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Week of November 21, 2022

Say Their Names:
Raymond Green Vance, Kelly Loving,
Daniel Aston, Derrick Rump, Ashley Paugh

Beloved community, thank you for holding space in your hearts and your thoughts after this weekend's violence in Colorado Springs. 

Our communications manager, Elaine Schleiffer, published a column Sunday night reflecting on the increase in violence against the LGBTQ+ community that seems to rise year over year. Check it out on The Buckeye Flame

It's clear that anti-LGBTQ+ vitriol, hate, and rhetoric in the public sphere is
a critical component driving violence in our communities. 

We are proud to stand with each of you in solidarity against
all threats of discrimination, hate, and violence. 


Teaching in the Wake of Violence:
Resources from Facing History and Ourselves

From our friends at Facing History and Ourselves:

Violent attacks that target people because of their identities happen 
around the world with disturbing frequency.

What can educators do to help students reflect on and understand these attacks?

This Teaching Idea is a guide for teachers to navigate conversations with their students after news of a mass shooting, terrorist attack, or other violent events. Such conversations are difficult. Yet when we don’t address the violence in the classroom, we risk normalizing it. We recommend coordinating with colleagues and ensuring that students have space to emotionally process the events. Afterwards, you may want to help students explore the nature and impact of hate crimes, and consider ways that communities respond to hate and violence. Finally, we offer recommendations to help students engage with ongoing news coverage in a responsible way.

Find resources for yourself, your students, and your lesson plans HERE.

State Board of Education December Meeting

The State Board of Education will vote to reject or adopt Member Mike Toal's second resolution at the next Board meeting on December 13, 2022.

This comes after the Executive Committee met on November 14, considered several new resolutions, and voted 5-2 to move Toal's second resolution out of committee and back to the full Board for consideration. 


Legislative Calendar HERE
Legislation Tracker HERE
2022 Lame Duck Session Has Begun!

Lame duck is the period right after a general election and before new candidates take office and the next General Assembly begins. It is a high-stakes, fast-moving, unpredictable period in the Statehouse when bills are introduced, amended, or passed before the end of the year. Pending bills do NOT carry over to the next General Assembly. There is a flurry of committee meetings, testimony hearings, and votes.

NOTE: You will receive many updates, calls to action and alerts in the coming days and weeks about our fast-moving bills. PLEASE take action and share the alerts with family, friends, school districts, community groups, and professional networks.


HB 748

November 29, 3:30pm | Ohio Statehouse, Room 122 | Watch LIVE HERE

The House Primary and Secondary Education Committee will have a second hearing for proponent testimony on House Bill 748, Rep. Adam Bird's (R-New Richmond) bill that requires each public school to adopt a policy about performance expectations of education staff. Watch sponsor testimony HERE

The bill requires each school district board of education, governing authority of a community school, and governing body of a STEM school to adopt a policy declaring that the district or school expects all professional staff members to maintain high standards with respect to co-worker relationships and in the performance of the staff member’s professional duties. The policy must prohibit each professional staff member from doing either of the following:

  1. Engaging in political, partisan, ideological, or religious advocacy by compelling a student to adopt, affirm, or adhere to a specific belief.
  2. Unfairly evaluating a student’s work because it does not reflect a specific political, partisan, ideological, or religious belief.

Bill Info | Bill As Written | Analysis
Sponsor: Rep Adam Bird R-New Richmond | Sponsor Testimony
Committee: House Primary and Secondary Education Committee

HB 454
On Wednesday, November 16, the House Families, Aging, and Human Services Committee heard more than two hours of opponent testimony against House Bill 454, Ohio's bill banning gender-affirming mental and medical healthcare for LGBTQ+ youth. Equality Ohio reports that nearly 300 Ohioans submitted written testimony opposing the bill and supporters filled THREE overflow rooms at the Statehouse! Watch the hearing HERE

During the hearing, Rep. Gary Click introduced a sub bill that requires:

  • Two years of counseling "related to gender dysphoria, mental health, and the risks of gender transition."
  • Screening for mental health conditions like depression, anxiety and autism and a confirmation that these conditions have been "treated and stabilized" for two years.
  • Screening for physical and/or sexual assault.
  • Consultation with a second physician
  • Physicians report various medical information about patients to the state, creating a type of registry for transgender patients

In Arkansas, this type of legislation caused a federal judge to block the measure in July 2022. As a result, the Department of Justice issued this letter reinforcing federal nondiscrimination obligations for trans youth. 

What’s next? 
Equality Ohio is expecting another testimony hearing in the near future. Prepare your testimony now, especially if you were unable to submit or present testimony last week. 

From our family at Equality Ohio:


Help stop these multi-pronged attacks against LGBTQ+ youth.  Learn more about HB 454 HERE

1) CALL: Committee Chair Susan Manchester

Find a script and contact information here.

2) EMAIL: Tell the Committee you oppose HB454!
Sign Equality Ohio's action letter here.

3) CALL OR EMAIL: Committee Members need to hear from you!
Find a script and contact information for each member of the Families, Aging, and Human Services Committee here

4) SOCIAL MEDIA: Speak out on social media
Your voice matters to elected officials, and it matters to your friends and neighbors, too. 

Bill InfoBill As Written | Updated Analysis
Sponsor: Reps Gary Click and Diane Grendell
Committee: House Families, Aging, and Human Services Committee

SB 178
Ohio Speaks Out Against SB 178

Last week, the Senate Primary and Secondary Education Committee heard sponsor testimony from Senator Bill Reineke (R-Tiffin). While the language in the bill is dangerously vague, Senator Reineke said the intent is to create the Department of Education and Workforce which would "have a dual focus on primary and secondary education as well as preparing students for the workforce." The bill would shift control and management of K12 education away from the State Board of Education to a cabinet-level agency, managed by the governor's office.  Watch sponsor testimony HERE

According to Senator Reinke, the State Board would retain minimal authority over K12 education including:

  • Appointment of the state superintendent
  • Management of school territory transfers
  • Decisions about licensure
  • Decisions about staff and educator conduct

Senate leaders stated a new sub bill will move quickly in the coming weeks. More details to come... 

Read More: 

Bill Info | Bill As Written | Analysis 

Sponsor: Senator Bill Reineke (R-Tiffin)Sponsor Testimony
Committee: Senate Primary and Secondary Education Committee

NEXT MONTHLY MEETING: December 12 & 13, 2022
Meeting Material Watch Meetings

Anti-LGBTQ+ Resolution Update:
After months of fighting multiple transphobic resolutions and amendments endorsing discrimination and harm against LGBTQ+ students, the State Board of Education has decided it will vote on Member Mike Toal's second resolution at the next Board meeting on December 13. Last week, the Executive Committee voted 5-2 to move Toal's proposal to the full State Board for voting consideration. Learn more HERE

What's Next?
THIS. IS. THE. TIME. to show your support and commitment for the LGBTQ+ community.
Business leaders, elected leaders, faith leaders, education leaders, advocacy leaders, community leaders... LET'S GO!

State Board of Education Meeting
December 12 & 13, 2022, 8am  -- Testimony & Vote on December 13

25 S Front St, Columbus
Meeting Material

Testify in person on December 13
Submit written testimony now
Continue phoning and emailing State Board Members
Continue asking your school district and community to speak out
Continue sending letters to the editor and op-eds
Help pack the Boardroom on December 13 -- Bring your community and allies!


Grant funding available:
National Endowment for the Arts BIG READ!


Arts Midwest now is accepting applications for the 2023-2024 National Endowment for the Arts Big Read Program. The Big Read is a community engagement opportunity with grants for up to $20,000 for communitywide reading programs focusing on one of 15 available books. Organizations eligible for the grant include school districts, institutions of higher education, libraries and more.
Learn MORE


Grant funding available: Stronger Connections

Safe, inclusive and supportive learning environments are associated with improved academic achievement and emotional well-being of students. These environments also are associated with reductions in disciplinary actions, as described in this letter from the U.S. Department of Education.

The Stronger Connections Grant is a supplement to the Title IV, Part A, Student Support and Academic Enrichment program. Local Education Agencies (LEAs) that meet specific criteria indicating they are “high need” for school health and safety will receive these funds through a competitive grant.
Learn MORE

Honesty is proud to welcome OSPA into the Coalition!


The Ohio School Psychologists Association (OSPA) is a non-profit, statewide organization of school psychologists founded in 1943. Its membership includes school psychologists who are employed across Ohio in public and private schools and at agencies, as well as faculty and students in graduate training programs.

School psychologists are uniquely qualified members of school teams that support students’ ability to learn and teachers’ ability to teach. They apply expertise in mental health, learning, and behavior, to help children and youth succeed academically, socially, behaviorally, and emotionally.

Learn more HERE
More Events
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Are you a middle school, high school, or college student who cares about
honest education and amplifying student voices?

Join the Youth and Young Adult Coalition!

3 Easy Ways to Plug In!

Join the YYA Discord HERE

Receive the YYA newsletter HERE

Join the YYA Coalition Meetings
Second Sundays at 2pm HERE 
Learn More
Visit the Honesty website to learn how you can help protect honest education across Ohio!

Give to Honesty and support our statewide work.
Join Honesty Mailing List
Honesty for Ohio Education
PO Box 506, Hudson OH 44236

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