OSSB Panther Paws Newsletter

October 31, 2018

Ohio State School for the Blind

Danny Ransey, Principal

Michelle Wagner, Assistant Principal

2017-18 School Year Wrap Up

OSSB celebrated with nine students from the Class of 2018, their family and friends on May 25, 2018 during OSSB Graduation. Did you know that OSSB was first established in 1837 and later moved to the building that still stands at Parsons and Main in Downtown Columbus?

Joining the ranks of "OSSB retired" is Ms. Lynn Boyce, from Student Records. Ms. Boyce was thrilled to share with staff this summer, that OSSB student Sophia Larick scored a 31 composite on the ACT, a standardized test used for college admissions. Sophia tied for top score on file at OSSB since 1990 along with alumnus, Noah Beckman. Congratulations, Sophia!

OSSB Workshop Combines Learning and Fun!

On Monday, September 24, OSSB held its 5th annual Adapted Physical Education Workshop. Approximately 40 participants attended from all regions of Ohio. A few highlights from the event start with the swimming session. Coach Steve Grim and swim team members discussed and demonstrated various swimming skills and techniques that are universal for all swimmers and some that are unique to visually impaired swimmers.

All participants provided a lesson plan to teach during the workshop and those lessons plans were compiled in a workbook to take home. Students from Mrs. Miller’s and Mrs. Peirano’s classes participated in the presentation of the lessons. A great time had by everyone involved. The Ohio Department of Education conducted a session on IEP’s and new updates.

Finally, representatives from the Adapted Sports Connection finished the day by discussing what their organization provides in the way of athletic activities and services. This was a full and exciting day.

Lisa Lyle Henry, Alison Brewer Wood and Lee Mascarello

Adapted Physical Education Department

So Much Musical Talent At OSSB!

Congratulations are in order to students, Philip Sotak and Garrett Brammer, who have been nominated to represent OSSB during the 2019 Ohio State Middle School Honor Band weekend this winter. Philip was also selected to represent Westerville City Schools in the District 15 Honor Band. New student, Haley Thurston auditioned for the Columbus Children's Choir and was accepted into their Santa Maria Choir. Please give those students a word of encouragement when you see them in the halls. ~ OSSB Music Department

What do Albania, Romania and a guide dog named Tina have in common?

OSSB was pleased to welcome visitors from Albania and Romania to our school on Tuesday. Lorela, an Organizational Psychologist in her home country of Albania, has created a program that combines Art and Therapy for children who are visually impaired or blind. Larisa is studying at University and also volunteering in her hometown of Sibiu, Romania. She came to the United States with her dog guide, Tina, a petite yellow lab. They enjoyed touring and learning about OSSB with Mrs. Kaplan, and spoke with Mr. Kelley and students Julia, and Jeremiah as part of the next Podcast! Finally they finished their day talking and answering questions with students of Mrs. Peirano and Mrs. Miller. Special thanks to the American Council of the Blind of Ohio who are hosting the young ladies during their 4 week stay in Central Ohio. (photos from the day, are below) Left Mr. Kelley and students interview European guests, Larisa and Lorela for this month's podcast. Center, Brandon explores a tactile globe in Mrs. Miller's classroom. Photo right, Larisa and Lorela engage with students in Mrs. Peirano's class while talking about currency, the Black Sea and modes of transportation.

English Language Arts Updates At OSSB

In Mrs. Bardon’s English classes, your student is either reading Shakespeare or drafting a personal research essay! Sophomores and Seniors are learning about figurative language, characterization, and theme through the haunting study of Macbeth; Eighth graders are exploring their views on relationships, learning about imagery, and drafting cohesive written responses while reading Romeo and Juliet; Freshmen and Juniors are investigative themselves and their eye conditions in order to synthesize an MLA formatted essay about themselves. Make sure to ask your student about what they are learning – hopefully they will have a lot of exciting things to say!

Staff and students are shown in the gymnasium after the recent Staff Student Goalball match.

OSSB Students and Staff following a recent Goalball Match!

Who Just Won The AERO Excellence in Education Award?!?

Congratulations go out to OSSB's Robin Finley who was recently awarded The Judy Cernkovich Excellence in Education Award during the recent AERO conference at Deer Creek State Park.

Robin Finley has served students in the field of blindness education in a variety of capacities for over 25 years. Her expertise and advocacy for literacy has led her to roles instructing aspiring educators in the field of blindness as well as contributions to publications used to educate students and aspiring teachers in the field nationally. Way to go, Mrs Finley!

Important Dates in November

  • November 7, 2018 OSSB Picture Retakes
  • November 7, 2018 Parent Teacher Conferences 4:00-8:00pm
  • November 8, 2018 - Early Dismissal at 2:30pm
  • November 9, 2018 NO SCHOOL - Professional Development for Staff
  • November 12, 2018 NO SCHOOL - Veteran's Day
  • November 20, 2018 - Early Dismissal at 2:30pm
  • November 21 thru 23rd - NO SCHOOL - Thanksgiving Break

The Northrop Challenge - A Walk In Their Shoes

You may be wondering what the photograph is in the background of the newsletter? The picture shown is from our celebration of White Cane Day on October 15th. Staff members spent part of the day doing typical work activities while under blindfold, or low vision simulators and using a white cane. The activity helped staff understand the challenges our students face each day, and how students can still do the same activities, they may just need to find a different path. Mr Phil Northrop, Certified Orientation and Mobility Instructor, will be retiring this winter, and this annual challenge has been named in his honor!

Get Your OSSB Panther Sportswear!!

It is that time again for the OSSB Panther Sportswear Sale. This year we are doing our ordering through Google Forms and it is very quick and easy. There is no login required and payment is not due until the shirts arrive in December. The order window closes on Monday, November 26th and all items will be available before the holiday break (December 21st). The OSSB logo will be on each shirt.

If you have any questions or problems, please contact Steve Grim at 614-468-8880 or sgrim@ossb.oh.gov.

The order link:


Thank you.

Mr. Grim

Yankee Candle Fundraiser - order online thru January 10th!

Thanks for supporting OSSB students and teachers through our PTSF Fall Yankee Candle Fundraiser. Money raised helps pay for field trips, athletic events, the Elementary Art Fair and much more!


You May Be Interested In...

Braille Assistive Technology Forum at OCALICON

Tuesday, Nov. 13th, 6pm to Wednesday, Nov. 14th, 5:30pm

400 North High Street

Columbus, OH

Braille AT Forum for Families and Professionals

The Braille AT Forum is a special event within OCALICON that focuses on student braille literacy, educator braille competencies, assistive technologies to support braille and more. Exhibitor table displays on Tuesday evening and Wednesday showcase the latest products, services, and solutions to support those who are blind or visually impaired. Educational sessions on Wednesday feature the expertise and insights of a wide range of speakers. An "event within an event," the Braille AT Forum takes place during OCALICON 2018 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center. The Braille AT Forum is a free event. Advance registration is required.

Braille AT Forum Schedule

Tuesday, November 13 | 6:00 - 8:00 pm

Join us for the Braille AT Forum kickoff! Enjoy complimentary snacks and drinks while you visit with Braille AT Forum exhibitors. Spin the prize wheel for a chance to win great prizes!

Wednesday, November 14 | 8:00 am- 5:45 pm

The learning and discovery continues on Wednesday! Start your day with the Summit on Sensory Disabilities, experience the full exhibit hall of vendors and exhibitors, and don't miss the four special Braille AT Forum sessions.

8:00 am - 9:15 am | Summit on Sensory Disabilities

9:00 am - 5:00 pm | Exhibit Hall Open

9:45 am - 11:00 am | APH Innovations in Braille: BrailleBlaster and the Orbit Reader 20

11:30 am - 12:30 pm | Poster Sessions

12:45 pm - 2:00 pm | Transforming Lives of Individuals with Disabilities Through Technology

2:45 pm - 4:00 pm | Introduction to AT for the Blind and Visually Impaired

4:30 pm - 5:45 pm | Perspectives of Young Adults with Visual Impairments on Transitioned Focused Planning

Contact Julie Pashovich for more information (office: 614.410.1042).

Braille AT Forum Registration Form

Download Accessible Registration Form (Word)

Download Registration Form (PDF)

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Register for Guardianship Workshop - 11/8/18 Dublin, OH

This event is not sponsored by nor afffiliated with OSSB.