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OAGC - Ohio Association for Gifted Children
Advocacy Alerts

Advocacy Update – 11.12.18 – Lame Duck Season Begins This Week

Lame Duck Season 

After little legislative action for months, the Ohio General Assembly is roaring back this week with multiple education committee hearings. The Ohio Senate Education will consider bills on both Tuesday and Wednesday. The House Education Committee will meet on Tuesday afternoon. In addition, a joint committee on E-school funding will meet on Thursday. Finally, the State Board of Education meets on Wednesday and Thursday. 

Both the House and Senate have several sessions scheduled through the middle of December.  It is difficult to know which education bills will take priority in what has been in the past a wild legislative time. As committees meet and House leadership is resolved, things should become clearer in the next week or two. One piece of legislation, HB 53, dubbed the “right to work” bill is already drawing opposition. 

What does the election mean for education in Ohio? 

Governor-elect Mike DeWine has named LeeAnne Cornyn as one first staff picks. She will direct children's initiatives across state agencies. DeWine indicated in his campaign his support for increased pre-school initiatives. A new budget will be introduced by the DeWine administration by March of 2019. 

While the Senate Education committee will likely be led by its current chair, Senator Peggy Lehner, the House Education and Career Readiness committee will be chaired by someone new in 2019. The current chair, Rep. Andrew Brenner, has been elected to the Ohio Senate. 

The State Board of Education will see a number of new members in 2019. Three members are term-limited or did not seek re-election. Two incumbents lost their seats. Two others will need to be re-appointed by Governor Kasich, so those seats should remain the same. 


Posted: 11/12/2018
Last Update: 11/12/2018

Advocacy Update - 9-14-18 - Gifted Performance Results; OAGC HQPD Tools; State Board

2017-2018 Gifted Performance Results– Most of the press on district report cards has centered around district composite grades. As with most other areas, there were gains in gifted performance as well this year. While OAGC needs additional data on ID and service numbers, types of services offered etc. to do a full analysis, we have put together a brief update on the gifted performance indicator results. This brief can be accessed at The bottom line is that there were gains across all three elements of the gifted performance indicator, and there was an increase in the number of districts meeting the indicator. However, there remain significant differences in performance and performance gains based on district typology. 

OAGC Gifted HQPD Tools – As districts begin to plan for gifted professional development, please be aware that OAGC has put together a number of very helpful resources to assist districts. Please go to more information.

State Board to Meet – After a recess for August, the State Board of Education will meet next week. Major issues of discussion will include graduation requirements, the report card and budget. 

Posted: 9/14/2018
Last Update: 9/14/2018

Advocacy Update 8.16.18 - Gifted Rule Update and HQPD Tools; Gifted Cost Study; Gifted Assessments

Gifted Rule Revision – The gifted rule (OAC 3301-51-15) is officially revised. OAGC has been working overtime to develop a new set of recommended plans, assessments, and tools to support districts in implementing the revised gifted operating standards. These include new tools to support AP/IB gifted HQPD and updated and expanded tools to support a four-year plan for general educators. Check out all of our new gifted HQPD tools at A copy of the new rule can also be found at that link. 

Gifted Cost Study – ODE completed a gifted cost study earlier this summer. OAGC reviewed the study and has developed a response. The study and response could be used in a bi-partisan group studying all aspects of funding. For more information, please go to  and go to the “2018 Gifted Cost Study” topic heading. 

Gifted Assessment Update– As noted in a previous Advocacy Update, ODE has granted a one-year grace period, which allows districts to continue to use current assessments for gifted identification. But a year moves by quickly. OAGC has provided additional information to ODE in an attempt to ensure that constructive progress is made on this issue. 


Posted: 8/16/2018
Last Update: 8/16/2018

Advocacy Update – 7.13.18 – Brief Gifted Assessment and Report Card Update

Gifted Assessment Update- As a result of concerns expressed to State Superintendent Paolo DeMaria and members of the State Board of Education, ODE released the following in an email last week: 

"Given the number of concerns raised by districts that already purchased tools for the 2018-2019 school year prior to the release of the new list, the Department will offer a “grace period” for previously approved assessments across all areas covered by the Common RFQ. The Department will allow the use of previously approved assessments for the 2017-2018 school year through June 30, 2019. Districts also can use the newly approved assessments for the 2018-2019 school year. After June 30, 2019, districts can only use the assessments on the new list. The Department will open a new RFQ early this fall for approval of any area without assessments or for vendors that are not on the new list. The new list will be available in March 2019 for use in the 2019-2020 school year."

While OAGC appreciates the one-year grace period, many concerns remain about the list of gifted assessments and the process used to determine the list. OAGC President, Colleen Boyle along with OAGC President-Elect, Suzanne Palmer provided testimony to the State Board of Education this week about our on-going concerns. OAGC will continue to try to work with ODE to ensure that the gifted assessment list will meet the needs of gifted students in Ohio. 

State Report Card Update – The State Board of Education report card working committee released a draft of report card recommendations to the full board this week. The committee plans to meet again in October. The most concerning recommendation for gifted advocates is the one that would eliminate a grade for the indicators component. The indicators component contains the gifted performance indicator, which is the only form of accountability for gifted students. This change would require a change in law. OAGC will continue to monitor any potential changes to the report card including HB591 (Duffey), which did not pass out of the House Education and Career Options Committee before the summer break. 

Posted: 7/13/2018
Last Update: 7/13/2018

Advocacy Alert – 6.27.18 – Newly Released ODE Assessment List is Hugely Problematic for Gifted Identification; SB216 Update

Gifted Assessment List Problems-- The Ohio Department of Education released its list of approved assessments on Monday, June 18. The list is the first time that all assessments in Ohio are consolidated on one list including those for gifted assessment. In fact, the process for compiling the assessments was altered by excluding any outside gifted assessment experts to participate on the workgroup that approved the assessments. OAGC raised concerns about the process several weeks ago to State Superintendent DeMaria and the State Board of Education. Mr. DeMaria indicated in his response that our concerns were unwarranted and the gifted identification process would not be compromised or denigrated. Unfortunately, the new list that was released on Monday has several problems that are hugely problematic for the appropriate screening and identification of gifted students in Ohio.  These issues include the following: 

1.No available assessments for the identification of creativity thinking and visual/performing arts. Not only are there are no assessments, according to the ODE FAQ, districts are not allowed to use the approved assessments from the list from January of 2018 to be used until new assessments are approved. No timeline has been provided for when that might happen. 

2.No available assessments for the identification of students in high school.Again, past instruments that were approved are no longer available to districts. 

3.Very limited assessments approved for individual achievement and cognitive testing. This is highly concerning as it may limit the ability to identified twice-exceptional and other under-represented student populations. Many districts have already purchased these tests that are no longer going to be allowed for use, which causes considerable financial difficult at the district level. 

4.The inclusion of a test for identification which has previously been rejected as it has not been validated using other norm-referenced tests used for gifted identification.In the past, when inappropriate tests were included as identification instruments, students were identified as gifted when it is likely they should not have been. 

5.The broad allowance for use of MAP across all grade levels despite the publisher indicating specific grade alignment to specific versions of the test. AnNWEA representative has verified that the company requested very specific approvals for use of MAP for gifted identification, namely the use of MAP Primary for grades K-1 and MAP 2-5 and 6+ for grades 2 and up.  This is based on their technical data, and to allow the use of MAP Primary for identification in grade 2 may lead to inappropriate identification of students.

6.Inconsistent approval of instruments for pre-screening.Previously, any instrument approved for identification was also approved for pre-screening. However, this list does not permit some instruments to be used for pre-screening, thus inappropriately giving the impression that those approved for both pre-screening and identification are more robust tools.

The solutions to these issues in the short term are relatively simple: 

  1. Allow the use of assessments available on the January, 2018 listof approved gifted assessments be utilized for creative thinking (which is required for whole-grade testing), visual/performing arts, and high school assessment until new assessments can be approved. 
  2. Allow a 12 to 18-month grace period of at least for old assessments to be used so that districts can plan in advance to purchase new assessments. 
  3. Remove the previously rejected assessment now included on the list for gifted identification and return it as a pre-screening tool until the publisher can provide appropriate validation studies. 
  4. Provide specific guidance on test version, grade level use, and qualifying scores as requested by publishers, incompliance with the law, and as reported on past versions of the approved instrument list.
  5. Mark all tools approved for identification as approved for pre-screening.

OAGC President, Dr. Colleen Boyle, communicated our concerns with Mr. DeMaria and the State Board of Education in an email on June 17, 2018. As of today, we have received no response. If this situation will affect your district, you may want to contact your state board of education representative (or all of them). Here is a list of State Board of Education members with their contact information: 




Email Address

























































**Vice President



If you only want to contact your own state board representative, please refer to the map at the bottom of the following page:

SB216 – Brief Update– SB216 (Huffman), the education deregulation bill, passed out of the House Education and Career Readiness Committee last night and is expected to be passed by the full Ohio House later today. A number of amendments were added to the legislation, including one that incorporates, most of, if not all of HB707, a community school reform bill that was introduced last week and has had no hearings for witness testimony. One very welcome amendment was offered by Rep. Dan Ramos (D) to exclude language requiring students to pay for half of textbooks in College Credit Plus courses. This amendment was accepted unanimously by the committee. Unfortunately, an amendment that would have required only visual and performing arts teachers with a K-12 multi-license to teach in the visual and performing arts areas was tabled, apparently at the request of the Ohio Department of Education. OAGC will do a full review of the bill once it is available in final form. 


Posted: 6/27/2018
Last Update: 6/27/2018