When it comes to getting acclimated to a new job, Pioneer Center assistant superintendent Leia Snyder feels her situation couldn’t be any better.
Snyder, who came on board in March, will benefit from the experience of longtime Superintendent Rick Marriott as she prepares to take over his position in January.
“I am very fortunate, because a lot of places when you take over a leadership position, day one it’s ‘here you go, hit the ground running,’” Snyder said. “I have had the opportunity to go out and meet with staff one on one and my goal is to meet with everybody face to face and just get to know a little bit more about them and how they became a part of our agency and let them get to know me a little better. That’s really a luxury a lot of people don’t get.”
A change is underway in how special needs students are encouraged to see their future and in how Pioneer Center teachers and administrators help them prepare for it.
Launched in 2012 through an executive order issued by Gov. John Kasich, Ohio’s Employment First initiative is designed to expose students with developmental disabilities to work possibilities at a younger age and help them choose a career path in the local business community rather than in a sheltered work environment.
The approach is more “person-centered,” said Pioneer Center Superintendent Rick Marriott, meaning that it focuses less on matching opportunities to the limitations an individual has and more on what that person wants to do.
“They are the center of the plan and we’re prioritizing that – what their wants, wishes and desires are – and we cater around that process in a little different way,” Mariott said.
Check out the latest issue of DD Advocate, featuring stories from Ross County on a former Pioneer School student who has achieved her dreams of becoming an author, a special job shadowing experience at the local radio station, and an announcement regarding our new Assistant Superintendent!