The short description below was written by fellow Superintendent Bob Humble from Fairbanks and is being shared throughout Ohio as Superintendents across Ohio are tired of over-testing our student and your kids. We need your help on this issue!
In 2016 the federal government finally got around to passing a new law designed to replace the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). The new legislation, The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), is designed to provide new flexibility to the states. It requires that states across the nation submit plans for implementation of the federal rules to the US Department of Education this spring. The new law is structured such that learning and testing decisions are returned to the states and even local districts. The Ohio Department of Education (ODE) had many meetings across the state to hear from people about how the new state plan should look. Over and over, at those sessions, participants urged the ODE to reduce the amount of state testing – a change that is allowable in the new federal law. Recently, Ohio officials released a draft of their plan. Disappointingly, the Ohio does not reduce testing at all. In fact, it maintains current levels of testing, failing to hear the urgent and overwhelming advice of the people of the state. If you, like me, are outraged by the ongoing test and punish philosophy in our state, I urge you to go to http://education.ohio.gov/getattachment/Topics/Every-Student-Succeeds-Act-ESSA/ESSA_Framework_Report.pdf.aspx to read the proposed plan. Then, add your comment here https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ESSAOhioOverview to tell the plan designers to follow the minimum requirements set forth by the federal government.
Of course, contacting our legislators is also a great way to voice your concerns. Representative Keith Faber can be reached by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Representative Craig Riedel can be reached by email at: email@example.com. Representative Bob Cupp can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Senator Cliff Hite can be reached by email at: email@example.com. Senator Matt Huffman can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is a golden opportunity to get local control back into our schools. I urge you to join me in calling on Ohio’s leaders to step forward and enact common sense reform for the benefit of Ohio’s public school children.
Thank you for your help.