Breaking News: The Olympics Are Coming To Delaware!

Yes, you heard it right.  The Olympics are coming to Delaware.  Or, to be more specific, to Barley Mill Plaza!  Odyssey Charter School, in celebration of their 10th Anniversary, is bringing the Olympic Torch to Delaware.  I just have one question though…  If this is to benefit Odyssey Charter School, why are folks asked to make checks out to the American Hellenic Educational Progressive Association (AHEPA) and not directly to Odyssey Charter School?  Does that mean the schools get all the money from these sponsorships for their 5k Run/Walk on September 24th?  Awesome!  But when I went to the website included in the press release (seen below) to register, it doesn’t give an online option to register.  You can only mail checks to the AHEPA Wilmington Chapter.  Wow! I can’t wait to see how much revenue they raise for the school!

AHEPA Wilmington Chapter 95
PRESS RELEASE
August 1, 2016
(For Immediate Distribution)
THE OLYMPIC TORCH LIGHTS UP
ODYSSEY CHARTER SCHOOL

In this Olympic year, Odyssey Charter School (OCS) is proud to bring the Olympic Torch and the Spirit and the Ideals of the Games, straight from Ancient Olympia, Greece to Delaware for the celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the Founding of the school and the Dedication of its new Barley Mill Campus.  Olympians from the United States and Greece, along with US, Greek and Delaware Dignitaries, will be on hand to join in the Dedication, Annual 5k Race and celebration on September 24th, 2016.

FESTIVITIES IN GREECE (Completed – June 2016)
Starting in June 2016 in Ancient Olympia, Greece, members and athletes from the Greek Olympic Committee, the Hellenic Athletics Federation, along with the Mayor of the City of Ancient Olympia, Public School Principals, and Students participated in the following events at the Ancient Olympic site:

  • The Mayor of the City of Ancient Olympia gifted an authentic Olympic Torch to be delivered to Odyssey Charter School for the re-enactment of the lighting of the Olympic Flame, which symbolizes peace, unity, friendship, respect, excellence, fair play and joy in competition.
  •  In the ancient tradition, students from Olympia, Greece created wreaths using branches from the olive groves of Ancient Olympia.
  • The Mayor of Ancient Olympia and dignitaries presented the Olympic Torch and olive wreaths to Greek athletes, who will deliver them to Odyssey Charter School at the September 24, 2016 celebration.
  • Pledging the Olympic Oath, athletes and dignitaries paid tribute to Pierre de Coubertin, founder of the modern Olympic Games, at his tomb in Ancient Olympia.
  • Officially recognized the “twinning” – creation of sister schools –  of Elementary, Middle and High Schools in Ancient Olympia with Odyssey Charter School in Wilmington, DE.
  • In the tradition of the modern Olympic Games, athletes carried the torch from Olympia, with stops at a number of    historic sites in Greece including the Panathenaic Stadium and the Parthenon.
  • The Olympic Torch and wreaths will next travel from the Athens to Wilmington in the company of Greek Government officials, dignitaries, and athletes.
  • A production company is creating a commemorative documentary film of all festivities and events.
  • Major funding for this event has been provided by two Greek Corporate Sponsors, “Real Greek Artisan” and                “The Hellenic Protein Group”.
 FESTIVITIES IN THE U.S. (September 24, 2016)

The AHEPA Wilmington Chapter 95, in conjunction with the Odyssey Charter School’s PTO and volunteers, will hold the following activities on September 24:

10:00 AM OPENING CEREMONY

Olympic Parade of Nations by students
Debut of the documentary film showcasing the events held in June in Greece
Arrival of the two athletes from Greece bearing the Torch and the Olympic wreaths to the Odyssey Campus
Olympic Torch relay by dignitaries and members of the school community
Singing of the Olympic Hymn and the United States and Greek National Anthems
Lighting of Odyssey’s Olympic Cauldron and welcoming the Olympic Flame with special performances
Recognition of dignitaries and friends of the School
Official dedication of the Odyssey School Campus at Barley Mill
Implementation of the official fraternal “twinning” of Odyssey and the schools of Ancient Olympia
12:00 NOON – 10th ANNUAL 5K RUN
Medal ceremony for the 5K winners and awarding of olive wreaths

The Order of AHEPA (American Hellenic Educational Progressive Association (www.ahepa.org), founded in 1922, is the oldest and largest Greek-American organization in the United States.
AHEPA members are proud of the unparalleled contributions of the ancient Greeks to Western Civilization. As Americans, we share fundamental values they revered: civic responsibility, philanthropy, education, family, individual excellence, and the ideals of democracy.
Odyssey Charter School of Wilmington.
In 2006, Odyssey Charter School (http://odysseycharterschooldel.com/index.html) opened its doors as Delaware’s first mathematics-focused, bi-lingual (English and Modern Greek) elementary education charter school. A rigorous standards-based curriculum and instruction in the Greek language is delivered in a challenging, yet nurturing learning environment.
Odyssey offers its students strong academics, insight into the classical learning ideals of Hellenism, a small-school environment, and a fresh approach to learning.

 For more information contact: Dimitri Dandolos  dimitri@ecologosinc.com or 302-983-1883
The AHEPA
10th Annual Olympic 5K Run/Walk
at the Barley Mill School CampusSaturday, September 24, 2016

The Olympic Flame and Ideals
Travel from Ancient Olympia, Greece
To Wilmington, Delaware
To Celebrate
The 10th Anniversary of the Founding of Odyssey
And the Dedication of the Barley Mill Campus

Ceremonies and Olympic Festivities
10:00 AM – 12:00 Noon

  • Athletes from Greece to present the Olympic Torch on Campus
  • Parade of the Olympic Flag by Students
  •  Lighting of the Olympic Flame
  • Twinning of Odyssey with Schools from Ancient Olympia
  • Official Dedication of the Campus
  • Greek Lunch and Refreshments
 and
The 10th Annual 5K Run/Walk
Registration 11:15 AM – Race Starts 12:15 PMTo benefit The Odyssey Charter School of Wilmington

Race Top Winners will Receive Olive Wreaths from Ancient Olympia
Complimentary T-shirts to the first 300 participants

On line Registration at www.races2run.com

By mail registration:
A.H.E.P.A. 5K Run
Odyssey Charter School of Wilmington
4319 Lancaster Pike, Wilmington, DE 19805-1512

THE OLYMPIC FLAME AND IDEALS
TRAVEL FROM ANCIENT OLYMPIA, GREECE
TO WILMINGTON, DELAWARE
TO CELEBRATETHE 10TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE FOUNDING OF
ODYSSEY CHARTER SCHOOL
AND
THE DEDICATION OF THE BARLEY MILL CAMPUS
SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES

GRAND SPONSOR:            $5,000

  • Company representative to present awards at the post-race ceremony
  • Sponsor’s logo on registration forms distributed throughout area
  • Sponsor’s logo on banner displayed prominently at race picnic
  • Sponsor’s logo to appear prominently on Official 5K T-shirt
  • Entry Fee waived for 10 athletes

FINISH LINE SPONSOR:             $950

  • Company representative at finish line.
  • Sponsor’s logo displayed on finish line material pole/tape
  • Sponsor’s logo to appear on Official 5K T-shirt
  • Prominent display of Sponsor’s sign or banner at race finish line
  • Entry Fee waived for 5 athletes

AWARDS SPONSOR:              $495

  • All references to awards, in event-related print materials and at the   post-race picnic, will mention, “Awards presented by Sponsor”
  • Sponsor to be recognized during the presentation of all appropriate athletic awards distributed at post-race picnic
  • Sponsor’s logo to appear on Official 5K T-shirt
  • Prominent display of Sponsor’s sign or banner at race check-in and post-race picnic
  • Entry Fee waived for 3 athletes

REGISTRATION SPONSOR:    $249

  • Display of Sponsor’s sign or banner displayed prominently at registration
  • Sponsor’s logo to appear on Official 5K T-shirt
  • Entry Fee waived for 2 athletes
MILE MARKER SPONSOR:    $100
  • Sponsor’s name imprinted on a mile marker sign
The AHEPA 10th Annual Olympic 5K Run/Walk
Celebrating the Olympic Flame and Ideals
Saturday, September 24, 2016Location: Odyssey School    Contact: Dimitri Dandolos
Barley Mill Campas              302-983-1883

dimitri@ecologosinc.com

To Benefit:     Odyssey Charter School of Wilmington

Sponsorship Form

Please print Sponsor name exactly as you wish to be listed on promotional materials.

Sponsor _____________________________________________________________

Address _____________________________________________________________

City _________________________ State ______  Zip_____________

Phone ________________________

Fax_________________________________

Contact

Name ____________________________

Email ____________________________

____Grand Sponsor ($5,000)

____Finish Line Sponsor ($950)

____Awards Sponsor ($495)

____Registration Sponsor ($249)

____Mile Marker Sponsor ($100)

____Prize and or Donation ($25- $99)

Total Due$_____________

Signature ______________________________________

PLEASE RETURN COMPLETED FORM TO:
AHEPA
Odyssey Charter School
4319 Lancaster Pike, Wilmington, DE 19805-1512
MAKE CHECKS PAYABLE TO AHEPA, Chapter #95

Why Hasn’t Governor Markell Signed Some Key Education Legislation?

For Delaware Governor Jack Markell, a great deal of time is spent during his summer months signing legislation passed by the Delaware General Assembly.  But some legislation has not received a signature by the Governor.  Three education bills, in particular, all show what can only be seen as resistance to many of the policies and agendas Governor Markell, Rodel, the Delaware Charter Schools Network, and the Delaware DOE have put forth in Delaware the past eight years.  The Governor has nothing on his public schedule this week.  That doesn’t mean he won’t sign bills this week.  But when he has nothing, that usually means he isn’t in Delaware.

House Bill 399 w/House Amendment 1, Senate Amendments 1 and 2

This is the controversial teacher evaluation bill that stretched into the wee hours of July 1st this year.  Coming out of the DPAS-II Advisory Sub-Committee recommendations, this bill generated a lot of heat after Senator David Sokola butchered the intent of the bill.  It was originally designed so other state-approved assessments could be used as a measure in Component V of the DPAS-II teacher evaluation system.  By forcing the Smarter Balanced Assessment scores to factor into teacher evaluations, the Delaware DOE and Markell got a ton of heat the past few years.  The bill was supposed to change that.  But Senator Sokola decided to intervene with a lot of help from ex-DOE employee Atnre Alleyne and the usual suspects over at the DOE and State Board.  So why hasn’t Jack signed the bill yet?  Rumors circulated at Legislative Hall that Markell did not like this bill.  We all know what happened the last time Jack “didn’t like” a bill.  Engrossed version of bill.

House Bill 408 w/House Amendment 2

The school breakfast bill, which would also give free breakfast to students in Delaware, caused a lot of controversy with a part about charter schools not being included.  An amendment in the House made sure they were.  Gee, when did a charter school meal program last cause a lot of conversation?  Perhaps when they applied for a major modification and it came out their meal program was not what it appeared to be?  Hello Newark Charter School!  Engrossed version of bill.

Senate Bill 93 w/Senate Amendment 1 and House Amendment 1

This bill is awesome.  The Autism community in Delaware spoke loud and clear in support of this bill.  But when an amendment was tacked on in the Senate giving the Delaware DOE a seat at the table through the very controversial Special Education Strategic Plan, led by ex Rodel employee Matthew Korobkin, the Autism community was outraged.  An amendment in the House stripped the entire Senate amendment out.  Over two years after Governor Markell signed this Special Education Strategic Plan into the FY2015 budget, we have yet to see it.  I’m hearing it is due any time now.  I can’t wait to see what Rodel and the charter lobbyists comes up with for this one!  Engrossed version of bill.

I see confusion on Markell’s part.  Does he sign these or not?  If he does, what does that say to some of his key allies?  If he doesn’t, he invites the wrath of many.  He is a lame duck, but he still has political aspirations.  Depending on what they are, could signing some of these bills affect those plans?  What to do, what to do…

The Irony That An Ex DOE Employee Who Is Now A Principal Isn’t Held To Damaging SBAC Part Of Component V

A former Delaware Department of Education employee is now a Principal at a Delaware school district.  As part of  their evaluation, for the  DPAS-II teacher evaluation system, they are measured on five components.  In Component V, it states the following:

If an administrator is not assigned to supervise and/or lead at the grades levels assessed for the Statewide ELA/Math Assessment, he or she shall use Part B1 & B2 to calculate the Student Improvement Component which will be weighted at 50% each, unless administrator and evaluator agree that Part B1 will include 100% of the Student Improvement Component during the Goal-Setting Conference.

A Principal has to be certified to supervise the administration of the Smarter Balanced Statement.  This ex-DOE employee who is now a Principal at a Delaware middle school, and actually worked in areas around accountability, is exempt from having Part A apply to this Princpal’s evaluation because this Principal is NOT certified in this area.  Talk about a complete hypocrisy and the ultimate irony!  So we can consider any DOE employee who enters the school system as a Principal, looking at this through a history lens, as BC, while others who actually do the work and get certified as AD.  Incredible!

And for teachers, the very damaging Component V is still a part of their evaluation.  Even though House Bill 399 passed the General Assembly in the wee hours of July 1st, Governor Markell has yet to sign the bill.  The original recommendation from the DPAS-II Advisory Committee Sub Group was to have teachers and the Principal choose which measures to use and not have Smarter Balanced be an automatic 50% of their evaluation.  But Senator David Sokola turned the bill into a pilot program for three schools and added controversial amendments.  Remember that on Election Day folks!  Markell has given no indication whatsoever if he is even going to sign HB399.  His public schedule is blank this week.  And school starts on Monday for most students.  Way to go Jack!  He is probably out there pimping for Blockchain or some other ludicrous education get rich scheme.