Thursday, March 15, 2018

Eye on Oshkosh - Police Department and local crime, taped 3-15-18

In this edition of Eye on Oshkosh, host Cheryl Hentz spends the hour talking with Oshkosh Police Chief Dean Smith about how the job has been going for him since taking over as chief two years ago, any challenges or surprises he's encountered here, the types of crime we're seeing these days, the department's dual accreditation (OPD is the only department in the state to have that), etc. Transparency is the one thing Chief Smith stresses in all he and his department do.

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

Local Organizations Improve Their Intercultural Competence

Oshkosh, WI - (March 6, 2018) -- Businesses and organizations in Oshkosh and the surrounding communities are recognizing the importance of intercultural competence to their mission and bottom line, and are taking concrete steps to further their efforts.
Fit Oshkosh, Inc., an organization dedicated to improving racial equality and building a welcoming and inclusive community, offers a tool to assess and improve intercultural competence. The Intercultural Development Inventory™ (IDI) has been used since 1998 in corporate, academic, and other settings in more than 30 countries around the world.
The IDI, conducted by a qualified administrator, is a 50-item questionnaire that takes 15-20 minutes to complete. It measures an individual’s capability to shift cultural perspective and appropriately adapt behavior to cultural differences and commonalities. This intercultural competence is a critical skill for more effective interaction in a culturally diverse setting.
The completed inventory is then used to focus individual coaching and action planning, to build real and virtual multicultural team development, to generate needs analyses for targeted developmental training, and to conduct program evaluation and other research. Fit Oshkosh can provide the full range of services, from initial assessment to program evaluation.

Tracey Robertson, co-founder and executive director of Fit Oshkosh, and an IDI qualified administrator, has worked with groups having a wide range of competency. “It’s not unusual for participants, even those with years of experience in diversity, to realize more opportunities through the IDI to reach their goals after implementing the assessment and subsequent programming,” she says. 
Associated Bank used the IDI with a select group of leaders involved in their diversity and inclusion efforts, with the intention of rolling out to additional key leaders over time. Although they are in the early stages of deployment, Darcy Pierson, Director of Inclusion, Engagement and Change Management Leadership, stated that “the IDI has helped the group identify specific and practical actions that we can take to advance our intercultural competency that go beyond traditional training classes.''

In engaging in the IDI process, Adam Jackson, culture consultant for Humana, wanted to get a deeper personal assessment of key leaders’ cultural awareness. The intention was to use that group’s scores to indicate what their larger organization may look like, and to work collaboratively on opportunities to make a difference together. A year into the initiative, Jackson says, “We have had leaders actually step up and lead some of these ‘real talk’ sessions where we explore inclusion and diversity topics. We made great progress on our action steps in 2017 and have a solid plan to continue this work in 2018.”

For more information on the IDI and other services offered by Fit Oshkosh, visit
About Fit Oshkosh

Fit Oshkosh is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that seeks to promote social transformation through Color-Brave conversations, education, advocacy, and research in order to achieve race equity and justice. It believes in the importance of a multicultural community and strength in diversity. It values a community where people of color fit in without having to conform to the dominant culture.

Friday, March 02, 2018

Dr. Vickie Cartwright Selected by School Board to Lead Oshkosh Area School District

The Oshkosh Area School District Board of Education is pleased to announce the selection and appointment of Dr. Vickie Cartwright as the next superintendent of the Oshkosh Area School District (OASD). On Wednesday, February 28, 2018, the board voted unanimously to approve a two-year contract with Cartwright, at a salary of $195,000 for the 2018-19 school year. Cartwright will take office on July 1, 2018.

Dr. Vickie Cartwright is currently the Associate Superintendent for Exceptional Student Education (ESE) of the Orange County Public Schools (OCPS) in Orlando, FL. Before leading the ESE department, Cartwright led the Accountability, Research, and Assessment Department in OCPS. Additional administrative experience includes being a secondary level school assistant principal and principal in suburban communities. Prior instructional experience includes serving as an elementary school music teacher and a middle and high school band director. In addition to working in OCPS, Cartwright has taught graduate students as an adjunct instructor at the University of Central Florida. Cartwright graduated from the University of Florida with her Bachelor of Music in Music Education. She continued her education at the University of Southern Mississippi, where she completed her Masters in Music Education and ultimately her Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Administration.

The board felt that Cartwright’s leadership, experience, and dedication to student success would best serve OASD students, staff, and the entire Oshkosh community for years to come. The board is confident that Cartwright will lead the school system to even higher achievement allowing the Oshkosh Area School District to continue building community through education and helping all students become problem-solving, independent, lifelong learners who contribute to society. This announcement follows the board’s interviews last week with three finalists. District employees, stakeholders, and community members also had the opportunity to meet the finalists during meet-and-greet receptions and provide written input to the board.

“All three finalists were exceptional candidates,” stated Board President Allison Garner. “We appreciate their time and their continued contributions to our educational system, and we thank them for their interest in our district. We would also like to thank the entire Oshkosh community and our district staff for being engaged in this process and sharing their input.”

After an extensive search process, led by Ray and Associates, 61 applications were received; the firm interviewed and conducted reference checks with references, state officials, and individuals who knew the candidates’ abilities and strengths. The firm then recommended the school board review 10 applications, representing candidates from Florida, Virginia, and Wisconsin. The board reviewed those applications on February 5, 2018, and invited a diverse group of seven candidates to the initial round of interviews, held the week of February 12. The school board announced on February 16, its selection of three finalists for the second round of interviews and public meet-and-greet receptions, held February 20, 21 and 22. 

Cartwright will succeed Superintendent Stan Mack II on July 1, 2018. In May 2017, Superintendent Mack announced his retirement, which will take place on June 30, 2018.
About the OASD: The Oshkosh Area School District is located in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, serving 10,000 students and operating 14 elementary schools, five middle schools, two high schools, two charter schools and an eAcademy. Building community through education, the mission of the Oshkosh Area School District is to create citizens who are critical, creative thinkers, responsible in their actions, and committed to learning for life by working together with families and communities. For more information visit .

Thursday, March 01, 2018

Eye on Oshkosh - Oshkosh Area School District annual report and report c...

In this edition of Eye on Oshkosh, host Cheryl Hentz talks with folks from the Oshkosh Area School about how the district compares with other districts and what steps it's taking to continually improve itself, even in areas where it already excels. District personnel are Stan Mack II,
Superintendent; Julie Conrad, Director of Curriculum and Assessment; and Katie Nieman, Communication Director. See the show here:

Kids and Cops annual basketball game at the Menominee Nation Arena

Boys and girls in sixth to twelfth grades will again join Oshkosh police officers for the Third Annual Kids and Cops Basketball Game. The charity game will be held on Saturday, March 10 from noon to 4 p.m., at the Menominee Nation Arena, 1212 S. Main St., Oshkosh.

The game is organized each year by Fit Oshkosh, a nonprofit racial justice organization, and the Oshkosh Police Department.  Boys and girls who would like to play must register by Wednesday, March 7, by filling out a form that can be found online at:

Oshkosh area youth and police officers will play a non-competitive basketball game. This year’s event also features a chat-back with the officers, free refreshments, t-shirts, medals and prizes for the youth participant.

The Kids and Cops Basketball Game was developed in 2015 by Fit Oshkosh, Inc., the Oshkosh Police Department and volunteers from the Oshkosh community as a positive event that can bring the community together. Additional sponsors this year include the Norden-Vanden Heuvel Charitable Giving Fund of the Oshkosh Area Community Foundation, Crown Trophy, First Congregational Church Oshkosh, the Wisconsin Herd and Menominee Nation Arena.

“The game provides an opportunity for local law enforcement to have authentic interaction with community children from diverse backgrounds,” according to Tracey Robertson, Fit Oshkosh executive director. “There is a definite need for this type of positive engagement. It is our hope that this annual event will show our commitment to developing an inclusive community that supports our police officers.”

This game allows officers to interact with youth from varying backgrounds. “Their participation demonstrates that they are committed to making Oshkosh affirming and inclusive,” Robertson said. “On a larger scale, the willingness by the Oshkosh Police Department to ask its officers to participate is a bold statement about their commitment to making Oshkosh a place where everyone feels respected and welcomed.”

Additional sponsors of this year’s event include the Norden-Vanden Heuvel Charitable Giving Fund of the Oshkosh Area Community Foundation, Crown Trophy, First Congregational Church Oshkosh, the Wisconsin Herd and Menominee Nation Arena.