Introducing the new Oakwood school staff members...
Pictured, left to right: Amy Fultz, Kelsey Jackson, Katherine Jenne, Kara Kahlig, Casey Kerr, Amy Stevens, Brandi Reidenback, Mindi Purdy; Not pictured: Paul Waller, Lilly Chen, Jennifer McClure, Janet Wagoner.
Paul Waller comes to Oakwood from Fairfield City Schools where he was high school principal. Prior to that position, Mr. Waller held administrative positions in the Oak Hills Local School District. He began his career as a chemistry teacher at Princeton High School in Cincinnati. Mr. Waller earned a B.S. in Science Education from The Ohio State University, a M.S. in Administration from the University of Cincinnati, and Superintendent credentials from Xavier University.
Lily Chen, through the Wright State University Dual Enrollment Program, will teach Mandarin Chinese for the 2009-2010 school year. Wright State University and the Oakwood Schools Education Foundation provide the financial support for this program.
Amy Fultz, a part time Kindergarten teacher at Lange School, graduated from the University of Dayton with a B.A. in Communication and a M.S. in Elementary Education. Mrs. Fultz previously taught in the Oakwood Schools for eight years.
Kelsey Jackson, a part time Language Arts teacher at Oakwood Junior High School, graduated from the University of Dayton with a B.S. in Adolescent Young Adult Language Arts Education and a Minor in Communications (Journalism).
Katherine Jenne, a Social Studies teacher at Oakwood High School, graduated from Miami University with a B.S. in Integrated Social Studies Education and a Minor in History.
Kara Kahlig, an Intervention Specialist at Harman Elementary, graduated from the University of Dayton with a B.S. in Special Education.
Casey Kerr, an Intervention Specialist at Harman Elementary graduated from Capital University with a B.S. in Disability Intervention Services and has a M.Ed. from Antioch University McGregor in Special Education/Intervention Specialist. In addition to teaching in Miamisburg Schools and West Carrollton Schools, Ms. Kerr has been a service director with United Rehabilitation Services and Abilities First Services.
Jennifer McClure, secretary assigned to the Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment has previously worked in the private sector.
Brandi Reidenbach, a long term Science/Math substitute at Oakwood Junior High, graduated from Wright State University with her degree in Middle Childhood Education.
Mindi Purdy, the Library/Media Specialist at Oakwood Jr/Sr High School, graduated from Miami University with a B.S. in Chemistry/Earth Science Education and earned a Master of Library/Information Science from Kent State University. Ms. Purdy previously worked in Northmont Schools.
Amy Stevens, will serve the district as the English as a Second Language Tutor. Mrs. Stevens graduated from Miami University with a B.S. in Early Childhood Education with a Reading endorsement. Ms. Stevens previously worked with Little Miami Local and Milford Exempted Village School Districts.
Janet Wagoner, a Latin teacher at Oakwood Senior High, graduated from Miami University with a B.A. in English and Latin, and a M.A. in American Studies from the University of Kansas. Mrs. Wagoner taught in Kettering City Schools for 35 years.
OJHS Open House slated Sept. 21
An Oakwood Junior High Open House will be held on Monday, Sept. 21, starting at 7 p.m. Please bring your child’s schedule with you to open house. We will be following Monday’s schedule. A copy of the student’s schedule will be mailed to parents on Friday, Sept. 11.
BELL SCHEDULE FOR MONDAY EVENING OPEN HOUSE:
Kindergarten: ‘It’s not Kansas anymore’
The 8-30-09 Boston Globe headline and lead read, “Pressure-cooker kindergarten: A new emphasis on testing and test-preparation--brought on by politicians, not early education experts--is hurting the youngest students.” An 8-24-09 Salt Lake Tribune headline said, “Kindergarten crunch: Lack of playtime killing joy of learning, say advocates.”
Both articles written by reporters in two very different parts of our nation highlight a very real concern about a testing-mania ignoring massive research data about how young children learn best. “In many kindergarten classrooms there is no playtime. And standardized tests are now routine,” wrote Kristen Stewart in Utah. Patti Hartigan in Boston wrote, “Five-year olds don’t learn by listening to a rote lesson, their bottoms on their chairs. They learn through experience. They learn through play.”
Both writers cite the ever-increasing emphasis on “sit-still, paper-pencil testing” as pushed most recently by the No Child Left Behind law since 2002 as a major factor. Both decry what is increasingly becoming common as even very young children are being labeled as failures when, in reality, it is the actions of adults. These adults, many are politicians, either do not know “diddly-squat” about how children grow and learn best, or even worse, they ignore these facts in favor of a political ideology.
“Recess has been truncated or has disappeared entirely in some schools, a double whammy, since children are stressed out by the new demands and also deprived of their major stress reliever,” wrote Hartigan. Ms. Stewart wrote, “The best teachers strive for a healthy balance of child-initiated play and teacher-guided, hands-on learning.”
Our own Ohio Governor has made a strong recommendation for ALL schools to have ALL-DAY kindergartens and the newest Ohio budget bill requires this for the future. That many low-income, minority, and limited-English children need this additional time and DO profit from it is well documented. This would help reduce the achievement gaps that now exist. HOWEVER, the new state budget contains NO dollars to pay for the new classrooms and new teachers that this requirement would require.
For example our Oakwood schools might need to find at least four more classrooms and hire at least three more teachers. Since the state is supporting Oakwood with many fewer dollars this year than last, these new costs of hundreds of thousands of new dollars would have to come from our local taxpayers. I fully support quality ALL-DAY K because it allows teachers more time to achieve both the balance described above AND to teach the basic curriculum in appropriate ways.
BUT I do NOT support such unfunded mandates that force local schools to find new dollars or to reduce other parts of the school program just in order to meet the new mandate from on high! Kindergarten needs to be an appropriate place for young children to learn best, but not the politicians’ political tool without adequate funding as a foundation. What do you think?
OHS ’06 alumna starting senior year at WSU
OHS Class of 2006 alumna Leslie A. Jacobs enters her senior year at Wright State University, making the dean’s list every quarter of her attendance there. Jacobs has maintained a 3.7 college GPA while being an active member of Zeta Tau Alpha sorority, the Continued Quality Education organization, the Student Union & Event Services and Campus Recreation. She also is employed in an on-campus job and internship with Culture Works.
Jacobs is a Mass Communication major with a focus in Public Relations and an Urban Affairs minor. Following graduation Jacobs plans on either continuing her education with a master’s degree in Higher Education, or joining Americorp for a year of volunteerism.
Alumni inducted into Denison honor society
Local students were invited to join the national health pre-professional honor society Alpha Epsilon Delta at Denison University. Students Christopher Luther and Krista Rieger, both of Oakwood, were inducted Both Luther and Rieger are members of the OHS class of 2010.
OHS Class of ’99 reunion in works
The Class of 1999 is having a 10-year reunion from 6 to 10 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 28, 2009. It will be held at the McGinnis Center on the campus of the University of Dayton on 301 Lowes Street. Price of admission is yet to be determined. Food and beverages included.
For information and to RSVP contact Ann McGinnis at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Attention: OHS 2009 Graduates
The commencement DVD’s are in the high school office. Feel free to stop by to pick up your copy.
The 2008-2009 yearbooks will be here in late September or early October.