CCSD Launches Educational Leadership Series

CCSD's Educational Leadership Series
Posted on 10/05/2021

The Canastota School District has launched its Educational Leadership Series, a new initiative that aims to inform local residents and businesses about district efforts and increase community engagement with school.

The community forum, held at the International Boxing Hall of Fame, allowed district leaders to debut a new collaboration with the Hall of Fame to support the career-readiness work of high school students. The Event Ambassador Badge program provides an opportunity for students in grades 9-12 to assist IBHOF with its major Hall of Fame Weekend and Induction Ceremony in June. Along the way, students will learn about local history, sport industry, communication, event planning, business operations and leadership, meeting specific goals in each area to earn small credentials on their way to earning the culminating Event Ambassador Badge.

“These credentials are all stackable, so even if a student doesn’t finish the whole program, they have something that shows what they have accomplished and what they can achieve,” said Liz Garofalo, the Coordinator of Innovative Learning, who designed the badging initiative. “Employment skills are built right into the work for each badge.” 

More than 70 students have already signed up to participate in the program. Several of them attended the formal announcement event and had an opportunity to step inside the famous boxing ring used for the 1971 Ali-Frazier match.

The program is part of a larger, districtwide Canastota Connects badging initiative that has been rolled out at different grade levels since 2020. The initiative allows students to work independently to complete different activities to show mastery in various topics, such as demonstrating good character, leadership development, goal setting and community service. Different badges are available at different age levels and are completed in an age-appropriate way, with completed badges following students throughout their school career in a digital portfolio.

The Event Ambassador Badge, and each of its component badges, are among those credentials that students can show to colleges and employers to demonstrate their skills. It also furthers the partnership between the IBHOF and the district, following the Hall of Fame hosting the CHS 2021 Commencement in June.

“Our relationships with the school has always been fantastic but this takes it a step further and it’s going to be exciting,” IBHOF Executive Director Ed Brophy said.

For the badge announcement at the Educational Leadership Series meeting, students, parents, district leaders and community members attended to learn more about the program and the series itself. The monthly series will feature an in-depth look at different district initiatives. Superintendent Shawn Bissetta said the forums are meant to ensure community members are aware of the great things going on in the district and the opportunities available to Canastota students.

“We want our kids to have every possible advantage to prepare them for what comes next,” he said.