Eye on Education

Despite New Faces, Not Much Change Expected for State Board of Education

Ida Lieszkovszky / StateImpact Ohio

Yesterday, Ohio voters picked members of the State Board of Education in 11 districts.

While there are some new faces on the board, there isn’t much change in the board’s political makeup.

The 19-member State Board of Education is a non-partisan board. Still, members tend to lean towards one political party or the other. Of the 11 seats up for grabs Tuesday, six had been held by Republicans, and five by Democrats.

After the election, that’s unchanged.

“There isn’t really a whole lot of change to talk about in terms of the makeup of the board,” says Terry Ryan with the Fordham Foundation, a conservative Ohio-based think-tank. “I think it’s fair to say that the change that’s going to take place in terms of the margin of the board will be in December.”

December is when Governor Kasich gets to appoint four new members to the board, including one to a seat that had been held by a Democrat. That would help to establish a Republican majority on the board.

“It gives the administration more flexibility in terms of getting what they want done, done through the board,” Ryan says.

This coming year, the board will have to chose a new state schools chief,  and implement the third-grade reading guarantee, new evaluations for teachers, and the common core curriculum.


  • Ron Thornbury

    I understand no change is expected from the addition/replacement of
    elected board members. I think it is more relevant to talk about the
    current board voting power, why it is how it is and what they are
    doing. I have listened to the November 2012 board audio file where they
    discus early childhood and third grade guarantee freezes on funding. I
    was given some hope by some of the elected board member’s emotional
    reactions to this but I also was keeping score of how many and who supports what.
    Please listen to this discussion or at least read the minutes on the ODE website. The impact the board has or the influence that must pass through them deserves attention. I want to help inform people but don’t know how so I appreciate greatly your website. Thanks, Ron

About StateImpact

StateImpact seeks to inform and engage local communities with broadcast and online news focused on how state government decisions affect your lives.
Learn More »