Posted in: Education


Ohio Legislature Passes Bill Extending Qualified Civil Immunity for COVID-Related Claims

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September 15, 2020  On September 14, 2020, Governor DeWine signed Ohio Amended Substitute House Bill 606 (“H.B. 606”) affirming the Ohio Legislature’s extension of qualified civil immunity for COVID-19-related claims. H.B. 606 specifically…

Ohio Department of Health Director Signs K-12 COVID-19 Reporting and Notification Order

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September 4, 2020  The Director of the Ohio Department of Health ("ODH") issued an order on September 3, 2020 requiring reporting and notification regarding COVID-19 cases in K-12 schools (the “Order”). The Order requires all K-12…

Ohio Department of Health Releases Order Allowing Sports to Move Forward with Stipulations

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August 21, 2020  On Tuesday, August 18, 2020, Governor Mike DeWine announced that all sports (both contact and non-contact) would be permitted to move forward this fall. The Order, issued by the Interim Director of the Ohio Department of…

Ohio Department of Health Releases Use of Face Shield Guidance

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August 17, 2020  The Ohio Department of Health (“ODH”) posted guidance to its website addressing the use of face shields including use in schools. In the ODH Face Shields FAQ, ODH addresses the use of face shields in lieu of masks or…

Ohio School Mask Orders Update

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8/14/2020 On August 13, 2020, the Interim Director of the Ohio Department of Health (the “Director”) issued an order requiring use of facial coverings in K-12 schools (“Order”). The Order, which became effective on Friday, August…

Ohio Department of Health Extends Contact Sports Order, Clarifies Definition of Contact Sports

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August 4, 2020  On August 1, 2020, the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) issued a third Order related to contact sports, which extends the expiration date of its second amended Order. Notably, unlike previous orders that had a set expiration…

Student Attendance During Remote Learning for the 2020-2021 School Year

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July 17, 2020  To assist school districts in developing remote learning plans for the 2020-2021 school year, the Ohio Department of Education recently released guidance addressing student attendance during remote learning activities. At…

Ohio Releases New Order for Contact & Non-Contact Sports and Competitions

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Updated: July 23, 2020 *On July 22, 2020, the Ohio Dept. of Health issued a second Order extending the expiration date of the Order below to July 31, 2020. The second Order can be found here. On July 7, 2020, just over three weeks after…

New Re-Open & Re-Start Guidance for the 2020-2021 School Year

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July 6, 2020  On July 2, 2020, the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) and the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) released new guidance regarding the re-opening of schools for the 2020-2021 school year. This guidance, which is titled “COVID-19…

Ohio Department of Education Extends Eligibility Under Developmental Delay for Students Transitioning from Preschool to Kindergarten

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June 30, 2020  On June 30, 2020, the Ohio Department of Education announced that preschool students with disabilities who were identified under the category of “developmental delay” for the 2019-2020 school year will be able to transition…

New State and Federal Guidance for Special Education Related to COVID-19 Closures

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June 30, 2020 ODE Guidance On June 29, 2020, the Ohio Department of Education issued “COVID-19 Guidance: Data Reporting for Students with Disabilities FAQ.” The guidance addresses EMIS reporting for noncompliance events that occurred…

Ohio H.B. 164 Provides School Districts Some Relief from Anticipated 2020-2021 Third Grade Reading Guarantee Impact

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June 22, 2020  Ohio Governor Mike DeWine signed Ohio House Bill 164 (H.B. 164) on Friday, June 19, 2020, also known as the Ohio Student Religious Liberties Act of 2019. In light of the coronavirus pandemic, H.B. 164 goes beyond its religious…

Ohio H.B. 164: Emergency Legislation for the Reopening of Schools

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Updated July 8, 2020  Ohio Governor Mike DeWine signed Ohio House Bill 164 (H.B. 164) on Friday, June 19, 2020, also known as the Ohio Student Religious Liberties Act of 2019. The bill allows public school students to pray, attend religious…

Contact Practices for Sports and Non-Contact Competitions Can Start – Are You Ready?

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June 19, 2020  Governor DeWine announced that on June 22, 2020, contact practice for all sports activities and non-contact sport competitions can resume. As with other reopening announcements, it comes with an order containing mandates and…

New Guidance for Early Intervention to Preschool Transition

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June 18, 2020  Several Ohio agencies are providing guidance regarding serving children with disabilities who are transitioning from Part C Early Intervention to Part B special education preschool services. The guidance, developed by the…

Questions Arise with the Reopening of Ohio Sports and Training Facilities

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June 1, 2020  The Ohio Department of Health Director has authorized school districts to reopen their doors to skills training and non-contact sports. The Order provides detailed requirements and restrictions as well as guidance specifically…

Don’t Forget About ADA Accessibility When Planning Virtual Graduation Ceremonies

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May 5, 2020  School-building closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic have Ohio districts preparing for a very different kind of student graduation this year. The Ohio Department of Education is urging all school districts to utilize alternative…

School Closure Clarification Released

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April 30, 2020 On April 29, 2020, Dr. Amy Acton, as acting director of the Ohio Department of Public Health (ODH), signed the Second Amended Order relating to the closure of K-12 schools, a copy of which can be found here. Within this Order,…

Don’t Toss Your Cap Yet: What it Means to be “On Track” to Graduate

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April 13, 2020  With the passage of HB 197 and additional guidance from the Ohio Department of Education (“ODE”), many questions regarding graduation eligibility and its “on track” process have been answered. For those students…

U.S. Department of Education Approves Funding for Continued Learning During Pandemic

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April 10, 2020 U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has authorized flexible funding to states to better serve the needs of students and educators throughout the COVID-19 crisis. The new flexibilities, introduced under the Coronavirus Aid,…

ODE Clarifies Teacher Evaluation Questions, But Complicated Decisions Remain

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April 9, 2020  House Bill 197, which was meant to provide clarity to school districts on a range of issues due to school-building closures from the COVID-19 pandemic, resulted in more questions than answers. Specifically, those questions…

Updated Ohio Department of Education Guidance Regarding Students with Disabilities During the State’s School-Building Closure

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March 30, 2020  On March 27, 2020, the Ohio Department of Education issued updated guidance clarifying its previously issued guidance document of March 18, 2020 entitled “Considerations for Students with Disabilities during Ohio’s Ordered…
State of Ohio flag

What’s Included in Ohio’s COVID-19 Response Law

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On March 27, 2020, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine signed into law emergency legislation that addresses the urgent needs of the State due to the COVID-19 pandemic. H.B. 197 goes into effect immediately. The new law addresses a wide range of issues,…

Ohio’s “Stay At Home” Order and Its Impact on Schools

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March 25, 2020  Currently, Ohio is under a “Stay At Home” Order, which is effective March 23, 2020 through April 6, 2020. The Order, issued by Ohio Department of Health Director, Dr. Amy Acton, requires all individuals currently living…
Student with books and a backpack

Interpreting the Ohio Department of Education’s Guidance Regarding Students with Disabilities During the State’s School-Building Closure

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        March 23, 2020 On March 18, 2020, the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) issued guidance entitled Consideration for Students with Disabilities during Ohio’s Ordered School-Building Closure. The…
Student at computer

Students with Disabilities and Team Considerations During the COVID-19 Crisis

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March 19, 2020 As we all continue to navigate the ever-evolving landscape of the COVID-19 crisis and review the various guidance documents from federal, state, and local officials, several guiding principles have begun to emerge in relation…
Social Distancing

Yost Revisits OMA Recommendations, Allows for Electronic Participation at Board Meetings

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March 16, 2020  On Friday, March 13, Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost (Yost) released a letter to local officials regarding the applicability of Ohio’s Open Meetings Act (OMA) during the COVID-19 pandemic. In his letter, Yost stated…

Ohio Department of Education Issues COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions Document for Ohio School Districts

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March 16, 2020  On March 14, 2020, the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) issued a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document designed to “help school and district leaders think through important local-level decisions.”  The FAQ document…
Student testing

COVID-19 and ESEA School Assessment Obligations

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March 13, 2020 Ohio schools are actively instituting Governor Mike DeWine’s mandatory three-week closure of all elementary and secondary schools, including public, private, and charter schools, in an attempt to battle the spread of…
District Schools on yellow school bus

COVID-19 and District Obligations to Students with Disabilities

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March 13, 2020 In a press conference on March 12th, 2020, Governor Mike DeWine directed that, in order to prevent the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), all elementary and secondary schools, including public, private, and charter schools,…

COVID-19: How the Virus Impacts School District Obligations

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March 12, 2020 Ohio’s Open Meetings Act and COVID-19 With many questions circulating regarding the application of Ohio’s Open Meetings Act (OMA) in light of Governor Mike DeWine’s recent guidance on COVID-19 and mass gatherings,…
Coronavirus name written on a chalkboard

COVID-19: What Ohio Schools Need to Know and Do

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March 10, 2020 COVID-19, also known as coronavirus, (a new respiratory virus strain), is spreading rapidly.  In the span of just a few short months, the virus has spread around the globe to our doorstep here in Ohio.  On March 9, 2020,…