Mayerson Academy, Deer Park Schools Recommended for Ohio Straight A Grant: Building Strong Character to Build Strong Learners

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Mayerson Academy and Deer Park Community City Schools were recommended by the Ohio Department of Education for one of its 20 awarded Straight A Fund Grants. The grant will fund the introduction of the science of character strengths in a blended learning environment.

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We know when individuals and groups understand and utilize their unique strengths that motivation, engagement and learning can be dramatically accelerated.

Mayerson Academy, in partnership with the Deer Park Community City Schools, was named a recommended awardee for the FY16 Straight A Fund from the Ohio Department of Education. Aimed at helping schools launch creative new ideas for improving education, the application "Building Strong Character to Build Strong Learners," was one of only 20 selected through a rigorous process.

The $106,000 grant will support implementation of the Thriving Learning Communities with Happify program, which will introduce the science of character strengths to Deer Park Community City Schools. Thriving Learning Communities with Happify is an innovative blended learning program that applies the science of character strengths and the engagement of digital games to deliver a strengths-based learning program. Mayerson Academy’s exclusive partnership with the highly regarded VIA Institute on Character, an international thought leader in the field of positive psychology, creates a powerful research foundation for the program. Mayerson Academy’s exclusive partnership with Happify brings a proprietary, patent-pending framework to create a fully blended learning environment. Expected outcomes, which will be assessed and measured as part of the grant process, include increased student motivation, well-being and performance.

“This initiative addresses a growing national awareness that perhaps we have viewed learning and learners far too narrowly,” said Jillian Darwish, Ed.D., President of Mayerson Academy, “We know when individuals and groups understand and utilize their unique strengths that motivation, engagement and learning can be dramatically accelerated.  The result is simultaneously maximizing performance, well-being, and happiness and that’s why we are so passionate about this work.”

“Mayerson Academy is breaking new ground in education reform by bringing character science to K-12 educators, students, and parents,” said Neal H. Mayerson, Ph.D., Chairman of the Via Institute. “We are so pleased the Academy has been awarded the very competitive and prestigious Ohio Straight A grant to advance this important work.”

“We are so excited about the opportunity to bring this program to Deer Park,” said Lynn Ochs, Senior Learning Designer for Mayerson Academy “and thrilled that Ohio has joined other states in recognizing the impact social and emotional learning can have on student well being and achievement.”

“Deer Park Schools is continuously looking for avenues to bring innovative programming to our students," said Jeff Langdon, Superintendent of Deer Park Community City Schools."We are very fortunate this innovative program will be supported with grant funding from the Ohio Department of Education. I would personally like to thank Assistant Superintendent, Jay Phillips, for leading the Deer Park team through this very competitive grant writing process. We were one of only 20 grants awarded throughout the State of Ohio.”

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For more than two decades Mayerson Academy has been deeply committed to inspiring successful outcomes for learners of all ages through creative, customized services and learning experiences. Since our beginning in 1992, the Academy has proudly partnered with Cincinnati Public Schools, the highest-performing urban district in Ohio, with whom we design, deliver and/or manage more than 600 learning opportunities for more than 3000 educators annually. Now through our online, blended or place-based experiences, we reach nearly 100 districts across the country, and have developed new programs that reach as far as Oman, South Africa, Angola and Australia!

To learn more about the Straight A Fund, visit the Ohio Department of Education: http://education.ohio.gov/Topics/Straight-A-Fund.

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Jeanne Bernish
@MayersonAcademy
since: 06/2010
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