Home > Uncategorized > Parent Update – February 23, 2011

Parent Update – February 23, 2011

February 23, 2011


All Olmsted Falls School District buildings will be closed Friday, February 25th due to inclement weather. 

****PLEASE NOTE:  This is the 4th snow day for Olmsted Falls City Schools in the current school year.  Current state legislation allows for only three calamity days per school year.  (This is a reduction from the previously allowed five calamity days.

Without any change to existing legislation before the end of this school year, today’s snow day (and any additional snow days needed) will need to be made up.

The existing Olmsted Falls School calendar indicates that any required make-up days will be made up at the end of the school year.  (Please click here for a copy of the 2010-2011 calendar for Olmsted Falls Schools.)  The last day for students for the 2010-2011 school year was scheduled for Tuesday, June 7th.  Because our District has now exceeded the three allowable calamity days by one day, the last day for students will now be scheduled for Wednesday, June 8th.

We will keep parents posted as to any change in legislation that may eliminate the need for this make-up day.  However, in the meantime, parents should plan for students to attend school through Wednesday, June 8, 2011.


Outreach to communicate the basic information on the upcoming 2.8 Mill Permanent Improvement Levy – which WILL NOT RAISE TAXES for residents of the Olmsted communities – will be done in a variety of ways to ensure that everyone receives the information needed to cast an informed vote on May 3rd.

A number of public meetings have been scheduled to provide information and answer questions.  In an effort to make information and meetings accessible to as many parents and residents as possible, meetings have been scheduled as follows:

Monday, March 7th – 7 p.m. – Falls-Lenox Library Media Center

Wednesday, March 23rd – 7 p.m. – OFHS Library Media Center

Tuesday, April 5th – 7 p.m. – Olmsted Falls Library Branch (Main Street)

Tuesday, April 19th – 7 p.m. – OFHS Library Media Center

To access a PDF file of Dr. Hoadley’s presentation on the 2.8 Mill P.I. Levy, please click here.

Additionally, if any parent or resident is interested in hosting an informational, in-home “coffee talk” for a group of 10-15 friends, neighbors and/or family members, please contact Superintendent Dr. Todd Hoadley to schedule.  These in-home presentations feature a 20 minute Power Point and an opportunity for Q & A with a District Administrator or School Board member.


With the campaign to pass the 2.8 Mill Permanent Improvement Levy on May 3, 2011 underway, the Pride In Olmsted Schools Committee has begun updating its Facebook page again.  To become of fan or friend of the Pride In Olmsted Schools Committee on Facebook, please click here.

Additionally, an informational website for the 2.8 Mill Permanent Improvement Levy is also currently under construction.  Please watch the blog for news on when this new site has gone live.

The main information points on the District’s 2.8 Mill Permanent Improvement Levy are as follows:

A “Yes” vote WILL NOT raise taxes.

A “Yes” vote will provide a dedicated funding stream for permanent improvement projects/purchases in our District.

A “Yes” vote will help lengthen the span of time before the next operating levy is needed by expanding the District’s ability to handle looming maintenance expenses at older facilities without tapping into limited general fund dollars.

 A “Yes” vote WILL NOT provide funds for employee salaries or benefits.

Passage of the 2.8 Mill P.I. Levy this May provides a revenue stream dedicated to the upkeep of our District facilities.  Residents understand the maintenance needs required by their own homes.  Olmsted Falls School District currently maintains approximately 574,000  square footage throughout its District facilities.


As we are all aware, the state of education funding in Ohio is in a continual state of uncertainty.  Keeping District forecasts as accurate and current as possible is a priority of our School Board and Administrators.  To that end, at last week’s regularly scheduled meeting, the Olmsted Falls Board of Education reviewed and approved a newly updated five-year forecast for the District.

The most significant adjustment in this updated forecast is the increase of anticipated cuts from the state level from 5 percent to 10 percent.  The state of Ohio has an 8 billion dollar “hole” in its upcoming budget. This will have to be “filled” by the state legislature by July 1, 2011. Our state level elected officials have been telling districts across the state since last Spring to expect a 10% to 20% reduction in our state funding. Other state level elected officials have been quoted in the Plain Dealer predicting up to a 30% cut in state funding for public schools. A 10% cut in state funding will equate to a reduction in our state revenue of around $1,000,000 for Olmsted Falls Schools.

To review a copy of this latest five-year forecast, please click here.

If you have any questions regarding the District’s newly updated five-year financial forecast, we encourage you to either utilize the comments section of this blog or contact the Board of Education office for information.


The lead story on the front page of last Wednesday’s Plain Dealer touted casino money coming to schools and even went so far as to list the specific amounts each district is anticipated to receive.

Since then, we have received a number of questions on this topic.  As we understand it, this casino tax revenue will go to the state government first and then be reallocated to local entities. It is the District’s belief that this revenue, like the Ohio lottery proceeds, will not increase our state funding, but rather, be used to supplant existing funding our school already receives through the state funding program for schools.

So, unfortunately, the District does not expect to see any sort of budget increase from the state as a result of the new casino tax revenue.  We will continue to monitor this new dynamic and keep you informed as additional information about this public funding stream becomes available.  It will be critical for school districts to keep their local community informed about the reality of this funding situation.


One indicator of an excellent school community is the accolades it receives – both collectively and individually.  It was a sincere pleasure at last week’s Board of Education meeting to again honor members of our Bulldog staff.

Our School Board members were pleased to be able to personally acknowledge and congratulate Mr. John Gaba, Mr. Dan Largent and Mrs. Rhonna Smith for recent honors bestowed upon them.  Mr. Gaba has been named Assistant Coach of the Year by the Greater Cleveland Football Coaches Association.  Mr. Largent has been named 2010 Division I Coach of the Year by the Greater Cleveland Baseball Coaches Association. Mrs. Smith has been selected by The Ohio State University to serve as coach of the Ohio All Star Academic Team.

Public acknowledgement of each of these staff members by the Board of Education was followed by a cake and punch reception with their family and friends. Congratulations again to each of these employees on these outstanding accomplishments!


We just received news that the Southwest Conference has selected OFHS Wrestling Coach Bill McGrain as SWC Wrestling Coach of the Year.

This is a well-deserved and fitting honor for another positive and successful season of Bulldog wrestling.

Congratulations Coach McGrain!


The 8th Annual PTA “Battle of the Schools” basketball game held earlier this month raised more than $4,100 for the Olmsted Falls High School PTA Scholarship Fund to benefit students in the graduating Class of 2011.

Many thanks to OFHS PTA for coordinating this event, and to all the Bulldog teachers and staff who participated.

Students, parents, and colleagues packed the Olmsted Falls High School gymnasium to cheer their building’s team on to victory during this always popular teacher/staff basketball challenge event.

Congratulations to the High School staff team for emerging victorious from this year’s challenge!

To view a gallery of photos from the 8th Annual “Battle of the Schools” event, please click here.


A great opportunity for some mid-winter book shopping!  The Olmsted Falls Early Childhood Center will host a Scholastic Book Fair tomorrow, Thursday, February 24th from 3 – 7 p.m.  Bring a buddy, buy some books and MEET CLIFFORD THE BIG RED DOG!  Enjoy cookies and cocoa to go!  Don’t miss this fun opportunity for the young ones – and the young at heart.  Great selection of books and activities to get you through the remaining weeks of winter.  Please click here for event flyer.


Class of 2015 Orientation for 2011-2012 students and their parents will take place next Thursday, February 24th at 7:00 p.m. in the OFHS Auditorium.


Individual college financial aid appointments are still available for senior parents. Please contact Mrs. Laut in the high school guidance office for more information (tlaut@ofcs.net or 427.6116).


OFHS senior Amanda Paliska has earned a spot to compete at the State Swimming Championships taking place this weekend at the CT Branin Natatorium in Canton (Friday at 9 a.m.; Saturday at 4 p.m.). 

Amanda will compete in two events:  the 200 yard IM and the 100 yard backstroke. 

Amanda recently broke the school records in both of these events at the district meet! 

This is Amanda’s second trip to the State Swimming Finals.  Last year she competed in the 200 yard IM and the 100 yard butterfly.

Congratulations and good luck Amanda! 


With the biggest upset of the district hockey tournament against Holy Name H.S. last Saturday, our Bulldog Hockey Team will continue its district tournament play this coming Saturday, February 26th at 6:00 p.m. against the winner of the Amherst vs. Westlake game.

All games are played at the Brooklyn Recreation Center, 7600 Memphis Ave., Brooklyn Heights Ohio.  Directions:  I-480 East to Tiedemann Rd exit, make a left. Go to Memphis Ave. and turn right.  Approximately 1 mile down on the left side of the road.

Don’t let a 13 minute ride stop you from coming out and cheering on the Bulldogs as they advance in tournament play!

Go Bulldogs!


Student artwork from ECC/Falls-Lenox Artsonia Page

The Artsonia program at the Early Childhood Center and Falls-Lenox is alive and well…and generating funds for art supplies and equipment!  So far this year more than 13,000 pictures have been downloaded to the on-line art gallery site, along with 25 short one to two minute videos of the students’ artwork.

To visit the ECC/Falls-Lenox Artsonia page, please click here.

Student artwork from ECC/Falls-Lenox Artsonia Page

DID YOU KNOW? For every dollar that parents and others spend buying items displaying their child’s artwork, 15 cents is earned by the two schools?

Although it may not sound like a lot, so far the ECC and Falls-Lenox have earned more than $900!

In these times of finding alternate funding sources, Artsonia has really paid off.  Every penny earned has been used to buy additional art supplies to be used at the ECC and Falls-Lenox.

A big thanks to Mrs. McConnell-Paul, art teacher at both schools, Mrs. Wagner, and to Amy Krogh, Barb Hargenrader and others of the PTA for all their time and effort making Artsonia such a success!


The Olmsted Falls School District has a long-standing partnership with our local public library.  As we begin planning to maximize participation in the upcoming Annual Summer Reading Program, we thought parents and students alike might be interested in seeing the wide variety of other programs offered by our local public library this Spring.  Please click here for a list of upcoming library events and programs.


 Board Briefs for the monthly meeting of the Olmsted Falls Board of Education held last Thursday, February 17, 2011 are now available on-line.  Please click here if you would like to review the Board Briefs from the most recent Board of Education meeting.

DID YOU KNOW?  Summaries of monthly Board of Education meetings are available on the District website.  Board Briefs for each month are uploaded on the Board of Education page.  Any person who is interested in following School Board meetings, but who is unable to attend, is encouraged to check the website following each month’s regularly scheduled Board of Education meeting.

Olmsted Falls Board of Education Meetings are generally held on the third Thursday of each month at 7:00 p.m.  The location of the meetings rotates to a different school building each month.  Please check the website to confirm dates, times and locations.  Changes in dates, times and locations are posted on the website.


February has been a very busy month for the OFHS Academic Team.  Read on for tournament results and highlights:

NAQT Tournament

The OFHS Academic Team hosted their first NAQT Tournament at Olmsted Falls High School on Saturday, February 5th.  Many thanks to the faculty members, Kiwanis Club members, and Bulldog parents who helped as readers and scorekeepers, as well as concessions.  This tournament attracted 30 teams from across Ohio and Michigan.  In the end, the Bulldog A-Team ended up in a 3-way tie for first at the end of bracket play.  After a series of tiebreakers, the Bulldogs finished in third out of the field of 30.

NEOAL Champs

On Wednesday, February 9th, the NEOAL (Northeast Ohio Academic League) held its annual tournament at Baldwin-Wallace College.  Olmsted Falls went through the day with a 7-0 record, thus capturing the Spring League Championship.  Since Olmsted Falls was the fall tournament winner as well, the Bulldog team was declared this year’s overall winner – as a Championship match-up would have been Olmsted Falls Vs. Olmsted Falls.  The “top gun” match featuring competition by individual students was won hands down by Bulldog Sohan Vartack.

OSU History Bowl

The team traveled to The Ohio State University on Saturday, February 12th for the History Bowl and Bee.  This is a new competition that is based on all different aspects of history knowledge.  The History Bowl is a competition for teams, while the History Bee is a competition for individuals.  The OFHS A-Team placed second in the History Bowl, with B-Team placing third.  Our JV Team placed second in the JV competition.  In the History Bee, we had 5 students advance to the Quarter Finals (there were 10 students who made the quarter finals).  Those students were:  Jim Coury, Mike Coury, Marty Mendenhall, Sohan Vartak, and Nathan Seese.  The top 5 advance to the Semi-Finals.  We had three students advance to the Semi-Finals:  Jim Coury, Mike Coury, and Nathan Seese.  The top two students advance to the finals.  Jim Coury advanced to the finals and finished second to Brandon Williams from Northmont High School.

NAQT Qualifier

On Saturday, February 19th, the Academic Team traveled to Solon High School for their NAQT Qualifier.  Our A-Team took home the first place trophy in a very competitive field.  On Sunday, February 20, we traveled back to Solon for their PACE Qualifier.  A-Team finished 5th overall.


Olmsted Early Childhood PTA’s Bargain Bonanza Resale Event is set for Saturday, March 12th in the Olmsted Falls Middle School Cafetorium. Great deals on gently used children’s clothes, toys, gear and maternity wear.  Sale times and costs are: Early Bird – 8:00am to 9:00am – $5, General – 9:00am to 12:30pm – $2, Bag Sale –  2:30pm to 3:30pm – $3 per bag.  Visit www.oecpta.org for more information.


 Dance It Up 4 Kids Health Event: Saturday March 19th 11a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Middle School

Activities: Dance Exhibition, Dance Marathon, Family Dance Room, Food, Raffles, Local Business Booths & OF Fire Engine on Display! Other Surprises in Store!

Event Admission(at the door):  $3 Students/Seniors 60+     $5 all others

Proceeds:  ECC Playground Fund, Autism and Asthma Charity Organizations

Come on Olmsted Falls!! Get your family, friends or club together and create a fun, creative routine for our DANCE EXHIBITION (Noon-2p)! It’s a healthy, fun way to spend time together.  Remember, it doesn’t have to be perfect, just entertaining! Any type of tasteful, routine to music is great and singing & dancing “are” even better.  Martial Arts, Cheer, Baton, and Tumbling are just a few ideas for creative routines.  We’re also looking for seniors to enter to show the rest of us what real talent is!

Registration Fees (includes event admission):

Students/Seniors:  Individual dancers: $5     Couple or Group of any size: $10

All Others:  Individual $10      Couple or Group of any size(includes family groups):  $20

Deadline for registration:  MARCH 1, 2011

Registration forms available: In all school offices or contact danceitup4kids@gmail.com


Annual Olmsted Falls Alumni Association LAS VEGAS NIGHT – THIS SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 26, 2011, 7 p.m. to midnight, will be held at the Irish-American Club, 8559 Jennings Rd. in Olmsted Township.  There will be a cash bar, refreshments, door prizes, big wheel, dice, black jack, let it ride, poker, Texas hold ‘em, 50/50 raffle and VitaMix raffle.   All profits go towards scholarships for the OFHS class of 2011.  Tickets are $5 in advance, $6 at the door.  Call the Alumni Office at 440-427-6030 for tickets or more information.  21 and over please. Hope to see you there!!

Olmsted Falls Music Association 2nd ANNUAL BALLROOM BLITZ – THIS SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 26, 2011, 7 p.m. – Live at The Historic Columbia Ballroom in Columbia Station.  Join us for an evening of dinner and dancing as the Olmsted Falls High School Jazz Band and Golden Expressions Vocal Jazz Ensemble present their second annual compilation of classic and contemporary hits.  The event includes casual dinner of pasta, chicken parmesan, salad, desert, dancing, soft drinks, raffles, and a silent auction.  $25.00 per person.  Limited Tickets.  All proceeds go to the promotion and enhancement of the music experience for Olmsted Falls music students district-wide.  Contact Don Woods (427-9737) or Sam Arendec (427-9443) or e-mail ofmamusic@gmail.com for tickets.  Click here to download event flyer.


Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Tiffany
    February 24, 2011 at 1:31 pm

    Please help me understand
    1. If the “no” vote is passed, the $2.8m will drop off in 2012, yet if the “yes” vote is passed, it will generate $1.4m – while you indicated the drop off will decrease the tax burden for home owners ($80 / $100k home) but no tax increase for the yes vote? Where will the money come from?
    2. These capital improvements require more than just infrastructural upgrade and replacement, are there any RFP bids out for budgetary purpose? If so, how long ago were they done?

    I am very much concerned about the tax burden more so than usual because I have been part of the 10% unemployed stats since last year. There are many things need to be done in my house as well, somehow, I have to make my money work harder. I would appreciate your feedback. Thanks.

    • February 25, 2011 at 3:16 pm


      Thanks for your questions and I am sorry to hear about your employment situation.

      Regarding question #1, 2.8 mills, previously passed during an earlier bond issue, will be “paid off” in 2012. This is like a mortgage on your house being paid in full and this monthly expense no longer being necessary.

      Regarding question #2, the Olmsted Falls school district has worked with the Ohio Schools Commission for the past several years. The Ohio School Facility Commission hire architectural firms to come in and evaluate all Olmsted Falls school facilities. This process has led to the cost estimates for various improvement projects that have been quoted by the District.

      In Ohio, any construction project that will cost over $25,000 must be put out for public bid. As such, when this PI levy (which will not increase taxes) is passed, then construction projects which cost over $25K will be publicly bid to ensure the District receives fair market pricing.

      Please let me know if you have additional questions.

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