Columbus, OH

University openly opposes Senate Bill 83, passed Ohio Senate Wednesday

The Lantern
The Ohio Statehouse in Columbus, Ohio. Credit: Courtesy of TNS

As Ohio State’s Board of Trustees openly opposed Senate Bill 83 on Tuesday , the bill, also called the “Ohio Higher Education Enhancement Act,” passed the Ohio Senate Wednesday.

According to a previous Lantern article , components of the bill include requiring students to take three credit hours on American history or government, banning the ability for employees to strike, ending diversity training requirements and prohibiting the university from taking public positions on “controversial beliefs of policy.”

The university released its statement in opposition of the bill on Tuesday, hours before it passed the Ohio Senate.

“We acknowledge the issues raised by this proposal but believe there are alternative solutions that will not undermine the shared governance model of universities, risk weakened academic rigor, or impose extensive and expensive new reporting mandates, the release said . “Trustees will seek to continue to engage with the members of the legislature to address the fundamental flaws in this current version that diminish Ohio State’s ability to fulfill its educational and research missions and negatively impact the state’s economic future.”

The bill also bans institutions, such as the university, from starting relationships with Chinese universities or those associated with the country. Ohio State renewed its relationship with Wuhan University in 2021, including the exchange of letters, advanced studies and research, according to the Lantern article .

The Board of Trustees’ concerns ranged from the bill potentially “limiting challenging classroom dialogue” to citing First Amendment challenges due to “ambiguous provisions.”

“SB 83 raises important questions about 21st-century education and the role of the university in preparing students for civic engagement,” the release said. “Decisions on these issues and how they are resolved could impact our university’s ability to attract the best students, faculty and researchers, and ultimately the quality of higher education at all Ohio public universities.”

The Board of Trustees also expressed concern that Senate Bill 83 could introduce new barriers to student success, including issues with financial aid programs that assist first-generation and low-income students due to the mandating of equal treatment of all persons by the bill.

“These programs are critical to the success of the university’s students– almost 75 percent of whom are Ohioans,” the release said.

This is original content from NewsBreak’s Creator Program. Join today to publish and share your own content.

Comments / 88

Published by

The Lantern is the independent, award-winning student voice of Ohio State, covering sports, campus, politics, and arts and life.

Columbus, OH

More from The Lantern

Comments / 0