COLUMBUS—State Senator Jerry C. Cirino (R-Kirtland) today announced the passage of Substitute Senate Bill 135, which aims to enhance higher education and workforce development in Ohio.
“This bill is for the students and their families. As a first-generation American college graduate, I understand the immense impact that getting quality education and training had on my life and career," said Cirino. "It is imperative for this state to increase the affordability and accessibility of higher education to our students so that Ohio can grow and prosper.”
Major components of the legislation include:
- Developing the Second Chance Grant Program to incentivize students who have stopped-out to obtain a degree or credential.
- Expanding opportunities for nursing bachelor of science degrees at community colleges.
- Streamlining guaranteed transfer credit pathways and dual enrollment opportunities between community colleges and state universities.
- Enhancing reporting requirements of universities and the Chancellor of Higher Education to increase transparency and aid the public and lawmakers in crafting additional higher education policy.
- Requiring universities to provide transcripts to students, regardless of outstanding debt, when needed for a verified employment opportunity.
- Ensuring Ohio’s educational systems have free speech policies that protect the rights of students, educators and faculty, and reinforcing the requirement for due process when free speech is violated.
- Enhancing counseling for students in primary/secondary schools by including information about career training programs and financial options.
"This legislation is the product of an open and collaborative process between a wide array of stakeholders and interested parties. Much of the input we received is not only included in this legislation, but makes Senate Bill 135 a win-win for our students and institutions of higher education," added Cirino.
For more information on Senate Bill 135, contact Senator Cirino's office at (614) 644-7718 or Cirino@OhioSenate.gov