Assessment Recommendations – As reported last week, the Superintendent’s Advisory Committee on Assessments finished up its work and sent a preliminary draft to the State Superintendent. The top recommendation, which received 21 committee member votes, would eliminate fourth and sixth-grade social studies assessments, American history and American government end-of-course exams, and one of two end-of-course exams in both math and English. It would also eliminate the fall administration of the third grade ELA assessment, if the third grade reading guarantee retention language is removed by the General Assembly. The final draft can be found at: http://www.oagc.com/files/AssessmentCommitteeRecommendationsReport-DRAFT%206.7.17(F).pdf
This week, State Superintendent Paola DeMaria, developed his own set of assessment recommendations which differed from the assessment committee. Mr. Demaria’s recommendations would eliminate the 4th grade social studies assessment, the high school ELA 1 end-of-course exam as well as the American Government end-of-course exam, and the WorkKeys assessments (for career technical students). He submitted these recommendations to the State Board of Education, which declined to vote on them this week. Meanwhile, the Ohio Senate included the elimination of the 4th and 6th grade social studies assessments in the current draft of Substitute HB 49, the budget bill. We should know within the next two weeks which recommendation will prevail as it is likely to be included in the final version of HB49.
State Budget Progress – Speaking of the state budget, The Ohio Senate accepted a substitute version of HB 49 on Monday and has held hearings all week. Nothing has changed for gifted education in the substitute bill though there are many changes to education. For a list of these changes and all others, please see: http://www.oagc.com/files/AmSubHB49SenateSummary6.12.17.pdf. The Senate is scheduled to vote the bill out next week. The Senate and the House will then confer and vote out a final draft which will be sent to Governor Kasich. He will need to review, line item veto any objectionable items, and sign by June 30th. Look for any highly controversial items to be included in the conference committee substitute bill.