Category: Issues Facing Schools Today


Episode 63

The next four years for public education

September 11, 2017 | Issues Facing Schools Today
Guest: Marlon Marshall

In this episode, host Joel Gagne talks with Marlon Marshall, a founding partner at 270 Strategies, about the 2016 presidential election and what’s to come for schools, both politically and legislatively. Marshall served as Special Assistant to the President and Principal Deputy Director in the Obama White House Office of Public Engagement, where he led on-the-ground enrollment for the Affordable Care Act.
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Episode 56

The Challenges and Opportunities for Small and Rural Schools

Guest: Kirk Koennecke and Allen Pratt

In this episode, Kirk Koennecke, the Superintendent at Graham Local Schools in Ohio, and Allen Pratt, Executive Director of the National Rural Education Association, talk about the unique needs and challenges facing rural and small schools.

Pratt tells host Carole Dorn-Bell that it’s a timely discussion because of the climate in Washington, D.C.

“When we go around the U.S. talking to different groups, this is rural education and rural small schools’ 15 minutes of fame right now,” Pratt says. “I think in Washington, they’ve paid attention, and rural is definitely a buzzword. It’s a positive culture that we have to take advantage of, and tell our story and be that voice to help all rural schools and communities.”

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Episode 48

How to Support Transgender Students in Our Schools

Guest: Dr. Vanessa K. Jensen

While much of the focus on issues facing transgender students and their families has focused on the federal policies surrounding bathroom access, there are a number of ways that schools can provide support to the students. Today, Carole Dorn-Bell speaks with Pediatric Psychologist, Dr. Vanessa K. Jensen at the Cleveland Clinic. She talks about how transgender children develop, the risks they face at school, and how families and schools can be supportive of them.

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Episode 46

What the Proposed Ohio Budget Means for Schools and What Happens Next

Guest: Barbara Shaner

This week, Barbara Shaner, Associate Executive Director of the Ohio Association of School Business Officials, speaks with Carole Dorn-Bell about Ohio Governor John Kasich’s budget proposal. The agencies and school districts that operate under the Ohio education budget start their new fiscal year on July 1. Carole and Barbara talk about what the budget proposal could mean for education and what happens between now and June 30th when the budget must be passed.

It is important to note that the actual language of the proposed budget has not been released yet. Also remember that this budget now has to go through committees and before both the Ohio House and Senate so a lot of changes will be made through this process — and there is a lot of time to provide feedback through public hearings.

“Everyone who will be affected by this budget will have the opportunity to weigh in.”

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Episode 44

The Benefits of Community College

Guest: Rick Hanes

Community colleges can be an important link the chain of somebody’s school and career ambitions. This week, Joel Gagne speaks with Rick Hanes, the Vice President of Business and Community Partnerships for Edison State Community College. The talk about why people should take a close look at community college, the cost, some of the false stigmas that some attach to them, and some of the great benefits.

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Episode 41

The Silence Around Education in the 2016 Elections

Guest: Amanda Morris & Jennifer Economus

Today, the day before the US Elections we speak with Amanda Morris and Jennifer Economus, both experts in school communications. We discuss this particular election cycle and how these politics relate to education. This year, in contrast to other years, the national discussion hasn’t included education and there seems to be a disconnect between the national stage and the local stage.

The Absence of Public Education

In many areas, there has been a push to keep local education separate from the federal. The focus and push is to keep control local. Regardless of this push, the absence of discussion about public education in this presidential election cycle seems strange, but potentially good. Perhaps politicians and the American public are satisfied with education, or confident that local school districts are doing a good job.

Dialogue is important, and we need to make sure that we are still talking about education, so that we do not fall away from the minds of the public.

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Episode 38

The Important Correlation between Poverty & Achievement

Guest: Dr. Walter Tschinkel

In this week’s podcast, Carole dives into the important issue of the connection between poverty and educational success. She talks with Dr. Walter Tschinkel, renowned myrmecologist, entomologist and Distinguished Research Professor of Biological Science and R.O. Lawton Distinguished Professor emeritus at Florida State University. Dr. Tschinkel applied the same analysis of variants he uses in his biology research to breakdown state school report cards and look for consistent variables. The link between poverty and performance was undeniable. Now the question is… how do we get schools and state government to apply this analysis and make adjustments to their test scores? And will we ever find a way to create a balance in opportunity?

“To ignore the link [between performance and…]  poverty is to beg for failure in any successful use of this testing system.” — Dr. Walter Tschinkel




Episode 34

Grassroots Campaigning for Your Ballot Issues

Guest: Susan Mahler

This week’s guest is Susan Mahler from Mahler Strategic Consulting. Her work with Ohio Schools to build effective grassroots campaigns to pass levy issues has earned her a winning reputation as a strategic authority in education and campaigns.




Episode 33

Grassroots How To

Guest: Mike Klein

This week, we’re talking with Mike Klein about creating grassroots programs that can affect real change for students. Mike is a former member of the New Albany Schools School Board and the creator of the grassroots movement, Eagle Pride Victory Club.

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Episode 31

Hands-On Learning

Guest: Crissy Lauterbach

This week’s show concerns the impact of teachers and the role they play in inspiring us all. Our guest is Crissy Lauterbach, an experienced educator and works with Contact Learning.

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