Week in Review - 08/09/2019

Week in Review - 08/09/2019

EDUCATION

The Cleveland Browns Foundation joined the grant-funded partnership between the Ohio Department of Education and Harvard University for a new initiative to promote school attendance and reduce absenteeism. The "Get 2 School, Stay in the Game" Network will aim for overall attendance increases, as well as focus on student subgroups such as African-American and Hispanic children, English learners, economically disadvantaged students and students with disabilities.The initiative is meant to connect schools to one another as well as state and national experts, quality materials, strategies, and evaluation tools. The network's website, www.get2school.org, is available to all schools and districts at no cost.


The State Board of Education Dropout Prevention and Recovery Schools Workgroup heard from Education Management Information System (EMIS) Director David Ehle at its Monday meeting, with Ehle answering members' questions and providing a detailed and technical overview of the state's education data collection efforts. Of concern to members was the fact that district and school administrators have access to a number of student metrics, including attendance records, disability status, scores on state assessments and what schools a student has attended, but data about course credits are not collected. According to Ehle, these data could be collected with additional reporting requirements for school guidance counselors and staff, but the current administrative load is already heavy.


The State Board of Education's (SBOE) Executive Committee held a lengthy executive session Monday with Superintendent of Public Instruction Paolo DeMaria following a previous July meeting in which the members were critical of some aspects of DeMaria's performance. Following the closed session, Board President Laura Kohler told Hannah News she made two errors during the superintendent's recent goal-setting and performance evaluation process: not engaging the superintendent in an open dialogue with other members and not sufficiently stating their general satisfaction with his job performance, outside of the areas they identified, in last month's resolution. She said that their overall conversation was productive.


The Ohio Attorney General's Office says school districts, charter schools, private schools, and institutions of higher education will have until September 15, 2020 to commence operations or obtain construction or renovation financing to avoid an Ohio Board of Building Standards (OBBS)requirement that all educational facilities install storm shelters.


Summer brought the effective date for a new law requiring the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) to offer schools assistance on instruction of cursive handwriting. The department recently posted a new section of the state's model curriculum for English language arts.


EMPLOYMENT/UNEMPLOYMENT

The nation added 164,000 jobs in July, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) announced Friday, while the unemployment rate remained 3.7 percent. June also saw little change in the unemployment rate, and the July report revised the number of new jobs that month from 224,000 down to 193,000. BLS said the number of unemployed persons was also little changed at 6.1 million, and rates for most major worker groups showed little or no changes as well. The one that did show change was the unemployment rate for Asians, which rose to 2.8 percent.

 

STUDIES/POLLS

In an era of concern over"fake news," a new study finds that people draw a distinction between information sources that are dishonest and those that are biased. Researchersfound that a source seen as biased may lose credibility with people, even if they believe the source is scrupulously honest. That means untruthful -- or"fake" -- news isn't the only issue for consumers.