From the Superintendent



Last week I had the privilege of talking to a group of 400 students, parents, teachers and administrators at a program to announce the winners of the Franklin B. Walter Scholastic Award. Sitting in the audience were the 88 award winners, each of them the top scholar in his or her county.

I felt honored to be present for an awards program named for Franklin B. Walter, Ohio’s 31st superintendent of public instruction and an extraordinary man. I knew Frank Walter, and I’ve never met an educator who cared more about children and more about educator excellence. During the 1980s when I first became a district superintendent, he exposed me to some of the best education thinkers and leaders in our nation. To this day I can say those experiences have shaped me as an educator more than anything else—including my master’s or doctoral programs.

I also felt something else while at the awards program: the gratification of being reminded that there are many Ohio girls and boys achieving at outstanding levels in our schools.

To meet our obligation to properly educate every Ohio child from every background and walk of life, we must focus a great deal of time on helping our struggling students learn and succeed. That takes time, patience, continual problem-solving and incredible perseverance. It is good work, and the right work. But it’s nice to celebrate the high-achieving students, too. Let’s take a minute this week to enjoy the successes of those who are thriving in our schools and be grateful that we have the chance to serve them, as well.

Thank you for all you do for the girls and boys of Ohio.


Dr.  Richard A. Ross
Superintendent of Public Instruction