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Monday, August 8, 2016

Newport Teachers Visiting Students' Homes Wednesday

Back to School Bash, Wildcat Hustle Scheduled 5 p.m. - 7 p.m. at Newport Stadium

One of the most unique back-to-school traditions in Greater Cincinnati takes place Wednesday, Aug. 10, when  teachers and staff of The Newport Independent School District fan out across the city to visit students in their homes.

Home Visit Day, which will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., is an opportunity for students to meet and get to know the teachers they will have during the 2016-17 school year, which begins Aug. 17.

"As the noted child psychologist Dr. James Comer has said, 'no significant learning occurs without a significant relationship.' Home Visit Day is designed to get to know our students before the first day of school," said Newport Independent School District Superintendent Kelly Middleton.  "We can talk on the porch, under a tree in the front yard, over a fence, etc. And our teachers are asked to make one follow-up attempt at a more desirable time or if a parent is not at home." 
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Prior to the visits, teachers will be served brunch through a generous donation from Pompilio's Italian Restaurant, the legendary Newport restaurant that is owned and operated by Newport High School alumni Larry Geiger and Joe Bristow

Newport fifth grade teacher Ashlee Bedinghaus grew up in Newport and didn't meet her teachers until the first day of school.

"Home Visit Day gives students some ease if they are anxious about the school year, particularly if they are new to the district or going to a new building this year," Bedinghaus said. "It's a great chance for the students to meet their teachers in a very comfortable setting that is not in a school building. Some parents frankly may not feel comfortable coming in the school building because they may not have had a good experience at school.

"So it is important for the teachers to interact with the students in their comfort zone while getting an understanding of the daily lives of their kids," she said.

Also on Wednesday, The Back 2 School Bash will be held from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Newport Stadium, which is on the campus at Newport High School, 900 E. 6th St. in Newport.

Parents, students and visitors can meet teachers, administrators and staff during the Back 2 School Bash. Food, inflatables, games and activities will also be available.

This year the Bash will also feature the Wildcat Hustle, an opportunity to run, jog or walk along an approximately one mile route on the campus of Newport High School and Ralph Mussman Park. The race begins at 5 p.m. To register, email Students can also register prior to the race between 4:30 p.m. and 5 p.m.

"The Wildcat Hustle is new this year and it is part of an initiative to promote a healthy lifestyle to the kids," Bedinghaus said. "And at The Bash you will see a lot of teachers, who participate to show they really do care about building positive relationships  with the kids and that they believe in and are vested in the community.

"It is so very important to start the school year off on of a positive note," she said. "And the Home Visit Day, Back 2 School Bash and the Wildcat Hustle certainly help us do that."

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