Creating smart, coherent education policy is painstaking work; there are technical, budgetary, and political challenges at almost every turn. But it is some of the most important work that state leaders can undertake. As Ohioans prepare to elect a new governor this November, and as state leaders look to build upon past education successes, we at the Fordham Institute are developing a set of policy proposals that we believe can lead to increased achievement and greater opportunity for Ohio students.

Over the coming months, we'll post a series of policy proposals on our blog and compile them on this page. These proposals aim to ensure that Ohio can thrive well into the future in a global economy where knowledge, talent, and technical skills are at a premium. Ohio has a long proud history as one of the nation's engines of growth, but today faces challenges such as a large "talent gap." To better understand this gap, only 43 percent of working age Ohioans have postsecondary certifications today. By 2025, it is estimated that 64 percent of in-demand jobs will require such credentials. A strong K-12 education system is a key to closing this enormous gap.

We believe that if Ohio policy leaders adopt and implement the education policy proposals outlined here, more Ohio students will be on a surer track for success in school--and in life.


MARCH 2019:

With Mike DeWine sworn in as Ohio’s 70th governor, and with his administration well underway, we are proud to roll out the full set of our education policy proposals.

You can download the full document, titled Fulfilling the Readiness Promise: Twenty-five education policy ideas for Ohio, at this link, or you can access the individual policy proposals from the links in the index below.


Our policy proposals are divided into five categories. They are listed here, along with individual blogs describing specific proposals:

Goal 1: Maintain high expectations for all students

Provide clear information to parents about college readiness (posted October 15, 2018)

Fine-tune state assessment policies (posted November 26, 2018)

Refine school report cards (posted March 4, 2019)

Align graduation requirements with college and career readiness (posted March 4, 2019)

Goal 2: Empower Ohio’s families

Create a preschool scholarship for low- to middle-income students (posted March 4, 2019)

Expand interdistrict open enrollment (posted March 4, 2019)

Develop a statewide course-access program (posted October 22, 2018)

Remove geographic restrictions on brick-and-mortar charter schools (posted November 12, 2018)

Broaden eligibility for private school scholarships (posted March 4, 2019)

Goal 3: Support great educators

Create a curriculum-review committee (posted October 8, 2018)

Develop teacher residencies (posted March 4, 2019)

Eliminate mandatory teacher-salary schedules (posted March 4, 2019)

Eliminate districts’ ability to bargain away their managerial rights (posted March 4, 2019)

Tie tenure to teacher performance (posted March 4, 2019)

Create an incentive program to attract and develop high-performing teachers (posted November 5, 2018)

Goal 4: Create transparent and equitable funding systems

Merge state funding components into the core Opportunity Grant (posted March 4, 2019)

Use direct certification for economically disadvantaged funding (posted September 10, 2018)

Phase out the use of caps and guarantees (posted March 4, 2019)

Pay schools of choice directly from the state (posted November 19, 2018)

Invest in brick-and-mortar charter schools (posted March 4, 2019)

Goal 5: Ensure seamless transitions to college or career

Incentivize schools to help students earn high-value industry credentials (posted March 4, 2019) 

Provide tax benefits to employers that train apprentices (posted October 29, 2018)

Create a data system that links K–12 and workforce outcomes (posted September 24, 2018)

Make AP/IB and industry credentialing exams free for low-income students (posted March 4, 2019)

Provide bonuses to teachers when students pass AP/IB exams (posted March 4, 2019)

All images sourced via Getty Images under license.

Image credits (first row from L to R, above): Gunay Aliyeva (high expectations), leremy (empowering families), leremy (supporting great educators); (second row from L to R, above): bananajazz (funding), raufaliyev (college/career).

Policy Priority:
Ohio Education Gadfly