The Ohio Department of Education recently recognized Assumption Academy with an Ohio Purple Star School designation for its commitment to serving military-connected students and their families.
To celebrate, students held a “Purple Up Rally” to recognize military children currently attending the school. The event started with a color guard ceremony by the About Wolfpack Battalion ROTC of Cleveland, featuring students from John Carroll University. Sgt. First Class T. Kyle Bennett then called forward the students and thanked them for their families’ service.
Bennett spoke to the entire group about ROTC, explaining that junior ROTC begins in high school and goes on to include collegiate ROTC programs, including that of a paratrooper. Bennett opened the floor for a question-and-answer session with the students in kindergarten through eighth grade. The most memorable of those questions came from a student who asked Bennett what his favorite color is. Without skipping a beat, Bennett quickly responded, “Camouflage!”
The closing speaker was parent Erik Sedlock, a retired U.S. Army intelligence officer. He talked about military life and how special it is to be a military child. He spoke of his 19 years of marriage and military service that caused his family to move 12 times. He said this forced his five children to learn to face challenges head-on, to be strong and become independent. It described ways that it made his children and family stronger. He also expressed how thankful he is that his youngest three children have found a home at Assumption Academy.
The celebration closed with the presentation of St. Michael Medallions to the school’s military children and Sedlock. Saint Michael the Archangel represents the leader of all angels and of the army of God.
Assumption is one of only 165 schools in the state to receive this three-year designation for meeting specific criteria set by Ohio’s Purple Star Advisory Board.
Principal Rick Kaliszewski and Teacher Sharon Shreiner played key roles in applying for the Purple Star designation and creating a system of support that addresses the unique academic, social and emotional needs of its military-connected students. ∞
Photo above (main): The St. Michael the Archangel medal lions represent the leader of all angels and God’s army. Photo submitted.