Gov. Kasich just delivered his State of the State and while the partisans on each side will cheer or boo some of his proposals, I suspect that the most bipartisan support will be in his plans for education. Ohio does have serious problems when it comes to dropouts and vocational education and the efforts to get kids on the right track and staying on the track will pay dividends in the future.
Through the magic of Twitter, I was recently made aware of an op-ed published by the Charlotte News and Observer in late January by two folks who are officials with Public Schools First NC, which I assume is a group dedicated to promoting public schools. Linda Nelson of the North Carolina Association of Independent Schools penned an excellent rebuttal that was published a short time later.
I had the opportunity to attend (and present to OAIS heads) at the recent ISACS Heads of School Conference in Chicago last week (I managed to make it out before the snow!) This is my second year attending and found it to be very informative, especially the talks given by NAIS President John Chubb about the role and future of independent schools in our nation.
Yesterday, I had the pleasure of following along on the redefineED website as they hosted a chat with Michael Petrilli of The Fordham Institute. A transcript of the chat can be found here: http://www.redefinedonline.org/2014/01/petrilli-school-choice-movement-better-off-without-awful-schools/
In the last several days, there has been a great deal of discussion on Twitter and on the blogosphere regarding the use of standardized tests in private schools, both for students on vouchers and the student population at large, depending on the number of students receiving vouchers in the school. The Fordham Institute kicked things off with its Public Accountability and Private-School Choice Toolkit and since then, many have weighed in to agree or disagree, including Jason Bedrick of the Cato Institute, Michael Petrilli of the Fordham Institute, Robert Enlow of the Friedman Foundation, Matt Ladner on Jay Greene’s blog and Rick Hess on the Education Week blog, among others.
As part of the outreach by OAIS to members of the public, the OAIS website will now feature a blog where I plan to discuss some of the items currently being discussed in the education community and their impact on independent education both in Ohio and nationally. Ohio has long been an outlier (in good ways and bad) when it comes to the relationship between state government and nonpublic schools. It is my hope that the blog can be used to add some perspective to larger discussion from the point of view of independent schools in Ohio so that the community might have a better idea of where our schools are coming from and what can change to benefit our schools, our students and our state.
The Ohio Association of Independent Schools consists of 44 member schools throughout the state of Ohio, all committed to the quality education that independent schools provide to students from diverse backgrounds. Each school is governed by an independent board with a focus on the school and education itself, not other issues that may affect the quality of a school’s curriculum or teaching.
Ohio Association of Independent Schools
Dan Dodd, Executive Director
PO Box 492
Granville, Ohio 43023