Pickerington Times-Sun

Pickerington Chamber to host education summit

State legislators, educators to discuss budget and curriculum

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The Pickerington Area Chamber of Commerce Friday will host an education summit Friday, July 19, in which state legislators, Ohio University officials and area superintendents will discuss the latest budget and curriculum trends affecting schools.

Ohio Rep. Gerald Stebleton, R-Lancaster, and superintendents from the Pickerington, Reynoldsburg and Lancaster school districts are scheduled to discuss state funding for schools, the planned implementation of the Common Core curriculum and other emerging public education issues during an education summit at the Ohio University Pickerington Center, 12933 Stonecreek Drive.

The event, which is slated from 9 a.m. to noon, is sponsored by the Pickerington Area Chamber of Commerce.

According to chamber President Helen Mayle, it's an opportunity for the public to learn more about issues currently impacting area public school districts.

"The Pickerington Area Chamber of Commerce worked with Rep. Gerald Stebleton, Director of Ohio University Pickerington Center Dr. Leigh Atkinson and Pickerington Local School Superintendent Rob Walker to create an education summit," Mayle said.

"Jerry Stebleton is (chairman)for (the Ohio House of Representatives) Education Committee and he wanted a forum to present the bi-annual budget," she said.

"Both Dr. Atkinson and Rob Walker wanted to inform the business community and local residents about the 'Common Core' curriculum, which will be implemented in 2013-14 school year.

"Through this education summit (the) PACC's and our committee partners' goal is to inform community of impactful events."

Following a breakdown of state funding for Ohio's public schools and school-related issues currently before the legislature, Terry Ryan from the Thomas B. Fordham Institute will provide a presentation about the Common Core, a new set of national academic standards being put in place in Ohio schools this school year to better prepare students for the 21st century global job market.

At 10:15 a.m., Walker, as well as Reynoldsburg City School District Superintendent Steve Dackin and Lancaster City School District Superintendent Steve Wigton will lead a panel discussion about Common Core.

Walker said the panel will discuss the "history (and) background information of Common Core," and how each of the participating districts have prepared to implement it in the 2013-14 school year.

He said the goal is to "make parents (and the) community more aware of the changes of the Common Core and how it will impact children learning in their schools."

The public will have opportunities to discuss the issues with the panel beginning at 11:15 a.m., when the summit is opened to public questions and comments.

Additional information about the education summit is available on the Pickerington Area Chamber of Commerce's website, www.pickeringtonchamber.com.

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