Educators are finding that the tide is turning with President Biden in office. Throughout the country school funding is being shifted away from private charter schools and back into public schools.
Ohio Federation of Teachers President Melissa Cropper joined AWF Union Podcast to discuss some Ohio legislation that will directly impact both public and private schools. She also discussed a bill that unnecessarily targets vulnerable students.
Boosting public school funding
Cropper said it is promising to have President Biden in charge and a competent secretary of education. The administration has already put in a request to provide more funding for public education, especially in underserved communities.
Locally, Cropper said Ohio is making some progress on the issue. There is currently a plan being worked into the state budget that would allocate school funding on a student by student basis, as opposed to the student body as a whole.
Additionally, public school districts are coming together to fight against vouchers. Cropper said school districts have launched a lawsuit against the state over the funding of school vouchers, which takes away vital funding from public education.
Ohio House Bill 99
In Ohio, Cropper said a group of legislatures are working to reduce the amount of training needed for an educator to bring a firearm into the classroom. She said the legislation could result in less than eight hours of mandatory training.
The bill has been deemed dangerous by many. A former state school board member went through the training course and participated in the simulation. In the simulation, the board member shot and killed a student. Cropper said more training is needed, not less.
Ohio House Bill 61 and Senate Bill 132
Transgender students participating in school sports has become a rallying point for right wing politicians. However, Cropper says the legislative efforts are a waste of time and attempt to solve a nonexistent problem.
These two pieces of legislation seek to ban transgender students from participating in school sports. Cropper said many of these students are already targeted and do not need to have participation limiting legislation written.