Senate Bill 17
Senator Steve Wilson, District 7
K-12 School Districts
State Board of Education
State Board of Education must incorporate specific concepts of "free market capitalism" into the standards and model curriculum for financial literacy and entrepreneurship for grades 9-12.
Senate Education Committee
January 11, 2023
As-Written | Analysis
SB 17 Details
Senate Bill 17 requires the State Board of Education incorporate the following concepts about “free market capitalism,” into the standards and model curriculum for financial literacy and entrepreneurship for grades 9-12.
- “Raw materials, labor, and capital, the three classical factors of economic production, are privately owned
- ‘Individuals control their own ability to work, earn wages, and obtain skills to earn and increase wages
- “Private ownership of capital may include a sole proprietorship, a family businesses, a publicly traded corporation, a group of private investors, or a bank
- “Markets aggregate the exchange of goods and services throughout the world. Market prices are the only way to convey so much constantly changing information about the supply of goods and services, and the demand for them, for consumers and producers to make informed economic decisions for themselves
- “Wealth is created by providing goods and services that people value at a profit, and both sellers and buyers seek to profit in some way in a free market transaction. Thus, profit earned through transactions can be consumed, saved, reinvested in the business, or dispersed to shareholders
- “Wealth creation involves asset value appreciation and depreciation, voluntary exchange of equity ownership, and open and closed markets
- “The free market is driven by, and tends to produce, entrepreneurship and innovation
- “The free market can include side effects and market failures where at least part of the cost of the transaction, including producing, transporting, selling, or buying, is born by others outside of the transaction
- “The political features of the free market, including legally protected property rights, legally enforceable contracts, patent protections, and the mitigation of side effects and market failures
- “Societies that embrace the free market often embrace political and personal freedom as well”
Honesty is opposed to Senate Bill 17.
- SB 17 is duplicative, unnecessary, and performative. Free market capitalism is already included Ohio's curriculum standards and does not need to punctuated by repetitive legislation.
- SB 17 will not contribute to students understanding economics as a whole, or their individual place in the economic system. Education about capitalism and the free market should be undertaken as one part of a full menu of economic systems, structures, and marketplaces that reflect the full breadth of the current geopolitical economy.
- SB 17 is political rhetoric masked as education reform. This bill is part of a national extremist agenda aimed at restricting what teachers can and cannot say in the classroom, demonstrating that legislators—not teachers, families, school boards, or the Department of Education —are defining the educational experience for all Ohio students.
- SB 17 does not solve for root cause issues faced by our students. We know that students and communities benefit most when caring families, skilled educators, and dedicated school boards define what is appropriate in classrooms. Placing specific pieces of curriculum into the Ohio Revised Code does nothing to serve our students, educators, or schools.