by German Lopez
at 01:48 PM | Permalink
New assessments could result in worse ratings
Ohio received a No Child Left
Behind waiver yesterday, and the state is now expected to evaluate its schools
with a more stringent assessment plan suggested by Gov. John Kasich.The state released district-by-district
data showing how each school district would fall under the new system, which
uses letter grades to evaluate schools. The simulation, which uses 2010-2011
data, shows most local schools would dropCincinnati Public Schools would
drop from the second-best rating of “Effective” under the current system to a
D-, with 23 schools flunking and Walnut Hills High School retaining its top
mark with an A.Charter schools in particular are
worried about surviving under the new grading system. Under Ohio law, if a
charter school flunks two out of three consecutive years, the school has to
close down.Some local charter schools are
especially desperate to improve performance. Earlier this year, Dohn Community High School began a program that would literally pay students for showing up to class and working hard.The waiver from No Child Left
Behind frees Ohio from a requirement to make 100 percent of students
“proficient” in math and reading by 2014. Many parents, teachers and schools
had criticized the No Child Left Behind requirement for being unrealistic.With freedom from No Child Left
Behind, Ohio now has the responsibility of paving its own path toward school
and student accountability. The new grading system was singled out as a big
caveat by the Obama administration. Ohio is also expected to put extra funds in
low-performing schools and create new accountability measures for teachers and
principals.Ohio is expected to work out the
full details of its plan by Sept. 15. If it doesn’t, the No Child Left Behind
waiver will expire. The suggestions would then need to be approved by the
legislature before January 2013 and go into effect August 2013.The Obama administration is using
the waivers as an incentive for education reform in states. Ohio was one of
eight states to get waivers yesterday. Connecticut, Delaware, Louisiana,
Maryland, New York, North Carolina and Rhode Island also obtained waivers.
by Danny Cross
Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel has returned
more than $100,000 in campaign contributions in response to an FBI
investigation into 21 donors who had no record of giving to federal
campaigns and many appearing to have low incomes. Mandel, a
Republican, is running against incombent Democrat Sen. Sherrod Brown.
Mandel's campaign treasurer Kathryn Kessler sent a letter to donors
explaining that any contributions appearing to be under investigation
would be refunded.
From The Toledo Blade:
Although the campaign provided a copy of the letter to The
Blade, it would not explain the timing of the decision or how long it
has been aware of the federal probe.
The Blade revealed the unusual pattern of contributions in
The company's owner, Benjamin Suarez, and 16 of his employees
(plus some of their spouses) gave about $200,000 to Mr. Mandel and
U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci (R., Wadsworth) last year. Each of those donors
gave $5,000, the maximum allowable amount, to one or both candidates.
The Ohio Senate yesterday passed new
fracking regulations, and the final version caused some environmental
organizations to change their stance on the bill. The Ohio
Environmental Council and the Sierra Club had both been neutral on
the legislation until changes were made forcing anyone suing over
chemical trade secrets to show current or potential harm, according
to The Enquirer. The regulations are part of Kasich's new energy bill
and easily passed both the Senate and House and is expected to be
signed by Kasich soon.
Cincinnati Public Schools says it will
apply for the latest available federal education grants, which amount
to nearly $700 million. The grants are geared toward helping schools
proceed with reform and innovation.
According to a new poll, President
Obama leads Mitt Romney in Ohio by six percentage points. Wonder if
Obama's “cow pie of distortion” speech had anything to do with
The John Edwards trial has entered day
six of deliberations.
United Nations inspectors have
reportedly found uranium in Iran enriched beyond the highest levels
previously reported. One diplomat said the measure could actually be
a measurement error, though the reading could also mean that Iran is
closer to producing bomb-grade uranium than previously thought.
Scientists might be one step closer to
creating birth control for men after U.K. scientists found a gene
used to enable sperm to mature.
From USA Today: “Profits at big U.S.
companies broke records last year, and so did pay for CEOs.”
Facebook's initial public offering
didn't go entirely as expected, and some investors are getting
refunds after technical problems and other issues marred the
company's first week of trading.
The Reds completed a four-game sweep of
the Atlanta Braves last night, winning their sixth in a row and
overtaking the St. Louis Cardinal for first place in the NL Central.
0 Comments · Wednesday, March 14, 2012
If Cincinnati Board of Education members
harbor any doubts about the validity of graduation test scores at Robert
A. Taft Information Technology High School, they’re not sharing them
0 Comments · Wednesday, March 7, 2012
Cincinnati Public Schools board member
Eileen Cooper-Reed plans to raise questions about test scores at Taft
Information Technology High School at the board’s March 12 meeting in
response to a recent CityBeat article (“Miracle or Mirage?,”
issue of Feb. 22) that delved into contrasting Ohio Graduation Test and
ACT test scores at Taft in 2010 and 2011.
by James McNair
Posted In: School Board
at 02:44 PM | Permalink
Eileen Cooper-Reed will broach the subject at March 12 school board meeting
Following CityBeat's Feb. 22 cover
story outlining test-score discrepancies at Taft Information
Technology High School, a Cincinnati Public Schools board member
tells CityBeat that she plans to raise those questions as a topic of
discussion at the board’s next meeting.
The article, “Miracle or Mirage? ACT
scores and a mysteriously ended cheating probe raise questions about
Taft High School’s climb to the top,” delved into contrasting
Ohio Graduation Test and ACT test scores at Taft in 2010 and 2011, as
well as a 2006 erasure analysis showing that Taft students entered
correct answers after 88 percent of all erasures on that year’s
OGT. Taft is one of only two excellent-rated high schools in the city
of Cincinnati and a 2010 winner of a National Blue Ribbon award from
the U.S. Department of Education.
The board member, Eileen Cooper-Reed,
doesn’t know what she will ask for or proposed at the board’s
March 12 meeting. “What I do know is that if we have nothing to
hide, then we have nothing to fear,” she says. “Whatever we can
do to make things clear so the community knows what’s going on,
it’s worth doing.”
At a board meeting in November 2006,
Cooper-Reed expressed dismay at having learned about the erasure
analysis from a Columbus Dispatch article that ran four months after
CPS, then under the leadership of superintendent Rosa Blackwell,
refused to investigate the erasures. Cooper-Reed and former board
member Rick Williams said at the meeting that they would send a
letter to the Ohio Department of Education asking it to revisit the
matter. She says now that she has “no idea” if the letter went
out. An ODE spokesman said there is no record of having received the
letter or taking up the request.
“I will bring it up,” Reed says of
the March 12 board meeting. “If someone else doesn’t bring it up,
I certainly will.”
0 Comments · Wednesday, November 9, 2011
reporter asked a few parents in line if they thought something was wrong
with an educational system in which some schools are so much better
than others that they warrant camping out to get into, he was informed
that if his “drug addict parents did things like this” he “wouldn’t be
making $20,000 a year, living in an apartment and standing out in the
cold like a dumbass” with them.
If approved, permanent levy would buy books, computers
0 Comments · Wednesday, October 19, 2011
When Cincinnati voters go to the polls in
November, they will be asked to decide on a new, permanent funding
source for local schools. The Cincinnati Board of Education is
seeking a property tax levy, which is Issue 32 on the ballot. The
measure is a permanent improvement levy for 7.95 mills. If approved, it
would provide the school district with about $49.5 million annually.
1 Comment · Wednesday, July 27, 2011
Barack Obama and John Boehner walk into a bar. The bartender says, “We don’t serve your kind in here … just kidding — what do you assholes want?” This stupid joke is a lot funnier than what actually happened when Obama and Boehner walked into a meeting room in an attempt to avoid a government default, only to walk back out and blame each other for walking away.
0 Comments · Wednesday, November 24, 2010
If you were to judge what marriage is like by depictions in beer commercials, you'd likely believe that most of them are pretty terrible and most husbands are real dicks who prefer doing idiotic things with their friends than spending time with their wives. In fact, a new study by the Pew Research Center found that 39 percent of Americans believe marriage is becoming obsolete. Jerry Seinfeld's hilarious TV single life apparently has spoiled it for everyone.
1 Comment · Tuesday, August 10, 2010
The city of Cincinnati recently used $88,000 in grant money to buy 20 solar-powered trash compactors that have been placed in locations around town. Although critics allege the $4,400 per compactor cost is high, we agree with supporters who noted that fewer trips by garbage trucks emitting fumes will lead to cleaner air.