1. What’s up in Dayton? Awesomeness, that’s what. Just take a look. First up, a change in bell schedules for nearly every school building in the district is on tap for the new school year. Awesome. (Dayton Daily News, 7/14/18) Additionally, the district is planning to begin implementation of a pilot turnaround strategy in five formerly-low-performing but very-soon-to-be-better-performing district schools. Also awesome. (Dayton Daily News, 7/16/18) The board also approved a slate of other new hires and rehires including principals and coaches and a number of new school resource officers. All awesome, of course. (Dayton Daily News, 7/17/18)
  2. Speaking of Dayton, here’s an update on some comings and goings in charter schools in the Gem City. Also awesome. (Dayton Daily News, 7/16/18)
  3. In today’s Easy Quiz, who do you think said the following phrase? “One has to look at the school district as a business.” If you guessed it was some for-profit corporate privatizer charter school pirate out to destroy the public common school system, you’d be wrong. But thanks for playing. It was in fact a 30+ year employee of Lorain City Schools, currently serving as Chief Operations Officer. He also said this: “I have to be able to look in the mirror to tell the public we’re spending their money wisely and doing everything we can to save it.” The nerve! Unfortunately, the longest-standing subscribers to Gadfly Bites (I love all five of you!) will remember him as the same fellow who famously told a local pastor that there would be no metal detectors in the Colossus of Lorain (aka their schmancy, nearly-complete-back-then new high school) because the “knuckleheads” knew how to get around them if they wanted to. He’s in charge of the hundreds of security cameras and keycarded doors instead. (Northern Ohio Morning Journal, 7/17/18)
  4. Yesterday, DeBlade opined on DeVos. (Toledo Blade, 7/17/18)
  5. It seems that some parents in tiny Madison Local Schools in rural Richland County are, shall we say, traditionalists when it comes to education. Several months have, apparently, been spent fighting tooth and nail to resist implementation of a nine week exploratory STEM curriculum in the district’s middle school. While some of the resisters say their concern is the amount of time to be taken away from other electives like gym and music, the quotes in multiple news sources since March read more like the district is planning to teach phrenology or moxibustion (or the Common Core). What SHOULD be concerning is that what’s coming is simply an off-the-shelf set of worksheets from some generic non-profit mimeograph factory. (Mansfield News Journal, 7/18/18)

Jeff Murray comes to the Thomas B. Fordham Institute from a five-year stint at School Choice Ohio. At SCO, Jeff was involved with getting the word out to parents around the state about school voucher availability - directing postcard campaigns, call centers, and advertising campaigns over the last few years. Tens of thousands of parents across Ohio received the news…

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