132nd General Assembly
Off to a Busy Start
Three bills are of particular interest to Ohio's education community: Senate Bill 34 and House Bills 21 and 58.
Under provisions of S.B. 34, all public schools -- with the exception those operating on a year-round basis - would begin the school year for students after the Labor Day holiday, starting in 2018-2019. However, school boards and governing authorities
Could adopt resolutions allowing schools to open prior to Labor Day if they determine it is in schools' best interests.
It is predictable that representatives of Ohio's amusement parks, campgrounds and county fairs will encourage legislators to support the legislation. Estimate indicate that delaying the start of the school year would increase annual summer tourism spending by about $200 million.
H.B. 21 proposes a dramatic change for both districts and charter schools. The bill would shift responsibility for review and reporting of student residency from districts to charters.
Charter school governing authorities would be required to verify to ODE each student's "home" school district and would continue to adopt policies to prescribe documents used to verify student residency. A change from current law in which districts are responsible for review of residency records for charter school students. When districts and charters disagree on student residency, charter schools must provide districts with student residency documentation.
Given the fact that some districts routinely "flag" student records - and delay funding to charters - over student residency issues, districts may object to this bill.
HB 58 would add handwriting instruction to the k-5 curriculum. The legislation is aimed at ensuring that students develop the ability to print letters and words legibly by third grade and to create readable documents using legible cursive handwriting by the end of fifth grade.