Gadfly Bites 5/23/18 – The brain is a muscle

  1. It was a busy hearing in the House Education and Career Readiness Committee yesterday. Lots of bills crammed in there. Our own Chad Aldis was on hand to testify on two bills. First up, Senate Bill 216, the education deregulation bill. Before Chad even hit the witness podium, the Dispatch had coverage of one of his most-important points: keeping the “n-size” for subgroup accountability as small as possible so that accountability for Ohio’s most vulnerable students is maintained. (Columbus Dispatch, 5/22/18) Luckily, Chad is not alone in this view. Details on Chad’s and others’ testimony on that point—and on other aspects of the wide-ranging bill—can be found in Gongwer. (Gongwer Ohio, 5/22/18) The other bill piquing Chad’s interest on yesterday’s docket was that regarding A-F grading for Ohio’s schools and districts. Surprisingly, he was not alone in his efforts to retain A-F this time. You can check out all the testimony in Gongwer, as usual. (Gongwer Ohio, 5/22/18)
     
  2. You can go ahead and ignore the headline of this piece on the deregulation bill, but the detail on some of the bill’s other provisions is solid. (Dayton Daily News, 5/23/18)
     
  3. Here is another early college success story, this time from Dayton. Ashli Garnett earned her Associates Degree from Sinclair Community College at the same time as she earned her high school diploma from Dunbar Early College High School, courtesy of the College Credit Plus program. Ashli is a force of nature, it appears. Look for more awesomeness from her as she attends Southern University at New Orleans this fall, entering as a junior. Boom! (Dayton Daily News, 5/22/18)
     
  4. Perhaps a bit less exciting than the above is the data on first year implementation of Cincinnati’s Preschool Promise program. Depending on who you ask, I guess. (Cincinnati Enquirer, 5/22/18)
     
  5. Speaking of data, there are some interesting numbers here regarding after school programming for young people across Lorain County—not just programs provided by schools but also those provided by community organizations. The Nord Family Foundation is working to increase the quantity and quality of these programs, and—most importantly it seems—increase access to them as well. (Northern Ohio Morning Journal, 5/21/18)
     
  6. Here is a story about a competitive grant program for teachers in Columbus City Schools which for the last 12 years has worked to inspire and support innovation. So why does a thing like that bother me? Maybe it’s because of the school buildings represented. Maybe it’s because it seems like the same teachers/projects win every year. Maybe it’s the insinuation that 15- and 30-year veteran teachers in Columbus are underpaid. Maybe it’s just that exciting and engaging projects like these should be the rule rather than the incentivized and subsidized exception. Or maybe I’m just churlish. (Columbus Dispatch, 5/22/18)
     
  7. If there is one true winner in today’s clips, it is probably Stow-Munroe Falls High School senior Corinne Dunton. She is the proud owner of a brand new car, the top prize given away as part of an annual raffle in the district. Seniors earn tickets by “making good decisions” throughout the year. These include: being on time, raising their GPAs by a number of points, and participating in Senior Service Day among other things. The raffle has apparently been going on for many years in Stow, but a new prize was added this year thanks to the Ohio General Assembly: all those “good decisions” are very similar to the requirements for the Class of 2018 to get a diploma. So perhaps there are more winners this year than ever before! (MyTownNEO, 5/22/18)
 
 
Jeff Murray
Jeff Murray is the Ohio Operations Manager of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute,