Opening doors to new school year

Published 9:57 am Friday, August 20, 2010

IRONTON — Summer is behind us, and the doors to schools have opened around the area. Appropriately, the Open Door School in Ironton is no exception.

For more than 15 years, the Open Door School has provided services and education to children with developmental disabilities and the 2010/2011 school year will continue those services and education.

From physical education to the educational basics — reading, writing and arithmetic — ODS provides specific care to students with multiple challenges and handicaps.

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With a new year come new challenges to ODS, as well as some new faces. ODS will welcome in six new staff members this year, including a new school secretary, instructors, and instructional aides.

The new staff has portrayed a boost in enthusiasm to provide the best education possible to the 60-plus students enrolled at Open Door, six of which are new students to the program this year.

The curriculum and activities will also have new elements added. A new spelling program has been added to the current reading and phonics curriculum.

With the new program, the administration is hopes to give a boost to the potential of students’ reading abilities. Also, with funding through a grant received last year, an archery class will begin at ODS, with beginner classes on how to bow and form.

Open Door School will also see fresh, yet familiar, faces instructing in the classrooms. Brynn Murnahan, who was a personal aide for last year, and Crissy Collins, a former long term sub for ODS, have been added to the program as classroom aides this year.

Brenda Harper, a former Intermediate teacher, has returned to Open Door, along with Angie Kelley, a former Adapted physical education teacher, who is the new primary instructor.

Johnda Carpenter, a former long term substitute for ODS and special education instructor for the Chesapeake School District, has returned to Open Door as an intermediate teacher for the program.

“I’m a little nervous, but excited and looking forward to teaching again,” says Kelley of her new teaching duties. “I’ve taught here before, and since I’m back, I feel like I’ve come home.”

Open Door School is certified by the Ohio Department of Education and accredited by the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities. The school serves more than 60 students with multiple handicaps, ages 6 to 21 from all Lawrence County areas.

For more information about the LCBDD and the Open Door School, call or (740) 532-1234.