- In case you missed it, Wednesday’s press conference on House Bill 290 has been getting some media coverage. This is the so-called “backpack funding” bill which would basically allow families to decide where and how to use their share of state school funding, including paying private school tuition with it. Some version of the pros and cons are included in this version of the story from statewide public media, but I am mostly struck by how opponents of the idea leap forward to make some very negative comments about parents. (Statehouse News Bureau, 10/7/21)
- Speaking of weird flexes (were we?), a transportation consultant at the Ohio School Boards Association executes one in this piece regarding student transportation troubles which are, according to him, running rampant across the state. Dude says that driver shortages have been building since at least 2018, but decides to point the finger at parents for somehow pushing these long-known-but-still-unaddressed problems to the aforementioned current breaking point. Sure hope the new boss at OSBA has a sit-down with that guy scheduled sometime soon. (10TV News, Columbus, 10/6/21) In the previous piece, a Columbus charter school parent describes how bad transportation has been for her “straight-A honor roll student” this year. In this piece, another Columbus charter school parent has created his own solution to the transportation problems being faced, not only for his family but for dozens of others, regardless of what schools they attend. (ABC6 News, Columbus, 10/6/21)
- On Wednesday, we marveled at a small and shrinking school district looking to spend $50 million in order to downsize. Today, we have another school district which is apparently losing student population (although not everyone quoted here believes this) and which is also planning to spend big on facilities anyway. The twists here are: we’re in the bougie Cleveland suburbs rather than rural Ohio, Shaker wants to at least keep the same number of facilities it has (or add to the portfolio if possible) rather than downsizing, and that all three “taxing bodies” in the area—the schools, the city, and the public library—are working together to cooperatively spend their loot so that each entity can maximally benefit from
the others’ moneywhatever the others ultimately decide to do. Definitely doesn’t seem like a recipe for efficiency to me. (Cleveland.com, 10/5/21)
- Finally this week, why do I feel like we have somehow leaped a long way from “online education is obviously inferior” in a very short time when I read about this plan? (NBC4i, Columbus, 10/6/21)
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