OSSB Panther Paws Newsletter

Summer 2019

Greetings from OSSB Principal - Mrs. Michelle Wagner

Welcome to the 2019-2020 school year. I hope that you are enjoying a wonderful summer. I also hope that you are relaxed, recharged and ready to start a new school year. Let me start by introducing myself. My name is Michelle Wagner and I am the new principal at OSSB. I have been a teacher, IEP Coordinator and Assistant Principal at OSSB. I am excited to start this new position and work with all of you in my new role. I am an alumna of OSSB and live close to school with my husband and two cats.

We have some staff updates I would like to tell you about. We would like to welcome Dr. Maynus as our new OSSB Superintendent. She served as our interim superintendent last school year and in May was appointed our official superintendent. Mr. Ransey has moved to become our director of Facilities. Mrs. Janell Brown our long-time librarian has retired after 25 years at OSSB. We wish her well in her retirement. We will be bringing some other new staff on board. Some of our new hires will be a new IEP Coordinator, a new elementary teacher, a new transition coordinator and of course a new librarian. We look forward to welcoming all our new staff at the start of our school year.

Enjoy the rest of your summer, I am looking forward to a fantastic year with you and your child.

Bicycling in Adapted Physical Education

Each Monday this past school year, students from Ms. Myers, Ms. Kester and Mrs. Young-Dove's classes rode bikes for their daily lesson. OSSB has a variety of bikes to work with including three wheeled, stationary and tandem bikes. Students are matched with a bike that best meets their individual needs (and they wear helmets when not posing for a photo op). Over the course of the academic year, many students have become independent riders or in need of very little assistance. This activity has been well received by both students and staff. If you are interested in more information about adapted bicycles, please reach out to your child's Adapted Physical Education teacher, or to the Adaptive Sports Connection in Columbus https://adaptivesportsconnection.org/sports-programs/cycling/ ~ Mrs. Lyle-Henry

A group of OSSB students, teachers and staff smile for the camera during their visit to the State Library of Ohio on April 25, 2019. Also shown at far left is Tracy Grimm, State Library Manager of Circulation and Special Services.

Third Annual OSSB Student Art Show, State Library of Ohio

On April 25th, high school students enrolled in the Visual Arts course at OSSB, traveled to the State Library of Ohio to attend a special ceremony honoring them for their artwork. Students created mixed-media, symbolic self-portraits in response to a class assignment. They drew inspiration from well-known artists like Frida Khalo and Jean-Michel Basquiat. During the ceremony, two students shared their artist statements. All students who participated received certificates and gift bags. The exhibit of OSSB student artwork was on display at the State Library until May 31, 2019. ~ Ms. Rachelle Smith

Aladdin Jr - The Musical at OSSB

Ohio State School for the Blind students gave an exciting performance of Disney’s Aladdin Jr. musical on May 15th, 2019. The cast included Maggie (Genie), Sarah (Aladdin), Autum (Jasmine), Emma (Sultan), Emily (Jafar), Byata (Iago and Babkak), Jana (Kassim), Carl (Razoul), Constance (Isir),and Dee (Rajah). Students performed for an audience of their peers, family, friends, and OSSB teachers and staff in Scarberry Hall at OSSB. Check out the OSSB YouTube Channel to watch Aladdin Jr. or click on the photo above left. ~ Mrs. Rachelle Smith

OSSB Podcast Team Making Memories

Students at the Ohio State School for the Blind have been hard at work this year creating podcasts that are helping them learn skills such as interviewing, recording, editing and creating a final audio product. We invite you to check out our OSSB Soundcloud page for new and archived podcasts as new topics are covered. Thank you for tuning into the OSSB podcasts and supporting the activities of students and staff at OSSB. To find the OSSB podcast archives, please go the the OSSB website.

Mr. Kelley worked with alumnus, Jordy Stringer and folks who came to the 2019 OSSB Reunion to do a special podcast comparing memories from historical OSSB digital recordings from 1952 to the present day. Click on 2019 OSSB Reunion link above to hear more! ~ Mr. Dan Kelley and Mrs. Lauri Kaplan

LEGO will release Braille Bricks in 2020

Check out this NPR article about the new LEGO Braille Bricks to be released in 2020.


OSSB Spring Celebration - May 16, 2019

OSSB Students, Staff and Families came together for a day of music, Spaghetti and sharing on May 16th. The fun began with a musical recital in the afternoon. Other activities planned in the afternoon were an OSSB Marching Band Spaghetti Dinner Fundraiser. The OSSB Marching Band has been invited to perform at the Outback Bowl in December 2019. The Spaghetti Dinner was a great success and filled the gymnasium with students, families and staff raising money for a great cause.

Families attending the dinner were able to connect with representatives from area agencies during the OSSB Family Resource Fair. Representatives from agencies such as the Social Security Administration, Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities, Universal Low Vision Aids, the Department of Developmental Disabilities and more, provided information and resources. The Resource Fair was cosponsored by Amy Dubin, Family Engagement Coordinator from the 21st Century Community Learning Centers grant, and Lauri Kaplan, Parent Mentor. Parents, let us know what you thought - we hope to make it an annual event!

"Heroes and Villains", under the direction of Ms. Yolanda Johnson, Musical Director, and her assistant, Olivia Swisher. The stage was colorfully decorated, and the curtain behind the stage included a backdrop of a night sky with the silhouette of a downtown skyline. Words like ZAP! and POW! were emblazoned upon the backdrop. Mrs. Carol Agler was the emcee for the evening's performance. The audience in Scarberry Hall enjoyed performances by students in all of the music classes at OSSB and such songs as the Batman Theme song on Boom Whackers & Keyboards and Bruno Mars Just the Way You Are on Bells and Bucket Drums.

Elementary choir students appeared as their favorite villains and heroes, and sang "Let's be super heroes so we can save the day, Wherever there is trouble, we're on our way. Let's be super heroes, so we can save the world. With our super powers, we're Super Boys and Super Girls! Super Heroes, Yay!"

No concert at OSSB is complete without band instruments, and we were treated to the Elementary Band on songs such as Super Hero, and We Will Rock You. The evening wrapped up with our Symphonic Band performing multiple numbers including Music in the Dark by Danny Elfman, Superman Theme by John Williams and Pharrell Williams unforgettable number, Happy. Such a lovely ending to a great day at OSSB. ~ Mrs. Lauri Kaplan

Elementary students stand on the stage in Scarberry Hall, many of them wearing super hero costumes such as Superman, Wonder Woman, etc. during the 2019 Spring Concert, Heroes & Villains.

End of the Year Bash at OSSB - May 23, 2019

At the end of the 2018-2019 school year, the OSSB Residential Department with support from the 21st Century Afterschool program invited ALL students, families, and staff for an evening of fun in the sun! A party was held that took place in our sensory garden behind the residential dorms. Attendees enjoyed jumping on inflatables, playing carnival games and GIANT Connect Four and Jenga, listening to music, and face painting by Ms. Kirk. Students that participate in the vocational program at the school provided food and snacks to purchase for a small fee, and there were Popsicles and other refreshments for attendees. The End of the Year Bash was very well attended, and a special thanks goes out to all of the OSSB staff who helped make the evening memorable! ~ Ms. Courtney Hunkele, Youth Leader Supervisor-2nd Shift

Shown in Downtown Columbus at the 5K race for Heart & Sole Team members from OSSB - students, staff and volunteers.

OSSB Heart & Sole Team races to a 5K Finish in Downtown Columbus

Congratulations to the OSSB Heart & Sole team of 2019! Danielle, My'Keyia, Hadijah, Emmie, Kurtacee, Jayla, Makayla, Sumeya, & Alexis all participated in the Heart & Sole season. Senior Aujanee, served as a junior coach and helped keep the team motivated. Several OSSB staff members and OSU undergraduate students in the Teacher of the Visually Impaired program volunteered as coaches and running buddies. The OSSB Team began the season in early March and concluded with a 5K in downtown Columbus on May 19, 2019. During the season, the coaches lead the girls through activities to strengthen the heart, spirit, body, brain and social aspects of their lives. They learned about celebrating their strengths, respecting themselves, setting safe boundaries, and the importance of healthy relationships. In addition, they ran, jogged, or walked each session leading up to the 5K run

Heart & Sole and Girls on the Run is a nationwide program that encourages young women and girls to dream big and commit to a healthy lifestyle. It was established in 1996 and has teams in all 50 states. The OSSB coaches and runners are proud to represent our school in such a positive program. ~ Dr. Chris Ross, Heart & Sole coach

Important Dates


8-2 Registration Packets Due Back

8-19 Residential Students return after 3:30pm

8-20 First Day of School

8-21 First day of track practice

8-22 Band practice 5:30-7:30pm

8-28 Band at Rhodes Tower - 10am

8-28 Band at Millersport Sweet Corn Festival 3:00 - 9:00pm


9-2 NO SCHOOL - Labor Day

9-5 Band practice 5:30-7:30pm


9-12 Band practice 5:30-7:30pm

9-13 thru 9-15 Track Meet @ TENNESSEE

9-13 thru 9-14 Band Weekend - High School Football game

Pilot Dogs Tailgate party & Band Competition

9-23 First day of Goalball Practice

9-26 Band practice 5:30-7:30pm

9-27- thru 9-29 NCASB Track and Field @ INDIANA

Photos Around OSSB This Spring

Don't Forget To Send In Boxtops for Education!

The elementary classes continue to collect Boxtops for Education coupons from products. If you send any to school, just label them for Mrs. Peirano. The Campbell’s Labels for Education program has been discontinued so we no longer collect those. Thanks for sending your Boxtops to support elementary programs! We recently received a check for over $275.00, so they really do add up!! OSSB thanks you for your support!

OSSB Sports Summer Camp 2019

Click on the button to learn more about OSSB 2019 Sports Camp activities and see photos of students learning this summer!

OSSB Foundation Facebook Page

Did you know that there is an Ohio State School for the Blind Foundation that supports educational programming at OSSB? Check out this non-profit organization by clicking this link.

Ohio State School for the Blind Facebook Page

Click on the link to take you to the OSSB Official Facebook Page!

Photo in the background of the newsletter shows artwork created during OSSB Summercamp 2018.