Those attending the annual Wadsworth State of the Schools address Wednesday watch a video presentation at The Galaxy Restaurant and Banquet Center, 201 Centre Road, Wadsworth.
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WADSWORTH — Those attending the annual State of the Schools address Wednesday viewed a video presentation featuring Wadsworth Schools administrators, faculty and students instead of the traditional speech.
“We have a different format this year. What better way to tell the story of our schools this year than to actually hear about it from our people that are on the front line,” Superintendent Andrew Hill said.
Hill said while sections of the film narration were scripted, the segments featuring speakers showcased their own thoughts.
“What you hear from them is actually what they feel, what they have to say about the area they have been asked to speak about,” Hill said.
Senior Andrew Jariga said the variety of coursework exposes students to different areas of study, helping them better prepare for college or a career.
“You can really find what you love, delve into it and really focus on what you want to do in the future,” Jariga said in the video. “That is really special to all students here.”
Hill said one of the most important academic endeavors the district has undertaken this year was reducing class size for students in kindergarten through second grade.
“We have reduced the average class size of these grade levels from the high 20s to the low 20s, a move that we believe will show a strong academic impact moving forward,” Hill said on the video.
Board of Education President Jody McDougal said the district has worked to incorporate community feedback into its decision-making process.
“The biggest examples of this would be the implementation of random drug testing for students, the future of our Central Intermediate School and updating our safety and security measures,” McDougal said in the video.
McDougal said the district uses a variety of public surveys and forums to gain community input.
The arts and athletics also were addressed in the video.
Pam Csaky, drama department head, said the district’s drama program provides opportunities for more than 150 students each year to participate on and off the stage during six full-length productions.
Aspiring thespians can learn the craft at the middle-school level, “where to start in the world of theater,” before taking on more challenging pieces at the high-school level, she said.
Ohio’s Mr. Football Joey Baughman said the athletic opportunities available at Wadsworth have been “amazing for me personally. I have the next four years of college completely paid for as I received a scholarship (at Elon University) to play football.”
Athletic director Brad Musgrave said there are 24 varsity programs available to students, and between 50-60 percent of the student body participates in those programs.
Hill thanked both Councilman At-large Tom Stugmyer and Sandy Hall, assistant to the superintendent, for making the video possible.