TO: OAPSE Members
FROM: Joe Rugola, Executive Director
DATE: June 16, 2020
Governor Mike DeWine and the Ohio Department of Education have again delayed the release of the Education Reset/Restart Plan. We do not have word from state officials about why the plan has not been released.
But a draft document has been leaked, and school districts are aware of the contents, including the proposed health and safety and operations standards.
Regardless of the final contents of the plan, OAPSE will continue to advocate for the job security and health of our members, and will fight any efforts to undermine them.
In fact, we beat back a late effort at the Ohio legislature to change Ohio law to allow employers more power to layoff and furlough employees and override our collective bargaining agreements. The Ohio House is now in recess and will not return until after the fall election.
We have been communicating with our professional staff, and they understand that our first priority is your job security and the maintenance of health and safety standards in your workplaces. We urge you to work with your field representatives and regional directors to have meaningful input as your school districts implement their version of the state plan — whenever it is released.
OAPSE continues to remind the ODE and the governor that in any plan to reopen schools, districts will need ALL school employees to make sure that reopening goes safely and smoothly for students, families and staff. And the OAPSE staff is emphasizing that with school districts all across Ohio.
Finally, we continue to advocate for additional federal and state funding for school districts, libraries, boards of developmental disabilities, head start facilities and community colleges so that layoffs in the fall will not be necessary and those who were temporarily furloughed due to budget cuts will be returned to work.
We will continue to share information with you as we know it. And we will remain on the job for you throughout the COVID-19 crisis and beyond.
Stay safe and stay well.