Posted by Beth Seibert on Jan 28, 2019
Lima City School Superintendent Jill Ackerman takes a "deep dive" into the state report card.
Polio Plus Auction brought in $100 for lottery tickets donated by John Ficorilli and Tracie Sanchez. Thanks to Beth Seibert for that bid and Jay Begg for serving as today’s auctioneer.
President Paul Swartz noted that there is a District Meeting planned for Feb. 22nd at Avon, Ohio. Go to the District webpage for more information.
Paul Swartz also announced a local committee meeting – the Small Projects Committee. This committee is being reactivated by Ben Swartz, Adam Stolly, Jeff Dulmage and Jay Wenger. Their next meeting will be Feb. 25 at 1pm after the regular meeting. Any interested Rotary member was encouraged to join in and bring new small project ideas.
Linda Hamilton, CEO of West Ohio Food Bank was presented with a $588 check from the fourth quarter Rottery proceeds.
Congratulations to the nine new club members who exchanged their red badges for blue badges today: Bob Fricke, Marin Harbur, Tony Miller, Tammy Colon, Josh Parker, Rob Nelson, Jeff Dulmage, Syndi Winkler, and Nathan Garlock!
Judge Richard Warren and Jesse Lowe gave an update on one of the Lima Rotary Club’s pet projects – High Octane Drumline. Jesse noted how 2018 was a rebuilding year after losing many kids to graduation and college. Their kids meet once a week for an hour and a half and are very dedicated. They are learning how to read, write, play and perform multiple music pieces. They have a full parade performance schedule for 2019. Jesse gave much credit to the dedicated parents and foster parents of his students. He also thanked the Rotary Club and the community as a whole for the donations critical to supporting this program. Judge Warren closed with acknowledgements of how Jesse and the other leaders not only serve as music instructors but also as important counselors and mentors for kids dealing with serious family and personal issues. He was adamant in stressing how these dollars we spend here at home ARE changing lives through devoted people like Jesse and organizations like the High Octane Drumline.
Jill Ackerman requested assistance with the Rotary 4-Way Test Speech Contest. She needs judges, assistants, and audience members for the contest at Lima Senior High on Thursday, February 28th beginning at 6:00 pm. Contact her at to sign up.
The key presenter at today’s meeting was Lima City Schools Superintendent Jill Ackerman – Lima City Schools 2017/2018 State Report Card. This report was developed by Lima City Schools as a tool to help the community and parents understand why they have received an F. She briefly spoke of how detrimental and debilitating this score can be on the consciousness of students, teachers, and community members who are working hard to support what they know to be an excellent school system. And a score of D or F for so many consecutive years holds with it the threat of having the state takeover the local school system. Lima City Schools missed the D score by only 4/100ths of a point.  She broke down most of the 23 testing indicators for the audience and showed where Lima City Schools is both succeeding and challenged. Their goal has been to peel back the layers and take a deep dive in to discover the strengths and weaknesses, and obstacles and opportunities within each student, individual school, and program. Jill spoke of their “Most Vulnerable Students” and noted that 23% of their students meet the requirements of needing special education assistance because of a cognitive, speech, emotional or other such disability. They are seeing good improvements with their targeted efforts at this student group. But if they want to focus on simply bringing the overall grade card score up, initiatives and improvements within this area may have to be sacrificed through some tough decisions. Jill believes the state report card system is broken, especially as you look at the common denominators of the 20 school systems in Ohio that are considered failing – larger urban districts with higher poverty demographics.  There is a direct correlation between poverty and test scores. Since the state cannot provide answers for how urban schools can improve their overall grade card, these schools have formed a collaboration to learn from one another. One of the most important next steps is for the district to focus on improving early learning and preschool. She talked about how important that brain development is from birth to age 4. If these kids enter Kindergarten unprepared or behind they are likely to lag behind their entire school career.  She also reported on how they have become a center that is serving the whole student and their family by providing free breakfast, food pantries, and health services.  Jill acknowledged how much the community is involved in their school district and how important and beneficial these partnerships are for Lima City Schools success.