Dear Middletown Community:
In late June, the Ohio legislature finalized the state budget bill and made significant changes to state tests for students. If we have learned anything first-hand it is that what happens at the Statehouse does affects us locally. Here is an overview of those two items and what they mean for our schools and students.
First, the governor signed into law the state budget bill. That bill provides funding to Ohio’s schools and represents a key part of our district’s budget each year, especially when funds are so tight. Over the next two years, we will see some increase from the state. That increase – although it sounds high at 8% and 7.5% -- is still below what we should be receiving and it does not begin to backfill that loss. Regardless, we are pleased with any increase as our funds are always very tight and we operate a very lean budget.
Second, the legislature made some changes to state testing in Ohio. Specifically, the state eliminated the PARCC (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers) assessments entirely. Instead, and starting with this next school year, students will take the AIR (American Institutes for Research) tests. The good news is that there will be fewer administrations of the tests. We are pleased that some progress has been made to minimize the amount of time students spend taking tests. It means that we can spend more time educating them.
We will continue to work with our legislators to lobby on behalf of our Middletown City Schools. Certainly our schools are important to the local economy and to a strong job market. Feel free to contact me with any questions. In the meantime, thank you for your continued support of our schools.