Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District

Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District News Article

Options Program Hosts Community Summit

Options Program Hosts Community Summit


Law enforcement representatives at the Options Program Community Summit: C. Randolph Keller Chief Prosecutor, Shaker Heights, Detective Grafton, Shaker Heights, Police Chief Porrello, Lyndhurst, Police Chief Hammett, University Heights, Police Chief Nietert, South Euclid, Police Chief Robertson, Cleveland Heights and Thomas Roper Retired Cleveland Officer, Back Row (L-R)

Officer Tomorrow, Lyndhurst, Lieutenant Orians, University Heights, Options Global Ambassadors, Cherronn Hodges, Nathan Jolly, Aaron Hemphill, Investigator Berry, Cleveland Heights, Officer Mack Cleveland Heights and Dr. Williams, Options Program Coordinator, Front Row (L-R)

Oct. 13, 2015 -- The Options Program (Cleveland Heights High’s alternative high school program) hosted a Community Summit on October 8th with local law enforcement and 60 Options Program students.

Chiefs of police, detectives and officers from Cleveland Heights, University Heights, South Euclid, Shaker Heights, and Lyndhurst attended the event.

Options Program Coordinator Dr. Brian Williams explained the purpose of the event. “The Community Summit was designed to provide local law enforcement and our students a space to talk about community, respect and communication,” he said. “Our students had the opportunity to understand what it is like to walk in the shoes of a police officer and the officers were exposed to the success and resiliency of our students.”

The Community Summit began with a brief welcome and introduction of all law enforcement officials, community partners, and central office administrators.

Students and guests later attended three separate breakout sessions that were facilitated by Options Program staff. The discussions focused on characteristics of a healthy community, respect, and positive communication.

Participants in the discussions compiled lists of the attributes of a healthy community, these included: civility, litter free, activities for citizens of all ages, order and beauty. The importance of giving respect in an effort to receive respect was a central theme throughout breakout sessions. Participants also discussed the healthy impact that positive communication has on a community.

The Summit concluded as students and law enforcement exchanged handshakes. “This is a day that I will always remember,” said an Options student.

Cleveland Heights Police Chief Robertson thought that the event was helpful in building community relationships. “I look forward to future opportunities to work with the Options students and expanding the relationship between the police department and the Options Program.”

After the event was over, Dr. Williams reflected on the discussions and interactions during the Summit. “Our goal was to humanize the discussion and continue to build a stronger community together,” said Dr. Williams. “Our mission was accomplished today.”

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