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RAVENNA -- Ravenna School District's pre-school program has received a five-star Step Up to Quality Award from the state, in recognition of a commitment to quality and on-going dedication to the learning and development of children.
Step Up To Quality is Ohio's rating system for learning and development administered by the Ohio Department of Education and the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services. Participants can receive from one star to five on the rating scale.
"The Ravenna City Schools Pre-School is proud to be a five-star program," said Lori Slattery, director of the pre-school. "We know that children have approximately 1,892 days from birth until school starts and every day matters. It is important to us that children develop their self-confidence, social and emotional skills and a love of learning."
Superintendent Dennis Honkala echoed Slattery's comment by saying it is crucial to start student's educational career out right.
"If a student experience isn't positive right away it is more and more difficult to be successful as you go along, so to have a great pre-school with such caring teachers is utterly and absolutely amazing," Honkala said.
In order to obtain the highest rating, which is the five-star grade, the program has to have met SUTQ's top standards in four areas including learning and development, administrative and leadership practices, staff qualifications and professional development, and family and community Partnerships. Some of the highlights of Ravenna's achievements include having lower staff-per-child ratios, the higher education level of the administrator and the teachers, having an accreditation by an approved organization, lesson plans that support each child's growth and having active and an organized parent volunteer group among many others.
Honkala said the accomplishments of the school are "amazing."
"It's not easy to get that five-star rating," he said. "When you have five stars it is a true indication of the time, caring and work that goes into that so it really is a big deal."