Senate Bill 89, commonly referred to as the CTE Deregulation Bill, passed the General Assembly and was signed by Governor Mike DeWine on November 27, 2020. The legislation will take effect March 3, 2021. The bill contains over a dozen meaningful changes to Ohio’s education laws, including the following CTE-specific provisions:· Requires the Ohio Department of Education (“ODE”) to a) develop a procedure no later than June 1, 2021 that permits CTPD EMIS staff to review and submit feedback on any new or updated EMIS guidelines; b) respond to stakeholder input and make adjustments to the proposed guidelines within 30 consecutive days after the comment period closes; c) initiate the comment process no later than June of each year; d) establish uniform guidance for CTPDs regarding EMIS and uniform training programs for all ODE EMIS personnel. “EMIS Guidelines” are defined under the bill as “any guidance issued by the department of education containing the student, staff, and financial information to be collected and reported, along with the data-element definitions, procedures, and guidelines necessary to implement the education management information system.”
· Permits a JVSD to hold its first meeting anytime in January of each year (rather than by January 15, as in current law).
· Permits a JVSD board of education to include in its calamity day plan the use of additional online lessons, student internships, student projects, or other options to make up any hours missed as the result of school closures among its member districts.
· Allows any district (including traditional k-12 districts or JVSDs) to satisfy its business advisory council requirement via participation in an existing JVSD business advisory committee.
· Requires ODE to annually update the list of industry-recognized credential / license programs that it exempts from the WebXam requirement.
· Eliminates existing requirement that home school districts and CTPDs both take attendance, even if the student is in one building all day.
· Clarifies the ability of CTPDs to enter into collective funding agreements between its member school districts that share students.
· Allows an approved substitute career-technical education instructor to substitute teach in a classroom outside of their specific career field for up to one semester, subject to approval of the district superintendent.
· Allows an individual holding an adult education permit to a) be employed outside the district that originally issued the permit; and b) to substitute teach in high school classrooms for up to one semester, subject to approval of the district superintendent.
· Permits CTPDs to receive a STEM school equivalent designation in the same manner as a community school or chartered nonpublic school.
· With respect to the Ohio’s Business Enterprise Zone (tax incentive) Program, clarifies that if an agreement is negotiated between the applicable legislative authority and a school district board of education to recoup all or part of taxes exempted, the legislative authority must compensate the JVSD at the same rate and under the same terms received by the home school district.
· Requires the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation, ODE, and ODHE to develop model guidance for maintaining a statewide inventory of industry-recognized credentials. The guidance must address a) methods for state agencies to efficiently and effectively organize the different categories of industry-recognized credentials in a manner that allows students and career technical schools to better understand options available to each unique individual b) the potential creation of a centralized, inter-agency database of information on all industry-recognized credentials that is accessible to the public; c) methods to streamline the process and add CTE programs to various approve lists; methods to increase transparency in the approval process for industry-recognized credentials.
Career -technical advocates have been working for passage of SB 89 for two years.In September of 2018, the career-technical education (CTE) community, represented by Ohio ACTE, the Ohio Association of Career Technical Superintendents (OACTS), and the Ohio Association of Comprehensive and Compact Career Technical Schools (Ohio CCS), convened to discuss all pertinent state policy issues impacting our schools, students, teachers and administrators. Shortly thereafter, the CTE associations developed an “issues list” and met with State Senator Matt Huffman (R-Lima) to discuss potential legislative solutions. After months of consideration, research, and discussions with other legislators / state agencies, proposed resolutions to the most pressing policy obstacles impacting CTE were placed into legislation via SB 89 (link to bill & bill summary), which Sen. Huffman introduced in mid-2019
A myriad of different factors (including the COVID-19 Pandemic) resulted in delays on the passage of numerous bills over the current legislative biennium (2019-20)—and Senate Bill 89 was no exception. While SB 89 passed the OH Senate in October of 2019 and the OH House in February of 2020, disagreements over the bill’s non-CTE related provisions necessitated a “conference committee” between the two chambers. And shortly after the formation of the SB 89 Conference Committee, the Pandemic began.
Undeterred, the CTE associations remained focused on passing SB 89 and continued to interface and discuss the relevant issues with state legislators across Ohio. Our advocacy efforts culminated in the SB 89 Conference Committee approving the bill and both chambers passing it shortly before the Thanksgiving (2020) holiday. And on November 27, 2020, Governor Mike DeWine officially signed SB 89 into law.
In Ohio, bills become effective 90 days after the Governor’s signature. Thus, SB 89 will take effect March 3, 2021.
by Will Vorys, Dickinson Wright, LLC, Ohio ACTE Legislative Counsel