News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Hennes Paynter Communications

The Holden Arboretum


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Education


Ohio teachers lobby lawmakers over proposed education changes
They say plans are confusing and they're being whipsawed
by WKSU's STATEHOUSE CORRESPONDENT JO INGLES


Reporter
Jo Ingles
 
In The Region:

Teachers throughout Ohio are starting to get a clearer look at Gov. Kasich’s proposed education plan. And they have concerns about it. As Ohio Public Radio’s Jo Ingles reports, educators are taking their concerns to Ohio lawmakers as the lawmakers start to dig into the two-year budget.

INGLES: Teachers are lobbying lawmakers

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (4:12)


It’s a typical day at the Ohio Statehouse.  Lawmakers are here.  And so are teachers concerned about Gov. Kasich’s newly proposed education budget.  On this day, these teachers turn into lobbyists.

Rod Miller is a middle school teacher in Ontario, near Mansfield.  He and two other teachers sit in the office of Republican State Sen. John Eklund, explaining their concerns about changes that will affect teachers, including a third- grade reading guarantee that will keep third graders from moving onto fourth grade unless they demostrate they can read.

Miller says he has no problem with the idea that children should have attained a certain level of literacy by the third grade.  But he says the rules and implementation for the guarantee are downright confusing.

“There is so much change coming around (teacher) evaluations, … and we don’t even know how it’s happening.  It seems like in one meeting, they will say one thing and in another meeting, they will say something else.  So we are not sure.

“We work hand-in-hand with our school board and our administration,” he says, to try to sort it out. 

And then there’s the money
Miller says it’s not only the proposed curriculum changes that trouble him. He says he’s also worried the proposed state funding levels for schools will not help districts like his.e

“Back a few years ago, we went back to our public for a levy. It had been 13 years since we did that. We had spent 20 percent less than the state average, we were rated excellent and still it took us six attempts to pass that levy.  That’s troubling.”

Darold Johnson with the Ohio Federation of Teachers says Miller’s concerns are echoed by teachers statewide.

“What we are hearing is that they’d like to see a lit bit of slowing down of the changes,” he says.  “They are concerned we won’t be able to implement the third-grade reading guarantee because we won’t have enough third-grade teachers.  They are concerned that we want to have a value-added score to help teachers improve … and not punish them. And we are concerned about the funding levels.

“We want to make sure we get rid of the over-reliance on property tax and that we adequately fund schools.”

Lawmakers say they’re listening
Many lawmakers are willing to sit down with teachers to talk about these issues.  Republican State Sen. Eklund says he wants to hear what they have to say. 

“They are legitimate concerns.  What’s most important about them is they are coming from the people who have to deal with the issues on a day-in, day-out basis. And that’s the way we get information, … when the people who are closest to the issues have the patience and good sense and fortitude to bring them  to the Legislature and express them.”

Eklund isn’t ruling out changes to Ohio’s education plans based on what teachers are telling him now. And that may include changes to Gov. Kasich’s proposed school-funding plan.

“My initial look at it is that there are many components to it that make good sense. I think it’s a good -faith attempt to try to take into account funding issues that perhaps have not been given as much emphasis as they could have in the past. So I think it’s a creative idea in that respect.”

Getting more input
Still, he says, “I’m in the process of talking to superintendents and school treasurers to get their reaction and see how they think it’s likely to impact them.”

And he says “God knows” what the final education budget will look like when it comes out of the House and Senate.

Hearings on the two-year budget and plans for schools are in the early stages right now.  

Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook




Stories with Recent Comments

Nature and nourishment down by the river at the Metroparks' Merwin's Wharf
I love QUICKBITES! I look forward to it every week. One question: is it possible to include a link to the restaurant or store that you profile? Thanks!

Canton's proposed Timken-McKinley school merger is drawing spirited debate
From a sports opinion Varsity would have a lot more talent to choose from So Im sure varsity sports would improve.Also Timkens name would be much more published...

Canton school board will decide whether to merge high schools
I really hope we can save those jobs, usually we try to cut budgets but the demand is still the same. Then we look bad a year or two after the descion is made. ...

FirstEnergy wants PUCO guarantees on nuclear and coal prices
Would just comment that the plant has admitted the following (as reporting in the Akron Beacon Journal): "The utility has said it may have difficulty keeping t...

Mozzarella's easy when you have a way with curd
Hello, Where can I get such a heater that you have? Does it hold temperature that you set? What brand and model is it? Thank you in advance!! :)

Pluto: A healthy LeBron James is the key for the rocky Cavs
It's time to back our Cleveland professional teams through thick and thin. I've seen management, players and coaches come and go and it hasn't changed a thing. ...

Legal marijuana group offers new details about ballot issue
Americans feel as if they should have the right to decide on their own if and when it is or is not a responsible time to have a drink or smoke a joint. The fac...

The PUCO is assessing what happened in Akron's AT&T outage
not the first time for that steam pipe break... happened in the late 70's when the office was being converted to electronic switch ESS.. was a big mess then but...

The freeze of green-energy standards hurts Ohio wind and solar industries
What do we do at night and when the wind isn't blowing? Where does the power come from to back-up these renewable sources?

Gov. Kasich may still face budget battles with Ohio lawmakers
Governor Kasich continues to disappoint many of us who voted for him when he was elected Governor four years ago. It is way past time for charter schools to b...

Copyright © 2015 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University