DeWine Unveils Executive Budget Proposal
On Monday, February 1, 2021, Governor DeWine released his second Executive Budget Blue Book detailing his plans for the state budget for Fiscal Years (FY) 2022 and 2023. The administration’s main focus is utilizing $1 billion in one-time funds for the “Investing in Ohio Initiative” that would provide $250 million to enhance broadband access and support small businesses and other businesses impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. Also, of note, the governor does not tap into the $2.7 billion Rainy Day Fund.
Below is a review of the governor’s proposal. Please note that there are few details at this point as the actual budget language has yet to be released. OEA is also waiting for the release of district-by-district spreadsheets. OEA Government Relations staff will share additional information as it becomes available.
DeWine’s budget proposal continues to fund the Student Wellness and Success Funds which he created in his last budget. This proposal provides an additional $100 million in each fiscal year for a total of $1.1 billion over the biennium for districts to support students by providing mental health counseling, wraparound services, mentoring, and other supports to address student needs. These funds will continue to be provided to school districts outside of the school funding formula. The funding formula is frozen at current levels.
What is noticeably absent from his budget proposal is a plan to address the state’s unconstitutional school funding formula. OEA will continue to encourage state lawmakers to include the Fair School Funding Plan which received overwhelming bi-partisan support in the House at the end of the last session and represents years of work and compromise to finally deliver an equitable and constitutional funding system.
- The proposal eliminates the $20 million school bus purchase program that was established in FY 2021.
- The budget provides $20.5 million in each fiscal year (a 412% increase from FY 21) to support over 70,000 high school students to earn industry-recognized credentials and support the Innovative Workforce Incentive Program.
- The proposal increases the income-based EdChoice voucher fund by 8.4% ($7.1 million) for an appropriation of $92 million per year.
- The budget transfers the Quality Community Support funding from the Lottery Profits Fund to the General Revenue Fund and appropriates $54 million in each fiscal year (an 80% increase over FY 21 levels). This fund was created in the last budget to provide additional per-pupil funding for the highest performing charter schools.
Developmental Disabilities (DD)
||FY 2022 – $637.0 million – 11.5% increase
FY 2023 – $707.0 million – 11.0% increase
Department of Rehabilitation and Correction (DRC)
|Institution Education Services
||FY 2022 – $34.9 million – 2.9% increase
FY 2023 – $35.7 million – 2.2% increase
||FY 2022 – $4.6 million – 0% increase
FY 2023 – $4.6 million – 0% increase
||FY 2022 – $400k – 0% increase
FY 2023 – $400k – 0% increase
|GRF Total (State Funding)
||FY 2022 – $1.95 billion – 3.8% increase
FY 2023 – $2.02 billion – 3.8% increase
|All Funds DRC
||FY 2022 – $2.04 billion – 0.4% increase
FY 2023 – $2.1 billion – 2.7% increase
Department of Youth Services (DYS)
State School for the Blind
|GRF Total (State Funding)
||FY 2022 – $12.6 million – 4.0% increase
FY 2023 – $12.8 million – 1.6% increase
||FY 2022 – $14.3 million – 0.4% increase
FY 2023 – $14.5 million – 1.4% increase
Ohio School for the Deaf
The Ohio House of Representative reintroduced the Fair School Funding Plan as House Bill 1. The Fair School Funding Plan (FSFP), which was passed with overwhelming bi-partisan support in the Ohio House during the last legislative session, would enact a student-centered school funding formula that is equitable, adequate, predictable, and that ensures that all students have the resources to succeed regardless of where they live or their family’s income. The FSFP would provide an additional $1.99 billion in state aid when fully phased in and provides about 70% of the increased funds to the poorest urban, small town, and rural districts in the state. Importantly, it would finally fix the state’s broken funding system, which was ruled unconstitutional decades ago by the Ohio Supreme Court in 1997’s landmark DeRolph v. State of Ohio ruling.
Following testimony from the non-partisan Ohio Legislative Service Commission (LSC) estimating nearly a billion dollars more in tax revenue over the next biennium than Governor Mike DeWine’s executive spending plan budgeted for, OEA is calling on the General Assembly to take up and approve the Fair School Funding Plan immediately.
SB 1: Requires Half Unit of Financial Literacy for High School Graduation
SB 1 received first hearing proponent testimony this week in the Ohio Senate Education Committee.
SB 1 requires students who enter ninth grade for the first time on or after July 1, 2021, to complete at least one-half unit of instruction in financial literacy as part of the required high school curriculum (this is in addition to current law that requires the social studies curriculum to include financial literacy). High school graduation requires 20 credits. In order to help make space for a half unit of financial literacy requirement, the bill adjusts high school elective credits from 5 to 4.5.
Further, beginning with the 2023-2024 school year, a license validation in financial literacy is required to provide the half unit of instruction in financial literacy (this requirement does not apply to social studies teachers who teach financial literacy as part of the ongoing social studies curriculum). The State Board of Education must consult with an advisory committee of at least five classroom teachers prior to adopting any rules regarding the license validation for teaching a half credit course in financial literacy.
Each district or school is required to cover any costs necessary for an individual employed by a district or school to meet the additional requirements for the license validation, and permits a district or school to seek reimbursement of the license validation costs from the Ohio Department of Education.