Ohio Gadfly Daily News 6-3-14

  1. The Cincinnati Enquirer has finally relented and covered School Choice Ohio's legal action against Cincinnati Public Schools in regard to student directory information. Sadly, the piece is a mess of misstated/omitted facts about EdChoice and includes some flawed conclusions because of it. Especially egregious is the omission of EdChoice eligibility for students in chronically underperforming schools regardless of income. The piece states, “A win by School Choice Ohio could lead to drastic enrollment drops at some schools.” Yes, indeed, if parents in perennially low-rated schools actually knew they had a private school option available to them and had someone to help them get more information, a number of them would likely leave. And that's a problem because why? (Cincinnati Enquirer)
  2. Teachers in Worthington City Schools have approved a new contract that contains some novel tweaks. The union’s leader trumpets a revised pay-for-experience schedule for veteran teachers entering the district, but as a Fordhamite I’ll highlight the clause which would deny a step increase to any teacher who receives a designation of “ineffective” on an evaluation. Which also begs a couple of questions in itself. (Columbus Dispatch)
  3. Summer school in Dayton Public Schools could be a bit crowded…for the first couple of weeks. Approximately 450 students had not yet scored proficient the third grade reading test prior to the May assessment and results for those children will not be known until a week or so into summer school, which all of those 450 students are being asked to attend due to Ohio’s Third Grade Reading Guarantee requirements. It is expected that a large number of those 450 students will have passed and will likely vanish from summer school to the lemonade stand or the ice cream truck or the swimming hole. For the others, it’s vital work time before the July assessment. (WDTN-TV, Dayton)
  4. Mergers of high schools are often fraught with obstacles that I have trouble understanding. I don’t doubt them, but the idea that a fear of turf battles can derail a move which could academically strengthen a community bothers me a lot. Here is a story about a high school merger in Northeast Ohio that seems to have worked OK, despite early fears. I won’t even complain that someone says “sports brought our school together”. (Cleveland Plain Dealer)
Jeff Murray
Jeff Murray is the Ohio Operations Manager of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute,