It’s now easier for teachers coming from out-of-state to come work in Ohio – as long as they’ve been teaching for the last five years consecutively and are not coming from Alaska, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota or Wyoming.
Last night the Cleveland school board unanimously agreed to what city and union officials are hailing as a groundbreaking teacher contract for Ohio. Union members will vote later this month.
The contract spells out a new basis for teacher pay hikes. Raises merely for lasting another year in the job are out; so are automatic bumps for an extra degree. Instead, “pay for performance” is in.Continue Reading
A state audit last week found a total of $1,850,489 to be recovered from former employees and school board members of the Cleveland Academy of Scholarship, Technology and Leadership Enterprise, a charter high school in Cleveland.
Today Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Timothy J. McGinty announced that ten people and thirteen companies are being indicted as a result of the audit’s findings.
Charges include corruption, theft and money laundering.
The special audit found that payments were made on behalf of the school to thirteen shell companies, all of which were either owned by or affiliated with school officials and board members. Continue Reading
An amendment added to the state budget bill yesterday prohibits teachers from talking about any “gateway sexual activity” and directs them to emphasize abstinence in sex education.
Teachers who don’t comply could be fined up to $5,000 if the measure passes.
So just what is “gateway sexual activity?”
Last week we told you that projections show under the new school report cards most charter schools in the state would get F's. It turns out the Urban 8 districts would perform just as poorly - if not worse - in many areas. Continue reading
It’s no secret that the Cleveland school district hasn’t been doing so well. The writing of a state takeover was on the wall when the district teamed up with the mayor’s office and the governor to pass House Bill 525, aka The Cleveland Plan.
Still, under state law when a district gets the equivalent of an “F” four years in a row and cannot meet federal standards for improving student performance, it has to go under state oversight until the district improves, or until the state superintendent sees fit.
Earlier this month, Cleveland and Lorain schools were sent letters informing them they are academically failing and an Academic Distress Commission has to be formed.
But Cleveland is hoping to get out of the state takeover. Continue Reading
In a decision this week, the Franklin County Court of Appeals reaffirmed an earlier ruling demanding that White Hat Management, one of Ohio’s largest charter school management companies, disclose its financial records.
Judge Julia Dorrian wrote the decision on behalf of the three-judge appellate court.
Late last week the Ohio Department of Education sent letters to Cleveland and Lorain School Districts, informing them that their failing grades have landed them in a state takeovers.
According to Ohio law, if a district is in academic emergency and fails to make progress for four or more years, the Department of Education must take over the district and whip it into shape under the guidance of an Academic Distress Commission.
The ACLU of Ohio and the Freedom from Religion Foundation have filed a lawsuit against the Jackson City school district over a depiction of Jesus that hangs in a district middle school.
But in an effort to keep the painting, the district passed a policy at its last board meeting declaring some parts of the school a “limited public forum.”
According to the newly passed policy, as long as the painting hangs in a space that is considered a limited public forum for student speech, and other student organizations are allowed to hang similar images of “inspirational figures,” the painting of Jesus should be protected as private speech.
“Our position on the portrait hasn’t changed,” says Nick Dorner of the ACLU of Ohio. He says the school will have to include whatever policies they pass in their court case.
Last month a rural Ohio school found itself suddenly in the spotlight after the Freedom From Religion Foundation asked the district to remove a depiction of Jesus hanging in one of its schools.
Since that letter was sent, the ACLU of Ohio has joined the debate, and the two organizations have now filed a lawsuit in Federal Court against Jackson City Schools requesting they take their painting down.
According to the lawsuit:
“The maintenance and display of the portrait has the effect of advancing and endorsing one religion, improperly entangling the State in religious affairs, and violating the personal consciences of Plaintiffs.”
The district will not relent, and has opted to fight the ACLU and the FFRF in court.