Upcoming Live Public Policy Forums

Upcoming Live Public Policy Forums
All open to the public

Forum on Issue 26 – Cleveland Heights University Heights School Levy
Thursday, February 20, 7-9 p.m.
Cleveland Heights Community Center, 1 Monticello Blvd in Cleveland Heights.
FutureHeights, ReachingHeights, and the CH/UH Chapter of LWVGC are cosponsoring this event.
A panel will be invited to represent opposing sides of the issue.

 

EdChoice/Voucher/Ohio School Funding Forum
February 25, 2020 7:00p.m.
25700 Science Park Dr #100 in Landmark Centre, Beachwood, OH 44122
Moderated by Patrick O’Donnell, Plain Dealer Education Reporter
•Chad L. Aldis, Vice President, Thomas B. Fordham Institute
•Stephen Dyer, Education Policy Fellow, Innovation Ohio
•Frank W. O’Linn, Ed.D, Sec for Education and Superintendent of Schools for the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland
•Barbara Shaner, Ohio Assoc of Schools Business Officials
Cosponsored by The Plain Dealer, CWRU Siegal Lifelong Learning and the League of Women Voters-Greater Cleveland
Corporate Sponsor: First Interstate Properties Ltd.

Beyond Suffrage: Women’s Reform Networks and the Road
for Women’s Rights
with lecturer Einav Rabinovitch-Fox, Visiting Asst Professor, History, CWRU
Thursday February 27, 2020 at 7p.m.
CWRU Siegal Facility on Richmond Rd 25700 Science Park Dr Beachwood, OH 44122 

Paula Giddings Book Discussions
•Fairview Park Library Friday February 28, 2020 at 2:15pm
•Cleveland Hts/Univ Hts Library Friday March 27, 2020 at 2:30pm

Cuyahoga County Health and Human Services Levy Educational Forums
•Thursday March 5, 2020 at Shaker Heights Public Library @7pm

William Tarter, Jr., Center For Community Solutions, Public Policy and External Affairs Associate
David Merriman, Interim Director of Health and Human Services
Moderated by Marcia Goldberg, League of Women Voters
16500 Van Aken Blvd, Cleveland, OH 44120
Cosponsored by League of Women Voters-Shaker Chapter and Shaker Heights Public Library and The City Club of Cleveland

•Tuesday March 10, 2020 at Rocky River Public Library @7pm
William Tarter, Jr., Center For Community Solutions, Public Policy and External Affairs Associate
David Merriman, Interim Director of Health and Human Services
Moderated by Janice Patterson, League of Women Voters
1600 Hampton Rd, Rocky River, OH 44116
Sponsored by Rocky River Public Library, League of Women Voters-Rocky River, Westlake/North Olmsted, Bay Village, Fairview Park and Lakewood Chapters and The City Club of Cleveland

Women’s Suffrage Centennial Symposium: From Complex Legacy to Collective Action
April 18, 2020

All open to the public.

2020 Women’s Empowerment Series (Starting Feb 27, 2020)

the series flyer is here
Another series flyer is here

Beyond Suffrage: Women’s Reform Networks
and the Road for Women’s Rights
Einav Rabinovitch-Fox
Visiting Assistant Professor, History, CWRU

Talk will be at CWRU Siegal Facility on Richmond Rd
25700 Science Park Dr Beachwood, OH 44122

Thursday February 27 7-8:30 p.m.

This talk will explore how the local activism of women in various reform causes in Cleveland and elsewhere led to their involvement in the suffrage movement, thus situating the right to vote in a broader activist agenda to advance women’s rights and equality before and after the ratification of the 19th Amendment. This series is held in partnership with The Laura and Alvin Siegal Lifelong Learning Program Case Western Reserve University and the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland.

Free and open to the public.
RSVP here

        

A Collector’s Tale: Memorabilia Of The American Women’s Suffrage Movement

Angela Clark-Taylor
Director, Flora Stone Mather Center for Women, CWRU

Talk will be at Lakewood Public Library, Main
15425 Detroit Ave, Lakewood, OH 44107

Thursday March 26  6:30 – 8 p.m.

This interactive lecture will utilize artifacts and ephemera from the American Women’s Suffrage Movement and the Anti-Suffrage Movement to provide a brief history of women’s suffrage and the memorabilia suffragists created to develop a mainstream market appeal for their movement to the American people. This series is held in partnership with The Laura and Alvin Siegal Lifelong Learning Program Case Western Reserve University and the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland.

Free and open to the public.
RSVP here

 


Symposium Link

 

                

From The 19th Amendment to the Occupy
Movement: 100 Years Of Women’s Social Movement Activism

Heather Hurwitz
Lecturer, Sociology, CWRU

Talk will be at One University Circle
10730 Euclid Ave, Cleveland, OH 44106

Wednesday May 20 6:00 – 7:30 p.m.

This talk will explore the range of social movement activism that women have engaged in since the passage of the 19th amendment. Topics include the pursuit of racial and gender equality, women in environmental movements, feminists in the Occupy movement, and more. Since suffrage, women have continued to fight for equality even within progressive movements. This series is held in partnership with The Laura and Alvin Siegal Lifelong Learning Program Case Western Reserve University and the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland.

Free and open to the public.
RSVP here

 

Cosponsored by

   

“EdChoice/Voucher/Ohio School Funding” a forum on Feb 25, 2020


EdChoice/Voucher/Ohio School Funding Forum

February 25, 2020 7:00p.m.
The flyer is here
25700 Science Park Dr #100 in Landmark Centre, Beachwood, OH 44122
with panelists:
•Chad L. Aldis, Vice President, Thomas B. Fordham Institute
•Stephen Dyer, Education Policy Fellow, Innovation Ohio
•Frank W. O’Linn, Ed.D, Sec for Education and Superintendent of Schools for the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland
•Barbara Shaner, Ohio Assoc of Schools Business Officials
Moderated by Patrick O’Donnell, Plain Dealer Education Reporter

Patrick O’Donnell, The Plain Dealer

Cosponsored by The Plain Dealer, CWRU Siegal Lifelong Learning and the League of Women Voters-Greater Cleveland
Corporate Sponsor: First Interstate Properties Ltd.

Beyond Suffrage: Women’s Reform Networks and the Road for Women’s Rights, a lecture by Einav Rabinovitch-Fox 2/27/2020 at 7pm

                

Beyond Suffrage: Women’s Reform Networks
and the Road for Women’s Rights
Einav Rabinovitch-Fox, Visiting Assistant Professor, History, CWRU
Thursday February 27, 2020 at 7p.m.

Talk will be at CWRU Siegal Facility on Richmond Rd
25700 Science Park Dr Beachwood, OH 44122

This talk will explore how the local activism of women in various reform causes in Cleveland and elsewhere led to their involvement in the suffrage movement, thus situating the right to vote in a broader activist agenda to advance women’s rights and equality before and after the ratification of the 19th Amendment. This series is held in partnership with The Laura and Alvin Siegal Lifelong Learning Program Case Western Reserve University and the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland.

Free and open to the public.
The flyer is here
RSVP here

Preschool and Early Child Education forum Jan 30, 2020 at Shaker Hts Public Library


Preschool and Early Child Education forum

Thursday, January 30, 2020 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Shaker Heights Public Library Main 16500 Van Aken Blvd 44122
The forum write up by Julie Hullett is here
The flyer is here
The video is here

The role of PreK in closing the achievement gap is clear. Engage with experts discussing the difference early childhood education makes and Shaker Schools’ preK plans.

with panelists:
Rebekah Dorman, Director, Cuyahoga County Office of Early         Childhood/Invest in Children

Billie Osborne Fears, Executive Director, Starting Point

Dr. Marla Robinson, Chief Academic Officer, Shaker Hts. Schools

Beth Price, Executive Director, Early Childhood Enrichment Center

moderated by Sharon Broussard, Former editorial writer, The Plain Dealer/Cleveland.com

Sharon Broussard

Cosponsored by Shaker Heights Public Library and the League of Women Voters Greater Cleveland- Shaker Hts. Chapter

 

High quality preschool closes the achievement gap, experts say By JULIE HULLETT

 

High quality preschool closes the achievement gap, experts say
By JULIE HULLETT
The pdf is here

SHAKER HEIGHTS — Early childhood education has a huge impact on children’s success later in school and as adults, according to local experts at the “Closing the Achievement Gap: Preschool and Early Child Education” forum on Jan. 30.

This panel discussion, hosted by Shaker Heights Public Library and Shaker Heights Chapter of the League of Women Voters at the Shaker Heights Main Library, included Executive Director of Starting Point Billie Osborne Fears and Director of the Cuyahoga County Office of Early Education/Invest in Children Rebekah Dorman.

Executive Director of the Early Childhood Enrichment Center Beth Price and Chief Academic Officer of the Shaker Heights City School District Marla Robinson were also on the panel and Sharon Broussard, former editorial writer for The Plain Dealer, served as the moderator.

“There has been research that documents, especially for kids who are coming from less advantaged backgrounds, that a high quality early care and education experience helps level the playing field for them,” Dr. Dorman said. “The research has been a game changer for us because it demonstrates that it’s an investment that is not [only] socially just, it is a smart thing to do from an economic perspective.”

Value of preschool

Preschool not only gives students a foundation for their kindergarten through 12th grade education, but it also develops necessary social and emotional skills, according to Ms. Price. She said that the Early Childhood Enrichment Center (ECEC), located on Sussex Road in Shaker Heights, focuses on children’s social and emotional needs so they can feel good about themselves, be socially adept and express themselves to other people.

Ms. Price also said that the ECEC is diverse in terms of race, ethnicity, background and socioeconomic status. At Ms. Price’s ECEC center, 90 percent of the children were ready for language and literacy, as measured by the Kindergarten Readiness Assessment, which is administered by the Ohio Department of Education.

Dr. Robinson said that there is a strong correlation between early educational experiences and a student’s success in a school setting. Expectations for students are much different now than in the past, she said.

“The best thing we can do to set them up for success in the k-12 setting is high quality preschool,” according to Dr. Robinson.

Cost barrier

Despite the importance of early childhood education, the panelists said that cost is still a barrier to many families. Ms. Broussard noted that the average cost of quality childcare is $8,600 per year. She asked the panelists to first define what makes childcare “quality” or not and explain why the cost is so high.

Ms. Fears described Step Up to Quality, a five-star quality rating and improvement system administered by the Ohio Department of Education and the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services. All early childhood education programs and preschool special education programs are mandated to participate in the rating and earn a 3, 4 or 5 to maintain state funding. She said that the rating was developed to help inform parents on the quality of different programs and provide support for education programs. Ms. Fears added that the teachers are key to the success of the program.

“There are several things that we know from the research. The most important indicator really rests with the teacher,” she said. “If they are educated in early childhood development and understand how children grow and develop…children will do quite well.”

Furthermore, preschool programs are costly, she said, because the administrators are trying to offer competitive wages and benefits to recruit and retain quality teachers. However, the turnover rate is high because the teachers can earn a higher salary at a public school district.

Dr. Robinson said that the Shaker Heights City School District offers preschool scholarships based on the family’s eligibility for free or reduced price meals and offers a payment plan. Ms. Price said that ECEC accepts students on childcare subsidies whose parents have a low income but are either working or in school.

“The state pays for part of their childcare and they pay a copay. They don’t pay us as much as we would get from a private pay individual but we feel that it’s important that everybody has that access to quality early care and education,” Ms. Price said. “We really try to make it for everyone.”

She added that ECEC is also part of Cuyahoga County’s universal prekindergarten program, so the county pays for a portion of the tuition. Ms. Fears said that middle class families are often hit the hardest since they do not qualify for the same financial assistance that low income families do.

“We feel confident that we’re delivering the gold standard of quality,” Dr. Dorman said of the universal prekindergarten program, which includes 67 sites across the county.

The panel discussed a variety of other topics, including recruiting minority students to preschool programs and engaging the parents. Dr. Robinson said that Shaker Heights schools are working strategically to seek out low income and underrepresented families to join preschool programs.

Dr. Dorman also spoke on community engagement, noting that the county Office of Early Childhood/Invest in Children is building a two generation approach to support the children and the parents’ needs. For example, the parents could use resources for further education and career exploration.

The panelists reminded the audience that many services for early childcare and prekindergarten are provided by the health and human services levy, which is on the March 17 primary ballot. If passed, the 4.7-mill levy will replace the current 3.9-mill levy. It would cost the property owner an additional $41 per $100,000 of property value from 2021-2028.

##

Cuyahoga County Plastic Bag Ban January 2020

      
Thank you Governor DeWine for supporting home rule and protecting Lake Erie.

Please tell your Ohio State Senator to let local areas determine their own laws, especially on plastics which can harm our lakes and rivers

This from the Sierra Club of Ohio:
EVERYONE make calls to Governor DeWine’s office applauding his position against the container law preemption bills and for local government freedom to develop solutions to plastic pollution. (Pats on the back are always nice, and hopefully it will encourage him to hold strong on his position and veto any bills that may make it to his desk)  (614) 644-4357

To find your Ohio State Senator (or Rep.), click here

Here are tools we can use to educate about the Cuyahoga County Single-Use Plastic Bag ban

 

Voucher/EdChoice in Ohio January 2020

State Senator Peggy Lehner tells the state school board Tuesday she hopes legislators will be cautious in making quick changes to the state’s private school tuition voucher program. (cleveland.com 1/14/2020)

Voucher/EdChoice in Ohio January 2020

1. Read what LWV Schools advocate Susie Kaeser wrote:
Diversion of Ohio school dollars to non-public schools has become a raging river. It must stop: Susie Kaeser
Op-ed on January 10, 2020 cleveland.com

2. Read more about Vouchers and EdChoice in Ohio in these articles:

Change To Exploding Voucher Program Likely Coming, But Time Is Running Out
by Karen Kasler, Statehouse News Jan 17, 2020

Do vouchers need a big “fix” or a small one? Legislature leaves two weeks to decide
by Patrick O’Donnell 

With Feb. 1 deadline looming, Ohio House seeks to change school voucher program
by Laura Hancock, cleveland.com

 

Expansion of Ohio’s EdChoice voucher program puts state’s complicated school funding formula in spotlight
by Todd Dykes WLWT Cincinnati

Lawmaker Questions Republican Willingness to Correct Massive School Voucher Expansion

by Karen Kasler WKSU

Dublin, Upper Arlington, Worthington schools ‘under-performing’? New system to expand Ohio vouchers flags even top-tier suburban public schools

by Anna Staver Columbus Dispatch

 

Heights Schools Ask For Help Fighting Voucher Program Losses
The Cleveland Heights-University Heights School District lost $4.2 million to voucher deductions in 2019, one school official said.
By Chris Mosby, Patch

Larry Householder should aim for nothing less than a truly comprehensive Ohio school-funding fix

By Editorial Board, cleveland.com and The Plain Dealer

 

Editorial: Revisit rules to make school voucher program more rational
Columbus Dispatch Editorial Board

 

Increase in private school tuition vouchers is costing districts – and soon you
By Patrick O’Donnell The Plain Dealer

3. More from Susan Kaeser
Voucher Update
Rural and urban interests are frequently at odds when Ohio’s lawmakers assert their interests. This division no longer applies to school vouchers.  

Starting with the 2020 school year, every member of the state legislature will represent at least one school district that must use local funds to pay for students to attend a private school under Ohio’s EdChoice voucher program. 

Because test scores drive eligibility and scores reflect income, the first victims of the voucher laws were high poverty districts – urban districts.  

But new laws – inserted in the new state budget without public review – made the issue ubiquitous.  In just three years EdChoice districts grew from 39 to more than 400 – two-thirds of the state’s 612 school districts. 

The legislature needs to staunch the bleeding of public school budgets by ending the requirement that local districts pay for students they don’t educate at the expense of those they do. 

Legislatures can unite on this one! They can freeze the growth of vouchers, change rules defining Edchoice schools, only grant vouchers to students leaving a public school, and starting with this school year, pay for any new vouchers they approved but didn’t fund for 2019-20. 

4. Forum video:

“How do school vouchers affect our public schools and taxpayers?” Thursday March 14, 2019. 7:00-8:30pm 

This panel will present information on how Ohio’s school voucher policies impact the Cleveland Heights-University Heights schools, as well as other schools in Cuyahoga County and beyond. 

Panelists: Susie Kaeser, LWVO Lobby Corps and Hts Coalition for Public Education 

James Posch, Cleveland Hts-Univ. Hts (CH-UH) Board of Education 

Scott Gainer, CFO/Treasurer, CH-UH City School District 

Meryl Johnson, Ohio State Board of Education, District 11 

Moderator:Jayne Geneva, past chair Lay Finance Committee for the CH-UH Board of Education 

Heights Library Main Branch 2345 Lee Road Cleveland Hts 44118 Cosponsored by Heights Coalition for Public Schools and the CHUH Council of PTAs

5. CALL TO ACTION: LWV-Ohio request
League of Women Voters of Ohio

ADVOCACY WORKS! The legislature is beginning to respond to the backlash against public funds going to private schools. Have you contacted your legislator yet? Click on link