Education is always a hot-button issue, on both the local and federal level. Whether you have kids or not, we all have a stake in a first-rate educational system for our children, the future of our state. In order to ensure a prosperous path forward, we must encourage policies that give students a wealth of opportunities to gain skills that lead to good jobs and a strong economy.

On that note, as your state representative, it is also my goal to keep many decisions regarding education controlled at the local level. So many of our school districts across our diverse state are so different, and local control allows our schools to better cater to individualized needs. With that in mind, Ohio must also have a stake in policies regarding education that are enacted at the federal level.

To make sure your views are heard regarding our state’s education plan, the Ohio House recently passed House Bill 235. This bill gives the state legislature greater oversight regarding the education plan required under the federal Every Student Succeeds Act of 2015 (ESSA). Specifically, it requires the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) to submit a written copy of the state plan to each member of the House and Senate education committees, and ODE is restricted from putting the plan into effect should the legislature disapprove of it.

What this bill will do is give the Ohio House and Senate more say in the plan that the administration develops under ESSA, thereby giving your ideas and concerns a better platform. As your state representative, it is my job to make sure your voice is heard when discussing and voting on legislation that affects all Ohioans. House Bill 235 allows the people of Ohio to play a bigger role in the state’s education policy.

As the parents, teachers, and coaches that raise the children of this state, your thoughts and opinions are of the utmost importance as the state crafts a plan to improve their education. As a supporter of local control, I’m glad that House Bill 235 will more directly involve you in this plan.

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