COLUMBUS – State Reps. Andrea White (R-Kettering) and Brian Lampton (R-Beavercreek) today introduced House Bill 244, legislation that would expand educational opportunities for Ohio’s military children to help ease their transition as their families move in and out of Ohio. The bill would specifically allow local education agencies to permit children of military families to participate in both virtual school enrollments and advance enrollments as they prepare to move to a new military installation with orders in hand.
Under the legislation, a school district’s board of education has the ability to permit a school-aged child of a member of the uniformed services who is relocating to the state on active duty, and who is not a resident of the district during the enrollment period, to apply for enrollment in a school district in the same manner and at the same times as students residing in the school district.
“It is critically important that we support our military families’ education and wellbeing as they transition in and out of the military installations in our state – including our region’s Wright-Patterson Air Force Base which is Ohio’s largest single-site employer and headquarters to some of the Air Force’s largest missions,” said White. “This legislation removes barriers and enables our schools to be more flexible and welcoming to families at a time in their service that can be extremely stressful as they relocate to a new assignment.”
The legislation would also allow for students to participate or continue to participate in a school district’s virtual schooling as they move in and out of a district, and waives the proof of residency requirements until the student begins school.
“About 185,000 U.S. military children move between schools annually and can potentially miss important registration and application periods,” said Lampton. “Advance and virtual enrollment, as laid out in our bill, helps to ease some of the challenges military families face. Given the location of Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in the district, our schools will be better equipped to assist our military members and their families under this legislation.”
The bill now awaits an assignment to a standing House committee.