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W I N T E R 2017

District newsletter

Introducing an easier way to stay connected Just in time for Valentine’s Day, the Olentangy Local School District is providing parents, students and community members with a new way to stay connected with the schools. The district will launch a free mobile app on February 14, 2017. The app will allow users to receive customizable school news, school building and district calendars, push notifications, texts messages and more - all directly on their smartphone and mobile devices. The “Olentangy Local SD” app will be available for download for iPhone and Android users in the App Store on their mobile device, and the online iTunes and Google Play app stores. Designed to make it more convenient and easier than ever for parents and families to stay informed, the mobile app will offer a regularly updated feed of important school news and events. Users can customize the app by selecting the schools they are most interested in following for news and updates. Users can also choose to receive text message and push notifications to quickly get news and updates about school closures and emergencies, events and more. Parents are not required to download the app to continue to receive school communications,


Looking forward to success in 2017

The Olentangy Local School District is preparing to launch a mobile app that will allow families and students to receive customizable school news and announcements, push notifications and more directly on their smartphone and mobile devices. The free app will be available for download for iPhone and Android users in the online iTunes and Google Play app stores beginning Feb. 14, 2017. but app users will have access to a number of tools that will make those communications more convenient. “We know that our students are more successful in schools

when parents are engaged in their learning and school activities,” said district superintendent Mark Raiff, “With our new mobile app, parents and community members can stay connected

with our schools and with the activities our students are engaged in everyday.” See APP, Page 2





Happy New Year! As we turn the calendar and our sights to 2017, we look forward to continuing to excel in all aspects of our District. This year we will be addressing key priorities as set by the Board of Education at their organizational meeting earlier this month. We will start a strategic planning process, developing a plan that will continue to address our high educational standards already outlined in our existing Continuous Improvement Plan, but in addition, encompass objectives that focus on the business related aspects of the District. We anticipate developing goals surrounding financial and physical asset management, employee retention, technology and community business partnerships, enrollment projections and our explosive growth, to name a few. We also plan to review the District’s current approach to school funding advocacy and determine a more effective manner in which we can ensure Olentangy Local Schools obtains tax dollars from the state of Ohio that we rightfully deserve and that will allow us to prolong time in between going to the voters with ballot issues. Identifying District-wide key performance indicators will also be a focus, allowing us to share progress with the community in a clear, definable manner. See LOOKING FORWARD Page 2

Inclusion and Equity: Empowering Student Voice Registration is now available for the Olentangy Local School District’s annual One Community: Equity and Inclusion Conference event series, which will be held over the course of two evenings: February 1 and April 5. The theme of this year’s series is “Empowering Student Voice.” The most valuable voice in the learning environment is that of our young people. This conference


FROM PAGE 1 In advance of the app’s launch, the district is asking parents to log in to their PowerSchool account to confirm that their contact information is accurate.

POWERSCHOOL NOTICE The app will use PowerSchool data to send communications to district parents, so ensuring that the information in PowerSchool is up to date will be important. To check your PowerSchool account information, visit the district website at www.olentangy. and read the “PowerSchool Account Update Instructions” post. Links to these instructions were also emailed to parents in January.

LOOKING FORWARD FROM PAGE 1 Due to the significant enrollment growth, voters passed a 6.9-mill ballot issue in 2016 that included an operating levy, a permanent improvement levy and a bond issue, allowing the district to begin construction of its fourth high school. With our continued rapid growth, more than 700 new students for the 2016-17 school year alone, we have embarked on a K-12 redistricting process to balance enrollment in our 23 buildings 2


seeks to put student voice in conversation with our district mission: facilitating maximum learning for all students. Two stand-alone conference event evenings will feature keynote presentations followed by expert and studentfacilitated workshops. Sessions will focus on the experiences of our young adults, how these experiences impact their social, emotional, psychological and academic growth, and

Here’s a sample of just some of the features included in the Olentangy Local SD mobile app: CALENDARS View and subscribe to calendars for general school events, reminders and more.

how to support them on their path to success. Full event details, including presenters and workshop descriptions, are available on the district’s website. Conference keynotes and workshop offerings vary each evening, so the public is encouraged to attend both



Receive notifications from your selected school buildings directly to your mobile device.

TOPICS INCLUDE • • • • • • • •

Economic diversity Exceptional learners Religious identity Autism Global work skills LGTBQ Anxiety and depression Misconceptions of black males

SCHOOLOGY Submit information and photos relevant to your school.

Access curricular materials and information on upcoming class assignments and events.

SCHOOL FINDER SPORTS Keep up with your favorite Olentangy team and athlete.



See all notifications, events, news, messages and more in one stream.

Find contact information for every district teacher and administrator and easily add them to your contacts lists.

and prepare to open our new Olentangy Berlin High School in fall 2018. A community committee, the Attendance Boundaries Committee, was established in September to begin the process of examining all boundaries, K-12 within the District. This committee, representing each district building, will make a recommendation to me after studying this topic in depth for six months. They are offering the community the opportunity to provide feedback to them during three community forums, January 30, February 6 and 13, or electronically after viewing a recorded

evenings. This is a free event. The first session will be held from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Feb. 1, 2017 at Liberty High School, 3584 Home Road. The second session will be held from 6 to 8:30 p.m. April 5, 2017 at Olentangy High School, 675 Lewis Center Road. For more information about the conference, and to register to attend, please visit the district’s website at

webinar. Information about the forums can be found on the District website. Ultimately, I will make a decision regarding attendance boundaries in mid-March, with changes taking effect for the 2018-19 school year. The Board of Education has provided redistricting guidelines to guide the process and decision, which both the committee and I will use. The committee’s primary responsibility is to examine options that balance enrollment and align feeder patterns. I’ve heard some concerns from district residents about movement of their children in


Access interactive maps that provide easy directions to Olentangy Local School District buildings and event locations.

View and engage with district social media posts, including Facebook and Twitter.



Link to the myOLSD student portal and access district provided resources and tools.

View monthly lunch menus customized to your selected school building.

regards to transportation travel times, children not attending their closest school and their child’s well-being as a result of a change in schools. I take all of these concerns very seriously and spend a significant amount of time thinking about providing the best experience for every one of our students. In a recent review of archived files, I found that district residents expressed these same concerns - almost verbatim - each time a building has opened or redistricting efforts have been needed over the past 26 years. What reassures me is knowing that each time we’ve had to redistrict, and with

such explosive growth as ours, we have been able to continue to provide and improve upon an outstanding educational experience for students. Change is never easy, but rest assured, at Olentangy we focus on what is best for our students, your children, and work hard to provide an educational environment and experience that is ranked among the best in our nation. We are experienced at adapting to change in building enrollment and are looking forward to continuing to live our district mission to facilitate maximum learning for every student.

Construction Update: Olentangy Berlin High School Construction of the district’s fourth high school, Olentangy Berlin High School, continues along Berlin Station Road, east of Gregory Road in Berlin Township. The project is approximately 25 percent complete as of January and remains on schedule for a summer 2018 opening, said Todd Clevinger, project manager with Gilbane Building Company, the contractor building the high school. Olentangy Berlin High School was made possible by voter approval of a March 2016 ballot request that included a no-new-millage bond issue to fund construction of the new high school. The new high school is needed in Olentangy to ease overcrowding at the district’s three existing high schools and to meet continued student enrollment growth. Olentangy Local Schools remains the fastest-growing district in the state. After the levy was approved, the district sought community input to help determine a name for the school. Olentangy Berlin High School was the most popular name among residents who submitted suggestions via a survey provided by the district. More than 230 of the 404 respondents recommended the school board select Olentangy Berlin

High School as the building’s name. The name is a tribute to the former Berlin School and the township in which it is located. The original Berlin School, which operated in the area from 1915 to 1973, was one of the four original school buildings in the Olentangy community to form the Olentangy Local School District. Prior to the opening, the district will review its current attendance boundaries to determine who will be assigned to the new high school. That process is well underway and an Attendance Boundaries Committee made up of community members from every school building in the district has been organized. The committee will make its recommendation to Superintendent Mark Raiff in March. Once the redistricting has been completed, the students and staff at the new Olentangy Berlin High School will help to decide the school’s mascot and colors. The school board has hired the Gilbane Building Company to serve as construction manager for the project. Fanning/Howey Associates is the architect. The new 303,000square-foot high school will be similar in design to Orange High School, with some modifications.



Visit for more photos!


The U.S. Deptartment of Education recently named Scioto Ridge Elementary as a 2016 National Blue Ribbon School. The coveted award is given to schools where students either achieve very high learning standards or are making notable improvements in closing the achievement gap. Scioto Ridge Elementary School was recognized for its overall academic excellence.

OLENTANGY BOARD OF EDUCATION Roger Bartz President 7922 Manorgate Street Lewis Center, Ohio 43035 (740) 657-4093 Dave King 5027 Lakeview Drive (740) 657-4094



Julie Wagner Feasel 7636 Holderman Street Lewis Center, Ohio 43035 (740) 657-4091 Kevin O’Brien 3366 Westbrook Place Lewis Center, Ohio 43035 (740) 657-4090 kevin_o’

SUPPORTING OUR VETERANS » Olentangy students in November honored past and present U.S. servicemen and women during Veterans Day activities held throughout the district. In addition to assemblies, breakfasts with veterans, ceremonies and guest speakers, several schools participated in Operation Buckeye.

STAY IN TOUCH ONLINE Mindy Patrick Vice President 403 Rosewood Court Powell, Ohio 43065



Olentangy Local Schools Winter 2017 Newsletter  
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