The Ginn Academy, founded in 2007 by Ted Ginn, Sr., is the only all-male public high school in Ohio. Come in and see what goes on inside the hearts and minds of 655 E. 162nd Street each day. Let us tell you our stories. Photos and text not to be used without permission.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Holiday Memories, Honor Roll, and Great Attendance at The Ginn Academy

Happy holidays from all of us at The Ginn Academy. We are all gearing up for a few weeks of rest and recharging, time with family and friends, good food and gifts. In our ongoing efforts to open our (virtual) doors and bring you inside our school, we'd like to share a few Christmas memories, wishes, and holiday favorites.

Rashee, a freshman, opens presents with his family and then goes out for breakfast at IHOP. His favorite holiday song is Santa Claus is Coming to Town.

Jameel hopes for a car and remembers his PS3 as his favorite gift ever.

Darrien enjoys decorating the Christmas tree with his family and says that his favorite ornament is a pine cone decorated with green and white glitter that he made years ago. He celebrates with his mom and 2 brothers and 3 sisters. His Christmas wish is to have his father home from prison.

Ms. Smith, one of our English teachers, has many family traditions this time of year. "We always put the tree up after Thanksgiving, always make prime rib for Christmas, and we do our family gift exchange on Christmas Eve," she says. Her favorite gift came from her mother, the necklace that she is wearing in this photo.

Rob J, one of our youth support staff members, has some favorite Christmas foods -- eggnog and cookies. And in the middle of the night on Christmas Eve, he wakes everyone up to give them each one gift.

Craig, one of our seniors, has a nice breakfast and opens gifts with the younger kids. His favorite Christmas song is Let it Snow.

Brothers, Jimond and Terrell, are ready for a couple of weeks of rest and fun. Jimond (left) wants a state championship title for the Glenville basketball team. Terrell remembers his favorite gift ever as a bike with a big wheel in the front like a motorcycle.

JaBrae, a junior, likes the toy store scene in Home Alone 2.

Donquez's family opens one gift on Christmas Eve and his favorite food this time of year is his Auntie LaShear's macaroni salad.

Our principal, Mr. Petty, remembers his first bike as his best ever Christmas gift. His favorite holiday movie is The Preacher's Wife.

Before we close out the blog for this year, we'd like to also share a few photos from our recent awards ceremony honoring our honor roll students and those with perfect attendance. 

Our average attendance rate at Ginn Academy is 93%. Truly excellent. Fifty-five of our young men were recognized for perfect attendance. In addition, we honored three students for the High Honor Roll, ten on the Honor Roll, and 26 on the Merit Roll. We are so, so very proud of every single one of these boys!! And it was wonderful to see so many family members there to cheer them on!

In this photo, Benji, the mother of one of our seniors, Banji, walks up to accept his award as he couldn't attend the ceremony that day.

Wishing all of you joy and kindness in your lives. Thank you for caring about our school. 

Sending love from everyone at The Ginn Academy


Thursday, November 8, 2012

Getting Our Hands Dirty at The Ginn Academy

Judy Rickel, Ginn Academy's art teacher, is on a mission. This tiny fireball of a woman has seen what a small amount of makeshift supplies can do and will not stop until she has a fully-outfitted art room and ceramics studio for her students."They need this and they are thriving. I'm amazed at what they already do with what we have here," she says.

We do not have many electives, so art is a treat for most of the boys. It was added in 2009 when we moved to our current location and had more space. Our students are starting to speak the language as they settle in to this new place outside of their comfort zone. "This is what we are doing in other areas of the curriculum: hands-on, small group collaboration, sharing ideas, movement. Boys need movement!" says Mrs. Hazel Parker, GA's Assistant to the Executive Director. "The art classes have been an opportunity for the boys who didn't know they had creative talent," she explains. "Some have even decided to pursue graphic design in college. This catapults them to levels they didn't know existed for them."

At the beginning of her fourth year at the Academy, Mrs. Rickel, whose father grew up in Glenville, where many of our students live, has begun a feverish push to gather the supplies that she needs for the GA students to really get their hands dirty. With a degree in ceramics, her current passion is pottery, specifically Native American pottery. She has the boys making olla pots (water vessels), seed pots, and story pots. They learn the history behind the objects and hope to eventually be equipped to sell their work. "We can have all sorts of experiences with the business aspect of this: making pots, selling them. How should we market and who is our customer?" explains Mrs. Rickel. "I also have a dream where each student makes a full place setting and then we all sit down to share a meal together. It would be very spiritual."

To get the program rolling, Mrs. Rickel hopes to be able to purchase ten new wheels, a ton of clay (as in 2,000 pounds of clay!), sturdy stainless steel tables, tools (currently brought in from Mrs. Rickel's own supply), secure drying cabinets and shelves for storage. Another kiln is also needed in addition to the one that was kindly provided by the Jewish Federation last year. To accommodate the kilns, some electrical updates are needed. "I'm not going to let it stop us. We make do with what we've got right now," she says.

As for now, our students are benefiting in so many ways from Mrs. Rickel's classes. Some come in early, before school, to work and open studio is each day at lunch time. "It's calming, therapeutic for them," Mrs. Rickel says. "I was looking for something new for these boys and I found something ancient."

Kind regards from all of us and thank you for your interest in our school.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Introducing Ginn Academy's Class of 2016

When school started at the end of August, a brand new group of Ginn Men entered our doors and the brotherhood of the Class of 2016 started to take shape. Our fifty-one Freshmen come from all over the Cleveland area, from different backgrounds, and with a diverse range of big dreams.

Ninth graders have the biggest adjustment each year as they are typically transitioning from a co-ed school to our all-male Academy, often not knowing anyone, and adapting to a whole new set of stringent expectations. Depending on where they come from, some of our boys might take up to 3 RTA buses to arrive at school on time each morning. Between the school's high standards and what it takes to simply get here every day, it takes courage and commitment to be a Ginn Man, and we're proud of how well this group is coming together already this year.

Five of the boys took some time last week to talk about what brought them to GA and where they see themselves going in four more years. Rajeem has wanted to be a commercial pilot since he was 8 years old and came to the Academy to better focus on his studies. "My mom wants me to go here because she knows there are a lot of opportunities for me," he says. Ben wants to be a public defender, inspired by a situation that his cousin is in in Florida, and Howard plans to explore the field of science. "I like doing all of the labs and experiments and stuff. I like testing things," he explains. Howard is actually the nephew of James Gordon, a member of our first ever graduating class, now playing football at the University of Toledo. Another of our ninth graders, Darnell, is inspired by police officers and plans to join a force in Florida after he graduates. "I would risk my life to save others," he says. Hard work and dedication are key to Christian who either wants to be a professional basketball player or an entrepreneur.

All of the young men mentioned better focus as the main reason that they chose The Ginn Academy. They all agreed that it was strange at first to see only male faces, but that they've quickly adapted. "Some of the others wanted to quit at first," explains Ben, "But no one did and now we all like it. We're developing a brotherhood." Outside of school, interests revolve around sports and video games, some skateboarding, and a few of the boys are very into chess. This group, like the others before them, holds a lot of promise. We hope you'll tune in for the next four years to see who they become.

Thank you for your interest in our school!

Kind Regards from The Ginn Academy