Craig Hockenberry: First Rural School Based Health

Craig Hockenberry: First Rural School Based Health Center I was named Superintendent of Manchester Local in 2012-13 school year. It was my first Superintendent Job and I was excited to get to work. My fifteen years at Oyler School in Lower Price Hill prepared me for the job and there were many projects I had to take on during my first six months. The first project at Manchester was the creation of one of the state’s first rural School Based Health Center where kids and families could access top quality medical care without driving seventy miles away from their community. The concept came out of the Community Learning Center Model where schools put top quality services inside of their schools such as medical, dental, mental health, daycare, food services, tutoring, and vision. This concept took off in Cincinnati Public Schools, however I had no experience with this model in a rural community such as Manchester. This was one of those, time to get to work Craig Hockenberry moments! I immediately reached out to some other providers in close by rural counties who might be interested in partnering with us to provide services. After many meetings we came across Pike County Community Action who were very interested right from the start. We met with them several times and took them on a few visits to Cincinnati and other areas were school based health centers were operating at a high level. From there we met several times in Pike County, Portsmouth, Cincinnati, and Huntington (WVA) and at the Manchester campus. Each week we continued to remove barriers, cut through red tape, and find ways to make it happen. It made so much sense in a rural community. In April of 2014 it all came together and we cut the ribbon launching one of the more successful School Based Health Centers rural Ohio. By Craig Hockenberry
Published: January 18, 2021
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