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A message from Superintendent Charles Smialek, Ph.D.

February 10, 2020


We continue to plan for the potential of constructing new secondary campuses‭, ‬a proposition we understand will be dependent upon‭ ‬the passage of a bond issue in November‭. ‬

Our Faculty Facilities Steering Committee‭ (‬FFSC‭) ‬visited last week two recently constructed secondary campuses‭: ‬North Olmsted and Lake‭ (‬Local‭) ‬in Stark County‭. ‬The FFSC consists of groups of teachers from each of our six secondary schools‭. ‬

We will continue to solicit the input of other stakeholder groups throughout the months that lead to our ballot initiative‭, ‬but‭ ‬we have begun our work with teachers as research has shown that their input into the design of new classrooms is most critical to raising student achievement‭.‬

Both North Olmsted and Lake contained examples of 21st-century elements‭, ‬including‭, ‬most noticeably collaborative spaces‭. ‬Collaborative spaces are open areas that multiple classrooms share‭. ‬Lounge-like in nature‭, ‬they are designed to allow students to more‭ ‬easily interact on cooperative projects than traditional classrooms can facilitate‭. ‬Lake featured one collaborative space per every four high school classrooms while North Olmsted included one collaborative space per high academic department‭. ‬

Both school campuses featured the pod model‭ (‬four classrooms surrounding a studio area‭) ‬in their middle school wings‭. ‬Most classrooms also contained‭ ‬“garage doors”‭ ‬on at least one wall so that teachers can choose to open their traditional space into the common collaboration area‭. ‬

After visiting both campuses‭, ‬our FFSC returned to the district office to process their observations‭, ‬looking for consensus points we should consider as we design our schools‭. ‬Clearly‭, ‬we have much work to do to pass a bond issue‭, ‬but we are grateful for our teachers’‭ ‬willingness to begin the important work of envisioning their future learning spaces‭. ‬

We look forward to soon beginning to engage our Parent/Student and Community Steering Committees to gather their respective perspectives‭. ‬Please visit our website‭ (‬‭) ‬to register to participate‭.‬




Have a great week‭!‬


Charlie‭ ‬