Greg kicked off May with one of the top posts of the month titled Mr. Governor, Shut This School District Down!. The post highlighted the horrible performance and excessive costs of ECOT, along with the $12 Million+ a year in state funds its founder, William Lager, is raking in by selling services and software to the school.
Brian quickly followed up, noting that Kasich, after spending months railing and threatening teachers and their unions, declared May 1st through 7th Teacher Appreciation week.
From a readership perspective, those posts were number 2 and 3 respectively for the month of May, a month that seems to have been filled with other popular posts about education and teachers, including Greg’s take down of Superintendent of Schools Stan Heffner who provided testimony to the Ohio Senate in support of teacher testing provisions that would have sent millions to his new employer. The revelations in this post eventually led to our ethics complaint and an IG complaint by State Rep Debbie Phillips.
Other popular education posts included Kasich urging voters to reject school levies, Meet the lobbyist responsible for Ohio’s new charter school Wild West and Kasich, Republicans Don’t Actually Support Teacher Merit Pay.
Our readers also seemed to enjoy stories about Kasich at the BMV, including the post about Kasich being escorted to the front of the line by gun-toting Public Safety Director Tom Charles. And this hilarious video of Kasich at the BMV insulting a young couple:
May was also a successful month for original PB research, including the most popular post of the month which revealed that Kasich’s office actually employed 90 people – 11 more than the maximum number of employees Governor Strickland had, 15 more than Kasich’s total expected number and 23 people more than he told the legislature he had working for him.
Original PB research also spurned popular posts about the casino commission’s expensive office space (leased from a Kasich campaign donor), the paperwork for One Ohio United, a pro-Kasich group, being submitted and paid for by a Kasich campaign staffer, and the revelation that Kasich’s own DAS analysts disagree with the quality of his SB5 cost-savings estimates.
And we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention the battle heating up over SB5 in May.
The Pro-SB5 folks finally got together to under the name “Building a Better Ohio” and then immediately stumbled on their messaging right out of the gate”. Brian prophetically reasoned: “If that’s the best the proponents can message for SB 5, it is doomed to be repealed.”
While Better Ohio was stumbling, We Are Ohio was busy collecting signature. In late May they announced they had already collected 93% of the signatures they needed – and they still had 6 more weeks to go.
The SB5 battle continues into June, where we’ll also find ourselves encountering stories about Casinos, Strippers and Elmo (oh my!) …