Return to Headlines

Schools May Be Out for Spring Break, but Student Support is Ongoing Around the District

group of people standing with resources

March 28, 2024 - As schools across the District gear up for Spring Break, initiatives are underway to provide resources for students needing support during the week-long break. Schools such as Salem Elementary, Maize Elementary, and Woodward Park Middle have collected various items to send home with students to ensure they have essential supplies and food during the break.

"There are food issues in the building with some of our students," said Christopher Prost, a first grade teacher at Salem Elementary. "This is an opportunity for them to take something home and eat over the break since they will not have our school breakfast and lunch that they count on."

Salem Elementary is now stocked with non-perishable food items, toiletries, and school supplies due to the amazing efforts of school counselor Promise Motley and other staff members. The school distributes these items to students before spring break begins. The school hopes to support families who may struggle to provide these items during the break, a sentiment echoed by other schools such as Woodward Park. 

"We want to ensure that students in need are cared for as much as possible while they are away from school," said Dr. Rhoda Arrington, assistant principal at Woodward Park. "We work closely with our students, building relationships to ensure they have the very best and can come to school and function without worrying about things such as food."

The Woodward Park staff is collecting similar items for their students in need. The school's initiative highlights the community's commitment to support its students, especially when school meals and resources are not readily available. Educators and Family Ambassadors in CCS buildings act as a significant bridge between families, their needs, and our schools. 

"One of my roles as family ambassador is to find resources that families need," said Christie Gianni, family ambassador at Maize Elementary. "I, too, am a parent and community member of North Linden and know the benefits of the Children's Hunger Alliance as well as other resources. At Maize, we are all in this together, and I think the families can feel it."

Maize Elementary partnered with the Children's Hunger Alliance to provide each student with a food box to ensure they had meals over Spring Break. This collaboration demonstrates a proactive approach to addressing food insecurity among students during the break.

"Community partnerships, like the one Maize has established with the Children's Hunger Alliance, are vital for the children in Columbus City Schools," said Maize Principal Tiffany Genton. "At Maize, we strive to make sure we meet our students' physical, social, emotional, and academic needs. We knew we needed to alleviate food insecurity for our families."

The initiatives happening in school buildings around the District reflect the dedication to supporting the well-being of all students, particularly those facing economic challenges. By providing essential items and meals, these schools are helping to ensure that students can enjoy a safe and nourishing break.

"One thing that is really important to me is food insecurity," Motley said. "The big picture is to change the food insecurity issue in our city."

Several resources are available during spring break and beyond for Columbus families who need additional support beyond what schools provide. 

The Children's Hunger Alliance offers a range of impactful programs to combat childhood hunger in Ohio. These include after-school and summer meal programs that provide nutritious meals to children in need. 

The Mid-Ohio Food Collective operates a network of food pantries and distribution sites across the city. Families can access fresh produce, protein, and pantry staples through its programs.

CAP4Kids (Children's Advocacy Project for Kids) is a valuable resource in Columbus, offering a comprehensive directory of services and programs available for children and families. From healthcare and mental health services to education and community resources, CAP4Kids provides easily accessible information to help families navigate the often complex landscape of social services. 

Power of One

Priority 1 - Whole Child FocusedPriority 2 - Equitable Opportunities for AllPriority 3 - Strong Learning Communities in Every RegionPriority 4 - Authentic Engagement