Fremont City School District
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NAACP, students honor King with oratory contest

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Kaliyah Paton, 12, gives a speech during the Annual Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Oratorical Contest held by the Fremont Chapter of the NAACP at the Fremont Middle School on Tuesday evening.
Photo: Molly Corfman/The News-Messenger

FREMONT - Students paid tribute to famed civil rights leader and orator Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with speeches of their own, as the NAACP's local branch held its annual MLK Oratory Competition at Fremont Middle School.

James Williams and Earlene Woodson served as moderators for the Tuesday night event, which featured 28 elementary, middle and high schools students from the Fremont area.

Williams told a group of middle and high school students and their parents that King wrote five books and delivered up to 450 speeches a year after his rise to prominence as a national leader.

"What he said 50 years ago still resonates today," Williams said.

For students, King's life and words gave them a chance to reflect on his legacy and tell audience members at the middle school what the revered civil rights leader's efforts toward bringing peace, justice and equality through nonviolence meant to them.

Kaliyah Payton, 12, a sixth grade student at the middle school, spoke about King's 1964 Nobel Peace Prize award and the importance of the leader's "I Have A Dream" speech, delivered in Washington D.C. on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on Aug. 28, 1963.

McKayla Carroll, 13, a seventh grade student at FMS, said civil rights leaders such as King and Rosa Parks gave her role models and encouraged her to stand up for her own dreams.

"He shared his big dream with others, and many brave people began to stand up for equality," Carroll said.

King was assassinated in Memphis on April 4, 1968, at age 39. Martin Luther King Day is now an annual federal holiday celebrated on the third Monday in January.

At the NAACP oratory competition, the students gave their speeches from the middle school's cafetorium stage. Elementary school students spoke in the school's Bowling Green pod area. Some students used King's words to speak out against bullying.

Emily Whitcomb, 11, a Stamm Elementary School student, said King continues to inspire people. She said one of her dreams was to one day have schools be bully-free.

"What can we do to make the world a better place?" Whitcomb asked students and parents in the Bowling Green room.

Story: Daniel Carson/The News-Messenger

Fremont City Schools is a proud participant in the Ohio Seal of Biliteracy Program

Seniors who would like to apply to earn the Ohio Seal of BiIiteracy should contact Mrs. Ward or Ms. Huth by the end of February of their senior year.  More information on the requirements of earning the Ohio Seal of Biliteracy can be found by clicking the link below.

Next Board of Education Meeting-Regular Meeting-March 12, 2018-7:30p.m.-Fremont Middle School,1250 North Street

An Update From Fremont City Schools Superintendent Mr. Jon Detwiler

It is an exciting time to be a part of Fremont City Schools. As I write this article, we have just had our Visioning Meeting for the new facilities. We had about 100 people attend through the snow to be a part of the process.

It was an intense day. We began with sharing the Successes and Challenges of our current facilities. Those responses were very interesting, though not unpredictable. We then watched a video about how we need to meet the educational demands of the future. Chris Smith, architect from TDA, then shared many photos and stories of new schools from around the State. Seeing these photos was, for me, the most exhilarating part of the day.

After lunch, we spent a lot of time writing down our desires for our new spaces by category: athletics, special education, music, art, etc. We finished the day with actual overhead pictures of the sites and the corresponding cutouts of the “rooms” that will make up the schools. We had gyms, classrooms, cafeterias, parking lots and other spaces cutout of paper and were asked to lay out possible spatial concepts of the buildings. I think Mr. Zeller, Ross Principal, summed it up best at the end by saying that this is why he is an educator and not an architect. I believe it showed the many decisions that will have to be made as we go forward and the level of compromise that will be necessary during this process.

My closing comments for the day included the reminder that, along with the excitement, we have to recognize the huge amount of change that will be coming to our world. Change is never easy, and we have a LOT of change in our future.

 I also mentioned that we must do our best to design buildings and have no regrets. We have to get this right!

 We will make it through and share a fabulous ride that we can be proud of for our entire lives, knowing we have been a part of the future.

Thank you for allowing me to lead.  Jon

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