Shrinking Jobs, Shrinking Schools

- May 1, 2013

No miracle – Ohio has the fourth-worst job creation record among states since June 2005, when we slashed taxes in the name of job creation. Since then, we’ve underperformed the nation in every sector, according to our comprehensive look at Ohio jobs. The country has added too few jobs since then, but Ohio has actually gone backward. True, our unemployment rate is lower than the nation’s, but that’s mostly because people are leaving the labor force, not because they’re finding jobs.

Ohio’s shrinking schools – A large majority of Ohio school districts responding to our survey are making serious spending cuts. Of those, most have gotten rid of staff, cut or frozen salaries, reduced benefits or cut back on classroom materials to deal with the loss of state funding since 2011. Students in many districts are facing larger class sizes and reduced course offerings, at a time when investing in education is essential to our economy. There’s still time for legislators to craft a stronger, more predictable school funding system for the next two years and beyond.

Hit while down – Thousands of unemployed Ohioans soon will be feeling the effects of federal sequestration budget cuts through a reduction in their weekly unemployment compensation checks, according to our statement on the automatic federal cuts. Altogether, unemployed Ohioans are expected to see $25 million less in benefits between now and the end of September. Too bad, since these benefits are a proven way to prevent deeper downturns.

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