Gadfly Bites - 8/28/14

  1. Week Two, Day Two of Common Core repeal hearings was a late one. As predicted, coverage is waning as the hearings go on…unless you follow Chad on Twitter. All of today’s pieces focus on the high-caliber business leaders who testified in favor of Common Core yesterday. Coverage in Cleveland not only addressed the important testimony of Cleveland Partnership’s Joe Roman but also that of CMSD CEO Eric Gordon and Breakthrough’s Alan Rosskamm. Cleveland has had its say. (Cleveland Plain Dealer) Gongwer’s coverage remains thorough, discussing the questions asked by legislators as well as the testimony written and given. (Gongwer Ohio) The Big D, interestingly, also focuses on some of the folks who haven’t testified, including ODE. (Columbus Dispatch)
  2. Speaking of ODE, news broke yesterday that the department has referred the Portage County ESC’s top two leaders for investigation, saying the agency attempted to open a new charter school in Cincinnati after being warned not to due to unsatisfactory vetting processes. You can check out the just-the-facts version from the Statehouse perspective here. (Gongwer Ohio) The view from Northeast Ohio, where the ESC is located, focuses on the status of PCESC having “the second-worst academic record of all state sponsors”. (Cleveland Plain Dealer) Let us note that the proposed school in question was the one we told you about two weeks ago, which appeared to be attempting to capitalize on the closure of VLT Academy. That is the focus of the coverage in Southwest Ohio, where the school is attempting to locate. (Cincinnati Enquirer)
  3. Transportation to and from school is often wonky in the first few days of any new school year. I have great sympathy for my fellow parents in these situations but I haven’t clipped any of the stories, even the one from Columbus that involves Twitter-twitting (you’ll have to Google that one). But this one seems to be beyond the bounds of “wonky schedules”: a bus driver in rural Lebanon, Ohio has resigned while under investigation for deliberately stopping his bus and forcing children to close their windows and sit inside for 20 minutes or more. Sounds awful. (Dayton Daily News)
  4. I’m not sure that too much can be made of this, but an audit of personnel procedures in Columbus City Schools has found some flaws in their hiring/promotion/record retention processes. Kudos to eagle-eyed auditors. (Columbus Dispatch)
  5. Additional kudos to the auditors who spent more than a year untangling this mess at ESC of Central Ohio. Sad. (Columbus Dispatch)
Jeff Murray
Jeff Murray is the Ohio Operations Manager of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute,