Gov. Mike DeWine signed Am. Sub. H.B. 442 into law in January. This bill eliminated licensing requirements for several pupil services positions that currently require both a license from the state of Ohio in the specific area of expertise and a separate Ohio Department of Education (ODE) pupil services license. The new law removes the ODE license requirement and sets up a registration process with ODE instead. The affected positions are:
- Occupational therapists
- Occupational therapist assistants
- Physical therapists
- Physical therapist assistants
- Social workers
- Speech-language pathologists
- Registered nurses who hold a bachelor’s degree in nursing
The STRS Ohio definition of “teacher” was also updated to include any person who is required to have a license or registration issued pursuant to Sections 3319.22 to 3319.31 of the Revised Code. This means that STRS Ohio membership will continue for the affected positions. However, there will be a change regarding nurses in schools.
Currently, only those nurses holding an ODE School Nurse license are members of STRS Ohio. Under the new rules, a registered nurse (RN) with a bachelor’s degree in nursing will also be considered an STRS Ohio member.
The new rules are effective April 12, 2021. RNs with a bachelor’s degree in nursing hired after this date should contribute to STRS Ohio. Existing RNs with a bachelor’s degree in nursing should switch to STRS Ohio starting July 1, 2021.
If you have any questions, contact the Employer Reporting Department toll-free at 888‑535‑4050 or email [email protected].