New bill proposes changes for CEO managed Youngstown City School - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

New bill proposes changes for CEO managed Youngstown City Schools

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -

The controversial law that put a CEO at the helm of Youngstown City Schools is again under fire. This time, lawmakers are looking to strip House Bill 70 of its ability to appoint an Academic Distress Commission and CEO and instead reinstate local control.

Monday evening, former educator and now State Representative Joe Miller from Amherst stood alongside Representatives Michele Lepore-Hagan and Don Manning as he laid out proposed House Bill 154 to a room of local stakeholders.

"This bill isn't just a temporary reprieve; this bill isn't just a 'Hey, we're going to do a Brexit and get out of it and figure it out down the road.' No, we have tried to put together a bill with a lot of stakeholder involvement as to what is going to give Youngstown, East Cleveland, and Lorain an opportunity to rebound,"  Miller said.

Miller said House Bill 154 would eliminate Academic Distress Commissions and district CEOs and restore local control. It would provide year-by-year road maps, benchmarks, and state support to guide decision making. 

"It's based on a model in Cincinnati, the Oyler School, and we'd like to base it more on the "I Promise" schools that LeBron James is very successful at right now," said Lepore-Hagan.

Under the proposal, the district school board would create an improvement team that would be responsible for creating an improvement plan. That plan would be based on options provided by the Ohio Department of Education.

"There's no cookie cutter; one size fits all model. It just doesn't work that way. We have too many issues that are different in Lorain, that are different in East Cleveland and as you know in this area different in Youngstown," said Miller.

Last year, now former Governor John Kasich told our print partner The Vindicator he would veto anything attempting to erode House Bill 70.

21 News reached out to newly elected Governor Mike DeWine to see his feelings on the issue. A spokesperson provided this statement:

"Governor DeWine believes it is unacceptable to let a failing school district continue failing its students. The budget will include language that provides alternatives for school districts that are showing improvement. These alternatives leave in place the option for state intervention when a school district has truly failed its students, but will also promote interventions that improve academic performance."
 

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