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Ohio Unveils New Education Plan, With Less Emphasis On Standardized Tests

Teacher reading a book with a student.
U.S. Department of Education

The Ohio Department of Educationhas released its new strategic plan on Tuesday. The department’s main goal is to increase the number of high school graduates enrolled in college, earning a living wage, learning a skilled trade, or in the military one year after graduation.

State superintendent Paola DeMaria says the plan, dubbed Each Child, Our Future, focuses less on standardized testing goals and more on the individual needs of the child.

The 35-page policy outlines four “learning domains,” like leadership and reasoning and well-rounded content, as well as 10 priorities, like expanding the quality of early learning and improving literacy.

Ohio’s 2018 Teacher of the Year, Jonathan Juravich, helped develop the new policy.

“For our students to be academically successful, the individual, diverse needs of our students must be met first," Juravich says.

DeMaria says this policy is what good teachers and schools are already doing.

Testing is still required, but one of the goals of the new structure is to more broadly assess students' learning. It emphasizes both foundational knowledge, like reading and technology, and what educators call “social-emotional learning.”

DeMaria says the new structure will help students use their strengths and overcome their weaknesses to develop important life skills.

Clare Roth was former All Things Considered Host for 89.7 NPR News. She joined WOSU in February of 2017. After attending the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, she returned to her native Iowa as a producer for Iowa Public Radio.
Jo Ingles is a professional journalist who covers politics and Ohio government for the Ohio Public Radio and Television for the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau. She reports on issues of importance to Ohioans including education, legislation, politics, and life and death issues such as capital punishment.