(The Center Square) – Ohio ranked No. 23 nationally with a grade of C in the ALEC Index of State Education Freedom.
Grades were scored overall from tabulating funding and financing programs; charter schools; homeschooling; virtual schooling; and open enrollment. The overall score was 44 points; Florida (95), Arkansas (92) and Indiana (86.6) were the only states to earn an A.
Ten picked up a B score and the next dozen got a C.
The report from the American Legislative Exchange Council, which bills itself as America’s “largest nonpartisan, voluntary membership organization of state legislators dedicated to the principles of limited government, free markets and federalism,” used this new analysis to replace the nearly quarter-century old Report Card on American Education. The authors say states are evaluated on “essential policies that change students’ lives by empowering parents and families with choice in education.”
In the five categories, Ohio was:
• Tied for ninth with Utah getting a B, in funding and financing programs. Arizona, Arkansas, Florida and Iowa got perfect scores, and West Virginia and Indiana were next. Oklahoma and Tennessee tied for seventh. Twenty-five states scored a zero.
• Tied for 35th, getting a D, in charter schools. Only seven states were behind Ohio, and all scored a zero and an F. Eleven states were tied for first with perfect scores of 20 and an A.
• Tied for 34th, getting a C, in homeschooling. Only five states were lower in this metric. Similar to charter schools category, there were 11 states with perfect scores and an A.
• Tied for 29th, getting a D, in virtual schooling. Seven states were worse, getting a zero and an F.
• Tied for 11th with three others, getting a B, in open enrollment. Only the perfect scores and A grades were in front of the Buckeye State here – Arizona, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Idaho, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Washington and West Virginia.
In its overview of methodology and scoring, the authors wrote, “Too many communities around the country utilize a “one-size-fits-all” system of education, assigning children to a public school based on nothing more than a street address. This arcane method neglects the unique and individual needs of each student and fails to recognize that, while many students will succeed and thrive in their local public school, many will also experience more success through various non-public educational options.
“The goal of this publication is to offer a comprehensive look at the educational options available to American families and, most importantly, demonstrate where each state can improve and keep pace with their peers. We hope that this newly reimagined publication serves as a resource to the dedicated policymakers around the country who are looking to expand freedom in education for their constituents.”