Team Talk

State Support Team Region 12 Newsletter - January 2016

Lonny J. Rivera, ED.D Announced as Upcoming Interim Superintendent of Public Instruction

Lonny J. Rivera became Ohio’s interim superintendent of public instruction on Jan. 1, 2016, following the retirement of current State Superintendent Richard A. Ross. Dr. Rivera began his career as a special education teacher and served as a principal and district superintendent before leading the Ohio Department of Education’s Division of Accountability and the Teaching Profession. In that post, he oversees the state’s annual school and district report cards, improvement for troubled schools and the licensing of Ohio teachers.

Schools honored at the Ohio PBIS Showcase

Twenty-two schools were honored at the Ohio Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports Showcase on Dec.1 for their successful implementation of PBIS. Recipient award winners demonstrated extraordinary leadership of implementation efforts, creative problem solving and innovative strategies.

Congratulations to the schools in our region: Starlight School (Tuscarawas Board of Developmental Disabilities) for receiving the Bronze Award, Ridgewood Elementary for receiving the Silver Award and special recognition to Bellaire Elementary School, the only school in the state to earn a Gold Award!

Safe Harbor Guidance document updated

Please note that the department has made two changes to the Safe Harbor Guidance document posted at In the updated document you will see:

  • A clarification in the EdChoice Scholarship Program text, under Safe harbor for school districts on page 2, explaining that a public school building can be removed from the program’s eligibility list, as indicated in ORC 3310:03(B)(1);
  • The addition of item 3.b. in the section titled Safe harbor for teachers and principals on page 3. It relates to student growth measures for educators exclusively using value-added data from state tests who are eligible for less frequent evaluation cycles. More details about the change are available here.

Ohio’s Kindergarten Through Grade 3 Learning and Development Standards

Ohio has created learning and development standards for grades Kindergarten through Grade 3 that address Approaches Toward Learning, Physical Well-Being, and Social and Emotional Development. These learning and development standards promote an understanding of the whole child and guide the instructional strategies that support all areas of learning. These standards are not tied to any assessments but are intended to be useful in determining how to support students in these early grades. The development of these standards represented collaboration between state agencies including Ohio Department of Education, Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, Ohio Department of Health, Ohio Department of Mental Health, Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities, and the Governor’s Office. The state agencies worked with national experts and writing teams made up of Ohio-based content experts and stakeholders to craft these standards.

Ohio’s Kindergarten Through Grade 3 Learning and Development Standards can be downloaded on the Ohio Department of Education Web Site.


  • Coshocton City Schools had their parent-teacher partnership kickoff on December 2nd. The parent-teacher partnership led the event and did an amazing job! Coshocton City hosted eight teachers and six parents/caregivers. They had rich conversation about communication and school improvement structures, and began building solid partnerships. Additional sessions will be held in February and March.
  • St. Clairsville-Richland City School District recently hosted “Special Education Basics,” a parent workshop designed especially to assist parents of newly-identified students, though all parents of students with special needs were invited and encouraged to attend. The program was created and supported by the District’s Intervention and Review Team. School Psychologist Jenny Schmidt led the two-hour workshop which covered frequently-encountered terms and acronyms, timelines, processes as well as an emphasis on the important role and involvement of the parent. Response to the event was very positive with parents indicating a willingness to attend additional workshops. According to Schmidt, a second workshop will be held in February or March focusing upon Secondary Transition Plans. Parent responses and feedback will generate topics for future workshops
  • Edison Local hosted their parent-teacher partnership kickoff and communication session on November 19th. Ten parents and ten teachers enjoyed a great dinner, children were welcomed in to the library for fun activities hosted by their honor society students who earned community service hours, and the group had very courageous conversations regarding communication and school improvement structures. It was a huge success! Additional sessions will be held in February and March.