As we move toward the end of the year, there are three major advocacy issues OAGC is monitoring – gifted assessments, HB305 (school funding bill), and a committee that will be studying the report card.
Gifted Assessments – ODE updated the list of approved assessments to include a new checklist for artistic behavior in dance grades 9-12. This list can be downloaded from http://www.oagc.com/files/2019-2020-Approved-Assessment-List.updated10.25.19(2).pdf .
While this helps with the identification issues in one small area of gifted assessment, other issues remain. OAGC continues to work with the Ohio Department of Education to address the many other issues regarding the gifted assessment list and the process for reviewing gifted assessments.
School Funding – The House Finance Committee has begun hearings on HB305. The two co-sponsors, Rep. Cupp (R) and Rep. Patterson (D) provided sponsor testimony on October 16. Other hearings have featured members of the Ohio Fair School Funding committee. Most of the hearings have concentrated on base cost and equity issues. Future hearings will focus on other parts of the proposed funding formula. OAGC has several issues with the gifted funding component of HB305 which are outlined at http://www.oagc.com/files/OAGC%20Amendment%20Requests%20to%20HB305.9.16.19.pdf . To view the documents from the various hearings on HB305, please go to http://www.ohiohouse.gov/committee/finance . To view the hearings, go to http://www.ohiochannel.org and look for the archives of the House Finance committee.
Report Card Study Committee – One of the provisions of the budget bill (HB166) established a committee to study the state report card and make recommendations for changes. This committee includes Sen. Peggy Lehner (R-Kettering), Sen. Louis Blessing III (R-Cincinnati, Sen. Teresa Fedor (D-Toledo), Rep. Don Jones (R-Freeport), Rep. Tracy Richardson (R-Marysville), and Rep. Lisa Sobecki (D-Toledo). In addition, three superintendents representing rural, suburban, and urban areas and the state superintendent or representative will be on the committee. These superintendents are Stephanie Starcher of Fort Frye, Cameron Ryba of Strongsville, and Marlon Styles of Middletown. The committee is charged with putting together recommendations by December 15th. The first neeting will be on November 6th.