Partnership brings behavioral health to LCS

The Lima City Schools is partnering with Health Partners of Western Ohio to provide on-site behavioral health services to the school district.

The Lima School Board approved a memorandum of understanding between the district and Health Partners at tonight’s board meeting. The meeting begins at 6 p.m. at South.

Health Partners will hire three behavioral health providers (one for high school, one for middle schools and another for elementary schools) and a family practice medical provider.

The partnership will not cost the district. The district will provide space for the staff. Staff will be in place beginning on the first day of school Wednesday, Aug. 14.

Health Partners has operated the Spartan Health Center at Lima Senior High School for the past five years. The center is available to all students, staff and their families. The same will be the case for this new service.

“The Spartan Health Center has been a tremendous addition to the Lima City Schools,” Superintendent Jill Ackerman said. “This is an extension of this great partnership that will allow us to continue to care for the whole student.”

The center can help with an array of behavioral health issues, including depression, anxiety, behavior issues, family stress and other challenges students and families might face.

In addition to the staffed center located at Lima Senior, the behavioral health providers will be scheduled at the elementary and middle schools. There will be flexibility depending on each schools’ needs at any given time.

Providers at the elementary and middle schools can refer students to the health center at Lima Senior. They will also be available to observe students and classrooms to make recommendations to teachers on how to best address issues.

Dr. Elizabeth West, Health Partners Chief Operations Officer, said planning for the new service began with school officials talking about the behavioral health needs of the district’s students and families. She said having the existing health center provide those services made sense.

“It is always easier when you have one entity providing all the services,” West said. “The school district and Health Partners have a consistent message. Our goals are the same – improve wellness so kids can be successful in school.”

Families needing to make an appointment can call the Spartan Health Center at 419-996-3436.

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Back to School Celebration

Great coverage from Your Hometown Stations about our Back to School Celebration. Click here.

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Students honored for academics, top student wins car

Ti'are Spivey sits insider her new car.      Students who qualified to win the car pose with it after the banquet.


Lima Senior High School senior and this year’s Valedictorian Ti’ara Spivey left last night’s Honors Banquet the owner of a new car donated by Tom Ahl Family Dealerships of Lima.

Spivey was one of 25 students with the chance to win the car, which is part of an incentive program for students.

Students who turned 16 before April 1, maintained a 3.5 GPA all school year, had no absences, no tardiness and no discipline referrals had the chance to win the car. A reverse raffle format is used to determine the winner.

The other students who met the criteria were Alexandria Moening, Ryan Utendorf, Noah Phillips, Ashley Smart, Anthony Lutz, Zachary Zwiebel, Anija Dupree, Brandon Stegg, Almarina Sutton, Daniel Osborn, Hailee Dunn, Ta’tiana Goston, Ryan Johnston, Lauren Willhight, Keaten Hittle, Lydia Henry, Kash Sutton, Jordan Guice, DaQuasha Lawrence, Dalonte’ Manley, Bryce Binkley, Jakyra Hunter, Samantha Doan, Camden Willhight.

This was the third year of the incentive program and the year with the most students qualifying.

Included in the academic honors were students selected by each department as the best in each grade. Teachers in each department decide on the award winners. Students did not know they won until the banquet.

The following were honored. They are listed in order from freshman to seniors.

English: Molly Sheets, Caden Burklund, Claire Mericle and Jasmine Pinn

Math: Evelyn Williams, Ryan Utendorf, Alyssa Jackson and Nathan Shauf

Social Studies:  Christopher Sellati, Roderick Thomas, Jeremiah Dew and Michaela Musto

Science: Seth Jones, Jourdyn Rawlins, Kaitlyn Marchbanks and Taryn Lesh

Spanish: Ara Rexford and Ti’ara Spivey

French: Hailey Bartels and Maria Guida

Career Tech: Ta’tiana Goston and Daquasha Lawrence

Art: Emalea Collins, Anija Dupree, Elica Hobbs and Samantha Doan

Music: Richard Lee, Noah Phillips. Saharra Young and Sofia Restivo

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Watch Convocation, Graduation live

Lima Senior High School’s Convocation and Commencement exercises are coming soon, with both again being live streamed via the internet.

People can get to the live stream through the district’s web site at The direct link to the live stream is

Convocation will begin at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, May 22, in the Lima Senior gymnasium. Students will receive scholarships from various community organizations, LSH graduating classes, businesses, families and other entities. Many of the scholarships are a surprise to students. The event usually concludes in about two hours.

Graduation will begin at 11.30 a.m. Saturday, May 25, in Spartan Stadium. If weather is an issue, the ceremony will be moved into the high school gymnasium.

This year’s Valedictorian is Ti’ara Spivey. The Salutatorian is Hailey Bartels. Both will speak during the ceremony.

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DECA project finishes Top 10 in the world

Kiara Daniel, Ryan Moore and Darian Slaise     Lima Senior DECA students at International Competition in Orlando

A team of Lima Senior High School DECA students finished in the top 10 at the DECA International Career Development Conference this week in Orlando, Fla.

Seniors Kiara Daniel, Ryan Moore and Darian Slaise presented the Spread Jada’s Joy project in the Public Relations competition. The project was one of more than 200 projects competing in that category.

The program placed somewhere between fourth and 10th place (only first through third are given a final placement).

Spread Jada’s Joy is a public relations campaign named after Jada Hood, the daughter of DECA Teacher Chrissy Hood. Jada’s dad, James Hood, also works at Lima Senior. Jada has Down syndrome.

Students expanded the project this year to include anyone with disabilities. Students worked with the Allen County Board of Developmental Disabilities, the Lions Club and Ronald McDonald House to do various fundraising and informational campaigns throughout the school year.

A few included handling the public relations and participating in the Down Syndrome Association of Western Ohio’s Buddy Walk and organizing a Down Syndrome and Disability Awareness Night at a Lima Senior basketball game.

A record number 21 Lima Senior students (seven projects) qualified for the International competition this year.

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Lima Senior ready for NASA Rover Challenge

Lima Senior River Team Members with their rovers LSH Rover drivers practicing for upcoming race.

Click here for Your Hometown Station’s story about Lima Senior’s NASA Rover Challenge team.

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Preschool expansion announcement

Superintendent Jill Ackerrman announces expanded preschool program with parents, Allen Lima Leadership and Heritage preschoolers.

Watch our preschool announcement here.

Thanks to parent Phillip Crawford, Allen Lima Leadership and our preschoolers at Heritage Elementary for being with us today.

For preschool information, call 419-996-3692.

And don’t forget our One-Stop Preschool & Kindergarten Registration from 8 to 10:30 a.m. and 4 to 6 p.m. Tuesday, April 16, at Liberty Elementary School.

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District to expand preschool, educate community

School officials, parents and Allen Lima Leadership at the press conference.

     Heritage preschoolers hols sign about expanded preschool program.       Banner advertising expanded preschool and registration event.

The Lima City Schools announced plans Tuesday to expand its preschool offerings and to offer transportation for preschool children.

School officials announced at a Tuesday press conference an effort to get more children enrolled in preschool by addressing barriers like transportation and scheduling that many families face.

Preschool children living within the district’s boundaries will be eligible for busing beginning next school year, and the district is adding more full-day options.

Citing studies showing that 90 percent of brain development happens between birth and 5 years of age, Superintendent Jill Ackerman said not nearly enough children are getting the early instruction they need.

According to the 2018 Ohio Early Childhood Race and Rural Equity Report, only 40 percent of children in Ohio come to kindergarten ready to learn. Once they are behind, Ackerman said, it is difficult to get them caught up.

”They often continue to lag behind their classmates both academically and socially,” she said. “Not getting that early classroom experience with a qualified teacher can negatively impact that child many years down the road.”

The district’s preschool program serves both typically-developing children and those eligible for special education services. Three, 4 and 5 year olds are eligible. Tuition is based on federal poverty guidelines and can be as low as $12 a month for the full-day program.

Full-day programs will be available at Freedom Elementary, Heritage Elementary, Independence Elementary and Unity Elementary. Heritage and Unity will also have half-day programs.

Students attend Monday through Friday, with times varying depending on the classroom and building. Students are enrolled August through May.

All classrooms are staffed by licensed teachers and paraprofessionals, who work with children on all areas of development: cognitive, language, social, emotional, physical and adaptive.

The program is a Five Star Step Up to Quality rated program. This is the highest rating possible and means the program has met quality program standards that exceed licensing health and safety regulations.

Walk-In Preschool Screenings will be held from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. July 23, at Heritage Elementary, and from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. July 30, at Unity Elementary.

For more information, call or email Angela Miller at 419-996-3427 or Or Jody Webb at 419-996-3692 or

Community effort

Ackerman said the need in the community goes beyond just getting children enrolled in preschool. It is also about getting books in homes early on, educating parents and making sure families are connected to the help and resources they need.

“I challenge this community to come together to wrap itself around these children and families,” she said. “This is a community-wide concern that impacts the wellbeing of our entire community. And together we need to find a way to address it.”

The school district, with the help of members from this year’s Allen Lima Leadership class, will be at various locations in the community from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, April 6, to talk to people and distribute information about preschool.

They will be at the following locations: Dollar General on Jameson Ave., Family Dollar on Main Street, Meat City on Kibby Street, Chief Markets in Northland, Ruler Foods on Elm Street, Lima Public Library, Lima YMCA, Fresh N Faded on Main Street, Black Lace Hair Salon on North Main Street, Superior Federal Credit Union on Kibby Street, and the Allentown Road Walmart.

**Superintendent Jill Ackerman will be at Ruler Foods.

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Register for next school year now

The Lima City Schools is now accepting online student registrations for next school year.

All registrations must be done online. Students must register each school year.

To register: Log onto and click on “Enroll” in the menu at the top of the page. Or click here to begin.

Parents will first need to create an account to register. Accounts created previously can still be accessed. Creating an account allows parents to save their work and come back and finish at a later time if needed. It will also make the process quicker in future years.

Parents need to register for their children, using their own emails. Students should not register with their emails. For additional information, parents should contact their child’s school.

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Public School Week Press Conference

School officials and members of the community stand at a podium during the press conference at South.

Click here for today’s Celebrate Public Schools: Experience the Spartan Pride press conference.

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