Understanding Changes to Ohio School Report Cards

Public schools in Cleveland have worked hard to overcome the stigma of a “failing grade” from the state’s annual school report card rating system. By assigning schools and districts a letter grade of A-F, the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) tried to give parents and caregivers information about the quality of their child’s school.

Unfortunately, many of the factors used to determine a school’s report card rating, such as standardized test scores, early literacy data, and graduation rates, tell us more about the income levels and barriers to success in a community than the quality of teaching and support available in its schools.

Updates to the state’s school rating system were approved last year, and the ODE released the new report cards for the 2021-22 school year in September. The new State Report Card uses stars instead of the traditional letter grades, hoping to give a more balanced perspective. Instead of a letter grade of “C,” schools that meet expectations receive 3 stars. Those that exceed expectations have a score of five stars.

In the past, CMSD has focused on the indicators that its schools are closing the achievement gap and student progress from one year to the next. Progress + gap closing = higher achievement. Before COVID-19, the district celebrated a drastic improvement in high school graduation rates and preschool enrollment, both very important measures of school achievement. Unfortunately, the impact of the pandemic undercut these successes and placed many students who already struggled further behind.

Key factors in understanding this year’s report card changes include:  

  • No more letter grades.
  • Schools and districts are now measured using a star rating system.

Schools can earn up to 5 stars in each of the following categories: 

  • Gap Closing —  Reduction in educational gaps based on student subgroups such as racial identity and diverse learning needs
  • Progress —  Growth students are making based on past performance
  • Early Literacy —  Reading skills and growth for students in Kindergarten – 3rd grade
  • Achievement — Measures student performance based on statewide benchmarks
  • Graduation — Measure the % of students who graduate in 4 or 5 years

A sixth category, “college, career, workforce, and military readiness,” will be added for 2022-23. The new star system will be fully implemented over the next 2-3 years, and it will also include half-stars which was not possible in the prior grade letter system.

The Exchange Zone: Cleveland Reflects on the Leadership of Schools CEO Eric Gordon

Image credit CMSD News Bureau

During a City Club Cleveland lunchtime gathering in the Renaissance Hotel’s grand ballroom on Wednesday, September 21, many of Cleveland’s most influential civic and educational leaders reached for their nicely pressed napkins, dabbing away tears as long-time Cleveland Metropolitan School District CEO Eric Gordon delivered his final State of the Schools address.

Gordon, who has served CMSD for over 15 years — 11 as CEO — recently announced his decision to resign at the end of the 2022-23 school year, continuing the new season of leadership across the city. “But I’m not planning to have a year of goodbyes,” he noted, making it clear there would be no slowing down during his final year of leadership.

Highlights of the “look back” over Gordon’s accomplishments included the recognition that when he was promoted into this role, CMSD was in a state of fiscal emergency and at risk of a state takeover, with a 56% graduation rate. The District has progressed to an 80% (pre-pandemic) graduation rate, an achievement made possible through the bold partnerships of the Cleveland Transformation Alliance and the Cleveland Plan for Transforming Schools.

With a solid 5-year financial forecast, Cleveland students will continue to benefit from college access through the innovative Say Yes Cleveland program, career readiness through the new Planning and Career Exploration, or PACE program, and a renewed commitment to our youngest learners through the PRE4CLE program. Cleveland is well-positioned as a leading urban school district in Ohio.

Borrowing from former President Barack Obama, Gordon compared good leadership to the synchronicity and collaboration of a relay race. “Winning a relay race requires far more than simply running. It requires that the entire relay team see the finish line and that each member is not only prepared for their run, but also for when and how the baton is passed.”

The time when that happens, when both runners are at full speed, is called the exchange zone. “CMSD has reached our exchange zone,” said Gordon. “The conditions of the District are such that, as we look intentionally ahead, it is clear that now is the precisely right time to carefully plan for a successful handoff to the next leader of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District. It’s time to pass the baton.”

In addition to three standing ovations, Gordon’s speech inspired some meaningful questions and words of appreciation from students, parents, and community members. The CMSD Parent Ambassador program and student advocacy were two points of pride for Gordon. He repeatedly encouraged students to hold their new CEO accountable and to tell District leadership about the programs that are important to them.

The full recording is available here, with photographs and video.

Meghann Marnecheck, Cleveland Transformation Alliance executive director, shared, “It was bittersweet to know we were hearing CEO Eric Gordon’s final State of the Schools.  Many people, like me, walked away from today’s speech wanting to help ensure we sprint toward the baton exchange, empowered by his relay race analogy. CMSD is primed for even more progress. The Transformation Alliance is here to continue sharing information, data, and resources with Cleveland families” to continue Gordon’s work.

Like Marnecheck, many Clevelanders took to social media before, during and after the event with words of hopefulness and appreciation:

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When @EricGordon_CEO started as CEO of @CLEMetroSchools 12 years ago, it ranked last among large urban districts in Ohio. Today, it ranks first.

PEP and its CEO @habeebahgrimes were honored to be there today for your last #stateoftheschools & to cheer on a fellow kid champion. pic.twitter.com/gY0UNLCTq7

— Positive Education Program (@pepcleveland) September 21, 2022

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“Well done is better than well said” – @MayorBibb honoring @EricGordon_CEO with his mother’s words and a proclamation at State of the Schools @TheCityClub pic.twitter.com/gdMtDqSLLd

— Kirsten Ellenbogen (@kellenbogen) September 21, 2022

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PRE4CLE is deeply grateful to @EricGordon_CEO for his remarkable commitment to Cleveland’s children and his leadership of PRE4CLE as the co-chair of the Cleveland Early Childhood Compact during the past eight years. 1/3 pic.twitter.com/J3zxDaXNoA

— PRE4CLE (@PRE4CLE) September 13, 2022

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❤️ https://t.co/F1QJPNMFBH

— PRE4CLE (@PRE4CLE) September 21, 2022

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Well deserved standing ovation for @EricGordon_CEO as he delivers his final State of the Schools at @TheCityClub. Thanks for being a great superintendent, civic leader, and trusted partner. @GCPartnership pic.twitter.com/9boSSJawfg

— Baiju R. Shah (@Baiju_R_Shah) September 21, 2022

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CPL Trustee John Hairston and @feltonian with @EricGordon_CEO at #SOTS2022. pic.twitter.com/TcazLBPYa7

— Cleveland Public Library (@Cleveland_PL) September 21, 2022


Working with a School Quality Navigator: Parents Lead the Way

Alicia Ballard knows her priorities for her son’s education, so she did her homework before contacting Cleveland Transformation Alliance. After receiving a printed copy of the Cleveland School Quality Guide at a community event, Alicia marked the pages of schools she wanted to learn more about and then used a QR code to visit the MyCleSchool.org website. There she was able to review each school’s profile, taking screenshots of five schools she liked best.

Since Alicia works from 9 am – 5 pm, it was hard to follow up with each school directly, especially with limited staff availability during the summer. That’s when Carolyn, a CTA School Quality Navigator, stepped in to help. “It was really easy,” said Alicia, who called to set up an in-person meeting where she shared her questions about school rankings, third-grade reading guarantee, staff diversity, school size, and approach to discipline. Then Carolyn contacted each of the five schools directly and followed up with answers to all of Alicia’s questions.

With this information in hand, Alicia could narrow the list down to two schools she recently visited in person to make her decision. “I think top priority is diversity as far as teachers, school staff and students, classroom size and school size. Another important thing is extracurricular activities, clubs, and activities he can do to familiarize himself with kids and what interests him.”

Transportation was also a concern, as one of the schools is near her home, and he would need to ride the bus home from the other school. Ultimately, both of the CMSD schools checked all her parenting boxes, so the final decision came down to two factors: playground/outdoor play space and the lack of a dress code, which are her son’s top priorities as an active third-grader.

When asked about the process of working with a School Quality Navigator, Alicia feels she had a slight advantage as someone who works in community health outreach and knows how to navigate city systems. She feels confident, however, that having an advocate like Carolyn would benefit any family. She has already recommended the Navigator Program to her sister, whose twin daughters are just starting preschool with kindergarten right around the corner. “Carolyn was really easy to work with, and I think that would be true for anyone. Good communication is really important to me, and the communication was awesome,” said Alicia.

Cleveland Transformation Alliance is committed to helping every Cleveland family find the right fit school for their child. Students and families who need assistance choosing from the wide variety of high-quality public schools in Cleveland can click here to make an appointment with one of our school quality navigators and get started today. 

Updates from the Board + A New Website for CTA

On Monday, June 13, 2022, Mayor Justin Bibb chaired his third Cleveland Transformation Alliance board meeting since taking office earlier this year. These meetings are always open to the public and family/community members are encouraged to attend. Click here for the full calendar of upcoming board meetings and events. 

Reflecting on a Difficult Year for Educators, Students, and Families

During the June meeting, the CTA board discussed the challenges faced and the progress made. In particular, Mayor Bibb referenced the extended impact of Covid-19 on education and the combined mental health and gun violence crises in Cleveland. Mayor Bibb reinforced his commitment to safety in our schools with a call to action for Cleveland’s educators and inner-ring school districts to join him in advocating for common sense gun laws that will combat the epidemic of gun violence in our communities.

Support for Common Sense Gun Reform

The group collectively recognized the efforts of Eric Gordon and the CMSD Board of Education in their resolution to ensure that Cleveland public schools remain gun-free, in spite of the passage of House Bill 99 which makes it easier for Ohio’s local school districts to arm teachers and staff. Gordon shared with local news station WKYC, “The Board of Education of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District believes that the presence of undertrained or improperly trained persons armed with firearms in our schools would create a dangerous environment in our schools, and threaten the lives and safety of students and staff.”

A New Website to Better Serve Cleveland Families

Another important resolution came as a result of a months-long effort from the board Communications and Engagement Committee, led by executive director Meghann Marnecheck. Marnecheck and the committee sought board approval to launch a redesign of the MyCleSchool.org website to improve the user experience of parents and families while also supporting CTA’s efforts to connect with underserved neighborhoods and communities.

Over the past year, a number of challenges made it difficult for families to access the MyCleSchool.org website and search/find information for their children’s best-fit school. Together with CTA staff, the committee determined the criteria for this investment and interviewed a variety of Northeast Ohio agencies.

Cleveland Parents & Families: Help Redesign MyCleSchool.org

Following the June 13 board approval of the website redesign project, Cleveland Transformation Alliance is now seeking parents and family members of Cleveland students to help reimagine the School Finder Tool, which is central to its mission of ensur easy and equitable access to high-quality public schools for every child in Cleveland.

If you or someone you know would be interested in getting involved with the redesign of the MyCleSchool.org website and/or the School Finder Tool, please contact us at info@clevelandta.org for more information.

Cleveland’s I ❤️ My School Contest Prizes Awarded

In February, the Cleveland Transformation Alliance launched a video contest for high school students in Cleveland’s public high schools. Students attending any Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD), or charter high school were eligible to submit a video explaining why they loved their school.

“We felt that we needed to take a moment to lift the good happening in our public schools every day,” said Meghann Marnecheck, executive director of the Cleveland Transformation Alliance. “Our students, teachers, and families continue to navigate complicated and difficult times due to the pandemic. We wanted to offer an opportunity for students to thank their teachers and shine a light on all the positive that is occurring in our classrooms.”



In April, the Transformation Alliance announced the three top prize winners on their social media platforms. Over the last several days, they provided the prizes to the winners, including $500 scholarships sponsored by Calhoun Funeral Home for the first and second place winners.

The first-place winner also received an iPad provided by Z107.9, and the second-place winner received a prize package from the Conservancy for the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. The third-place finisher received a $250 scholarship by Calhoun Funeral Home and a $250 Visa gift card furnished by the Cleveland Transformation Alliance. Complements of the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, four student runners-up received a four-pack of tickets for admission to the museum. Beckham’s B&M BBQ restaurants also donated meal gift cards for
student winners.

“These students are amazing,” said Marnecheck. “The students we have awarded over the past
few days will attend Ohio University, Akron University, or will finish their high school careers in the fall. We could not be prouder of these students, and we hope that these prizes will help make their next academic step a little bit easier. We look forward to hosting the contest again and plan to focus on K-8 schools during the 2022-2023 school year.”


2nd Place Winner, Nathan Parish, John Marshall Civic & Business Leadership


3rd Place, Xavier Mims, Northeast Ohio College Preparatory School


Cleveland Is Creative When It Comes to Celebrating Teachers!

At Cleveland Transformation Alliance, we know that high-quality schools for every child starts with dedicated teachers and staff who play many roles in their students’ lives.  After two+ years of pandemic learning, we are more grateful than ever for Cleveland teachers who go above and beyond to build connections and inspire curiosity in their students.

During National Teacher Appreciation Week (May 2-6, 2022) we noticed Cleveland schools celebrating their teachers and staff with everything from taco bars and food trucks to  pancake breakfasts, balloon bouquets, and handwritten notes of appreciation.

Below are a few of the ways families and school administrators showed their appreciation for the hardworking and dedicated teachers who serve Cleveland families. Our Editor’s Choice Award goes to Northeast Ohio College Preparatory for their tastefully creative “Nacho Average Teacher” bar.

And here are a few words of appreciation from administrators and families:

“We thank you, dear teachers and staff, for being so dedicated and so passionate about teaching/helping our explorers. We can never repay you for your remarkable contributions that you make daily to their growth and development.” — Campus International School 

“One final “thank you” as we wrap up Teacher Appreciation Week today! This week, we celebrated and thanked all of our educators for the amazing work they do with our scholars. Our teachers at Breakthrough maximize the learning environment, motivate our scholars, and help them thrive! We hope our teachers enjoyed the breakfast or lunch provided by the board members this week. Thank you!!!” — Breakthrough Schools

Northeast Ohio College Preparatory

“So many fabulous teachers! We love Mrs. Fucile, Ms. Misizin, Ms. Arko, Mr. Manthy and Mr. Meagan. From fun math assignments to school day anecdotes in car line, these teachers hold up the sky so their students can reach for the stars ” — Near West Intergenerational School

“All the teachers at Constellation Schools: Eastside Arts Academy thanks for being amazing, trustworthy, caring, and passionate. The Goldsby family loves and appreciates you all!” — Constellation Schools 

Finally, we love the teacher appreciation videos shared last week by CMSD, like this one from the Cleveland School of the Arts string quartet:

Education Legislation: Bills We Are Following

While the board and staff of Cleveland Transformation Alliance have not established official policy stances on the issues outlined below, we are deeply committed to equity in education as it relates to Cleveland public schools and the families we serve.

The following legislation have been introduced by the Ohio House of Representatives and the Ohio State Senate with potential impact on public education:

HB 322 – Education Curriculum —Regards the teaching of certain current events and certain concepts regarding race and sex in public schools.


This bill prohibits public entities from requiring discussion of current events and prohibits the teaching of a list of topics dealing with race, sex, slavery, and bias.

HB 322 was introduced in May of 2021 and referred to committee in June of 2021. Three hearings took place between June – Sept. 2021 with public testimony presented during the second and third hearings. Opponents of the bill include the Ohio Education Association, ACLU, Equality Ohio, YMCA Greater Cleveland, Honesty in Education Ohio, Columbus School District,  League of Women Voters and Public Education Partners, and Ohio School Psychologists Association, among others.

HB – 327 – Education Curriculum—To prohibit school districts, community schools, STEM schools, and state agencies from teaching, advocating, or promoting divisive concepts.

HB 322 prohibits public schools, state agencies, colleges, and universities from offering teaching, instruction, or training on “divisive concepts” or accepting private funding to promote such concepts. Violations of the bill would result in the withholding of funding to school districts or State Share of Instruction to colleges and universities. The bill has a list of concepts related to race, sex, nationality, color, and ethnicity that it defines as divisive and therefore prohibited.

Introduced in May of 2021 and presented to the State and Local Govt. committee June 2021, with five hearings as of February 2022. Hearings with public testimony were held in June and September. Opponents who testified represented the ACLU, Ohio Education Association, Ohio Council for Social Studies, Honesty for Ohio Education, Positive Education Partners, and Equality Ohio, among others.

HB 467 – Community Schools — Regards the operation, management, and accountability of community schools.

HB 467 was introduced in Nov. 2021 and referred to the Primary & Secondary Education Committee in November 2021. No additional updates available at this time.

HB 497 – Third Grade Reading Guarantee To eliminate retention under the Third Grade Reading Guarantee.

Ohio HB 497 was introduced in Nov. 2021 and referred to the Primary & Secondary Education Committee in Dec. 2021. Two hearings were held in March of 2022 with proponent testimony presented by representatives from the Ohio Education Association, Ohio Association of Elementary School Administrators, First Ring Schools Collaborative and Ohio Mid-Sized Urban Districts, among others.

HB 529 – School Curricula —To require public and nonpublic schools and public colleges participating in the College Credit Plus Program to post course curricula and other related information online. 

Ohio HB 529 was introduced and referred to the Primary & Secondary Education Committee in January 2022. No additional updates available at this time.

HB 616 – Public School Curriculum — Regards the promotion and teaching of divisive or inherently racist concepts in public schools.

Commonly referred to as “Ohio’s Don’t Say Gay” legislation, HB 616 was introduced on April 4, 2022. No additional updates available at this time.

SB 240 – Community School Network — Authorizes the merger of one or more community schools and a nonprofit operator into a community school network.

Ohio SB 240, which would establish a process that would allow the merger of one or more community schools and nonprofit operators into a community school network, was introduced in Sept. 2021 and referred to the Secondary & Primary Education Committee. Four hearings have taken place from Nov. 2021 – April 2022. Public testimony includes opposition from Cleveland Metropolitan School District CEO, Eric Gordon and the Ohio Education Assocation,  among others.

Ohio Statehouse photo credit: Wikipedia Commons

Tips for Choosing a Cleveland Public School for Kindergarten

Most Cleveland public schools serve kindergarten through 8th grade students, so making a decision about where your child starts school can set them up for success now and in the future. Finding a school that meets all of your student and family needs (or at least most of them) can prevent you from having to change schools as your child gets older.

Spring is the time of year to start thinking about what you are looking for in a school, with 2022-23 school year registration starting March 14, 2022.

Our school quality navigators are trained to help you decide what is most important to your student/family when choosing a school. They can also help you research and compare schools to explore all the options for your child/family’s needs. School quality navigators can also help you with the application and registration process and any other issues that may come up once your child starts school.

Click here to Make an Appointment with a School Quality Navigator

Below are some of the things that families have told us are important to them when choosing a kindergarten:

  1. Safety — All parents/families want to know that their child is safe when they drop them off for school or wave goodbye to them at the bus stop. You can ask to view the school’s safety policy. Some indicators of school safety include their check-in/check-out procedures, staff training related to safety, safety drills that are age-appropriate, school resource officers, counselors, nurses, etc. Another important aspect of safety is the school’s wellness, behavior management and mental health services. Students feel safe at school and they are less likely to experience unsafe situations when their social/emotional needs are being met.
  2. Learning Philosophy — Does your child prefer a flexible, hands-on approach to learning? Or are they more comfortable with a traditional curriculum that includes more structure and clear expectations? Do you want to emphasize science, the arts or a foreign language in your child’s school experience? Cleveland is very lucky to have schools that provide Montessori, International Baccalaureate, STEM, all boys, all girls, bi-lingual education, English as a second language, and many more options. Some schools focus on collaborative learning while others are more focused on independent achievement. Asking questions about a school’s learning and teaching philosophy can help you imagine how your student and family would fit in there.
    It’s also important to consider how a school identifies and supports students with special needs. Is the school working to ensure equity in its programs and services?
  1. Location and transportation — Families used to just assume that their child will go to the “neighborhood school” that is closest to them, but there are more options now to ensure that every child has access to a school where he/she can thrive. Depending on the school and/or location, students may be eligible for transportation outside their neighborhood school. Visit CMSD‘s website for district policy or contact their office. Some parents also like to consider schools that are close to work or a family member who might help with before/after school care.
  1. Before and After School Care Extracurriculars — Ask the start and end times of the school day, since not all schools have the same schedule. If you know that you will need to have your child stay after school while you are working, now is the time to ask about the programs available (and costs) for before and after school care. Some schools provide this service in their buildings while others transport students to programs outside of the school. This can be for tutoring, homework supervision, or extracurricular activities. If you know that your child enjoys music, art, sports, etc. you can also look ahead to see what programs are available for the future. In Cleveland public schools, access to sports usually starts in the 5th or 6th grade.
  1. Talk to other parents/families — One of the best ways to learn about a school community is to connect with other people who know what it’s like to go there. When you are comparing schools, you can ask the principal or your school quality navigator to put you in touch with other families from the schools you are interested in learning about. While everyone’s experience is different, you can ask other parents why they chose the school, how much parents/families are involved, etc. You can also read community ratings and reviews on our School Finder Tool.

Try to visit and tour schools before making a final decision.  Many schools were not allowing outside adults to enter schools during the pandemic, but as policies shift, these policies may be rolled back.  Information about how to contact each school is available via our School Finder Tool. Reach out to the school(s) you are interested in to see if there is a specific time you might be able to tour the building, or if you can set an appointment. Some schools have specific days/times when you can tour the building, some require you to make an appointment with the principal or other staff.

Most importantly, trust your instincts. As a parent/family member, you know more than anyone what your child needs to succeed. And the feeling you have when visiting a school is an important part of deciding if the community is right for your child and family.

Are you ready to take the first step toward finding the right fit kindergarten for your child?

Click here to make an appointment with one of our school quality navigators and get started today.

March into Kindergarten, Cleveland

Now is the time of year when Northeast Ohio families look hopefully toward spring when the young people in their lives can get back outside for sunshine and outdoor, active play.

It’s also the time of year when parents and families of children who plan to attend Kindergarten during the 2022-23 school year can begin to explore their school choice options.

Children who are 5 years old on or before September 30th are eligible to attend kindergarten and registration begins March 14. If you’d like to learn more about local schools and compare options for the right fit school that meets your family needs, click here to access our School Finder Tool.

You can also click here to request a 1-1 conversation with one of our School Quality Navigators. Many of our Navigators are parents who have been through the school choice process in Cleveland, and they can walk you through the steps and answer any questions along the way.

What can you do now to help get your child ready for kindergarten? Below are some of our favorite free resources to help ensure your child starts his/her first day of school ready to experience the joy of learning that kindergarten is meant to inspire in our youngest students.

Grow Your Home Library

The Literacy Cooperative is one of our community partners committed to helping ensure that every family has access to books and resources that open up a world of opportunities. One of the ways they do this is through Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, a free and unique program that mails a brand new, age-appropriate book to enrolled children every month from birth until five years of age, creating a home library of up to 60 books and instilling a love of books and family reading from an early age.

Click here to register your child for the Dolly Parton Imagination Library and he/she will receive their first book 2 months after registration. 

The Cleveland Kids Book Bank is also a wonderful resource for families hoping to give kids more access to books at home. In addition to events throughout the year, they also help place books for all ages at Little Free Libraries throughout Cleveland. Click here to find a Little Free Library near you! 

Museum Exploration is also Education! 

Studies show that exploring museums helps inspire a young child’s sense of wonder and curiosity that will prepare him/her for future learning. Children who visit museums also show improved reading and writing skills.

The Cleveland Museum of Art is always free to the public and they have areas of the museum dedicated to interactive art and expression for children. Thanks to a generous gift from the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation Cleveland families can visit the Cleveland Museum of Natural History for free on Sundays with proof of residence. Click here for details and ticket reservation link. Families that do not live in Cleveland or East Cleveland that are eligible for Snap/EBT assistance can also visit for just $1.

Visit the Library: Online, By Phone or In-Person

The Cleveland Public Library system has a variety of programs to help young children engage with stories and inspire their imagination. These include virtual stories with local celebrities, in-person story times, as well as a “Dial a Story” program that allows children to explore books using their imagination by calling to hear a recording of classic children’s stories, jokes and poetry. To listen to a story, dial 216-777-6500. Summer reading challenges are also a great way to get students inspired to engage with books as they get ready to start a new school year.

To find a story time at your local library or view online virtual stories, parents and families can visit the library website. 

Make Reading at Home Fun! 

Twenty minutes a day is all it takes to develop a child’s key reading skills! The Cleveland Schools Book Fund website provides tips and tips for reading at home and ideas to help make the most of your child’s home library. They also have ideas for how to find reading inspiration out in nature (no books needed) and how to make sure reading time is relaxing and fun for both you and your child. Click here to visit their website.

Hey Cleveland, Show Your High School Some Love!

Maybe it’s the security guard who smiles as you walk in the door or the kind words of a teacher helping with a tough assignment. Perhaps it’s a coach’s high-five in the hallway, the energy of live music during a concert, or the cheers of a crowd during sporting events — if Covid-19 has taught us anything, it is that these kind of in-person school experiences are as important to student development as the lessons taught in the classroom.

With this in mind, Cleveland Transformation Alliance is sponsoring the “I Love My School” video contest so high school students can celebrate the people and experiences that make Cleveland high schools some of the best around. “This is an invitation to our high school students to focus on the fun experiences of being a high school student — memories being made, the caring teachers and staff, the stories you’ll hold onto after graduation,” said executive director Meghann Marnecheck about the contest.

Special thanks to Lamar signs and our media partners at Z107.9 HipHop Cleveland. Contest prizes and support include a $500 scholarship sponsored by Calhoun funeral home as well as gift certificates and donations from the Conservancy for Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Cleveland Museum of Natural History and the Greater Cleveland Aquarium. One winner from each participating high school will be selected and the top videos will be featured on the Cleveland Transformation Alliance website and social media. Students just need to record a video and add their own creative spin to the “I love my School” logo and sticker icons that are available for download. Students can upload their video to any online video or social media website and provide the link through our online submission form.

“Our high schools are home to some of the most innovative and unique programs in the country, and this contest was designed to remind everyone about the amazing assets we have in our public schools,” said Marnecheck. Schools already planning to participate include John Marshall, Invictus High School, Cleveland School of Science & Medicine, Rhodes College & Career Academy, Lincoln West School of Science & Health, Rhodes School of Environmental Science, Max Hayes, Northeast Ohio Preparatory School, Lake Erie International High School and the Ohio Connections Academy. Students and families who are considering high school options can visit our school finder tool to find information and facts about all of the high-quality public school options in Cleveland.

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