1. A new independent STEM school coming to Northeast Ohio for the 2019-2020 school year! It will start its inaugural year with rising seventh and eighth graders—co-located with a district school in Campbell, no less!—adding two new grade levels each year as it grows to cover 7-12. Y’all know how much I love love love the STEM schools. Impact Academy is open to all and is not far from Youngstown at all. Just sayin’. (Youngstown Vindicator, 3/27/19) Speaking of choices, a new charter school for grades K-6 will be opening in Marion for the 2019-2020 school year. Best wishes for a great first year! (Marion Star, 3/27/19)
  2. The superintendent of Troy City Schools unloads on the state legislature—especially on two particular legislators—in this commentary piece. He also reveals what seems to me a “complicated” relationship with school choice. (Troy Daily News, 3/27/19) A more sedate commentary comes from the pen of two members of the board of Ohio Excels, the new nonprofit organization created by members of the business community across the state. Its mission is to help boost K-12 education and especially academic attainment for Ohio’s students. (Cleveland Plain Dealer, 3/29/19)
  3. Speaking of sedate, the treasurer of Lorain City Schools this week gave a calm, no-nonsense report on the district’s financial picture to the Academic Distress Commission under whose aegis Lorain operates. Bottom line: There is no fiscal chaos in Lorain and the trend is even more positive than dude’s previous report in December. Despite what you may have heard from other, less-informed sources. Why, I ask you, is this not getting more play in the media? (The Morning Journal, 3/27/19)
  4. State testing season can make some folks a little nutty. None more so than journalists, in my experience. In this piece from the Dayton Daily News appears the following sentence: “In Dayton Public Schools, the results [of this year’s state tests] could determine whether the district faces state takeover this fall, although legislators have vowed changes to that system, leaving DPS in limbo.” I suppose I could be misreading it, but the implication to me is that if the ADC system is changed and test results don’t determine a takeover, then those test results wouldn’t actually matter to the district and the “limbo” is deciding whether or not it is necessary for the district to try/care/bother re: test outcomes. Have I got that right? Fordham is namechecked in the piece as apparently the only folks in Ohio who are supportive of test-based accountability so perhaps my judgment is affected by this. But seriously, is there any other way to read that sentence? (Dayton Daily News, 3/29/19) And if you think I’m exaggerating about journalists and their weird reactions to state testing season, I give you Exhibit B. But I’ll bet you’ve already seen this train wreck on the interwebs. (Toledo Blade, 3/28/19)

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Policy Priority:

Jeff Murray is a lifelong resident of central Ohio. He previously worked at School Choice Ohio and the Greater Columbus Arts Council. He has two degrees from the Ohio State University. He lives in the Clintonville neighborhood with his wife and twin daughters. He is proud every day to support the Fordham mission to help make excellent education options more numerous and more readily available for families and…

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