Southwest Local School District

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Academic and Social Growth for ALL Students, Every Day!
About Us » Superintendent's Message

Superintendent's Message


 Key points for this month are below; you may also want to view the December issue of Southwest Schools: Defining the Future, our monthly publication covering additional items of interest (click here). 


Greetings all!

We are entering one of the most challenging portions of the school year: The weeks leading up to our holiday break, which are full of classroom and building level activities and crazy amounts of energy! While the kids’ excitement builds in anticipation of the long break and possible snow days, our educators are focused on our mission – both academic and social growth, for ALL students, EVERY day! It is during this time that your support can make a huge difference in the academic success of your students – from maintaining the normal homework routine at home to really emphasizing the importance of finishing the semester strong!


Items of note:

  • Facilities for the Future – Following the passage of the November 7, 2017 school bond issue - we now start taking the steps to see our new facilities become a reality!  The district will soon begin working with the State of Ohio to select an architect, design and engineering firm (January – March, 2018). In the meantime, we will create a streamlined / inclusive process to solicit the public’s input on the design and development of project plans for each school, starting late this spring and running through the summer / fall.

    Construction on the new schools is projected to begin next summer (2019) and we expect the new schools to be ready for students in the fall of 2021! Information and updates will be posted periodically on the district website under the Facilities for the Future section. Please keep an eye and ear out for the design input portion – our goal is to get as much community input as possible, as we design schools that will last the next 50 years!                                                                                                                                        

  • Mayor's Fund community service project The Southwest Local School is again participating in the annual Mayors Fund canned food drive, in partnership with the Harrison City Council / Mayor. The Freshman class is also collecting winter coats, hats, scarves and gloves/mittens are in conjunction with our canned food drive. This effort is our winter community service project, aimed at benefiting those in need – locally. Click here for more information and deadlines for donations.                                                         

  • The Elizabethtown Property is sold - On November 29, 2017, Southwest Local School District finalized the sale of the former Elizabethtown School Property.  At their September meeting, the SLSD Board of Education discussed the recent public auction for the sale of the property. The highest bid of $235,000 was the closest to the $240,000 market value of the property. Following a unanimous vote, the Board directed us to finalize the sale, which was completed Nov. 29, 2017.

  • Reminder: No School for Students Dec. 15-Jan. 2
    There is no school for students Friday, Dec.15, which is the end of the first academic semester. Winter break runs from Monday, Dec. 18, 2017 through Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018 - with no school for students during that time. School resumes Wednesday, Jan. 3.
  • December Podcast  The December edition of Super Chat is available here on the district website.

Important dates coming up:


  • Friday, Dec. 15 – end of first semester, no school for students; also, deadline for donations to the Mayor’s Fund community service collection
  • Monday, Dec. 18-Tuesday, Jan. 2 – winter break, no school for students
  • Thursday, Dec. 21 – Board of Education meeting, 6 p.m. Harrison Junior School
  • Wednesday, Jan. 3 – school resumes 
  • Friday, Jan. 5 – report cards issued

As always, please let me know if you have comments or questions. 


I hope your family has a wonderful winter break! In the days leading up to both Christmas and the New Year, let’s continue working together to encourage and motivate our students to do their best, as well as to give to those in need!


John C. Hamstra
Southwest Local Schools