Home Education and Careers Removal of Strike Ban from Ohio Higher Education Overhaul – A Balanced Approach

Removal of Strike Ban from Ohio Higher Education Overhaul – A Balanced Approach

Removal of Strike Ban from Ohio Higher Education Overhaul – A Balanced Approach

Ban on Employee Strikes Removed from Ohio Higher Education Overhaul

A ban on employee strikes will no longer be part of an Ohio higher education overhaul bill, according to the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Jerry Cirino, R-Kirtland. The decision to remove the provision was made as a compromise to move Senate Bill 83 forward in the Ohio House. Although Cirino still strongly believes in the ban, he agreed to its removal. Previously, unions had deemed the ban as crucial to the collective bargaining procedure.

Other Changes in the Bill

The removal of the ban on employee strikes is not the only change in Senate Bill 83. The bill also includes the following modifications:

  • Protection of faculty with 30 to 35 years of tenure from losing their positions if their programs or majors are eliminated. The Board of Trustees of the respective university or college will have the authority to determine which programs are cut or reduced due to financial reasons.
  • Clarification of language regarding the reduction of university trustees’ tenure from nine to six years.

Promoting Intellectual Diversity

Sen. Cirino argues that the higher education overhaul is necessary to promote “intellectual diversity” on campuses, responding to concerns from conservatives that colleges have become predominantly liberal. He expresses concerns about faculty members being politically far left and critical of the United States and capitalism.

Opposition and Concerns

Opponents of Senate Bill 83, including the Ohio Federation of Teachers, Ohio Student Association, and university faculty, argue that the bill would hinder open and robust conversations in classrooms and introduce unnecessary and costly regulations.

Key Provisions in the Bill

The underlying bill includes several key provisions, such as:

  • Banning the use of political and ideological litmus tests in hiring, promotion, and admissions decisions.
  • Requiring the Ohio Department of Higher Education to develop a standardized set of questions for student evaluations, including the inquiry about creating a classroom free of bias.
  • Mandating that students take an American government or history class to obtain a bachelor’s degree.
  • Prohibiting Ohio’s public institutions from accepting gifts, donations, or contributions from China, while allowing payments from Chinese residents for fees and donations.
  • Restricting diversity, equity, and inclusion courses unless they are required by federal law, professional licenses, or other guidelines.

The Path Forward

Sen. Cirino expects the bill to pass out of committee later this month. It had previously received approval in the Ohio Senate with a 21-10 vote in May. Any amendments or changes to the bill will require final approval from the Senate before reaching Governor Mike DeWine’s desk.

Jessie Balmert is a reporter for the USA TODAY Network Ohio Bureau, which serves the Columbus Dispatch, Cincinnati Enquirer, Akron Beacon Journal, and 18 other affiliated news organizations across Ohio.


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