State Representative Andrew Brenner (R-Powell) has announced that House Bill 342 passed out of the Ohio House of Representatives.

HB 342, which Brenner sponsored, allows educational service centers (ESCs) to apply to be the lead applicant of a consortium of school districts for grant funding under the Straight A Program. ESCs partner with school districts within defined regions throughout the state to offer shared instructional services and assistance to students within the member districts. Allowing ESCs to serve as the lead entity for grant proposals allows for better coordination and shared educational services.

“Allowing education service centers to act as a lead sponsor to the Straight-A Fund will give school districts greater flexibility and cost savings,” Brenner said. “This in turn will stretch Straight-A fund dollars.”

The Straight A Program, created in the most recent state operating budget (HB 59) covering fiscal years 2014 and 2015, provides grants to entities like school districts, ESCs and community and STEM schools. Under the program, grants are awarded for projects that fulfill important goals related to student achievement, responsible budgeting and shared resources.

The bill will now go to the Ohio Senate for further consideration.

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