Students in a Newark, Ohio High School are all smiles when it comes to making pizza. Smiling With Hope Bakery is operated by students with disabilities in a non-traditional way.
When it comes to pizzerias, the Smiling with Hope Bakery is not what you might call traditional.
Smiling with Hope is in a school, which means locked doors and specific hours.
There’s no direct phone line, no advertising, and customers have to order in advance.
There’s only one size option for pizzas, 18 inches, and two topping choices: cheese or pepperoni.
Still, the pizza is good, and people are starting to notice. This winter, Smiling with Hope Bakery — run by special-needs students at Newark High School — will be featured on Serious Eats, a cluster of websites dedicated to celebrating food.
Walter Gloshinski, Special Education Teacher, musician, and founder of Smiling With Hope, created this video as a thank you to the community for supporting the program:
….[Walter] Gloshinski has a caseload of six students at Newark High School, and they spend most of the day working in the bakery. There are another 10 that stop by just for a class period — Gloshinski’s students go elsewhere during that time for academic training — but to Gloshinski, the important factor is his students are learning while they bake. They’re not just rolling dough and shuttling pans in and out of ovens; they’re learning how to measure, shop, take inventory, follow directions for deliveries and work on a team, even with people they may not like.
Those are all necessary skills for the real world, Gloshinski said, and they are skills that will help his students land jobs later in life.