It's a budget!

Ohio has an operating budget for the next two years! Thrilling stuff we know – but there are some very real provisions that will affect our eSchools.
 
First is a change to the way grades will be reported for eSchools. The report cards will now list individual grades for sub-schools (elementary, middle & high, if the school has those grades and distinctions). Previously eSchools were given only one overall grade no matter the size of the school (measured by student enrollment). While eSchools will still receive one overall grade, we’ll now also see individual grades for the sub-schools laid out on an eSchool’s report card.
 
We’re very pleased to see this change as it will make our schools even more accountable to parents and give us more data to make informed decisions about our children’s education. Grades for all traditional public school districts are done in this manner, now public eSchools will be too.
 
Second, there was no reduction to the amount of funding provided to online schools to help cover some of the costs of testing that are unique to eSchools such as securing testing facilities. There is always concern that legislators won’t understand that eSchools may not have buildings but do still have need for what is often called facilities funding because we do have other costs that traditional brick & mortar public schools don’t.
 
Finally, the budget increased school funding (for every type of public school) by $154 million in Fiscal Year ’18 and $120 million in Fiscal Year ’19.
 
Overall the budget was good for public eSchools and we’re grateful that our leaders continue to treat eSchools fairly especially when it comes to funding.  
 
The budget may be over for the next two years, but we do expect to see some legislation directly about online schools so stay tuned to our Facebook and Twitter for regular updates and to be sure you’re doing what you can to speak up for your school!