From 2006 to 2011, the Youngstown City School system was under state-declared fiscal emergency.

In 2011, the state stepped in to place Youngstown in academic emergency.

The emergency gave rise to creation of the Youngstown Academic Distress Commission. Under state law, the commission has significant control over the operation of the district.

The first such commission disbanded in early 2015 after a new state law was enacted that created the Youngstown Plan (House Bill 70). Under this plan, developed by a group of Mahoning Valley business and community leaders, passed by the Republican-controlled General Assembly and signed into law by Republican Gov. John Kasich, a new five-member academic commission was created. The law’s purpose is getting failing school districts out of academic emergency.

The centerpiece of the Youngstown Plan is appointment of a district chief executive officer by the new commission. The CEO will have total authority over the district – and will be paid by the state.

Brian Benyo and Laura Meeks are appointed to commission by state Superintendent Richard Ross in May 2015.

Barbara Brothers selected by then-Mayor John A. McNally for commission in November 2015.

Jennifer Roller is appointed to commission in December 2015.

Benyo selected as chairman in December 2015.

Teacher Vince Shivers appointed by Youngstown Board of Education in April 2016.

Laura Meeks, former president of Eastern Gateway Community College, resigns from the commission in May 2016.

Commission selects Youngstown’s first CEO Krish Mohip in May 2016.

State Superintendent Richard Ross appoints John Richard in May 2016.

John Richard resigns in late 2016.

Nick Santucci sworn in by the commission in August 2017.

Benyo and Roller resign from the commission March 2.

State Superintendent Paolo DeMaria assigned Richard, who is now state deputy superintendent, the responsibility of supporting the work of the academic distress commission until a new chairman is designated.

Source: Vindicator files

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