OSSB Panther Paws News

Friday, November 6, 2020 - Week Nine



9 - NO SCHOOL, Veterans Day

10 - NO SCHOOL, Teacher Professional Development

* NEW * 11-30 - REMOTE LEARNING for all 7-12 grade students and staff

15 - OSSB Dorms Open for Elementary Students

19 - Parent Teacher Conferences

* NEW * 23 & 24 - Remote Learning for Teachers and Students Off-Campus

25,26,27 - NO SCHOOL, Thanksgiving Break


21 NO SCHOOL - Winter Break begins

Student Shares Voting Experience and OSSB Holds Mock Election

We are so excited for OSSB senior, Jeremiah, who shared his voting day photo from the Cleveland area, and was proud to have voted for the first time! Jeremiah voted in person on Election day earlier this week.

In other election news, the results of our 2020 student mock presidential election are in. Due to COVID-19 and restrictions around the school, students were unable to vote in person. This year students were sent a Google Form link, with two candidates to choose from, Donald Trump and Joe Biden. We had 60 of our 116 students vote, which was a 52% turnout. Out of the 60 students that voted:

  • 35 voted for Joe Biden (58%)
  • 25 voted for Donald Trump (42%)

It was a pretty close race, if just 5 or 6 of those votes had gone the other direction, we would have had a different winner. So every vote truly mattered and was important in this mock election. ~ Adam Schwamburger, High School Social Studies teacher

OSSB History Book Project Continues

The Ohio Arts Council has extended the grant period allowing artist Claudia Retter to continue working with OSSB students on what’s come to be known as the “history book project.” Due to COVID-19, the project’s plan for a final exhibition is up in the air, but the mission remains the same: to research the school’s history and add OSSB’s own "currently-happening" history and perspectives to it, archiving and presenting student experiences in creative ways.

Stay tuned: we’ll be putting out a general call for submissions to the project and keeping you updated on the progress. Thank you to all who have already contributed! If you have questions about the project, please reach out to Mrs. Rachelle Smith or Claudia Retter, Ohio Arts Council grant recipient.

The image shown with this article is the first official school building of the Ohio Institution for the Instruction of the Blind. This structure was built in 1838 on the corner of Parsons Ave. and East Main Street in Downtown Columbus. Eventually, it was replaced by the building currently on that property.

Order Your OSSB 20-21 Yearbook

Now is the time to order your OSSB Yearbook for the 2020-21 school year. Parents and students have the ability to edit your own personal pages for the yearbook. Please see the TreeRing PDF in this newsletter for more information on ordering. The deadline to order is April 9, 2021. Must be a Parent or Student 13 years or older to purchase and design. Questions? Please ask Mrs. Rachelle Smith, Art Teacher. rasmith@osdb.oh.gov

Sign into TreeRing Website to order your child's yearbook.

Price - $20.98

Physical Fitness Fridays - Join In on ZOOM

OSSB staff will be offering Fitness Fridays. Each week, new and exciting exercise routines will be offered to participate in. To maximize the health benefits, full and active participation is a must. Be ready to sweat!

The sessions will start at 9:30 am and run for approximately 45 minutes. Proper dress is required – tennis shoes and exercise clothes. You may want to keep a water bottle nearby during the activity. We encourage everyone to join. It will be a fun time!

Mrs. Henry, Ms. Gilliland and Mr. Lee

Physical Education Class Zoom Meeting

Zoom Link:


Meeting ID: 998 911 7625

Passcode: Fq36nR

OSSB School Lunch Menu - Week of November 9, 2020

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Early Intervention Program Sponsors Family Coffee Chat

On October 28, 2020, a small group of parents met virtually to share experiences and feel some sense of common ground. The connecting factor? These parents have young children from 1 - 3 years old who are blind or visually impaired (B/VI). The group was facilitated by Jenni Remeis, Statewide Coordinator of Early Intervention Vision Services for Ohio that is housed at OSSB. Jenni oversees a cohort who work with families of children ages 0-3 who are blind, visually impaired, and may have additional disabilities.

Jenni has created a series of monthly Family Coffee Chat's to engage parents and give them time to connect with other families of young children, while learning about a specific topic, and from each other. In October, Jenni and OSSB Parent Mentor, Lauri Kaplan, held two virtual sessions for families centered around the theme, Fall Into Sensory Fun!

The next virtual coffee hours will be held on November 18, 2020, at 3:00 pm and 6:00 pm, and the topic will be Toys Toys Toys!! With the holidays approaching, families will be able to share some of their child's favorites, and Jenni will share gift ideas she has found over the years. For more information on how to register please email Jenni at jremeis@osdb.oh.gov or Lauri at lkaplan@osdb.oh.gov.

OSSB Block Bell Schedule

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Wear A Mask, Protect Yourself and Your Friends

Support OSSB PTSF using Amazon Smile

New Program Available to Families of Children Learning 100% Remotely

Last week, Ohio Governor Mike Dewine announced Learning Aid Ohio, a grant program that aims to provide supplemental learning support for students with IEPs during this unique school year. The grant provides for a supplemental tutoring program, Learning Aid Ohio that DeWine says can assist parents with the challenges of virtual learning. Eligible families can apply for up to $1,500 in grant funding to cover tutoring costs and other needed support. You must fill out an application and be approved to begin services.

To Apply:

  • You must be an Ohio resident
  • Your child must be learning full-time remotely
  • Child must be on an IEP during the 2020-2021 school year
  • You must be experiencing financial hardship

Click on Learning Aid Ohio FAQ's for more information, and if you feel your family may qualify, click on Learning Aid Ohio Application to apply.


OSSB Facebook Page

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

OSSB Parent Teacher Staff Foundation Facebook Page

The OSSB Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization dedicated to raising funds to support students and programming at the Ohio State School for the Blind.

~ Workshops For Families ~

Disclaimer: The following information is being provided for informational purposes only. Listed events are not sponsored or endorsed by the Ohio State School for the Blind. OSSB does not guarantee the veracity of the information or data provided at these events. In no way is OSSB instructing students and families to participate in the described events.

Click on the Images below to Register for Outside Workshops And To See More Information on Guardianship and Alternatives, SSI, Waivers and Advocacy, Trusts, STABLE Accounts and More

Background photo for this newsletter is of a beautiful fall tree with orange and gold colored leaves taken on the OSSB campus circa 2015. ~ L. Kaplan