Arts On Line Education Update April 17, 2017

April 10 & 11 

Graduation Requirements for class of 2018-2019

The State Board of Education voted to approve two additional graduation requirement options to assist the class of 2018-2019 in earning a high school diploma.  The two options were the product of the Graduation Requirements Workgroup, a special committee convened to address concerns that many in the 2018-2019 class would not meet the criteria needed to graduate under Ohio’s new requirements.  The Board approved recommendations now head to the General Assembly and can be viewed in their entirety here.

Recommendation 1

  • Complete all required high school courses
  • Take all required end-of-course exams; retake any ELA or Math test for which student scored a “1”
  • Meet two of the following eight conditions:
    • 93% attendance rate during senior year
    • 5 senior year GPA (min. 4 full yr. courses)
    • Capstone senior project defined by district
    • 120 hours senior year work experience/ community service
    • College Credit Plus course – 3 or more credits earned
    • IB/AP course and exam score earning college credit
    • 9 pts on WorkKeys exam (min. 3 pts. on each of three components
    • Earn State Board approved in-demand credential (3 pts or higher) 

Recommendation 2

  • Complete all required high school courses
  • Take all required end-of-course exams
  • Complete an Ohio Department of Education approved career-technical training program that includes 4 or more Vocational Technical (VT) courses
  • Complete one of the following:
    • Proficient or better on the total test score based on the average performance across career-tech program end-of-course exams or test modules (WebXams)
    • Earn State Board approved credential or group of credentials (12 pts. or higher)
    • Workplace participation: 250 hours; evidence of positive evaluations

The Associated Press:  Board wants more flexibility in Ohio graduation requirements

“The State Board of Education wants to give current high school juniors more flexibility in how they can earn a diploma amid educators’ warnings that too many of those students are at risk of not graduating next school year under Ohio’s new graduation requirements.  Because the Board’s authority is limited, it voted Tuesday to seek the Legislature’s permission to move ahead with such alternatives.”

Columbus Dispatch: State school board looks to recommend easing graduation requirements

“Hoping to prevent thousands of students from being denied a high-school diploma next year, the State Board of Education is urging lawmakers to mitigate new graduation requirements.  The board voted 16-3 Tuesday to ask legislators to sign off on a one-year bailout giving this year’s juniors who fall short on end-of-course exams other ways to earn a diploma.  The Class of 2018 is the first subject to the tough new benchmarks approved by the General Assembly in 2014 to ensure students are prepared for college or a job.”

Cleveland Plain Dealer: Students could graduate regardless of test scores under plan backed by state school board

“The state school board has lined up behind a proposal to avoid a graduation crisis for the class of 2018 by allowing students to earn diplomas regardless of their scores on state tests.  The plan backed by board members, with some limits, would create a one-year emergency exemption from the state’s new requirements that students score well on new state high school tests, in addition to passing the required classes, in order to earn a diploma.  It would let this year’s high school juniors, the first class affected by the new requirements, graduate by instead reaching some career training goals or by doing things like having strong attendance or classroom grades their senior year.”


Teacher Evaluation

The Board approved revisions to the Ohio Teacher Evaluation System (OTES) Framework that would decrease the impact of student growth measures on teachers’ assessments, among other changes.  The six recommendations were developed by the Ohio Educator Standards Board. The Ohio Department of Education plans to present the recommendations to the General Assembly for approval and vote into law.

The six recommendations included:

  1. Update the OTES rubric.
  2. Embed the current student growth measures as sources of evidence within the rubric indicators in five of the ten specific domains in the OTES rubric: Knowledge of students, Differentiation, Assessment of student learning, Assessment data, and Professional responsibility.
  3. Remove shared attribution as it does not accurately measure individual teacher performance or student growth because the measure uses assessments for a cohort of students that the educator does not teach.
  4. Embed the Alternative Framework Components as sources of evidence in the revised OTES rubric by integrating alternate measures (like student surveys and portfolios) into the regular scoring rubric.
  5. Tailor the structure and timing of observations to meet the needs of teachers in order to focus on improvement and growth.
  6. Provide a professional growth process for teachers rated ‘Accomplished’ and ‘Skilled’ to include a teacher-directed professional growth plan for the ‘Accomplished’ teacher and a professional growth plan (PGP) for the ‘Skilled’ teacher.

The full report can be read here.

Dayton Daily News: Ohio looks to change teacher evaluation system

“Changes to the Ohio Teacher Evaluation System, moving away from mandatory grading of student growth on tests, are on track to be introduced in 2018-19 after the state school board approved a resolution Tuesday by a 15-4 vote.  The state’s Educator Standards Board worked for months on revisions to the OTES model, including language that ‘the evaluation system would no longer include student growth as a separate, weighted component rating.'”


Addressing Chronic Absenteeism  

The Accountability and Continuous Improvement Committee continued their discussion on the development of a model policy for school districts to use in an effort to address chronic absenteeism.  With the passage of HB410 last December, schools cannot suspend or expel students for missing too much school beginning with the 2017-2018 school year.  Instead, districts must amend or adopt policies that outline their interventions and plans for students who miss too much school.   The School Board’s model policy for districts is due July 5 and guidance and training materials developed by the Ohio Department of Education must be completed by October 3.

Recommendations for addressing chronic absenteeism to date are as follows:

  • Generate and act on absenteeism data
  • Create and deploy positive messages and measures
  • Use a tiered system to target interventions and support
  • Focus communities on addressing chronic absenteeism
  • Ensure shared accountability throughout the whole community
  • Engage parents and families



During last week’s State Board of Education meeting, State Superintendent Paolo DeMaria outlined the timeline for Ohio’s plan to comply with the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) September submission deadline.  Over the next two meetings, the State Board committees will review the ESSA plan along with the previous feedback from interested parties with the intent of the full Board approving the plan at the July meeting.  The plan would then be sent to Governor Kasich by August 18 to give him a full 30 days of review before the final Ohio ESSA plan would be officially submitted by the September 18 deadline.

(Earlier this year OAAE submitted specific recommendations to the State Board of Education on how Ohio’s ESSA Plan can be amended to support a well-rounded education, including the arts. Read OAAE’s recommendations here.)

The State Board Committees have been assigned the following sections for their review during the May and June State Board meetings:

Accountability & Continuous Improvement Committee

May Meeting:  21st Century (section G) & Homeless Children (I)

June Meeting:  Accountability/Improvement (A4) & Appendix A

Achievement & Graduation Requirements Committee

May Meeting:   School Conditions (A6) / School Transitions (A7) / English Language Learners (E)

June Meeting:  Eighth Grade Math Exception (A2) / Native Language Assessments (A3) / Rural and Low Income Schools (H)

Educators & Student Options Committee

May Meeting:   Access to Educators (A5)

June Meeting:  Effective Instruction (D)

Executive Committee

May Meeting:   Neglected, Delinquent, or At-Risk (C)

June Meeting:  Migratory Children (B) / Student Support/Enrichment Grants (F)



Plain Dealer: Lakewood City Schools earn national music education designation: A Place in the Sun

“Lakewood City Schools are among 4 percent of districts nationwide to receive the Best Communities for Music Education designation from The NAMM Foundation for its commitment to music education. School officials said the district’s and community’s commitment to music education is reflected in the new Performing Arts wing that will open in August at Lakewood High School. The new wing includes a band room, choir room, eight practice rooms, uniform and equipment storage rooms a keyboard lab and music library room.”

Columbus Dispatch: Will Ohio’s new high-school graduation exams doom poor kids to failure?

“It sounded like a good idea three years ago when state government leaders instituted new graduation exams to make sure kids were prepared for college or a job.  That is, until last fall, when state officials began to look at the sobering number of kids who could be denied a high-school diploma next year when the new requirements are to take effect.  Some districts and charter schools could see graduation rates plunge by as much as 70 percent, particularly those serving poor minority students. Some charters might not graduate a single student, according to projections compiled by the Ohio Department of Education in response to a superintendents’ march at the Statehouse.”

Lima News: DeVos to make scheduled visit to Van Wert schools

“Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos will make a visit to the Van Wert City School District on April 20.  ‘I look forward to visiting the students, parents and educators of Van Wert,’ DeVos said in a statement. ‘Every parent should be able to send their children to a school that meets their unique needs, and for many parents, that is a public school. I support and celebrate all great schools. I appreciate the district and American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten extending the invitation.'”

Columbus Dispatch: Database: New graduation standards

“Statewide, 66 percent of high school juniors have met, or are on track to meet, new graduation requirements. More are likely to qualify by next year as the class of 2018 is the first to face the higher benchmark for earning a diploma.  This database shows where Ohio districts stood in December.”




Columbus Dispatch: Kasich, lawmakers cutting $400 million a year from proposed state budget

“Ohio Gov. John Kasich and Republican legislative leaders are huddling to identify $400 million in annual cuts to the proposed two-year state budget amid still-sluggish economic growth.  ‘We’re going to look at all the options,” the governor said today. “Everything has to be under the microscope.’  Asked if any areas, such as schools, were immune from reductions in proposed funding in the $71 billion-a-year state budget, Kasich said: ‘The message is we’re not going to take anything off the table.'”

Cleveland Plain Dealer: Ohio legislators must trim $800 million from proposed biennial budget

“Ohio lawmakers will have to cut $800 million from the two-year budget they’re pounding out.  Gov. John Kasich, flanked by GOP legislative leaders and budget director Tim Keen, said Thursday that slow economic growth nationally and in Ohio are responsible for tax revenues lagging behind estimates.  As of the end of March, yearly tax revenue collections were $615 million below estimates, which were already revised downward in June.  At a Thursday news conference, Kasich, House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger and Senate President Larry Obhof said nothing is off the table when considering what to cut. But they said state efforts to combat the state’s opioid abuse and overdose epidemic will not likely be affected.”

Toledo Blade: Kasich, GOP agree to cut budget $800M

“Gov. John Kasich and Republican legislative leaders on Thursday agreed to reduce Ohio’s spending by $800 million in the next two-year budget, making an already tight plan even tighter.  Mr. Kasich’s hope to include a fourth consecutive net tax cut is in danger.”



WOSU: States want more career and technical training, but struggle to find teachers

“Two-thirds of states are currently reporting a shortage of CTE teachers in at least one specialty, according to a Stateline analysis of federal data.  Many Minnesota employers say they can’t find skilled workers with the right career training. Meanwhile, high schools are cutting career and technical education courses because they can’t find qualified teachers.” 

Washington Post: DeVos Praises This Voucher-Like Program. Here’s What It Means for School Reform

“Florida has channeled billions of taxpayer dollars into scholarships for poor children to attend private schools over the past 15 years, using tax credits to build a laboratory for school choice that the Trump administration holds up as a model for the nation.”

The Hill – Opinion: Why we need to continue funding the arts

“As a professional artist, curator and college art professor, I’ve witnessed firsthand the importance of the arts and the humanities. They play a vital role in modeling our perspectives and enriching our lives. The arts and humanities are not just a tool for personal expression or a way to mark celebrations, but they challenge our perceptions of society.  The arts and humanities inspire, challenge, and expand our minds.  They encourage us to think critically and allow us to experience the world through someone else’s reality.”


Arts On Line keeps arts education advocates informed about issues dealing with the arts, education, policy, research, and opportunities.

The distribution of this information is made possible through the generous support of the Ohio Music Education Association (, Ohio Art Education Association (, Ohio Educational Theatre Association (; OhioDance (, and the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education (


About OAAE

It is the mission of the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education to ensure that the arts are an integral part of the education of every Ohioan. We believe that: * All children in school must have quality arts education provided by licensed arts educators * All Ohioans have the right to expect quality arts education * All arts programs must have adequate resources * All arts and cultural organizations and artists have a critical role in arts education Learn more at
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