The Oak Park Advantage

November First Edition 2021


Saturday, Nov. 13th, 8am-4pm

13701 Oak Park Boulevard

Oak Park, MI


Ascension & Oak Park Schools Community Health Clinic

Saturday, November 13


Oak Park High School Gymnasium (13701 Oak Park Blvd. Oak Park, MI 48033)

Prizes will be available for attendees.

Appointments are also available at the OPHS Clinic Daily, call (248)398-0199 to schedule an appointment.

#OakParkPride #OakParkTogether


Congratulations to Oak Park High School math teacher Sean Kelly! An inductee to the 15th Cohort of the Gerstacker Education Fellowship Program.

Mr. Kelly was one of fourteen educators selected for leadership training and a trip to the Netherlands and Germany in June. The Saginaw Valley State University leadership program aims to increase the quality of K-12 education in Michigan.

The Gerstacker Fellowship Program was established in 2005 with a $1.5 million endowment from the Rollin M. Gerstacker Foundation of Midland. Participants, known as Gerstacker Fellows, meet monthly. Experts instruct the group on subjects such as leadership practices, organizational leadership, communication, cognitive coaching, finance and education with a global perspective. This year’s group is the 15th cohort.

This year’s Gerstacker Fellowship cohort includes:

  • Julie Alley, an elementary principal in Port Huron Area Schools
  • Sarah Cooper, an elementary teacher in Midland Public School
  • Rebekah D’Haene, an elementary principal in Saginaw Township School
  • John Folsom, assistant high school principal in Bay City Public Schools
  • Kelly Frank, an instructor at the Teacher Prep Academy at Iosco Regional Education Service Agency’s Career and Tech Center
  • Stephanie Hayward, an elementary principal in Reese Public Schools
  • Sean Kelly, high school teacher, Oak Park Schools
  • Stacey Luberda-Criner, superintendent of Alma Public Schools
  • Nancy Mahoney, assistant superintendent of Instructional Services, Clarkston Community Schools
  • Lisa Morford, a literacy coach in the Saginaw Intermediate School District
  • Amanda Murray, secondary interventionist at Michigan International Prep School
  • Tiffany Peterson, high school principal with Carrollton Public Schools
  • Rachel Reid, principal of Saginaw Arts and Science Academy in Saginaw Public Schools
  • Joshua Wrinkle, principal of Rochester High School

For more information about the Gerstacker Fellowship at SVSU, visit


Our own District Nurse, Vanessa Long, has been nominated for the LifeChanger of the Year Award. Please click on the link below for more information and for an opportunity for VOTE for her. We are so grateful for Nurse Long's dedication and the care she provides to the OPS learning community and beyond.

Ms. Long has been a nurse since 2004. Most recently, she served as an NICU nurse at William Beaumont Hospital. During the height of the pandemic, she signed up with the Oakland County Health Department as a COVID response public health school nurse to give back to her community. Luckily, she was assigned to Oak Park Schools in Oak Park, MI.

"The day I met her, I knew she was a leader who was living out her calling as a medical professional," said Diglio. "She is kind, compassionate, empathetic, organized, and a master multi-tasker. Most importantly, the children trust and adore her. Nurse Long is the walking definition of a LifeChanger."

Shortly after her assignment to Oak Park, a full-time district nurse position became available, and Ms. Long was asked to consider joining the staff permanently. Like many urban districts, Oak Park serves a high-need, underserved, diverse population of students and families. In addition to being in the midst of a global pandemic, the district was out of compliance in terms of basic school health protocols such as:

  • expired or no EpiPens at the building levels;
  • a lack of training for medical emergencies;
  • no evidence of individual medical plans for conditions such as allergies, diabetes, or seizures;
  • no system for intake, administration, and storage of medication;
  • high levels of students out of compliance with childhood immunizations;
  • expired and/or out of service AEDs, and;
  • an overall lack of K-12 systemic protocols to meet student health needs.
  • On top of all this, there was an urgency to identify, write, and implement a return-to-school plan for COVID-19. Needless to say, that did not deter Ms. Long, as she left her job at the hospital to serve K-12 education in its most vulnerable state.

Ms. Long officially became Oak Park’s district nurse in November 2020. The impact she has had on her school district in less than 12 months, during a global pandemic, is astounding. She has been instrumental in supporting her district with the alignment of new school health programming, face-to-face training at each building, COVID-19 reporting and close contact tracing, and supporting the efforts to improve childhood immunizations. She has brought in a number of community partnerships to provide Oak Park Schools and the community of Oak Park with COVID-19 testing every Wednesday, six childhood immunization clinics, two COVID-19 vaccination clinics, and future clinics scheduled.

Ms. Long's personality is what makes her a LifeChanger. She exudes kindness and love. She is a local rockstar to children. Her tenacity, advocacy, and determination to make sure the Oak Park Schools community has access to health care prevention and ongoing education makes her a LifeChanger.

"It is with the utmost respect and personal gratitude that we nominate Vanessa Long for LifeChanger of the Year," said Diglio.


Our district values your feedback! We will be asking you to take a brief survey to tell us about your experience with Oak Park Schools. To ensure we continue to provide high quality, rigorous learning experiences that meet the needs of our learners and prepare them for college and career, we need your feedback. We want to know what you think.

The survey will begin during the week of November 15th and close by Tuesday November 30th. You will be able to take the survey online at home. More information will be sent via email! We thank you in advance for your thoughtful responses. If you have any questions about the survey administration, please reach out to your child’s school.

Learn more about how Oak Park Schools uses Panorama to inform best practices for Family Engagement and Social Emotional Learning! Link to Watch Video:

Oakland Schools Technical Campus presents at OPHS

Special thank you to OPHS Counselor Violida Barnett and Angela Haley, Representative from Oakland Schools Technical Campus for the presentation to our high school students. They enjoyed your presentation and learned a lot about OSTC and it’s career exploration, hands on experiences and much more!

For more information on Oakland Schools Technical Campus visit:

"MIND YOUR BUSINESS when entrepreneurs speak”

Huge thank you to Leslie Jones and Tuere Vaughn for taking the time to speak to our Oak Park High School students at the “MIND YOUR BUSINESS when entrepreneurs speak” series about their experiences as entrepreneurs, personal experiences, and about taking the leap from student to entrepreneur!

Leslie Jones is an accountant who has her own CPA firm, Tuere Vaughn is a health/beauty business owner and nail technician.

Special shout out to our guidance counselor Mrs. Rosalyn Jones for giving students a platform to connect with these amazing entrepreneurs.

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Knights Cafe will be open after school 3pm until 5pm starting Monday!! Sign in and out required and absolutely no outside guests or visitors!

Oak Park Public Library Updates Hours

The Oak Park Public Library will now only be open by appointment between the hours of 3 and 4 pm. This decision was made as a result of rising COVID cases and increased traffic during those hours, which requires additional staffing. As we continue to search for adequate staffing to ensure we can safely reopen the Library building between 3 and 4 pm, the following services will be available during those times:

  • Information desk (by phone);
  • Computers and study rooms (by appointment);
  • Curbside pickup.

Other measures the Oak Park Public Library is taking to protect patrons against the spread of COVID is:

  • Requiring all patrons to wear masks;
  • Hosting Library Board meetings virtually;
  • Continuing to meet the requirements of the Emergency Declaration approved by the Oak Park City Council in September of 2021;
  • Hosting events virtually.

Contact Us!

14200 Oak Park Blvd

Oak Park, MI 48237

(248) 691-7480


Monday - Thursday: 10:00 - 8:00 pm

Only Open by Appointment 3-4 pm

Friday: 10:00 - 5:00 pm

Only Open by Appointment 3-4 pm

Saturday: Closed

Sunday: 1:00 - 5:00 pm

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Being a teenager can be hard—and when a pandemic disrupts your normal routines, it can get a lot harder. You may feel disappointed, depressed, and anxious about the future. How about connecting with other teens from around the state to share your feelings and compare experiences?

Register for a virtual support group designed especially for 14-to-17-years-olds, hosted by our Stay Well counseling team. Sign up for one or more sessions at

You’ll get a confirmation email with information to join the meeting. Be Kind to Your Mind.

Call the Michigan Stay Well counseling line for free emotional support. Dial 1-888-535-6136 and press “8.” Remain on the line until you hear the prompt to speak with a Stay Well counselor. This service is free, confidential, and available 24/7. For more guidance on coping with pandemic-related distress, visit


We want to ensure all families wishing to receive meals can do so.

Families and individuals in need of food are encouraged to attend upcoming distribution provided by Gleaners Community Food Bank

The distributions will take place on Friday's 2:00-4:00pm

10/8/21, 10/22/21, 11/5/21, 11/19/21, 12/3/21, 12/17/21, 1/14/22, 1/28/22, 2/11/22, 2/25/22, 3/11/22, 3/25/22, 4/8/22, 4/22/22, 5/6/22, 5/20/22, 6/3/22, 6/17/22, at Oak Park High School

(13701 Oak Park Blvd, Oak Park 48237). PLEASE ENTER OFF OF COOLIDGE HWY.

Additional Details:

-30 lbs. of groceries - Items such as milk, canned fruits & vegetables, lean protein & other shelf-stable items.

-Drive-up or Walk-up - Stay in your vehicles, and groceries will be placed into your trunk. Walk up guests without vehicles or those w/o a trunk are welcome to obtain groceries from a self-service table. If walking, please be prepared to carry the groceries or have a cart.

-No appointment needed - You do not need to bring identification or proof of eligibility to receive food.

-Increasing safety - If you wish to pick up for another household, you may do so without their presence in the car.

Please check our website for up to date changes/cancellations: PANTRYNET.ORG/MOBILE-DISTRIBUTION-EVENTS/


In partnership with NASA, the Hoffman Planetarium was officially recognized as a NASA Community Event host and welcomed into the NASA "family" on September 23rd of this year. In November, with the launch of the JWST, the Oak Park School district with have a month of events and shows leading up to the launch in early December.
Please visit for more information on upcoming events.
In partnership with NASA, the Hoffman Planetarium was officially recognized as a NASA Community Event host and welcomed into the NASA "family" on September 23rd of this year. In November, with the launch of the JWST, the Oak Park School district with have a month of events and shows leading up to the launch in early December.
STEMi in the OPSD


Oak Park Schools, in partnership with St. John's Ascension Health Center, is proud to provide health services for students from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday – Friday.

You can come to the Health Clinic to schedule an appointment for your physical. The Health Clinic is located at Oak Park High School. You can also print the Ascension paperwork here or pick the paperwork up in the Health Clinic.

Services include:

Medical – General health assessment, school/sports physicals, sick care, immunizations, vision and hearing testing, laboratory screening, health education, and nutrition counseling.

Counseling – Counseling and referrals for various concerns related to school-age children and adolescents including depression, behavioral issues, personal relationships, violence prevention, family problems, and substance abuse.

Health Education – Student and parent educational programs related to the school-age child’s health issues: i.e., asthma, hypertension, diabetes, nutrition, abstinence, substance abuse prevention, and conflict resolution.

As a state-funded center that bills insurance, uncovered costs do not get billed to our students or their families, so we encourage your students to utilize these services.

For more information about Ascension MI School-Based Health Centers, please contact District Nurse ​Vanessa Long District Nurse, or visit

OAK PARK SCHOOLS COVID-19 Preparedness Manual 2021-2022


Dear Oak Park Families,

If you have a student device at home that needs to be repaired or exchanged, we are asking that you please place a service request with the Oakland Schools Service Desk. Please describe the nature of the issue your device is experiencing.

Oakland Schools Service Desk

Phone: (248)209-2060


Online Ticket submission/LiveChat: Create service ticket

We will have Office Hours beginning Tuesday September 7th, at the times and location below for you to be able to come and exchange your device. We will be offering two free repairs per student. After two repairs there will be a cost associated.

NOVA Academy

22180 Parklawn

Oak Park, MI 48327

Near the corner of Granzon and Parklawn, see map below. Please come to the door where it is labeled, Device Exchange. Look for signs that says, Device Exchange

: 7am-9am

Thursdays: 2pm-4pm

If you are new to Oak Park Schools and do not yet have a device at home, these will be distributed at your students school, the week of September 13th.

Thank you!

Oak Park Technology Team


C2 Pipeline is a program sponsored by Wayne State University's College of Nursing. We are funded through the Michigan Department of Education's 21st Century Community Learning Center funds. Our program focuses on increasing graduation rates, improving academics, and helping to ensure students are college and career ready. It currently operates in twenty-four Metro Detroit high schools, serving grades 9-12. C2 Pipeline consists of three main components: 24 afterschool programming centers, annual summer programs, and the Innovation & Curiosity Center. Our overall program goals include the following:

  • Preparing students to be college and career ready
  • Increasing academic achievement in student learning
  • Expanding student awareness through enrichment activities and other non-traditional learning
  • Provide a safe and nurturing environment for all students
  • Provide family services

Afterschool programming operates for a total of 32 weeks during the academic school year. Oak Park High School is one of 24 program centers, programming runs for two and a half hours daily, Monday through Thursday. During these two and a half hours, students are served dinner or a snack and also have a chance to participate in academic center and enrichment. C2 Pipeline's academic center offers students the opportunity to receive assistance with homework, projects, and any school related work in a small group setting. Our enrichments cover topics that would not normally be covered during the school day in a fun and exciting, hands on atmosphere. Examples include: Anatomy In Clay, Fashion Engineering, Traumatic Brain Injury, Need for Green Speed, SAT Prep, STEM Busters, and Empowerment Improv. Each center considers district goals and school improvement plans when determining programming activities. All enrichment curriculum is aligned to Common Core State Standards, Next Generation Science Standards, and state curriculum standards.

Oak Park Program Hours: Monday - Thursday from 3:00 - 5:30PM

Any Oak Park Students interested joining the C2 Pipeline program please contact me at

What can we expect this coming school year? Let's listen to what some of Oakland County's education experts have to say in the first episode of Season 3 of our Educationally Speaking #podcast.…



One by one, get the #COVID19 vaccine! Residents 12+, Oakland County Health Division offers all vaccines needed for students.

Walk-in clinics:

Monday-Friday: 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

North Oakland Health Center

1200 N Telegraph, Bldg 34E Pontiac

South Oakland Health Center

27725 Greenfield Rd. Southfield


Oak Park Schools is excited to announce the release of a mobile app designed specifically to keep our families better informed and connected to what’s going on in our schools.

The new Oak Park Schools mobile app for both Apple and Android devices will keep you connected while you are on the go. The app is FREE and available for download today!

The app will deliver real time school news to your smart-device for fast, up-to-date access. With the app you can:

  • Get the latest district and school news
  • Select the schools you want to follow
  • Get push notifications about breaking news, closures, weather, events, and more
  • See the latest photos from school events
  • Tap to see school locations, phone numbers, and staff information

Download the new app in 3 easy steps:

From a smart-device, go to the iTunes App Store® or Google Play®

Search Oak Park Schools

Then select the “Oak Park Schools” app for free download

School news in the palm of your hand, your new Oak Park Schools mobile app is just a few taps away. Download it today!


Our mission is to provide a quality education that promotes respect for the individual and cultural differences of students and provides college and career readiness skills to become lifelong learners and productive citizens.

The Oak Park School District’s nearly 4,500 students are served at Einstein, Key and Pepper elementary schools (grades PreK-5), the Oak Park Preparatory Academy (grades 6-8), , Oak Park High School (grades 9 -12), NOVA (grades 3-12) the Oak Park Alternative Education Center (ages 16-19 years old) and My Virtual Academy of Oak Park (grades 5-12) in Oak Park, MI in Oakland County located in a suburban community near Detroit with approximately 30,000 residents. Our district consists of over 450 staff members, including 250 teachers and 11 building administrators.

Our school district boasts an abundance of educational and co/extra-curricular programs to meet the needs of a vast array of learners from Pre-K through twelfth grade. We encourage students to challenge themselves academically, explore comprehensive course offerings, and take risks to discover their individual gifts. We are dedicated to providing an intellectually challenging educational experience in safe, nurturing school environments that thrive on cultivating and empowering students to be their authentic selves. In addition, our academic and co/extra-curricular opportunities provide agency and shape self-identity, which are critical components to the adolescent development process.

Oak Park Advantage

The Oak Park Advantage is a holistic approach to education that not only prepares students academically, fosters a sense of belonging but creates long-lasting connections to the Oak Park community. While attending Oak Park Schools, students develop a confidence that is woven throughout their post-secondary, professional and social-emotional well-being years after they graduate.

Contact an Oak Park School District principal and take a tour! Get the Oak Park Advantage!

Our 2020 Goals

Maintain dynamic, healthy, and safe learning environments that inspire unlimited equitable opportunities for optimal classroom instruction to increase student achievement.

Implement ongoing transparent best practices to reduce operating costs to create opportunities to invest in human capital and professional learning, sustain quality facilities, establish a healthier organizational culture, and ensure fiscal stability.

Strategically design and implement organizational systems to increase efficiency, boost productivity to allow staff and students to focus entirely on student learning and social-emotional well-being.

Review and refresh curricular needs and resources employing planned adoption schedules based on current research with technology integration for classroom instruction.

Operate collaboratively district-wide and abandon ineffective silos.