LIMA — In in effort to boost the reputation of public schools and public education, Lima schools superintendent Jill Ackerman is using the last week in March to celebrate public schools week.
“Celebrate Public Schools: Experience the Spartan Pride” will begin Monday and continue through Friday. Each of the Lima schools buildings will have activities throughout the week.
Ackerman was joined by Lima Mayor David Berger, State Board of Education District 1 member Linda Haycock, staff, volunteers and parents to kick off the celebration.
“A year ago I talked of the attack on public education coming from across the nation and from right here in Lima, Ohio. Today, little has changed on that front. The push toward vouchers and school choice from the national, state and local elected officials continues. The effort to portray public schools in a negative light is as persistent as ever. Despite this, public education continues to thrive and the Lima City Schools continues to find ways to improve, offer more and produce well-rounded, high quality students,” said Ackerman.
Haycock felt Ackerman’s celebration of public school week is needed.
“Public education can be and has been discounted for years. Just by, I think, misunderstandings. They are not certain of what’s going on inside the school. So when superintendent Ackerman decided to celebrate public education and invite the public into the schools, I think it’s marvelous. It’s incredible what’s going on inside the schools,” said Haycock.
The highlight of next week will be an open house from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at Lima Senior High School.
Ackerman is eager to show what Lima schools has to offer.
“A lot of people always say, ‘Well, I didn’t know you had that here, I didn’t know you had that there,’ so then we said we need to have an opportunity where we’re opening the door to let people come in and really experience it. Whether they have kids in our district or not. So when we came up with the open house idea last year, I know they all thought nobody is going to show up. And there were probably over 400 people that went through those doors. The best part of it was talking to people that walked around and came back wide eyed and said ‘I never knew you had all of this to offer,’” said Ackerman. “Knowledge is powerful, and you can’t have a conversation about everything we have to offer unless you really experience it.”
Reach Merri Hanjora at 567-242-0511.