OSBA Opportunity Knocks for The BEAT By Hannah Wasylko, BEAT Reporter

On December 9, 2014, Brunswick's BEAT Video Program (www.thebeat22.com ) traveled to Columbus, Ohio to be the featured speakers at an Ohio School Boards Association (OSBA) workshop. School districts from all throughout Ohio attended the presentation, created by eight student BEAT reporters from grades seven through twelve. John Wasylko, BEAT advisor, also participated.

"A lot of preparation went into it," explained Jonathan Yokiel, an Edwards Middle School eighth-grade student and BEAT veteran. "We were informed about it in early November. We started with a simple outline and decided who was going to say what. Then, we wrote rough drafts of our speeches, rehearsed, rewrote it all, got it perfect and then presented it."

At the workshop, BEAT students shared facts and information about the BEAT and how it is unique from the other student activities. "The whole presentation received rave reviews as I talked to audience members afterwards," commented Crystal Davis, OSBA Deputy Director of Communications Services. "They were impressed with how well-prepared the students were and with the overall organization and success of The Beat program."

The BEAT was chosen because it is an award-winning, student-run and entirely self-funded program. BEAT students shared their thoughts on how other districts can create their own video programs in their communities.

"It gave us the opportunity to practice our speaking skills," said Yokiel. "Also, it gave us the opportunity to look at The BEAT through a different way, because we presented all the specifics that we may not think about each week. And, it was great for the people who attended because they learned about the video program through the students' perspective, not only Mr. Wasylko's perspective."

"I wish I could wave a magic wand and implement The Beat program in every Ohio school district that does not already have a video production program in place," said Davis. "But, I realize that The BEAT program was not built overnight. It has taken a lot of hard work to create and maintain the independent, student-run and self-funded program. I think the Brunswick community should be very proud of this homegrown success story," she added.

Hannah Wasylko, a freshman at Brunswick High School, Is one of over thirty-five "backpack journalists" in the award-winning Brunswick Schools Video Program. The Program is sponsored by RPM, Plum Creek Assisted Living Community, WOW! Cable & internet, Allstate/Brenda States and Lorain County Community College/University of Akron at Midpoint Campus Center. Go to www.thebeat22.com to learn more about the Program, or visit thebeat.pegcentral.com to view videos produced by the students.

PICTURED (L-R): BEAT speakers Rohan Srivastava, Jonathan Yokiel, Alexis Gemelas, Allison Rhoades, Madilyn Gaydos, Sara Popov, Hannah Wasylko, Gabe Wasylko


Brunswick Life
This issue of Brunswick Life is almost exclusively filled with articles from Brunswick students. They are among 30 to 35 students in grades six through 12 participating in the BEAT program. The independent, self-funded program is sponsored by RPM, Plum Creek Assisted Living Community, WOW! Cable and Internet, Allstate/Brenda States, and Lorain County Community College/University of Akron at Midpoint Campus.

"None of this would be possible without the support of the Brunswick City Schools, our sponsors over the last fourteen years and especially our BEAT students and their families. They've made the program the success that it has become," said program adviser John Wasylko, who also contributed much to this issue, tracking down pictures and articles.

I am grateful for the students' contributions and impressed by their work, but they didn't leave much room for me. The students came up with their own story ideas and delivered quality articles. This is their issue.

I encourage readers to visit TheBEAT22.com to read the longer versions of the students' articles, and watch them on Channel 22. Join me in congratulating them on a job well done.

Bill Hammerstrom Editor, Brunswick Life Magazine.