Legislation Review

The Ohio Alliance for Arts Education periodically produces summaries of federal and state legislation that can potentially impact the delivery of fine arts instruction in Ohio. Please feel free to disseminate these reviews with your colleagues. 


SB216 The Ohio Public School Deregulation Act

October 19, 2017

Senator Matt Huffman (R-Lima) introduced on October 10, 2017 SB216, the Ohio Public School Deregulation Act. According to Senator Huffman, the bill was developed based on recommendations from several school superintendents in his senate district and superintendents across the state. The bill’s intent is to reduce regulations and mandates for local schools to increase local control, improve efficiency, reduce costs, and improve student achievement. 

But the repeal of other mandates, such as the requirement that teachers be certified in the subjects that they are teaching, could lower the quality and effectiveness of classroom instruction, which could lower student achievement. 

Continue reading: OAAE's analysis of SB216 the Ohio Public School Deregulation Act 

OAAE's Testimony to the Senate Education Committee regarding SB216 (December 13, 2017)


Legislative Update

September 23, 2017 

National News
FY18 Appropriations and More: The U.S. House and Senate returned to Washington D.C. in early September and surprisingly passed legislation (H.R. 601), that included $15.3 billion for Harvey relief; extended the national debt limit; and funded government agencies through December 8, 2017. President Trump signed the resolution into law on September 8, 2017.

Continue reading: Legislative Update September 23, 2017


Overview of Am. Sub. HB49 Biennial Budget

September 13, 2017

The Ohio General Assembly approved the two-year state operating budget, Am. Sub. HB 49 (R. Smith), on June 27, 2017 and Governor Kasich signed it into law on June 30, 2017.

Governor Kasich, exercising his line-item veto authority, struck-down 47 provisions, including 13 education-related provisions, before signing the bill into law on June 30, 2017. Details about the education-related vetoes are included in the appendix.

Continue reading: Overview of Am. Sub. HB49 Biennial Budget


Updated: Recommendations in Response to Ohio’s Consolidated Plan for the Every Student Succeeds Act 

June 10, 2017

OAAE believes that there are many opportunities for Ohio’s ESSA Plan to directly support arts education programs. After providing recommendations about the February 2, 2017 draft consolidated plan, we had hoped that there would be more emphasis on a well-rounded education, including the arts, in the revised consolidated plan.

OAAE continues to recommend that Ohio’s ESSA plan describe how the Ohio Department of Education will assume a leadership role to guide and support school districts that are struggling, due to lack of adequate resources and other factors, to provide all students with an ambitious, engaging, and well-rounded curriculum as defined in the law.

Read OAAE's recommendations for Ohio's ESSA Plan

Read OAAE's June 11, 2017 letter to the State Board of Education (.pdf)


Substitute HB49 As Passed by the House

May 9, 2017

On May 2, 2017 the Ohio House approved Sub. HB49 (R. Smith) Operating Budget, making significant changes in Governor Kasich’s executive budget request.

Sub. HB49 was approved by the House 58 to 37, with several Republicans voting against the measure along with most Democrats.  Some lawmakers are concerned that the House budget isn’t really balanced, because it did not fully address a possible $800 million gap in revenue projections for FY18-19.

To adjust for the projected revenue shortfall, the House cut about $632 million from the executive budget. For the proposed budget to fit into the lower revenue projections for the next fiscal years, the Ohio Senate will have to find another $168 million to cut, which could affect funding for Republican priorities, including $170 million to address the opioid crisis in Ohio and additional funding for K-12 education.

Read OAAE's full update on HB49 as passed by the Ohio House of Representatives


Update on Substitute HB49

May 1, 2017

On April 25 the Ohio House Finance Committee, accepted a substitute version of Governor Kasich’s FY18-19 Operating Budget, Sub. House Bill 49. 

At a press conference, House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger, Speaker Pro Tem Kirk Shuring, and House Finance Committee Chair Representative Ryan Smith described their efforts to tighten and refocus HB49 to support House Republican priorities and address an estimated $800 million shortfall in state revenue for the current fiscal year, which ends on June 30, 2017.

Following the acceptance of Sub. HB49 last week, the House Finance Committee held two days of hearings.  The committee is scheduled to meet this week and will consider an omnibus amendment, and report the bill out of committee.  The substitute bill will then be sent to the full House for a vote, and if approved, will move to the Senate, which is already holding informal hearings on the bill as introduced.  HB49 must be signed into law by July 1, 2017.

Read OAAE's full update on the changes in Substitute HB49.


Recommendations in Response to Ohio's Consolidated Plan for ESSA Implementation

February 2017

OAAE believes that there are many opportunities for Ohio’s ESSA Plan to directly support arts education programs, and overall, we had hoped that there would be more emphasis in the consolidated plan about ESSA’s support for a well-rounded education, including the arts.  

The Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) approved in 1965 was part of President Lyndon Johnson’s “War on Poverty” and above all, represented a commitment to equal access to quality education programs and the complete curriculum for all children.

ESSA supports efforts to achieve this goal by providing States and local educational agency (LEAs) with the financial resources and policy support to make it possible for students to achieve more than standards in reading, math, and science. 

OAAE has one overall recommendation and more specific recommendations to add to Ohio’s consolidated plan.  Read OAAE's recommendations for Ohio's ESSA Plan.


Summary of Policy Changes in HB49 (R. Smith) Operating Budget

February 2017

Governor Kasich introduced his final biennial budget in the Ohio House on January 30, 2017 as HB49 (R. Smith) Operating Budget.

Appropriations for the Ohio Department of Education are organized into five fund groups that include the General Revenue Fund, the Dedicated Purpose Fund, the Internal Service Activity Fund, the State Lottery Fund, and Federal Funds.


Continue reading: Summary of Policy Changes in HB49


New Arts Support in Well-Rounded Education and Pre-K Guidance on ESSA

October 2016

Memo from Americans for the Arts

This memo is part of a series to state and local arts education leaders providing updates on federal and state implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) which contain a dozen provisions impacting arts education. Previously shared policy materials are available online here.

Today [October 21, 2016], the U.S. Department of Education (USED) is releasing guidance relating to a new federal program titled, “Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grant Program.” This new program was included in the December 2015 passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).


Continue reading: New Arts Support in Well-Rounded Education


ESSA Summary for Arts Education

May 2016

After years of debate Congress and President Obama agreed on December 10, 2015 to reauthorize the 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act, and end the contentious No Child Left Behind Act. The new federal education law is entitled the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), and, in a major policy change, scales back the role of the federal government in the areas of testing, teacher evaluations, academic standards, and school reforms.


Continue reading: ESSA: A Summary of the Law As It Pertains To Arts Education



HB59 Review

July 2013

In addition to appropriations for the Ohio Department of Education and other state departments and agencies, HB59 also includes over a hundred changes in education policies, including several that were strongly opposed by various education stakeholder groups, such as the Ohio School Boards Association, the Buckeye Association of School Administrators, the Ohio Association of School Business Officials, the Ohio Federation of Teachers, the Ohio Education Association, and the Ohio Coalition for Equity and Adequacy of School Funding. 


NCLB and Talking Points for Arts Education

The Elementary and Secondary Education Act is currently under consideration. The NCLB and Talking Points for Arts Education were used in 2008-10 and may prove helpful as the re-authorization process is happening in 2011.

This document is an update of a 2007 unified statement which was endorsed by more than 60 national organizations, representing a cross-section of stakeholders in federal education policy, including teachers, parents, administrators, schools, education policymakers, corporations, and arts and community based institutions.