Posts by: Greg

Ohio Auditor of State Dave Yost detailed ECOT’s financial records as a part of his investigation into potential illegal activities of the online charter school as a part of its closing.  Among Yost’s findings is nearly $2.3 million in payments in 2017 and 2018 to a company called Third Wave Communications.

In August 2016, we wrote about Third Wave Communications as ECOT was doing business with them back then, too.  Missing from Yost’s January 18, 2018 letter is any mention that Third Wave Communications is operated by Jessica Harris […]

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The Working People’s Day of Action takes place on Saturday, Feb. 24, at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus. Attendees will be gathering at the Statehouse at 10:30 a.m. and the rally starts at 12 p.m. This rally is part of a National Day of Action being held in 10 cities across the U.S. to fight back against attacks on workers.

We sat down with National Education Association Vice President Becky Pringle and Ohio Education Association President Becky Higgins to discuss this National Day of Action and why it is such a significant event for the working class.

Question: What is this day […]

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Ohio’s public school funding model is needlessly complex.  So much so, in fact, that it can be extremely difficult to believe when trying to explain its oddities to friends and family.  I’m often met with responses such as “that can’t be true”.  With the recent lawsuits and closing of the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT), I decided to go on a bit of a quest to break down the model in the simplest terms possible, using ECOT and its relationship with the Columbus City School District as an example.

To be fair, breaking it down to the “simplest” terms […]

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Ohio Senate Bill 39, introduced back in February, is finally up for discussion in the Senate Education Committee this week.  Ohio state Sen. Joe Schiavoni, D-Boardman, introduced the bill on February 8 and offered testimony to the committee on February 15, but the bill was put aside by committee chair Peggy Lehner, R-Kettering, until now.

The Senate Education Committee will meet on Wednesday, September 27, at 3:15 pm in the South Hearing Room.  Information about providing written or in-person testimony in support of the legislation is at the […]

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As Ohio’ Budget Bill (House Bill 49) comes ever closer to becoming law, a simple provision eliminating Ohio’s Resident Educator program is garnering a lot of attention – with some now believing that the program could be “saved” when the two houses eventually meet to hash out their differences in the final version of the bill.

Last week, the company that stands to lose $5,000,000 per year if the program is eliminated – Educopia – provided misleading testimony to the Senate Finance Committee in support of keeping the program.  Educopia is in charge of the most […]

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The Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT), the beleaguered online charter school embroiled in a financial battle with the Ohio Department of Education apparently pulled out all of the stops for their 2017 graduation ceremony by bringing in Tucker Carlson from Fox News.

According to Carlson’s booking company, the Washington Speaker’s Bureau, Carlson can be hired for a speaking engagement for a fee of at least $40,001.

Of course, since ECOT can spend their money without any disclosure to the public, thanks to the private nature of their “management” companies and lax state laws, we’ll likely never know […]

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The Senate Finance Committee introduced their revised version of the budget bill today (House Bill 49) and while the mere summary of changes totals 14 pages, one change that did not occur was to the House’s provision that eliminates the Resident Educator Program required for teachers in their first four/five years in the profession.

The Senate Finance Committee’s version made no changes to the language that the House added in as described by the Legislative Service Commission (click the image to enlarge):

The bill does the following:

Eliminates the Resident Educator Program […]

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Two lengthy bills have been introduced in the Ohio House that seek to implement significant changes once again to educational practices across the state.

House Bill 176 had its first hearing in the Ohio House Education and Career Readiness Committee on May 16, and House Bill 181 gets its first hearing this coming Tuesday, May 23, in the same committee (click on image above).

The two bills have many similarities, so it’s curious that Chair Andrew Brenner is giving the bills separate hearings in the committee, especially considering they […]

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In the latest iteration of the Ohio Budget Bill, language has been added that would eliminate the Resident Educator Program that requires new teachers to jump through some hoops in order to maintain their license, and their career.  The most talked about piece is the costly Resident Educator Summative Assessment, or RESA, a series of tasks that are submitted and graded by a third-party vendor, Educopia, that is contracted by the Ohio Department of Education at a cost of $5,000,000 per year.  In a lean budget year, the House might be looking to save money wherever they can.

The changes […]

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Governor John Kasich’s latest budget bill, House Bill 49, contains a variety of non-budget related legislation (as has always been the case), but one short section tucked far into the budget has captured the attention of teachers and administrators more than any other — a requirement to complete an “internship”, of sorts, in order to renew a license.

Here is the exact language from page 1,056 of the bill:

Sec. 3319.236. Beginning September 1, 2018, the state board of education’s rules for the renewal of educator licenses shall require each applicant for renewal of a license to complete an on-site work experience with […]

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Governor Kasich released his proposed 2018-19 budget on Monday and, as always, it includes his priorities for reforming the educational system. While the specific details won’t be known until the actual language in the budget bill is introduced, the Governor has put out a brief list revealing that his political agenda remains unchanged – testing, privatization, and minimal funding, with some slight evidence that he may not actually know what is already taking place in Ohio.

Here is the list from Kasich’s budget recommendations with our commentary following:

Agency Priorities

Provide the basic education funding necessary to […]

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