority. The Senate Republican from Kettering says the legislation requires schools to look at why students skip class instead of resorting to suspensions.
"To start looking at truancy as a social-emotional issue, as opposed to a judicial-issue."
When report cards came out recently, it was not without controversy.
Districts did worse than last year because the tests and the expectations changed. It was harder to get a passing grade.
“But the report card is important. It tells us useful information and we can't just ignore it in this state,” says Howard Fleeter, an economist who consults for the non-profit Ohio Education Policy Institute. “As we raise the bar, we're increasing the challenge disproportionately for districts that are struggling the most.”
Chart of data from the 2015-'16 state report cards showing student performance index scores and percentage of economically disadvantaged students. [chart: OHIO EDUCATION POLICY INSTITUTE]
A report commissioned by three groups representing officials from traditional public schools shows what they call a strong link between student performance and household income - in other words, kids in wealthy districts do better on tests on average than kids in poor districts do.
Educators, administrators, and parents gathered at Cuyahoga Community College Monday night to weigh in on the best way for Ohio to move forward with a new education plan. The state department of education is preparing for the Every Student Succeeds Act.
About 200 stakeholders sat and answered targeted questions about what the state should write into its plan for the federal law known as ESSA. It will replace No Child Left Behind in the 2017-2018 school year.
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