New Legislation Affects STRS Ohio Membership Eligibility

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:

  • Audiologists
  • 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].