In the News

Cool School of the Month - Toledo School for the Arts

July 1, 2014

Toledo School for the Arts (TSA) is a 6-12 school located in downtown Toledo focused on providing a college preparatory academic curriculum and intense visual and performing arts environment. TSA opened in 1999 – a pioneer in the charter school movement.  Admission is open to creative students who seek an educational community of peers who are serious about their academic endeavors. 

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Cool School of the Month - Bridges Community Academy

June 4, 2014

Bridges Community Academy (BCA) is in Tiffin, Ohio and is a K-12 school serving approximately 130 students from Seneca and surrounding counties. The core foundations of Bridges Community Academy include individualized attention, dedicated staff, teacher/parent partnerships, student self-awareness and student acceptance of others.
Bridges Community Academy has Open Door Friday which is a monthly opportunity to invite the community to visit the school and see the great work happening.  Some of these exciting activities at Bridges include advisors for group mentor students, access to post-secondary options at Tiffin University, Heidelberg University and University of Findlay, as well as participating in many community projects including a 5K run and a volunteer program working with senior citizens.

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Cool School of the Month - Horizon Science Academy Columbus Middle School

May 2, 2014

Horizon Science Academy (HSA) Columbus Middle School serves students in grades 6-8, with over 460 students representing 27 different countries. HSA provides students with an innovative education rich in math, science and technology. When you walk through the school, you feel the unique, positive culture.  As school leader Okan Celiker explains, “The culture is built on a common set of values, as well as student, teacher, and parent accountability, and high expectations all resulting in high levels of student achievement.”

We also spoke with the PTO President Mikafui Daboni on our tour. Daboni has four children – two currently enrolled in HSA and two who graduated from HSA. Her daughters who graduated from HSA now attend college at University of Chicago and Case Western University. When I asked her why she liked HSA, she said, “There is no bullying and the teachers care so much for the students, in addition to the excellent education they receive.”


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Cool School of the Month: KIPP Journey Academy

March 31, 2014


Pictured left: Hannah Powell, CEO of KIPP Journey Academy and Mark Real, CEO of





Pictured Right: Construction on KIPP Columbus campus






KIPP Journey Academy: Excellence Expands  

This month OAPCS and staff had the privilege of touring the new KIPP Columbus campus currently being constructed on Agler Road. We met with KIPP Columbus Executive Director, Hannah Powell, and Chief Academic Officer Cecilia Shanahan, who gave us a guided tour of the new school site located approximately five miles from KIPP’s current location.  This project is working at rapid speed; the property was purchased in summer 2013 and the new facility is set to open its doors to students in August 2014.

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Cool Schools of the Month: Summit County Early Learning Center & Schnee Learning Center

February 24, 2014


Pictured Above: State School Board Member Sarah Fowler and School Leader Dona Cardone of Schnee Learning Center with students

State Board of Education School Board member Sarah Fowler of District 7 visited two OAPCS member schools during School Choice Week. Fowler toured Greater Summit County Early Learning Center (GSCELC), a K-4 school in Akron and also visited dropout recovery school Schnee Learning Center in Cuyahoga Falls.

Fowler toured GSCELC with School Leader Teresa Graves and members of OAPCS staff. The school focuses on providing children with innovative and intentional learning formats, and providing motivational spaces for engagement such as a garden where parents and students can harvest food year-round.

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Cool School of the Month: Toledo Preparatory & Fitness Academy

January 27, 2014

Pictured above: Performance Academies President Dr. Myrrha Satow, Regional Superintendent Stephanie Widner and Principal Valerie Sandy


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OAPCS President and CEO, Bill Sims, testified before the Education, Public Institutions & Miscellaneous and Local Government Com

December 13, 2013
 OAPCS President and CEO, Bill Sims, testified before the Education, Public Institutions & Miscellaneous and Local Government Committee of the Ohio Constitution Modernization Commission

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Black Alliance for Educational Options Releases Survey Revealing A Hunger for Change

July 24, 2013

 Washington, DC – The Black Alliance for Educational Options (BAEO) released today the findings of a multi-state survey of Black adults concerning parental choice andeducation reform, showing strong support among this significant segment of the population for choice measures such as charter schools and state voucher programs. The study entitled, “A Survey Report on Education Reform, Charter Schools, and the Desire for Parental Choice in the Black Community,” conducted in March of this year and commissioned by BAEO, surveyed nearly 2,000 Black registered voters selected at random throughout four Southern states. BAEO designed the survey to gauge attitudes and opinions within the Black community on education reform, charter schools, and the need for parental choice in their community.

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Op-Ed by Governor John Kasich - The Freedom to Choose a Quality Education is a Right Worth Celebrating

July 1, 2013

The Freedom to Choose a Quality Education Is a Right Worth Celebrating

By Governor John Kasich

The freedom to pursue our dreams and a better future for ourselves and our children is part of what makes America great.  Remembering how Ohio’s longstanding commitment to educational choices for families puts this freedom into practice is something worth celebrating this Fourth of July. 

Public schools, private schools, parochial school, charter schools, homeschooling, online schools, and vouchers to attend non-public schools are some of the education options that families and students have at their disposal in Ohio.  There is no one-size-fits-all answer in education and Ohio’s array of education options gives families the freedom to find the school setting that aligns best with their values and their children’s needs.

I strongly support this freedom of choice in education and have worked to expand families’ education choices.  In my first budget we made it possible for more families to benefit from school choice options and, working with the General Assembly, I’m proud to report that Ohio is adding to these choices in the new two-year budget that I just signed into law.

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