Cincinnati Public Schools
Mary Ronan, superintendent of Cincinnati Public Schools, and John and Eileen Barrett and Chris Bochenek, were recently honored by the Assistance League of Greater Cincinnati at its annual awards presentation for their commitments to giving back.
Mary was recognized with a National Operation School Bell Award. Operation School Bell is an Assistance League program that provides school uniforms annually to more than 2,500 children in poverty in 35 public and parochial schools in greater Cincinnati and northern Kentucky.
Some of the ways Mary has supported Operation School Bell and the Assistance League include: regularly assisting as a volunteer during Operation School Bell uniform distribution; developing a protocol enabling Cincinnati Public Schools to pay for school buses used to transport students to Assistance League distribution sites, which freed the nonprofit organization’s chapter funds, enabling an increase in the number of children served; and arranging for Operation School Bell coordinators to regularly attend staff development meetings with the resource coordinators from each school, strengthening the AL role and program impact on the children participating in Operation School Bell.
John and Eileen Barrett
The Barretts are long-time community leaders and have received many awards for their philanthropic work.
John is chairman, president and chief executive officer at Western & Southern Financial Group. He serves on the board of directors for Western & Southern Financial Group and Cintas Corporation and is a member and former chairman of the Cincinnati Business Committee. He serves on the executive committee of the Cincinnati Center City Development Corporation (3CDC) and is active with REDI Cincinnati and the University of Cincinnati and its foundation.
Eileen serves or has served on the board of trustees for Central Clinic Foundation; Barrett Cancer Center; Children’s Protective Service-Families Forward; The Children’s Home of Cincinnati; Cincinnati Country Day School; Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden; and The Springer School. She is co-chair for Ride Cincinnati; former United Way Campaign co-chair; and helped raise more than $1 million in 2011 at the Queen City Ball Gala benefitting the Barrett Cancer Center and the Lindner Center of Hope.
Christine A. Bochenek
Vice president and senior program officer for human services with the Haile/USBank Foundation, Christine has served 28 years with U.S. Bank and has been with the foundation since it opened in 2007. She serves on the board of trustees for the Women’s Crisis Center and the Hamilton County Job & Family Services Family Fund; Scholar House of Northern Kentucky; Homeless to Homes Plan; and Seton High School’s Advancement Committee.
The Assistance League of Greater Cincinnati is made up of volunteers who run programs dedicated to aid women and children in crisis, serving Hamilton, Butler, Warren and Clermont counties in Ohio, and Kenton, Boone, Campbell, Grant and Mason Counties in northern Kentucky.
A positive teacher who brings out the best in her students is an incredible gift to a growing mind. My Walnut Hills High School intern, Isabella Noe, spoke with Dawn Wolfe. I think you will be moved by this teacher’s inspirational story of how her job brings her joy.
In her own words, from Dawn Wolfe, an English teacher at Walnut Hills High School (a Cincinnati Public School)
“There is a simple joy of seeing a student in the morning and saying, ‘Hello.’ No matter what that student has done, what they had been through that morning and the night before, they still come into school, and they are ready to say ‘hello’ and they are ready to work. Even when I give them an essay. And they still smile, and they are still thankful.
Actually I really love when I hand students an essay and they say ‘thank you.’ And that amuses me to no end, every time, because they are grateful for their learning, and they are thankful for the opportunities they are being given.
The opportunities that I have had at Walnut are different because of the diversity of students here, and the variety of students- not just socio-economic, not just gender, but the level of grades that we have (7-12). [I enjoy] being able to work with kids when they are very small and scared and new to Walnut…And then when I see them as seniors, and I got to watch them grow and work with them at various points. I think that is the most amazing opportunity that I have had here.
And then, when they come back and give me hugs after they’ve gone to college; That’s so cool!
One thing I love about teaching is that there is no repetition, even between bells. I teach the same thing every day, 5 bells a day…every day. But the comments and opinions of students make it interesting, and each year you get to start with a brand new group of students, a completely clean slate, and reflect on what you’ve done in previous years, and you get to do so much more.
You get to make changes to make things better for the students. Especially with this new human rights course, I hope I can impart the message that we cannot be passive and let things slip by. Let’s be upstanders, and make a change in what you want to in the world.
I decided to be an English major because I was the kid who read 5 books at a time when I was little. But, I was going to go to law school. I wasn’t going to be a teacher. But I was so proud of what I saw in students and I wanted to be part of that, and wanted to have fun every day when I went to work; I do have fun every day when I come to work.”
– Dawn Wolfe
Have you heard about the new OneSight Vision Clinic at Cincinnati Public School’s Oyler School? The Cincinnati Eye Institute Foundation is a founding partner and OneSight is funded by the company that owns LensCrafters and Pearl Vision and Sunglass Hut.
Families of kids who attend Oyler don’t have a lot of money. Marilyn Crumpton with the Cincinnati Health Foundation told www.marketplace.org ‘s Amy Scott even parents with Medicaid can’t always get their kids to the eye doctor.
“Sometimes it’s a choice between going to the grocery or taking that bus trip,” she says. “Poverty interferes with children getting health care,” Crumpton said.
Oyler is a CPS Community Learning Center, a neighborhood hub in Cincinnati’s Lower Price Hill that leverages public and private partnerships to offer dental, medical and vision care plus tutoring, quality after-school programming and more to remove barriers in the way of student success.
They say that it takes a village to raise a child. Thanks to so many who have come together with one common goal – to help young people achieve.
What a wonderful opportunity for Cincinnati Public School’s School for Creative and Performing Arts students! Yesterday, kicking off the Mayerson Artistic Excellence Program, internationally acclaimed violinist Joshua Bell gave a career talk. Who better to inspire Cincinnati’s young, upcoming artists than professionals who are among the finest in the world!
Some 1000 Cincinnati school children are proudly telling the world they are being the best they can be. They’re wearing t-shirts that they earned for demonstrating positive character values.
The incentive project was a partnership between TSC Apparel and the Character Council of Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky and Rees E. Price Academy, Ethel M. Taylor Academy, and Westwood School, all Cincinnati Public Schools who have adopted school wide character education programs to create a safe and positive culture for learning.
The t-shirts carry a character message and artwork designed by the students themselves. A Westwood student came up with the theme, “Being the best at getting better!” Similarly, Ethel M Taylor shirts include a student-designed message, “Others wish for it, we work for it!”
Students earn t-shirts through their demonstration of kindness, respect, and positive behavior. At Taylor Academy, chosen students are recognized monthly for their character in a ceremony that is broadcast internally to students and staff. At right are Taylor students of the month.