Superintendent's Message - October 2015

Superintendent’s Message: October 2015

Dear Bulldog Supporters-

This month’s Board Meeting was held at Maple Leaf, and I’d like to first thank all the students, families and teachers for providing such a wonderful demonstration of achievement taking place in our buildings. I’d like to take a moment to reflect on the last four years that I have served as superintendent. It has been my honor and privilege to serve as the PROUD superintendent of the Garfield Heights City Schools. In a short period of time, a great deal has been accomplished by our team…AND I STRESS “TEAM,” which includes the Board of Education, the teachers and staff, our administrators, community and students. Together, this TEAM has cultivated new academic initiatives, has been creative in bringing new styles and ideas to education and has made the Garfield Heights City Schools a better place. Some highlights of what our collective team has accomplished in the last four years include:

· The K-5 Transition: Now in its third year has dramatically changed the elementary dynamic of the school district by permitting a student to enter into one building and remain there for up to six years. This consistency and continuity combined with the nurturing academic environment created in the process, will prove successful in the years to come.

· Renovations to Facilities: Upgrades to the cafeteria and gym at the Middle School

· All Day Kindergarten and Head Start Pre-School: This move to keep our youngest students educated for an entire day is beginning to pay off, since we know that if the GHCS can capture a student at a younger age, we have a greater likelihood of positively impacting his or her academic careers.

· Safety and Security Upgrades: By bringing two police officers to the district…Officer Seawright at the HS and Officer Dillon at the MS, the Garfield Heights City Schools has been on the leading edge of utilizing the Student Resource Officer concept. Additional security personnel throughout the district, technology and camera upgrades have all been included to keep our school safe. This has been and will continue to be a major focus.

· Late Arrival Thursdays for Staff Professional Development: Now going into its third year, late arrival Thursdays have permitted teachers and staff members to seek improvement and develop. Thank you to the community for continuing to be so supportive of this effort.

· Technology: This has been a major focus, exposing younger students to technology at earlier ages. The most recent newsletter outlines the ipads, chromebooks and computer lab technology that has recently been instituted throughout the district.

· Textbooks: Though technology has served as a major focus, the GHCS recently purchased new textbooks with teacher input and professional development so that our students receive cutting edge education and information.

· Community Engagement: The Garfield Heights City Schools attempts to engage more people, businesses, community organizations and other stake holders today than ever before. We mail out more information to more people. We continue to invite our parents to the buildings for donuts for dads, muffins for moms, family engagement nights, concerts, literacy nights, elementary recognition nights and AllPro Dads. We have good standing with our major corporate citizens, such as Marymount Hospital and Overdrive. And, the relationship with the City of Garfield Heights is fantastic.

These are just a handful of the many areas-of-focus the GHCS have kept a deliberate attention on over the last four years. I thank the team of true professionals that we have in the Garfield Heights City Schools for making these things a reality. It makes me feel proud to be a BULLDOG!

I hope you feel “Bulldog Proud” too!


Terry Olszewski

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