A ‘thank you’ to Oakwood academic community
So, what’s the bad news? During the past six months Oakwood High School has received so many recognitions it’s hard to remember them all. As we begin a new calendar year, I want to recap the latest additions to the Oakwood tradition of academic excellence.
First, last spring, we were informed that the OHS Class of 2009 was first in the state on the Ohio Graduation Test (OGT). This matches the accomplishments of the Class of 2007, and barely tops the Class of 2008 – which was second in Ohio! Since OHS relies on its regular program of studies to prepare our students for the OGT battery of tests, this achievement is all the more significant.
Also, last spring we were informed that OHS ranked first in the state on the high school “Report Card.” This measure compiles data from a number of categories – attendance rates, graduation rates, standardized test data, the OGT, etc. – and then labels schools (and districts) as Excellent, Effective, Continuous Improvement, Academic Watch or Academic Emergency. Both Oakwood City Schools (for the eighth year in a row) and Oakwood High School were labeled “Excellent.” In addition, however, OHS ranked first among Ohio high schools on its “Performance Index Score.”
Early in the fall of 2007, OHS was informed that it was designated a U.S. Department of Education “No Child Left Behind” Blue Ribbon School. Oakwood was one of only forty-one senior high schools in the United States to get this award. Mrs. Heidi Steinbrink, OHS science department chair, joined this writer at ceremonies in Washington, D.C., on November 12 and 13 to accept this prestigious award on behalf of the entire faculty and staff at Oakwood High School.
Yes, the tradition of academic excellence is truly alive and well at OHS. However, as we all are so acutely aware, we cannot just sit back and rest on our accomplishments. We must find ways to keep getting better. We must continue to look at any and all data available regarding how we do what we do. We must talk to our alumni and ask them to help us improve. We must connect with colleges to find out what they expect their incoming freshmen to be able to do. We must challenge our students to undertake even more rigorous courses and to make sure they are aware of the truly global economy in which they will work and live.
The really good news is that I have not heard of any staff members patting themselves on the back over these fantastic awards and accomplishments. Our faculty knows it’s about “what’s best for kids,” and not about them. Our entire staff also knows that our parents truly value – and expect – quality education for their children. When parents truly value quality education, really good things happen at schools.
So, THANK YOU parents and faculty for these awards and recognitions. Most of all, THANK YOU students of Oakwood High School for putting out the effort to be successful and for making your education a priority in your incredibly busy lives.
Joseph R. Boyle, Jr.
Rotary announces Ambassadorial Scholarship
The Rotary Club of Dayton is now accepting applications for the Rotary Foundation Ambassadorial Scholarship. The scholarship is for foreign study during academic year 2009-2010. Up to $25,000 will be provided for round-trip transportation, tuition and fees, room, board, some education supplies, and language training (if necessary). Scholars act as “ambassadors of goodwill” as they study abroad in one of more than 160 countries where Rotary Clubs are located.
Students with permanent addresses in the Dayton area, or studying in the area, who have completed two years of college or two years of recognized vocational work by the time the scholarship period begins are eligible to apply. Graduate students may apply as well. The application deadline is March 3, 2008.
Since 1947 more than 30,000 men and women from 100 nations have studied abroad under the auspices of Rotary Foundation Ambassadorial Scholarships. Today it is the world’s largest privately funded international scholarships program. More than 1,100 scholarships were awarded for study in 2007-08. Through grants totaling approximately $26 million, recipients from some 69 countries studied in more than 64 nations.
Contact Diane Welborn at (937) 223-4613, to request an application form.
‘Test call’ to district families Jan. 15
Beginning today, Oakwood City Schools will make a “test call” to district families using an automated phone notification system through OneCall Now to deliver pre-recorded messages.
The “test call” is being made to home phone numbers of district families sometime between 4 and 7 p.m. today. The call will be from School Superintendent Dr. Mary Jo Scalzo, and it will be clearly identified as a “test call.” Families should receive only one call, even those with children at more than one school in the district. Those who do not receive the call should report it to the secretary at your child’s school.
For questions about the OneCall Now system, contact Randy Dorsey at 297-1513.