December 8, 2021
Several of you have written to me and asked about the status of HB#327 and HB#322 which are bills to end Critical Race Theory in the State of Ohio.  I wanted to give you an update on what I know about the status of the two bills.
There are four key legislators involved in getting a Bill to the floor of the Ohio House. Scott Wiggam is a state representative for the first District of Ohio in Wayne County.  He is the Committee Chairman for the House State and Local Government Committee.  The two bills involving Critical Race Theory have been introduced under this committee. (It is unknown why this proposed legislation would not be introduced by Gayle Manning , District 55 (primarily Lorain County) and Chair of the Primary and Secondary Education Committee) . The bills received first testimony on June 23, 2021, which was over 5 months ago. 
Many people have testified in favor of the bills.  Several large Ohio Education groups and Universities have testified against the bill. Since the original testimony happened, the Ohio Legislature took its summer recess and our group, was told that Critical Race Theory would be a priority for the House in September.   Nothing really seems to have happened since June 23.  There have been two or three requests for more testimony which caused us to ask people to testify and waste their time.  But the testimony hasn’t happened.   Wiggam has not answered any of our questions regarding legislation.  Critical Race Theory does not appear to be a priority for the committee and there is no sense of urgency.
Other key people involved in HB# 327 and HB#322 are Bill Seitz, the number three person in the Ohio House.  When I asked Seitz where we were on the legislation and asked him why things were taking so long this is how he responded: “I don’t think your information is at all correct.”  Seitz did not elaborate further on Critical Race Theory in Ohio or if his caucus is going to get something done.
Robert Cupp is the Speaker of the House and ultimately decides whether a Bill makes its way to the floor of the House to be voted on.  I reached out to Cupp recently and asked if I could meet with him for 15 minutes to determine where the House stands on Critical Race Theory.  Cupp’s people explained to me how busy he was with the re-districting of Ohio and that he didn’t have time to meet with me.  Cupp was unable to provide me any communication on where we stand on HB#327 or HB#322 other than his aide told us that “Cupp is not trying to kill it.”
Ohio President of the Senate, Matt Huffman has taken some action of Ohio’s Education when he sent the message to Ohio Department of Education President Laura Kohler that she would not be re-confirmed causing her to resign from her position.  This principled action gives the Ohio Board of Education a chance to start over fresh from the mess that they have created.  (The mess? CRT already in Ohio Schools just made more public with the passing of Resolution 20 in 2020). We are looking for Huffman and Senate Education Chair Andy Brenner to take action to pass a simple bill to end Critical Race Theory in Ohio. (Gayle Manning, the Chair of the House Education Committee denies that CRT is in Lorain County schools (her district) as superintendents have “told her so”. At a recent public meeting, Gayle Manning did comment that parents should have the tools to monitor what is being taught in the classroom). Andy Brenner has also noted this oversight belongs at the local level, i.e. by parents with their respective school boards.  Critical Race Theory is not high on the list of important items for the Ohio Senate at this time.
Diane Grendell and Sarah Fowler Arthur are serious legislators that want to end Critical Race Theory with their House Bill #327. When I talk to them on the phone they seem to have no real road-map for where their colleagues are taking them in this legislative process.  They are continuously moved one way or the other, told to stop, then start, yes, no, maybe.   It must be a terrible way to have to work… 
Overall, many of us as Citizens saw the Ohio Legislature in disarray over HB#248 and subsequent bills in the Ohio House like HB#435.  There seems to be no ability for Senate or House members to communicate on what they are doing for Citizens on important issues. In many cases the legislators seem more concerned whether they are working for Citizens or large Corporate interests or the size of their donations they receive from teacher unions.
There are other problems with getting legislation passed in the Ohio House and Senate and that is Governor DeWine. DeWine is a wild card.  No one—legislators, citizens, even his own team–seem to know at any time what he is going to vote for or veto or act on.  He is truly out on an island and he only comes out of the bunker from time to time to go on George Stephanopoulos’ show and pass his next fiat. DeWine has said publicly he is against Critical Race Theory but has taken no action to show it. The concept of DeWine working with his team of Republicans doesn’t seem to be there—at all.
At this point in time my message to you would be that the Ohio House and Ohio Senate will not pass legislation on Critical Race Theory in Ohio.  If we would ever get any kind of legislation or bill it would be a big surprise to me.
Over the weekend a parent from Cincinnati Public Schools sent me 5 short videos of Equity meetings he had captured.  When I looked at them I couldn’t believe how far down the CRT path that things have gone.  How far off track we have gotten with Education in Ohio…   I can’t imagine what things will look like in another year or two; how much harder it will be to claw back.  It is hard to even imagine how much time schools are devoting to “Race” via an Equity message, instead of instruction.
We should NEVER let our own representatives off the hook on CRT legislation. If you haven’t discussed CRT with your representatives call them until you get a meeting. It does not have to be an in-person meeting, a phone meeting is fine. You will have to be persistent. If they won’t meet with you, are you going to vote for them, ever? If you do get a meeting, press them on whether they are going to pass legislation to end CRT and discriminatory diversity training in Ohio’s government and schools. Many will try to deflect. If they refuse to commit to passing legislation, tell them you will no longer be able to support them, in a primary or general election. Be tough. That is the ONLY way we will make progress in this. If they won’t work for you, why would you ever support them? The leaders don’t need our votes. And our money is dwarfed by woke corporations and megabuck progressives. But our personal representatives in our districts do need our votes.
Contact Robert Cupp–Click Here
Contact Mike DeWine–Click Here
Contact Bill Seitz–Click Here
Contact Scott Wiggam–Click Here
Contact Matt Hufffman–Click Here
It’s good to be honest and reflect on where we are and let us understand what we’ve got with this group of people running Ohio’s legislature.  For those of us interested in changing what happens to children’s indoctrination in Ohio, we’ll have to look at other ways to be successful.  All of these ways will start by working with the problem individual school systems directly.  We’ll also have to look at things like getting the Backpack bill passed and by supporting the formation of more charter schools similar to the Hillsdale Barney Charter Schools (currently in the Toledo are and soon to be in the Cincinnati area). And then we’ll have to look at the legislators when they are up for election next year…
Daniel P. Regenold, Managing Board Member
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