Soccer talent on display at 2017 SHAC preview Baseball community mourns the loss of Gene Bennett Winchester Homecoming Festival is Aug 25-27 Eleanor P Tumbleson Felicity man killed in Ohio River boating accident WUHS golfers take Portsmouth Invitational It was pretty cold that day Volleyball kicks off with SHAC Preview Night Young awarded Women’s Western Golf Foundation Scholarship One Mistake Senator Portman visits GE Test Facility in Peebles Adams County school districts facing some major challenges for the coming year Family, friends, and roots: the ties that bind residents of one Adams County village What is your strength? Just the chance to take a look back Ronnie L Wolford Dale J Marshall Herbert Purvis Great American Solar Eclipse coming Aug. 21 BREAKING NEWS: West Union wins fifth consecutive County Cup Wallace B Boden John L Fletcher Lady Indians golfers learning the links North Adams, West Union golfers open 2017 seasons This Labor Day, ‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over’ Blanton announces candicacy for Court of Appeals Local student attends Congress of Future Medical Leaders MHS welcomes new principal Made in America When it feels like you’re spinning plates Bonfires and “building” a farm Lady Devils looking to take that next step 50 years of Bengal memories Ag Society delivers donation to Dragonfly Foundation Young Memorial Scholarship awarded to a pair of local seniors ‘Musical passion is in his blood’ Naylor named NAHS Principal Boldman retiring after 17 years as Homeless Shelter director Manchester concludes another River Days celebration Drug Treatment vs. Prison James R Brown Bobby Lawler Jr Adams County man charged with killing estranged girlfriend Lexie N Hopkins Volleyball, soccer previews coming this weekend Michael A Cheek Discover Ohio’s Ancient Cultures during Archaeology Day at Serpent Mound Summer Reading Program ends as new school year approaches Lady Hounds preparing for 2017 volleyball campaign, looking for more improvement A servant’s hands Oh my, nothing better than a sweet tooth Rec Park hosts All-Star Sunday A Saturday night peek at a gridiron future McDowell, McCarty awarded Farm Bureau Scholarships Adams County Medical Foundation awards Dr. Bruce Ashley Legacy Scholarships Your kid on heroin Jerry W Olinger Douglas R Burchett Wayne Cowles Shirley Collins Jack L Yates Wayne Grooms Sr Adams County Building and Loan merging with Southern Hills Community Bank Ahead of Sales Tax Holiday, Attorney General DeWine offers tips for consumers Delores L Cook Harold L Smith Pell, Seas have high hopes for new SSCC campus ‘We prayed and believed it was going to happen’ 4-H Scholarships awarded during Fair Week Showmanship Sweepstakes concludes Junior Fair Competitions Junior Fair Crops are a Premium Show Southern Ohio’s only blackberry farmer wants to make berry pickin’ fun again Challenges ahead for new MLSD Superintendent SAY Soccer celebrating 50 years North Adams hosts Youth Football Mini-Camp Lady Dragons host Soccer Shootout 38 years later, Indians football returns It’s time Ten years and twenty goats later When nobody is watching When a blackberry wasn’t just a cell phone, but delicious Heroin user’s mom says addiction is a disease, not a choice Mary A Wallingford Rickey L Vincent Pauline Ertel William Bryant ACOVSD announces 2017-18 policy for free and reduced lunches What we are made of When summer really arrived Horse project 4-H members head to Ohio State Fair Defender hosts annual Cornhole Tournament George’s Brave Shave’ benefits other Year of planning, work pays off for 2017 fair Local teen opens new business Why can’t you stop? Camp first step in preparation for 2018 Greyhounds on the gridiron Young awarded SEDAB Scholarship Fair hosts Hall of Fame broadcaster Peebles goes back-to-back at the Barnyard The sport of goats

Seas bringing changes to OVSD

The new superintendent for the Adams County/Ohio Valley School District, Richard Seas, recently began work in the district and was able to sit down with The People’s Defender to talk about his vision for the schools in Adams County.

Seas, from St. Mary’s, Ohio, attended Ohio University out of high school and received a Bachelors in Science Education, a Masters of Education from Wright State University and an Educational Specialist Degree from the University of Dayton. Seas hopes to bring that passion for education he has to the children of Adams County.

Over the years Seas has bounced around a few school districts in both public and private education. First Seas went back to his Alma Mater in St. Mary’s and taught there for four years before stops in Springfield, Kettering, Coshocton, Tipp City and Coldwater where he was first a Junior High Principal before being Superintendent of Coldwater Schools for the past 12 years.

But with this stop, Seas says he hopes it’s his last.

“In the short time I’ve met a lot of good people,” Seas said. “There’s definitely some challenges here but I’m OK with that. I told everybody I want this to be my last stop. I see a lot of work to do here within 11 or 12 years.”

Seas brings a lot of experience and success from a highly rater school system in Coldwater, a record Seas is very proud of .

“You can go look at the records of Coldwater and find that’s a well oiled machine,” Seas said. “I think when I was there we always did exceptionally well in the state report card and the performance index was very high. At the end of the day I think I left them with a lot more money than they started with and I never increased anyone’s taxes which to me speaks volumes to what we tried to do. We tried to work with the money we were given.”

But going from a smaller school district in terms of both area and population to an area nearly county-wide with three school systems is the next challenge that Seas says drew him to this job.

“I’m always one of those guys who likes a challenge,” Seas said. “Coldwater is 44 square miles where this is 467 square miles. It’s really three school districts within a district and a CTC so it’s going to be busy. But I felt stale up [in Coldwater]. I needed a change after 12 years as a superintendent. If you look at that statistic right there with today’s superintendents that’s unheard of. You don’t hear of someone lasting 12 years. And I’ve always made it a goal to make decisions as if I’m going to retire there. That’s what I’m going to do here. I’m going to make decisions that will set us up for success.”

Seas said that he’ll have to do his job a little differently with such a large school district, relying on others to help him out since there are only so many hours in a day.

“You have to rely on good people,” Seas said. “It’s awfully hard for me since I was used to having my hand in everything [in Coldwater]. But here I just don’t have time for everything so it’s a different style of leadership. I need to make sure people under me know what they’re doing.”

Part of what Seas does hope to have his hand in though is changing the culture of education in Adams County, with more of an emphasis and passion for educating the youths of the area.

“It’s different up there [in Coldwater] than it is down here,” Seas said. “Education is more of a priority in Coldwater. It’s just a different set of values about what people believe in. I say it now and I’ll say it tomorrow and I’ll say it until the day I’m out of here but education has to be valued, anywhere you are.”

Seas also wants to change the focus on where education can take students, particularly in skilled labor fields.

“That’s often times taken as being degrading to people but what I’m saying is it just hasn’t been a priority but if you look at what could be available for the kids, which is what we’re about, we’re looking for skilled labor,” Seas said. “Great paying jobs. And I’m not talking about four-year college degrees. There’s a crisis because we can’t find skilled labor. We need machinists, we can’t find welders. You talk to plumbers and they can’t find people to do the plumbing – HVAC too. That really all boils back to working. We need to mold kids who want to work.”

Seas said he hopes to be able to peak students’ interests in programs like skilled labor, but knows that isn’t without challenges.

“You can just look at the beauty of our technical center,” Seas said. “There’s so many jobs attached to that right there. Real jobs. Real good paying jobs. $20 an hour plus jobs right out of high school if you can just train yourself up and connect with the business and the world. The thing is you have to have good attendance, you have to stay drug free and you might have to leave this area because there’s no jobs like that around here. And that’s probably a tough pill for some people to swallow because I find people around here to be very family oriented in a lot of ways – very tight knit which is great, but if you don’t have the business attached to the skill that you’re teaching someone, that’s difficult.”

Seas asked the parents of Adams County to help him during this transition process and potential cultural change surrounding education in the county.

“There’s a world of opportunity for our kids if we can just get them to train in some different areas and find some importance and that’s what I want to do is provide opportunities for kids,” Seas said. “Obviously you can’t force any kids into those opportunities and that’s where I’m going to need parental support to understand how they can better their own lives and the lives of their children if they get a good education.”

Reach Charles Grove at 937-544-2391 or cgrove@civitasmedia.com.

New OVSD Superintendent Richard Seas is shown at his desk at the Central Administrative Offices in West Union.
http://www.peoplesdefender.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/web1_seas.jpgNew OVSD Superintendent Richard Seas is shown at his desk at the Central Administrative Offices in West Union. Charles Grove | People’s Defender

By Charles Grove

cgrove@civitasmedia.com

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