Ohio’s education leaders’ public engagement in the adoption and early implementation of the Common Core
In recent weeks, some from the anti-Common Core crowd have insinuated that Ohio’s state legislators, the state board of education, and state officials were somehow duped into adopting, or worse yet, covertly adopted the Common Core standards in math and English language arts. This would be a fair argument, if only it were the case.
To debunk this myth, one might want to consider the public forums that Fordham and our partners across the state have organized in recent years. At these public events, a bipartisan group of state and local leaders participated and spoke knowledgably to the issue of Ohio’s learning standards and the need for the higher Common Core academic standards. Feel free to dig into our video and blog archives (linked below), and consider the evidence for yourself:
- “World-Class Academic Standards for Ohio” was an event held on October 5, 2009 in Columbus. The conference was aimed, in part, at helping the State Board of Education complete its overhaul in K-12 academic standards by June 2010. (The State Board later unanimously approved the Common Core standards in math and English language arts at that time.) The leaders who participated and their titles at the time included: Deb Delisle (state superintendent, Ohio Department of Education), Eric Fingerhut (chancellor, Ohio Board of Regents), Jim Mahoney (executive director, Battelle for Kids), Stephen Dyer (Ohio House of Representatives), and John Husted (Ohio Senate). The video of the event can be viewed here.
- “Embracing the Common Core: Helping Students Thrive” was an event held in Columbus on February 15, 2012. This event addressed head-on the implementation plans and challenges that accompany the state’s transition to the Common Core. Nearly 400 people gathered to hear the remarks of keynote speaker, former state superintendent Stan Heffner. The panelists included Steve Dackin (superintendent, Reynoldsburg City Schools), Eric Gordon (chief executive officer, Cleveland Metropolitan School District), Debe Terhar (president, State Board of Education), Deb Tully (director of professional issues, Ohio Federation of Teachers). The video of the event can be viewed here.
- “What Does the Common Core Mean for Dayton and for Cincinnati” were two separate events, the first held in Dayton on May 23, 2012 and the second held in Cincinnati on August 29, 2012. The event in Dayton included a keynote address from former state superintendent Stan Heffner and comments from a panel that included David Ponitz, a Fordham Board member and president emeritus of Sinclair Community College and Ellen Belcher, former editor of the Dayton Daily News and author of Fordham’s report Future Shock: Early Common Core Implementation Lessons from Ohio. Meanwhile, the Cincinnati event drew roughly 100 community leaders and educators. The speakers and panelists at this event included former state superintendent Michael Sawyers, Mary Ronan (superintendent, Cincinnati Public Schools), and Katie Hoffmann (president, Cincinnati Federation of Teachers).