Fedor Votes In Favor Of Sweeping Charter School Reform Bill
Lawmaker expresses concerns with charter teacher retirement restrictions
October 07, 2015
[ Teresa Fedor Home | Teresa Fedor Press ]

The Ohio House today agreed on conference committee changes to House Bill 2 (HB 2), a bipartisan education bill aimed at increasing transparency and accountability for Ohio’s charter schools. The monthslong legislative process culminated in significant reforms that will strengthen oversight of a charter industry repeatedly plagued by fraud, scandal and failing report cards.

“This legislation represents a strong, bipartisan effort to strengthen Ohio’s charter school system,” said Rep. Teresa Fedor (D-Toledo), ranking minority member of the House Education Committee. “As the recent scandals at the Ohio Department of Education involving charter school oversight highlight, the charter industry has for too long run wild with taxpayers’ money while failing to deliver an adequate education to our children. These long overdue reforms will strengthen oversight and increase transparency. ” 

HB 2 requires charter school operators to report how they spend tax dollars, tightens rules on student attendance and changes how the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) rates charter sponsors. Other changes include cracking down on “ineffective” sponsors, improving education standards and increasing accountability and transparency for Ohio’s oft-ridiculed charter school system.

One last-minute change made to HB 2 in conference committee that did raise concerns among lawmakers was a restriction blocking new teachers at charter schools from being a part of the state pension system. The change will affect newly hired charter school teachers working directly for charter operators rather than the school districts that provide the majority of charter school funding.

“I remain deeply concerned about restrictions on the ability of newly hired teachers at charter schools to invest in the public retirement system,” added Fedor. “The majority has promised to address this outstanding issue in the immediate future, and I intend to hold them to their word.” 

House Bill 2 passed the Ohio House by a vote of 91-6. 

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