All posts by Jim Soyars

April Update

April 2018
To the Kent community,

Join me Monday evening, April 23, at the Kent Free Library

Join me for “Coffee and Conversation with the Superintendent” on Monday, April 23. from 6 to 7:15 p.m. at the Kent Free Library.  This is a follow up discussion on school safety issues.  We will share ideas and information, as well as answer questions from community members.  See you there!

Kindergarten Registration Night on Wednesday, April 11 at 7 p.m.
at Davey, Holden, Longcoy and Walls elementaries

Registration for Kent’s all-day kindergarten will be held on Wednesday, April 11, at 7 p.m. at Davey, Holden, Longcoy and Walls elementary schools.  All-day kindergarten is offered at no cost to Kent families.

Parents and guardians of children who will be five years old on or before August 1, 2018, should plan to attend “Registration Night” at their neighborhood elementary school.  This “parents only” event features a brief overview of the kindergarten program by the building principal and kindergarten teachers.

Visit to register for the event, fill out online New Student Enrollment form and find more information.  Parents or guardians must bring a number of documents to the registration, including the parent’s photo identification and two proofs of residency.  In addition, an authentic health department copy of the child’s birth certificate or passport, the child’s immunization records, Social Security card and custody or guardianship papers, if applicable, are all needed to register.

Those unable to attend “Registration Night” should fill out the online New Student Enrollment Form and select an appointment time to come to the Registration Office at 321 N. DePeyster to register.  For questions, call Kent City School’s Registration Office at 330-676-7675 or e-mail

Thank you for your continued support of the Kent City Schools,

George Joseph
Superintendent of Schools

March Update

Kindergarten Registration Night for 2018-19

Kindergarten Registration Night will be held on Wednesday, April 11, 2018 at 7:00 p.m. at Davey, Holden, Longcoy and Walls Elementary Schools.  A parent/guardian must register their child at their assigned attendance area school. A resident parent/guardian of a child who will be five years old on or before August 1, 2018, should plan to attend.  Please complete the online 2018-19 New Student Enrolment Form found at  The links to the necessary registration paper forms are also available on this page.  You can complete, print, and bring the forms to Registration Night.  If computer access is needed, registration packets will be available for early pickup beginning on Monday, April 2, at each of these buildings.  Computers will be available on April 11 for any parent/guardian unable to complete the New Student Enrollment Form prior to Registration Night.

Student Safety

The Jackson Local School tragedy and the Parkland, Florida school shooting create questions on whether it is safe to send our kids to school. The incidents of violence in schools today are extremely frightening, and we extend our hearts to those students and families touched by this violence.

Please know that safety of our students will always remain first in the Kent City Schools. Our school district has a strong positive working relationship with our safety forces in the City of Kent, including the police, EMS and fire department.

We have collaborated with safety experts to help guide and create crisis planning for lockdown procedures, as well as staff training—all part of the A.L.I.C.E program. You can find more information at Our students and staff regularly practice drills in each of our buildings, as it is vitally important that our students and staff understand these emergency procedures and processes.

Kent students, staff and families are some of the best resources to help prevent school violence. Please talk with your child and encourage him or her to have the courage to SAY SOMETHING if they see or hear anything that could jeopardize the safety of our students.

The Kent City Schools has the responsibility of not only keeping students and staff physically safe, but we also continually address the emotional needs of the whole child. This is a high priority for our district. We are now in the second year of implementation of the Red Flags approach to mental health and wellbeing. Additionally, we are starting a new pilot program this semester with our ninth grade health classes. This collaboration with Kent State University and Akron Children’s Hospital addresses the social emotional needs of students. Interventions take place right at school, rather than using a referral process. This pilot is grant-funded for three years and will eventually extend to students from fifth to twelfth grades.

Thank you for your continued support of the Kent City Schools. If you have any questions, please feel free to call me at 330-676-7610 or email me at


George J. Joseph
Kent City Schools

March Update

March 2017

To the Kent community:

Kindergarten Registration Night is scheduled for Wednesday, April 19 at 7:00 p.m. at our elementary schools. Parents with students that will be five (5) years old on or before August 1, 2017 should plan to attend.  Please click this press release link for more details.

Nominations needed for Kent City Schools Hall of Fame
Kent City Schools Hall of Fame committee is soliciting nominations for the Classes of 2017 and 2018.  An induction ceremony and dinner, held every other year to recognize two classes of honorees, is planned for April 2018. 

Established in 1999, the Hall of Fame honors graduates of Theodore Roosevelt High School who have made exceptional achievements in their field or unique contributions to their community.  Nominees must have graduated at least 10 years ago and cannot be current employees of the Kent City Schools. Permanent plaques commemorating each honoree are displayed in the Roosevelt auditorium atrium. 

Nomination forms are available on the Kent City Schools website at  Or you can click on Community  to find the Hall of Fame link. Pick up and return forms to the Kent Board of Education office.  Mail to Hall of Fame Committee, attention Superintendent George Joseph, at 321 North DePeyster, Kent, OH 44240 or call the Superintendent’s office at 330-676-7610 for details.

Celebrating National African American History Month
As part of our celebration of National African American History Month in February, many of our teachers and principals have developed initiatives to share the contributions African Americans have made to our society.  At Roosevelt High School, our Social Studies department encouraged each high school teacher to spend time talking about the contributions of African Americans in specific subject areas, such as science and math.  In addition, students hear highlights about the career pathway of an African American Roosevelt graduate as part of the daily announcements.

Project Unity members organized a project to honor 16 African Americans, who graduated from Roosevelt and have excelled in their professions.  According to club advisor Tahira Habeeb-Butler, students researched the careers of alums and posted photos and biographies in the library display case as a way to bring “a greater sense of pride and unity to our alma mater.”  Roosevelt alums honored include:

  • Cameron Black II – Player Development Assistant for the NBA Atlanta Hawks
  • Trent Boykin – Assistant Coach (Running Backs) at The University of Akron
  • Jason Butler – Award-winning teacher and journalist
  • Michele Ridenour-Comeaux – Award-winning teacher and track coach
  • Maya (Gilbert) Dunbar – Los Angeles-based actress, writer and producer
  • Aaliyah Habeeb – New York City-based actress, teaching artist, writer and producer
  • Billy Hawkins – President of Talladega College, Talladega, Alabama
  • Mike Pechac – Director of Player Development (football) at Indiana University
  • LeRoy Rowser – High school teacher and college baseball umpire
  • Olaun Simmons – Assistant City Attorney for the City of Manassas, VA
  • Talaun Simmons- Executive Director of Muslim Community Center for Human Services at University of Texas at Arlington
  • James Smith – National Business Development Manager for Sylvania Lighting and co-owner of Bailiwick Clothing Company
  • Jeffrey Smith – Director of Diversity and Inclusion/Multicultural Programs at Emmanuel College in Boston, MA and co-owner of Bailiwick Clothing Company
  • Ema Temu – M.S., Certified Event and Wedding Planner and owner of Events by Ema in North Carolina
  • Andrew T. Wright – Founder of Young Scholars Mentoring Center Inc. and Master Barber
  • Danita Brown Young – Vice Provost for Student Affairs and Dean of Students at University of Minnesota


Thank you for your continued support of the Kent City Schools,

George Joseph
Superintendent of Schools