Posted by John R. Price on

As we close out calendar year 2023 and embark on a new year, school officials need to be aware of their obligations in the area of school attendance and truancy. Student attendance is critical for positive outcomes, and the law is clear that school officials cannot remain passive when a student is excessively absent from school. Ohio’s school attendance laws, most recently updated with 2016’s House Bill (HB) 410, outline very specific steps that school officials are required to follow when students meet certain…

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Posted by Jennifer A. Hardin on

Ohio is a compulsory attendance state with laws governing how districts should work with students and families to improve attendance. School attendance and engagement in learning are critical to success in school. Attendance and absentee prevention laws had a major overhaul a few years ago in the General Assembly and the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) continues to provide resources to school district leaders about how to comply with those laws and encourage attendance. An…

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Posted by Jennifer A. Hardin on

September is almost here! School buses are back on the road, lunch bags are back on the kitchen counter and educators are in that exciting back-to-school mood. As the new school year begins, it’s a good time for a reminder of upcoming school deadlines required by state law and resources available to districts.

September deadlines

Posted by Sara C. Clark on

In just a few weeks, schools across the state will open their doors and officially kick off the 2022-23 school year. As they prepare for the arrival of their students, we see a significant uptick in the calls we receive about Ohio’s attendance, tuition and custody laws. While the OSBA Legal Hotline (855-OSBA-LAW) is available to assist with answering these questions, we also wanted to provide a list of other resources that might be…

Posted by Jennifer A. Hardin on

In January, the ESC of Lake Erie West (ESC), which was the sponsor of the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT), voted to suspend the operation of the community (charter) school. ECOT suspended operations and closed shortly afterward.

Since that…

Posted by Jennifer A. Hardin on

OSBA’s legal services division hosted its annual Attendance, Tuition and Custody Law Workshop today in Columbus.  This year, more than 170 school district EMIS professionals participated in an open and active discussion about a variety of topics. 

At the workshop, speakers shared information about resources that have been prepared by the Ohio Department of Education (ODE). For those of you who weren’t able to attend the workshop today, here are links to some of those resources.

HB 410

Posted by Megan E. Greulich on

House Bill (HB) 359, Ohio’s new Safe at Home program, became effective yesterday, Sept. 8. The HB 359 bill analysis is available here. The program creates a system of address confidentiality implemented through the secretary of state’s (SOS) office. The new provisions appear in Ohio Revised Code (RC) sections 111.41, 111.42…

Posted by Shadya Yazback on

With the end of summer comes falling leaves, football, and OSBA’s legal hotline abuzz with enrollment questions throughout the state.  One of those questions:  our school district requests a student’s social security number (SSN) to enroll students.  What do we do if the parent doesn’t provide one?

Under the Privacy Act of 1974, a school district may not prevent a student from enrollment for failure to provide their SSN or proof the student has an SSN. 

School districts are permitted to ask for a…

Posted by Candice Christon on

Unmarried parents and enrollment issues

Under Ohio Revised Code Section (RC) 3109.042, an unmarried woman that gives birth to a child is the sole legal custodian and residential parent of that child unless and until a court issues an order that designates another individual, including the father, as the legal custodian and residential parent. This is true even if the unmarried father’s name appears on the birth certificate. 

This means that an unmarried father will not have certain legal rights including the right to sign permission slips,…

Posted by Sara Clark on

Recently, the Ohio Attorney General’s office (OAG) was asked to provide clarification regarding a district’s tuition obligation for adult students who “support themselves by their own labor.”  Since this phrase is not currently defined by law, the OAG was asked for an opinion on its meaning.  But before we delve too far into the opinion, some additional background information may be in order.

In general, under Ohio law, children are entitled to attend school in the district of their parents’ residence without an obligation to pay tuition.  There are exceptions to this…