Crowd packs into Middletown Schools’ annual district open house

Middletown Schools invited the community to its second annual, districtwide open house Thursday and more than 2,000 visitors accepted.

They were entertained and enlightened as the city schools turned Middletown High School into walking tour of student and staff created exhibits from each of the district’s 10 schools.

Kicked off with the Marching Middies Band performing in the Wade E. Miller Arena, followed by a student dance troupe and then short videos from each school projected on four giant screens, the “Middie XL: A Living Quality Profile” event is proving itself a popular one in the Butler County city.

Annual quality profiles are produced by some area school districts as reports summarizing academic and other school-related data on their school systems.

But Middletown officials wanted to instead offer an interactive, live event to showcase its schools and build pride in the 6,300-student district, said Superintendent Marlon Styles Jr.

“This is not just about us as a staff or us as students but this is about us as a community and we are proud to open up the doors of our schools to truly engage them and allow them to experience the wonderful things happening inside our schools,” said Styles.

Noting the second consecutive year of more than 2,000 attendees, Styles said “this (event) is so popular because it’s about students … and the wonderful things they get to experience inside the walls of our schools.”

“We get excited about having so many people show up because it means we are doing very good things and our students are having great experiences in the classroom,” he said.

A walk through the high school hallways revealed dozens of student displays showing off digital learning and other technology-based projects.

In one area grade-school students hold iPad mobile devices as they control robots rolling around on the floor.

Nearby students fly a plane in a flight simulator.

Another group of students compete in a game-show like activity – complete with questions and possible answers projected on a large screen - that tests their history and agricultural knowledge in friendly competition.

Middletown’s show choir drew hundreds to the school’s auditorium for its performance.

Students of all ages manned educational kiosks where those passing by could ask questions about their fields of studies as well as the display exhibits showing off what they’ve learned.

Middletown Schools parent Jennifer Miller was impressed.

“I think it’s a great event, especially for the younger kids to come here and see all the things the high school is offering,” said Miller.

“And I like the fact that all the district’s parents and families can get together in one night and see all the things going on in the entire district,” she said.

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