There’s a well known saying that it takes a village to raise a child. That sentiment is as true today as when it was first uttered.
Earlier this spring, the Newark City School District hosted a districtwide Social and Emotional Awareness Day, designed to help students deal with everyday stressors. The day was a shining examples of the kind of “village” we have shepherding our students. Dozens of community members and organizations came together to help with the social and emotional needs of our students.
The day sprang from our SEAS Team — Social and Emotional Awareness and Success. The team is a group of our school counselors, linkage coordinators, social workers, parent mentor and psychologists who meet throughout the year to share ideas and strategies for helping kids.
Students in all grade levels attended daylong sessions geared toward giving them strategies for dealing with emotions, respecting their peers, making healthy choices and having healthy relationships.
Across the district, organizations including the YMCA, OSU Extension, Mental Health America, Licking Memorial, Behavioral Healthcare Partners, Pathways, Hospice and many more visited our schools to talk with students.
I had the pleasure of visiting many sessions in our buildings on that day. I was impressed by the way our students took to yoga, as they quieted down and learned breathing strategies.
Our own staff also did a great job presenting interesting topics and working with their students, providing their own expertise — many of our music and art teachers led “therapy” sessions designed to help students either calm down or expend some extra energy.
The scene in Cherry Valley Elementary’s music room, as Mrs. Noyes led a roomful of students pounding on exercise balls set atop five-gallon buckets to the rhythm of Imagine Dragons and other songs.
The day was an overall success, and we plan to hold more social and emotional-focused days in the future, always learning from each event. Children learn best when they feel safe in their environment, and we hope days like this help our students to feel safe and secure.
By Superintendent Doug Ute
Roy Kelley, Class of 1980
United States Navy Rear Admiral Roy Kelley is being honored as the recipient of the Alumni Citizenship Award during the 2018 Newark High School Commencement Ceremony on May 26. Kelley is a 1980 graduate of Newark High School.
Kelley was promoted in October 2017 to commander of the Naval Air Force Atlantic.
Following his high school career, Kelley received a Bachelor of Science in Business from Southeastern Oklahoma State University in Durant, Oklahoma. He holds a Master of Arts in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island.
Kelley was designated a naval aviator at Naval Air Station (NAS) Kingsville in August 1986. His early flying assignments in the F-14 community included Fighter Squadron (VF) 102 aboard USS America (CV-66), VF-101 instructor/demonstration pilot, VF-143 aboard USS George Washington (CVN 73) training and quality assurance officer, and VF-32 aboard USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) maintenance officer.
Kelley’s shore tours included F-14 placement officer at the Bureau of Naval Personnel, Joint Staff J-3 Joint Operations Division Central Command planning and briefing deployment orders to the secretary of defense and chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff, Navy Staff Air Warfare Division (N-88) as a F/A-18 requirements officer and the chief of staff for Commander, Naval Air Forces Pacific (CNAF).
Kelley’s first command tour was Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 102 Diamondbacks aboard USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) in 2001, a record-setting deployment in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. The Diamondbacks were awarded the Battle Efficiency award, Rear Adm. Clarence Wade McClusky award, Golden Wrench award and Navy Unit Commendation under his leadership. Kelley’s second command tour was Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 7 in 2009 where he made two deployments aboard USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. CVW-7 and Eisenhower won the Ramage Award for the best CVW/CVN team in 2009 and 2010.
As a flag officer, Kelley served as the chief of Naval Air Training in 2013, deployed around the world as commander of Carrier Strike Group 12 aboard USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) in 2015, served as the director of Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) Fleet Integration Office from September 2016 to September 2017, and is currently serving as commander, Naval Air Force Atlantic.
His awards include the Legion of Merit (six awards), Bronze Star (two awards), Joint Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal (seven Strike Flight Awards, Combat V), Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (five Awards, Combat V), Joint Service Achievement Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, and various campaign, unit and service awards. He has accumulated over 4,000 flight hours and over 940 carrier arrested landings.
NCS Receives Breakfast Program of the Year Award
Newark City Schools was named as the School Breakfast Program of the Year for 2017 by the Children’s Hunger Alliance during an event this spring.
The Hunger Alliance chose Newark City Schools for our work in increasing school breakfast participation. The district currently serves more than 4,000 school breakfasts every day.
“It’s important for students to start their days with a full stomach,” Superintendent Doug Ute said. “It helps them feel better, and helps students focus more on learning.”
After successfully piloting breakfast in the classroom at Ben Franklin Elementary in the Spring of 2016, the district expanded the free breakfast program districtwide for the 2016-17 school year. During the first year, we saw an increase of 1,400 students served per day — or 250,000 more breakfasts served throughout the year.
Student behavior and attentiveness have improved, while visits to the nurse’s office with complaints of headaches and stomachaches have declined significantly.
Newark Teachers Receive Travel Grant
The kits contain items that can help people treat serious wounds while waiting for medical professionals to respond. Items include a tourniquet, pressure dressing, Z-Fold gauze, a Mylar Emergency Blanket, Instructions for Use and more.
Newark is the first school district to partner with citizenAID.
“We are proud to have Newark City Schools as our inaugural partner,” said Robert M. Otter, citizenAID’s co-founder and CEO. “citizenAID is committed to our mission: to save lives in times of crisis. To fulfill that mission, our goal is to donate one million trainings to educators and administrators across the country.”
The Newark City School District announced an official partnership with citizenAID earlier this spring. This partnership will provide the system nearly 300 of citizenAID’s Public Treatment Kits and 600 online trainings to staff members throughout the district.
The kits and classes will help teachers leverage the knowledge of experts who have decades of experience in emergency response. In addition, all Newark City School employees will have access to citizenAID’s free mobile application, equipping every member of the community with the knowledge to respond in times of crisis.
“We take the safety and security of our kids incredibly seriously at Newark City Schools,” Superintendent Doug Ute said. “In those rare instances when we can’t prevent a crisis, basic medical treatment can make all the difference in keeping our kids safe before EMTs and paramedics arrive on the scene.”