It’s been nothing short of a turbulent 2020 for many local families, but one thing remains undisturbed: the talents and accomplishments of the community’s youngest residents.
About five years ago, Albion Elementary Principal Vince Ketterer was reflecting on all the great things he’d heard from his students. Each day, they would excitedly fill him in on their various out-of-school activities and hobbies, like accomplishments in dance, sports, music, theater, Scouts and volunteerism, among many other deeds. Ketterer saw how proud they were to share their news. He got the idea to start a bulletin board dedicated to recognizing the diversity and interests of Albion children and their families and celebrating their dedication and hard work out-of-school. Ketterer put a call-out to parents asking them to submit details of their child’s accomplishments, earning them a picture and write-up on the newly introduced board in the main hallway. By the end of that first year, the board was covered in photos and write-ups, and the momentum hasn’t stopped since.
Now, years later, the “Superhero Selfies Board” is more important than ever, helping children stay connected and emotionally engaged with their school community, as it soldiers on in an all-remote learning setting. On top of that, the bulletin board is also unifying the three separate school communities of Albion, Valley Vista and Royal View. In a telephone interview, Ketterer shared with the Royalton Recorder that he sang a song in an all-community video huddle. His melody struck a note with a Valley Vista parent who was tuning in.
“I got an email from the parent who told me that her daughter loved my song and that she loved to sing to, so we put her on our Superhero Selfie Board,” Ketterer said.
He notes that the bulletin board helps everyone see each other in more than an academic light. The Superhero Selfie Board has shared all sorts of talents over the years, from a student who performed in a production of The Nutcracker, to a student earning a new belt in Karate, to a student who raised nearly $1,000 for cancer research. The board highlights all sorts of activities on a small or large scale, from hobbies at home like fishing and playing music to accomplishments in extra-curriculars and volunteer activities. And it’s not only students participating, but building staff as well, as one teacher highlighted her hobby of driving go-karts on the weekends. The board is routinely highlighted by Ketterer in his morning announcements.
“The idea behind it is that it’s celebrating all the things that kids are proud of outside of school,” Ketterer said. “We know what they do in school, but they have so many great hobbies, achievements and interests outside of school.”
The board starts off empty each new academic year and is filled up by the end of the school year. Submissions are welcome on an on-going basis.
“It’s a great platform to have school connect with home. It supports our kids with their socio-emotional needs in feeling pride in what they do,” Ketterer said. “For the longest time, we didn’t have that stage or avenue for our kids to present their out-of-school accomplishments building-wide. Over the years of doing this, it’s neat to see all the things on there.”

Contributing Writer