Charters Outnumber Traditional Districts In Preliminary Ohio RttT Participant List

"Race Track - Start 50" by Flickr user Celikins.

The time period for Ohio’s public school districts and charter schools to join the state’s Race to the Top (RttT) application expired on Friday, Jan 8. Guidelines for the grant set by the United States Department of Education prevent private schools from applying for RttT funds. Only public school districts and charter schools were allowed join a state’s grant application.  

On Thursday, Jan. 7, the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) released an incomplete list containing  the names of 252 traditional public school districts and charter schools as participating Local Education Agencies (LEAs) in the state’s RttT efforts.

Ohio has 610 public school districts and 332 charter schools that were eligible to join the state’s RttT application.  An analysis of ODE’s incomplete participant list released on Thursday indicated a disproportionate number of charter schools had submitted an MOU when compared to the state’s LEA composition.

A total of 131 of the 252 LEAs named in ODE’s list were designated as charter schools. Only 121 traditional public school districts had applied for the grant as of Jan. 7. A number of LEAs have submitted MOUs to ODE but have not yet been listed. The complete list of participating LEAs is expected to be released by ODE during the week of Jan. 11. CEA President Rhonda Johnson has signed the MOU on behalf of the Association and Columbus City Schools has been listed as a participating LEA.