By Linda Dillman
Canal Winchester Schools celebrated the athletic excellence of a special middle schooler who took top honors at the state level in her second year of competition.
Izzy Jackson, an eighth grade female wrestler, went 5-0 and became the district’s first state champion in Canal Winchester wrestling history in March at the Covelli Centre in Youngstown.
“She was absolutely dominant on the mat,” said Middle School Assistant Principal Brent Palsgrove during an April 19 Canal Winchester Board of Education meeting. “Izzy is a football player, wrestler and track and field athlete, honor roll and nothing but rave reviews from her teachers, including myself. She is the model of what we hope all Indians represent.”
Board president Mike Yonnotti called wrestling a tough sport and fellow board member Kevin Butler, who wrestled in high school and college, said he was a big wrestling fan.
“You have a bright future ahead of you,” Butler told Jackson. “I always like to hear those good stories, especially about wrestling.”
Other CW Schools’ news
•Winchester Trail Elementary School teacher Emily Adams reported on Project Lead the Way where students spend the year trying to solve a problem and create a solution through computer coding.
“In fall 2019, we were awarded a $10,000 grant for Project Lead the Way,” said Adams, who said students focused on creating a digital game to play while waiting for the bus. They are using collaborative skills and problem-solving skills. District-wide we have many Project Lead the Way courses.”
At the high school level, students participate in the project’s Pathway course and in the lower grades they follow the Launchway learning model, which involves an introduction course, three activity projects and a problem to address.
“It is very engaging for the kids because they can be very creative with this coding,” continued Adams. “To conclude the year, students complete a creative coding project.”
During the school year, students were challenged to create a clicker game and use what they learned to create their own game, which requires user input.
“This is what we’re trying to do at a very young level, so when they get to high school, they have those experiences and can go further with it,” said Superintendent Jim Sotlar.
Yonnotti said now is the time to plant the seed for projects like this in young minds.
•Sotlar also reported on the return to a full day, five days a week school schedule starting May 3 until the end of the school year. He said it was a good feeling to know the district is getting back on a path to some kind of normalcy.
“We’re not out of the woods yet,” said Sotlar, “but the end is getting closer.”