(A) Continuing education for licensed home inspectors shall be offered in a classroom setting or in an online setting.
(B) To be considered "online," the course must satisfy the requirements found in this paragraph of the Administrative Code and refers to educational programs in which instruction is accomplished through the use of interactive, electronic media and where the teacher and student are not physically in the same location at the time the course is being taught. Online home inspector education is acceptable if:
(1) The course provides interaction. Interaction is a shared environment where the student has verbal or written communication with the instructor;
(2) The course content is approved by the superintendent or the home inspector board or is offered by a community or junior college or a college or university that is a degree-granting institution accredited by the commission on colleges, a regional or national accreditation association or accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. secretary of education; and
(3) The course receives course delivery mechanism approval from the international distance education certification center (IDECC) or is part of an approved curriculum under paragraph (C)(2) of this rule at an institution of higher education that awards academic credit for the online course. A course that fails to maintain approval from IDECC no longer meets the requirements of this rule as of the date the approval is withdrawn by IDECC.
(C) An applicant for continuing education course approval shall submit to the division of real estate and professional licensing for approval of home inspector continuing education courses on a form prescribed by the superintendent along with the nonrefundable fee as specified in rule 1301:17-1-03 of the Administrative Code. The application form and fee must be submitted to the division at least thirty days prior to the proposed initial date of the course offering. Upon notice from the superintendent that an application is incomplete or incorrect as filed, the applicant shall, within thirty days of the date of the last such notice, submit to the division the additional requested information or the corrected application. Failure to timely submit the additional requested information or the corrected application shall constitute just cause for the superintendent to void the application.
(D) Continuing education approved for this rule shall be valid for three years from the date of issuance by the superintendent provided the superintendent approves any substantial changes made to the course, and the education provider and its instructors comply with the requirements of this rule and Chapter 4764. of the Revised Code. Changes to the course instructor or to the course syllabus, description or content consisting of more than one-third of the course hours shall be considered a substantial change. Each education provider of approved continuing education shall file an application with the division at least ten days in advance of any substantial changes to a course.
(E) Criteria for approval of offerings and instructors.
(1) For this rule, "classroom hours" shall mean the amount of time necessary to complete the course, without interruption. One classroom hour consists of sixty-minutes of instruction out of a sixty-minute segment.
(2) Instructors who present a continuing education course, shall submit documentation to the division through a form prescribed by the superintendent demonstrating the instructor meets at least one of the following qualifications:
(a) Possession of a bachelor's degree or higher in a related field to that which the person is to teach, from a school listed as an institution of higher learning by the United States department of education, or from a comparable school of a foreign country;
(b) Possession of a valid teaching credential or certificate from Ohio or another state authorizing the holder to teach in the field of instruction which the person is to teach;
(c) Five years full-time experience in a profession, trade, or technical occupation in the applicable field; or
(d) Any combination of at least five years of full-time experience relevant to the applicable field and college level education.
(3) Acceptable education providers of home inspector continuing education include: a college or university that is a degree-granting institution accredited by the commission on colleges, a regional or national accreditation association or accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. secretary of education; a community or junior college; a proprietary school approved by the state board of career colleges and schools; or a home inspector professional organization. A home inspector professional organization consists of an organization that offers instruction in home inspector subjects found in paragraph (E)(6) of this rule; offers an organization designation to home inspectors upon the completion of home inspector education and experience; and has established a standard of practice and code of ethics for its organization members that is consistent with the boards standard of practice and code of ethics.
(4) Each continuing education course shall be open to all licensed home inspectors on an equal basis.
(5) An education provider may administer examinations in an online continuing education course for the purpose of verifying participation and evaluating the effectiveness of the online education course but passing a course examination shall not be a requirement for successful completion of a continuing home inspector education course.
(6) The superintendent may approve course offerings for continuing education which maintain and increase a licensed home inspectors skill, knowledge and competency in home inspecting and which fall within the following topics:
(a) Inspection safety;
(b) Report writing;
(c) Canons of ethics;
(d) Standard of practice;
(e) Systems and components as defined in the Ohio home inspector boards standards of practice;
(f) Environmental issues;
(g) A meeting of the Ohio home inspector board;
(h) Use of technology as applied to the practice of home inspection; and
(i) Personal safety for the home inspector and the consumer.
(7) Additional course offerings may be approved by the Ohio home inspector board.
(8) The following offerings will not be considered by the Ohio home inspector board to meet continuing education requirements:
(a) Examination preparation courses;
(b) Sales promotion or meetings held in conjunction with the general business of the attendee or the attendees business associates;
(c) Meetings which are a normal part of in-house staff training; or
(d) That portion of any offering devoted to meals or other refreshment.
(F) The education provider must issue certificates to licensees using the correct course certification number provided by the division. Any certificate incorrectly issued must be reissued to the licensee within thirty days of receipt of notice of the defective certificate by the education provider using the valid certification number as assigned by the division.
(G) No approved education provider shall certify the attendance of a person who was not physically present during ninety per cent of the offering time. All offerings must be successfully completed.
(H) Record keeping.
(1) Education providers shall maintain for four years from the date of the course a record of attendance of each person attending the course disclosing the following information:
(a) Ohio home inspectors board approval certification number;
(b) Name and business address of attendee;
(c) Course title, description of offering and name of course instructor;
(d) Classroom hours of attendance;
(e) Date of course offering; and
(f) Name, address, and signature of verifier in employ of the education provider.
(2) The education provider shall certify the items specified in paragraph (H)(1) of this rule on a certificate or transcript and furnish a copy to the attendee within twenty-four hours after successful completion of the continuing course offering.
(3) Each education provider shall submit to the division, in a format prescribed by the superintendent, within fifteen days after completion of each offering, a list of the licensed home inspectors who successfully completed the course. The list shall include the licensees license numbers and names, the course certification number, the number of approved hours and the date the course was held.
(I) Denial or withdrawal of offering.
(1) The superintendent may deny or withdraw approval of the application for any proposed continuing education offering if the offering does not meet the requirements of Chapter 4764. of the Revised Code or of the standards or criteria prescribed in this rule.
(2) The superintendent may deny or withdraw the approval of a continuing education course instructor who is found not to be honest, truthful and of good reputation, has been disciplined by the board for a violation of Chapter 4764. of the Revised Code or has been disciplined by any state licensing board for home inspectors.
(3) If the superintendent determines an initial offering, an offering previously approved, or an instructor previously approved does not meet or no longer meets prescribed standards set forth in this rule, then a written notice of the denial or withdrawal of approval will be given stating the reasons therefore. The notice of withdrawal of approval will be effective ten days from the date of the notice of withdrawal.
(4) A party served with the notice in paragraph (I)(3) of this rule may file, within thirty days of the date of the notice, a written request for hearing before the board. If a request for hearing is timely filed, a hearing before the board will be held at the boards next regularly scheduled meeting.
(J) The division shall keep a current list of approved home inspector continuing education courses which shall be available to the public.
(K) An education provider shall allow the division to audit a course approved pursuant to this rule and shall permit division investigators and auditors to audit, upon division request, an education providers records related to that course during normal business hours. An education provider has a duty to ensure an approved course remains current with home inspector laws, rules and industry practice.