Gadfly Bites 5/12/17 - In which the match up of NAACP vs. OHSAA results in the winner being DPS

  1. We told you last week about the Vindy op-ed penned by district CEO Krish Mohip, in which he opined in favor of big raises he wanted to give his district’s teachers. How big, you ask? How about 7 percent? Union leaders this week said no thank you (minus the “thank you”) to the CEO’s formal offer. You’ll have to read the piece to try and figure out why. Hint: it’s complicated and involves a reference to Greek mythology. (Youngstown Vindicator, 5/11/17)
  2. Speaking of money (and of less-than-polite-rejections), the state’s largest online school got a dose of the latter this week when a court hearing officer ruled against them in one phase of their ongoing kerfuffle with the state. A healthy dose of the former – $60 million – is now owed to the state. Pending appeals and other court cases and legislation, that is. (Columbus Dispatch, 5/9/17)
  3. Sticking with charter schools for a moment, a member of the board of United Schools Network here in Columbus (whose schools are sponsored by Fordham, dontcha know) opined this week in support of the state’s efforts to get facilities funding in the hands of high-quality charter schools. (Columbus Dispatch, 5/10/17)
  4. Cleveland’s Hawken School is leading an effort to develop what they’re calling a “no-grade transcript” – a complete snapshot of a student’s education career sans test scores of any kind. Probably easy to do when you’re sure said student could pass any test put in front of him. Might I humbly suggest “number of burpees in 90 seconds” and “pizza crust creation technique” as possible criteria? (Cleveland Plain Dealer, 5/10/17)
  5. We end the week with a mixed bag of news from various school districts across the state. First up, Dayton City Schools recorded a valuable assist from the local NAACP this week. Their intervention with the Ohio High School Athletic Association got the district’s entire varsity sports program downgraded from “probation” to “enforceable review”. Nope. I don’t know either. (Dayton Daily News, 5/11/17) Officials in Clark County fear an impending shortage of tech teachers since an advocacy organization says there is such a shortage impending nationally. Despite the fact that such a shortage does not appear to be the case in Clark County currently. Nope. I don’t know that either. (Springfield News Sun, 5/10/17) A new-ish arts-based afterschool program in Lorain celebrated this week with a concert-performance-palooza. Now this I know about. It is an interesting and seemingly popular and successful extracurricular program supported by higher ed, philanthropy, and the community which your humble clips compiler might humbly suggest could easily and cheaply and equitably take over the entire arts education of the district. Leaving the academically distressed district more time and resources to – oh, I don’t know – focus on those pesky academics perhaps? (Northern Ohio Morning Journal, 5/10/17) Finally, just in case you thought that everything was settled and hunky-dory in Louisville after the divisive teacher’s strike earlier this year: this brief squib from the Rep should serve to disabuse you of that notion. In it, we learn that the board of education has had to retain the services of three different judges to act as referees in the separate appeal hearings of those three middle school teachers still contesting charges that they deleted vital district computer files before heading out on strike lo those many months ago. Nope. Me neither. (Canton Repository, 5/10/17)
Jeff Murray
Jeff Murray is the Ohio Operations Manager of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute,