Education

Photo of Lou Blessing
KAREN KASLER / OHIO PUBLIC RADIO

The controversial proposal to merge K-12, higher education and workforce development into one big cabinet level state agency won’t go forward any time soon. Statehouse correspondent Karen Kasler reports the plan was backed by some Republican lawmakers and Gov. John Kasich, but had lots of opposition.

The controversial proposal to merge K-12, higher education and workforce development into one big cabinet level state agency won’t go forward any time soon. The plan was backed by some Republican lawmakers and Gov. John Kasich, but had lots of opposition.

photo of University of Akron Law School
UNIVERSITY OF AKRON

The University of Akron says it's anticipating a $16 million operating deficit for the new fiscal year beginning July 1st.

The university attributes the shortfall partly to a downward trend in enrollment the past several years, including a projected 7 percent decrease for the fall. But interim President John Green says the school will adjust program offerings in the hopes of attracting new students.

photo of Inter-University Council presentation
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

A coalition of public universities is touting a study that says income from schools, their students and alumni adds up to $42 billion pumped into the state’s economy.

The Inter-University Council of Ohio says a public university student ends up making more than $4 for every $1 spent on tuition.

photo of Zachary Blanner, Charles Johnson
KABIR BHATIA / WKSU

Since the fall of 2016, the number of colleges that have varsity eSports programs has jumped from six to more than 70. This fall, Northeast Ohio’s two largest universities will start offering scholarships for students who are skilled at battling futuristic robots, jungle monsters, and warlocks.  So what does that mean for the universities and their students?

The investigation into allegations of sexual abuse against a former Ohio State doctor has nearly doubled to include athletes from 14 sports and non-students from outside of campus.

An Ohio State Board of Trustees committee signed off Thursday on a measure that would allow certain law enforcement officers to carry concealed weapons on campus, and a plan to purchase land in Delaware County for a satellite medical facility.

Kent State board of trustees meeting
TIM RUDELL / WKSU

Tuition at Kent State University is going up this fall for out-out-of-state undergraduates and all graduate students, but not for current in-state undergraduates. University trustees approved the changes at their quarterly meeting Wednesday. 

The majority of Kent State students this fall will be returning, in-state undergraduates. They will still pay $5,006 a semester -- same as last year. In-coming freshmen tuition was set in March and locked in for four years so they’re not affected. 

photo of ECOT sign
KAREN KASLER / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

A progressive think tank says data from the Ohio Department of Education’s website shows not only how much state money went to the now-closed Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow, but also how much traditional public school districts lost to what was the state’s largest online charter school.

Tri-C is Offering a Drone Certification Course

Jun 6, 2018
a photo of Tri-C
Cuyahoga Community College / Instagram

Cuyahoga Community College is opening up a drone certification course this month at its Parma campus. It will give students 25 hours of practice flight time and prepare them for an FAA Unmanned Pilot License exam.

Associate Dean James Ploskonka says the course is open to all students, not just pilots or first responders.

photo of Westlake Albert Einstein Academy
ALBERT EINSTEIN ACADEMIES OF OHIO

A charter school focused on LGBTQ students will be opening in Lakewood this fall.

Officials at Albert Einstein Academies of Ohio say they design their schools around the needs of the students who enroll. Recently, they’ve noticed an increase in the need for resources among LGBTQ students at their existing campuses in Westlake and Strongsville. Superintendent Bruce Thomas says the new high school will offer wrap-around services for students in Lakewood.

photo of Pauly Belletti and Lisa Gonzalez
IDEASTREAM

While the Ohio House speaker saga drags on, more than 150 bills are awaiting action. One is a measure that would preserve money for a program that serves more than 800 at-risk kids with severe behavioral needs each year.

Eight-year-old Pauly Belletti is an outgoing, energetic first grader in Parma.

“School is awesome.”

“Why is school awesome?”

“It's because you do cool stuff in art and do cool stuff in gym and do cool stuff in music.”

Pauly was diagnosed with autism at age 2. His mother Lisa Gonzalez says life hasn’t always been this good for Pauly.

Akron Schools See a Major Boost in Graduation Rates

May 28, 2018
photo of Chad Aldis
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

One Northeast Ohio school district is graduating students at higher rates this year than in the recent past. But education advocates say the increase isn’t necessarily something to celebrate.

In all, 93 percent of Akron City Schools’ seniors are expected to graduate this year, up from an estimated 54 percent who were on track to graduate at the beginning of the school year.

Ohio's Standardized Tests May Just be too Easy

May 28, 2018
photo of Ohio Department of Education building
MICHELLE FAUST / WCPN

A new Stanford University analysis of state and national test scores shows more Ohio students pass state exams than similar nationwide tests. Researchers say that means the state’s proficiency standards are too low.

The analysis by Stanford’s Hoover Institution looks at NAEP scores, or the National Assessment of Educational Progress. The NAEP test is the only exam that compares academic progress across states. 

Kasich Talks Virtue in Harvard Commencement Address

May 23, 2018
photo of John Kasich
OHIO GOVERNOR'S OFFICE

Gov. John Kasich didn’t offer words of advice during his commencement address at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government Wednesday, but instead told graduates not to count on people like him to make change.

The crowd of graduates and their families welcomed Gov. John Kasich to Cambridge with loud applause after, during his introduction, it was noted that the former Republican presidential candidate did not vote for Pres. Donald Trump.

photo of Dan Ramos
JO INGLES / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Studies show in the near future, about two-thirds of Ohio’s jobs will require some college or skilled vocational training. But the cost of getting that education often leaves Ohioans with thousands of dollars in student loans that hinder their buying power and ability to succeed financially.

Democratic Rep. Dan Ramos says he pays a couple of hundred dollars each month on student loans. The 36-year-old lawmaker says he’s not alone.

photo of East CLC
EAST CLC

Akron Public Schools is going to benefit from a half million-dollar grant to better focus educational and support services for its students.

Key Bank is giving the grant to United Way of Summit County to coordinate the programs for the East Community Learning Center and the schools that feed into it. These include providing wraparound services for non-academic issues at elementary schools and creating a new financial technology learning lab at East CLC.

Photo of Dave Yost
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

An audit regarding alleged attendance inflation by the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow is now in the hands of several investigative agencies. The review claims that ECOT padded their student data on purpose to get more money from the state. Critics say this information comes after years of ECOT operating unchecked.

Photo of the Board of Education
ASHTON MARRA / STATE IMPACT OHIO

The Ohio Board of Education will consider a resolution this week delaying a major piece of the state’s school report cards.

State Board of Education members will consider postponing the implementation of the final piece of the A-F grading system — the summary grades for schools and school districts.

The 2017-18 report cards will be the first time schools will receive an overall grade, made up of more than a dozen scores on things like academic progress, graduation rates, and K-3rd grade literacy.

Cleveland State official seal
CLEVELAND STATE UNIVERSITY

Ronald Berkman participated in his final commencement as president of Cleveland State University this weekend.  Berkman steps down this summer after nine years leading the urban institution.

During his tenure, Berkman implemented policies that he says were meant to help first generation and minority students succeed, like allowing students to enroll in classes for multiple semesters at a time to keep them on track to graduate.

Editor's note: The complete audit has been added to this story.

Ohio Auditor Dave Yost has referred findings in his long-awaited audit of what was the state’s largest charter school over to the U.S. attorney's office and Franklin County prosecutor for possible criminal charges.

A photo of a graduaton cap.
WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

A new national survey shows college students graduating with the class of 2018 could have a more difficult time finding a job than other recent graduates. 

Across Ohio, colleges and universities are celebrating their spring commencements this month, with some like Ohio State University celebrating the largest graduating classes in their history.

photo of Overwatch eSports league
KABIR BHATIA / WKSU

Kent State University has joined a rapidly growing movement around the country and started an eSports program to recruit video gamers and form a team to compete against other schools.

Kent State held its first eSports tournament on Saturday, complete with play-by-play announcers, fans in the stands and an online stream of the six-person teams playing the shoot-em-up game “Overwatch.”

Photo of Journalist Dan Rather
JEFF ST.CLAIR / WKSU

Veteran journalist Dan Rather speaks as part of Kent State University’s 2018 commemoration of the shootings of May 4, 1970, and shares his experiences as one of America's premier broadcasters.

In comments ahead of his appearance at the Presidential Speaker Series, Rather said that dissent has a place in American democracy.

In reflecting on what happened 48 years ago, he said the Vietnam War probably would have lasted longer had not the killing of four students shaken the nation.

Photo of Steve Dyer from Innovation Ohio
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Longtime critics of the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow, the now-closed but still controversial online charter school, say that more employees would come forward with accusations of student data manipulation had they not signed contracts with non-disclosure agreements attached.

Steve Dyer with the liberal think tank Innovation Ohio says these so-called non-disclosure agreements signed by ECOT employees cover up any possible data fraud with public money.

Photo of a school chalk board with the words "report card"
SIMEZ78 / SHUTTERSHOCK

A new proposal would overhaul Ohio's state report-card system. The bill would back off of the “A” through “F” grading scheme and offer a more comprehensive view. 

Republican Rep. Mike Duffey says school districts are receiving unfair grades on their report cards which he says end up being misleading.

He says a district can excel in an area, but still receive a “C” or “D” grade because of the way the section is scored.

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