Award Year: 2019

Freedom Trail Elementary School

6743 Bale Kenyon Road
Lewis Center, OH, 43035-9312

(740) 657-5700

Mr. Stephen Sargent, Principal at time of Nomination

Olentangy Local School District

School Website


To facilitate maximum learning for every student.

Student Demographics
  • Black/African American: 4%
  • White: 76%
  • Hispanic: 1%
  • Asian: 13%
  • Native American: 1%
  • Two or more races: 5%
Good Morning Freedom Trail!

Good Morning Freedom Trail!

Freedom Trail Elementary School (FTES) is a successful school due to the practice of developing meaningful relationships among students, staff, and the community. Building on the belief that positive teacher-student relationships have affects on student achievement, FTES has implemented a variety of strategies and classroom practices to strengthen interpersonal relationships. An essential component of building relationships is the development of the Trail Award. Recognized Character Traits include being Truthful, Respectful, Accountable, Industrious, and a Leader (T.R.A.I.L.). Each month, the school identifies one student per class for exemplifying one of the core traits. Students are honored with T.R.A.I.L awards, including a certificate and a backpack tag. The school community gathers monthly to celebrate student leaders at an assembly. A pancake breakfast served by teachers to the award winners and their families is the culminating celebration. This serves as a great opportunity to acknowledge parents for their role in the support of FTES and the development of their child as a leader.

Cross grade level student relationships are developed through paired classroom buddies. Classroom bonds between older and younger students are established, providing the opportunity for students to establish friendships and emerge as academic and social leaders. The positive relationships students build with buddies are evident in the excitement expressed at the anticipation of buddy day and in their greetings as they pass each other in the hallways. Multiple opportunities are available for students and teachers to continue to build relationships. Students have the opportunity to participate in the diversity book club, choir, gardening, running club, or art club. Teachers participate in vertical teams during meetings providing the opportunity for staff members to collaborate across grade levels. A planned, purposeful collaboration supports meaningful relationships and facilitates maximum learning for every student.