“Best year yet”: Superintendent looks forward to new school year

By A.J. Kaufman - For the Inquirer

GALION- With 27 new staff members for the 2022-2023 school year, Galion City Schools Superintendent Jennifer Allerding is excited for the first day of instruction in just a couple weeks.

“It’s gonna be our best year yet,” she exuded at the July school board meeting. “Our new candidates are top notch people.”

When it comes to cell phones, the district has been collecting data the last few years on how it impacts academics. Allerding is confident that minimizing cell phone access for students on campus is the best plan for all.

“(Without the phones) I would talk to the kids …and they told me they got to talk to their friends at lunch,” Allerding said. “One little girl said she can sit at lunch and not worry about someone doing a video of her, not taking her picture, not posting it. That impacted me.”

A more firm stance to limit cell phone usage — which has received much positive feedback — is planned for 2022-23.

She also mentioned updates to the dress code, which are still in place, and will be implemented “with fidelity.”

Additionally, at the July 19 gathering there were discussions on substitute teachers, field trips, the district policy handbooks, school and stadium construction, and improving marketing and communication.

“I have not been happy with some aspects of our communication. I’ve been analyzing that. There are going to be some changes,” Allerding explained. “My goal has been to increase our level of communication with the community …and sharing out the good things that are going on.”

The district has worked with Impact Communications the last couple years and will continue to share information with the community through various avenues, solicit feedback, and continually review priorities, strategies and objectives.

The district shared they were happy with ongoing streaming of live events, especially during COVID-19, when families couldn’t attend. There’s a hope to “push things out quicker,” while still maintaining relationships with the media.

Galion City Schools will hold an Aug. 16 district-wide open house, welcoming families, the day before the new school term commences.

Allerding added that “fingers crossed,” there will hopefully be no masking or coronavirus restrictions for the first time in over two school years.

By A.J. Kaufman

For the Inquirer