Welcome to the Youngstown City School District

Welcome, 2020! We're ready for a great year.

Some of our high school scholars wrapped up the AIR End of Course exams near the end of 2019 and the next phase of AIR testing is slated for late March. These tests are important as scholars' performance ultimately determines how the district is rated by the state on the annual report cards.

There's much discussion in Columbus about changing the report cards as detractors argue the system is unfair and that a scholar's performance on one test on one day doesn't accurately reflect his or her knowledge. If the legislature opts to change the system, we will certainly abide by whatever changes are implemented. Until and unless that happens though, we have to prepare scholars for those tests so they can do their best. We need families' help. Testing resumes this spring and schedules will be announced. Please ensure your scholar gets a good night's sleep the day before a test so that he or she is prepared.

As I develop my strategic plan that will provide the framework for district improvement over the next several years, I will be meeting with stakeholders to gather input. Those meetings begin this month, first with staff at our schools. At 5 p.m Feb. 25, I'll convene a town hall community meeting to collect input from the community as well. I hope many, many families and community members attend to ensure that as many voices as possible will be represented. That meeting will be in the Commons area at Choffin Career and Technical Center, 200 E. Wood St. I hope to see all of you there.

Ultimately, my strategic plan will build upon the strategic emphasis I implemented for the district shortly after I took office. That emphasis employs a focus on five areas to foster district improvement: governance, community partnerships; diversity, equity and inclusion; talent and leadership; and data and accountability.

That emphasis also established four cornerstones necessary for positive, sustainable change across YCSD: 
   * Culturally responsive teaching and learning with standard-aligned curriculum,
   * Data-informed continuous improvement.
   * Strong relationships with families and communities in a safe, nurturing environment and 
   * Professionally-developing, effective, caring, culturally-competent educators (teachers, leaders and staff.)

Thank you.

Justin M. Jennings
Chief Executive Officer
Youngstown City School District


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