Cory-Rawson Local Schools serves a student population of 557, including 299 PK-6 students and 258 7-12th grade students. While a number of our students come via open enrollment, many of our students reside in the local villages of Mount Cory, Rawson, and Jenera as well as in the rural areas of our 101 square mile district. Our school and surrounding communities value the family-like small school environment and the relationships that are built through this atmosphere. Despite our small school size we strive to provide as many opportunities as possible for our students as evidenced below.
In regards to special populations which are noted on the report card, our district-wide population includes 38% of students who receive free or reduced lunches and 17.4% of the student population who receive special education services.
In the past few years we have made significant strides in our curricular areas. Through a collaborative effort we were able to introduce Eureka Math in grades K-6 three years ago. Despite the significant changes it brought to the math curriculum, our students have adapted well and its impact has been noted in both their daily learning and district test scores.
In addition to the math curriculum changes (which included curriculum revisions in the high school), this year our K-6 English and Language Arts staff is implementing a new curriculum from Collaborative Classroom, while our 7--12 staff is implementing a research-based, standards-aligned curriculum as well. We are excited to see the better aligned and balanced curriculum in action this year.
Along with the noted, substantial changes to curriculum areas we’ve also made a number of smaller, though no less important revisions to other content areas. Many years ago, Jason Diller pursued and implemented an expanded physics curriculum which include a Robotics (Applied Physics) course for our high school students. The application of theory and knowledge in this course allows our students to grow and better prepare themselves for advanced work beyond Cory-Rawson.
Intervention, Remediation, & Enrichment
In our elementary building, we have expanded Title I services to include students in K-6th grade to ensure we provide resources and support to our those who need it. Title I services include two research-based programs, Leveled Literacy Intervention (LLI) and Systematic Instruction in Phonological Awareness, Phonics, and Sight Words (SIPPS), as well as other strategies and instructional strategies. Likewise, we’ve significantly expanded our Gifted services to ensure those students who can benefit from being challenged receive those opportunities.
EMPIRE is a schedule designed for 7th-12th grade students to enhance student learning by offering greater opportunities for intervention, remediation, and enrichment.
The goals of EMPIRE include providing:
- Ohio Curriculum-Based Assessment Intervention to students who scored below expected levels on state testing in an effort to improve test scores.
- Grade Remediation to at-risk students in an effort to reduce failing grades in courses offered at CRHS.
- Enrichment opportunities to our high-performing students in an effort to challenge/enrich their education.
While these things occur within a traditional schedule, EMPIRE specifically sets aside time during the school day for intervention, remediation and enrichment.
Cory-Rawson Local Schools offers award winning band and choice programs. Our band has been featured at the Ohio Music Educators Association conference twice (to achieve this once is an outstanding honor for any band). The last time they were there they were used to illustrate what you can achieve with a small school band. Likewise, our vocal music department offers outstanding opportunities (which many area schools do not) for our talented students to perform and hone their skills.
Our community has always valued down-to-earth, common sense knowledge and skills. Our FFA/Vocational Agriculture program has maintained a strong connection to our community roots and to ensuring our students have a pathway to one of the largest industries in the world. Beyond that, student can learn character and professional traits that make them some of the most prepared people for the next steps in their lives.
A number of years ago we were faced with the possibility of cutting the Family Consumer Science program. Schools across the state were doing so in an effort to save money and, frankly, because the state department of education had devalued the curriculum so much by choosing to focus on a few core areas. Fortunately, our Board of Education and our community saw the value in this life skills program and ensured we could maintain it and continue to offer our students knowledge and skills that they might otherwise go without.
Finally, we were able to revitalize our business program. This is another area that had been long-overlooked by state level curriculum. Thanks to a fortuitous situation, a CR alum, Joe Faine, was able to bring his business acumen, combined with his outstanding people skills back to CR and help us create a strong foundation for this program. Becky Bucher, a Cory-Rawson alum and small business owner, has successfully continued with this program and works to ensure our students have the opportunity to learn more about potential careers - both through the classroom and through individual college and career advising we provide to all our high school students.
Our students and staff learn as much about life as they do about the curricular areas. Our Student Council Groups and National Honor Societies engage our students in the community with fundraising and projects such as Rake a Difference. Our staff loves participating each year in the Rawson Proud Festival - a wonderful opportunity to bring school and community together each summer.
About 3 years ago a parent saw a need in this district and worked with us to create a solution for those students who might not get enough food at home. Through a partnership with the United Way and local donors, the Feed-a-Child program has been able to provide weekend meals for Cory Rawson children in grades K-6. The program has delivered these meals to children every other week or every week. as the need and funds fluctuate. This program serves an average of 25 children per year.
In the not-too-distant past our school faced a dire financial situation where we had no carryover...no money! I am happy to share that the past is just that - the past - and we are no longer in that situation thanks to prudent budgeting, collaborative communication, and sound planning for the future. We make our decisions based on what’s best for kids - which is the reason we are here! With our strong financial situation we’ve been able to update many areas of the high school building to match the quality of our newer elementary building. In the past few years we have refurbished a gymnasium, replaced windows, installed new lockers, in addition to many other projects. Our financial success would not have been possible if it were not for our outstanding booster organization - our music and athletic boosters have partnered with us to provide outstanding opportunities and facilities for our kids. Our FFA alumni do the same for that program. Our SOS program at the elementary level always surpasses any expectations - in fact, this year they provided school supplies for all of our elementary students!
Cory-Rawson Local Schools has an innovative food service program with a focus on scratch cooking. Some of our most notable qualities include homemade meals and updated online menu software. With breakfast participation nearing 20% of the student population and lunch participation nearing 70% or higher, the students are clearly excited to eat in the cafeteria.
Our focus on homemade and fresh foods has increased participation drastically and we often get raving reviews from both students and adults alike. Up to 13 different fruit options and up to 31 different flavor options of some fruits such as applesauce and sorbet options are available daily, including fresh pineapple, watermelon, strawberries, grapes, oranges, apples, and bananas that are chopped fresh each morning. Also, we make most menu items from scratch, including pizza, taco meat, BBQ pork, shredded chicken, marinara sauce, mashed potatoes, etc. We also strive to be creative and offer foods different from many other schools, such as buffalo chicken dip on our nacho bar, loaded potato wedges, and various specialty pizzas.
We also use Health-e Pro software for our menuing. This allows us to easily make sure every meal is within the government guidelines and meets the healthy standards set by the USDA. It also allows our community to see online menus that include food pictures and descriptions as well as nutrition labels for all meal items (including homemade items). Community members can also download an app on their phone, sort the menu based on allergens, and view total meal nutrition facts based on a student’s specific food choices that are available.