Grass Roots Initiative Moving Forward

On November 21 of last year, 60 superintendents met in Columbus to kick off an initiative that I believe will prove to be historically significant for the children who attend Ohio’s public schools.  The initiative is to provide citizens with a stronger voice in shaping the statewide education policy impacting them and their local schools.  In a day-long meeting hosted by the Buckeye Association of School Administrators this past Tuesday, the superintendents leading this grass roots effort provided an update on their work to their colleagues.  Included in the update were:

  • videos produced by the Educational Service Center of Lorain County highlighting how high stakes teting, the charter school movement and the loss of local control are impacting our schools and communities,
  • a resolution passed by the Vandalia-Butler City Schools Board of Education to take back local control,
  • a progress report on how superintendents in southwest Ohio are engaging their citizens in discussions about how education policy in the Buckeye state is impacting them and their local schools,
  • tips on how to generate successful coffee discussions – which is the subject of my next blog,
  • the results of county-wide surveys reporting on how citizens view statewide policy mandates to reform Ohio’s public schools,
  • an update by Ridgemont Local Schools Superintendent Emmy Beeson on the work of the Ohio Public School Advocacy Superintendents’ Group to create a vision for public education,
  • information about an initiative in the Kirtland Local School District to engage community members in helping to create locally developed educational standards, and
  • feedback from book discussions of America’s Schools at a Turning Point:  And how we THE PEOPLE can help shape their future.

The next step in this superintendent-led Ohio initiative is to begin meeting this fall with local citizens and discussing how the education reform movement in Ohio is impacting them and their schools.

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