COLUMBUS—On Wednesday, State Senator Nathan Manning (R-North Ridgeville) introduced Senate Bill 110, legislation that would restructure the way the Academic Distress Commission (ADC) oversees Lorain City Schools.
This legislation is in response to concerns local leaders and school board members in Lorain have had with House Bill 70, passed in the 131st General Assembly, the law responsible for governing school districts in academic distress.
"I have heard the concerns of parents, teachers and community leaders and Senate Bill 110 is collaborative plan to improve accountability and return local control to Lorain," said Manning. "Even if House Bill 70 were good policy, local school leaders and residents have said they do not want something forced on a local school district from Columbus."
Senate Bill 110, which applies only to Lorain City Schools, would change the appointing power of the Academic Distress Commission members, having the State Superintendent and the Mayor each appoint two members and the School Board to make the appointment of one teacher.
Senate Bill 110 also creates a financial and performance audit for the school district to be conducted annually by the Auditor of State. Performance audits typically identify and help correct inefficient processes to ensure efficient operation of public offices and schools.
Manning worked in collaboration with School Board President Mark Ballard, Lorain Mayor Chase Ritenauer and a host of community leaders to identify the needs that are addressed in Senate Bill 110.
"While Lorain has felt the failure of House Bill 70 most immediately, communities across Ohio have Senator Manning to thank for working hard to ensure local governance remains in our schools," said Ballard. "This is real political action at work, and it's a powerful thing. I hope everyone remembers what happened here in Lorain. And that is was real people, one by one, who stepped up to make a change."
The Lorain Plan will bring much needed accountability to the city's schools and hopefully begin to repair some of the deep division brought on by the disastrous HB 70," said Mayor Ritenauer. "I appreciate Senator Manning's leadership on this issue. The word collaboration is often thrown around; this bill is what true, bipartisan collaboration looks like."
"State lawmakers and education leaders are working on bigger picture legislation that would address solutions for all of Ohio's low-performing school districts, but I wanted to work on something specifically for the people of Lorain." Manning added.
To learn more on Senate Bill 110 click here.