This weeks "Five for Friday" focuses on public education and the importance of telling our story.
1. January 27 was declared as "Public Schools Day of Action" by @NElovesPS. Check the ways you can help spread the message of the great public schools we have in Nebraska.
2. Dr. Mike Lucas of York Public Schools (@YorkDukePower) shared a very powerful blog post. Every public school educator in Nebraska should read and share his message.
3. Along with the "Public Schools Day of Action" #NElovesPS moderated the weekly #nebedchat on Wendesday night. Check out the archive and great ideas shared from educators from Nebraska and beyond!
4. Looking for a good book to inspire you to write a better story? Although not education related, it will challenge you to look at the story you (or your school) is writing and how can you make it better.
5. Last but not least, not a link or blog post but a philosophy engrained in everything we do at #milfordsoar.
Thank you to everyone who makes Milford Public Schools home for me and my family!
If you haven't read any of Jon Gordon's books, I highly suggest that you do! They are powerful and mostly quick reads that you can always take something away from. This week's "Five for Friday" centers around his best work (in my opinion).
1. Building a great culture is imperative to any organizations success!
2. From his book "The Carpenter"--one must show they care.
3. From one of my favorite books "The Energy Bus"--10 Rules For The Ride of Your Life.
4. A great reminder for all educators.
5. And lastly, a link to a great blog post "Working for a Bigger Purpose."
I find January to be one of the most interesting times of year. We are in the grips of winter with snow and blistering cold weather the norm on every 10 day forecast we read. Winter sports and activities are heading into the main stretch of their seasons with conference and district tournaments right around the corner. And for many students (and some staff) the fond memories of Christmas break are still running through their heads. For administrators, January poses a unique conundrum which can be exciting but difficult to grasp at times.
January means the school year is now half over. Graduation and the end of the year still seem like a distant date on the calendar, yet we all know it will be here before long. Planning for numerous banquets and spring activities are on our radar, but are still low on the priority list. Reflection on the past semester has caused us to make changes that may dictate our daily routines. All the while, we are still trying to maintain our laser like focus on the current school year, yet our calendars remind us that planning for next school year should have already begun.
Class changes, new programs, ideal class sizes, teaching responsibilities, new staff, retirements, master schedules, new initiatives, etc. have been imbedded in my daily thoughts and conversations since we came back from break. While the 2016-17 school year is still over eight months from kicking off, it is imperative many of these ongoing discussions are wrapped up and decisions are made soon. Failure to properly prepare is not fatal, but it can be the difference between a great start to a school year or one of constant frustration and disruptions.
Being an an educator is like very few professions out there. While balancing the important task of finishing up the current school year while planning for next may cause sleepless nights and a fair amount of stress, it also possesses an amazing opportunity to make a lasting impact of the lives of our students. Each school year allows for a clean slate to start anew. Teachers and staff have the ability to quit doing what may be no longer effective and take on a new approach that may have been difficult to implement midyear. But most importantly, staff has the opportunity to fulfill most schools’ missions statements by creating “lifelong learners and productive citizens.”
Before we know it the sun will be shining, the birds will be chirping, our lawnmowers will be fired up, and this year’s seniors will be anxious to walk across the stage towards their next season in life. It is impossible to fully prepare for next school year as new students will arrive this summer, a staff member may decide to retire/leave late, or new programs or funding may fall through. However, take the time now, while it’s still bitterly cold, to begin to preparing for the next class of seniors who have been excitedly waiting their turn and the new class of seventh graders who will be nervously gracing our halls for the first time. A few sleepless nights now will pay dividends in the fall.
To say that there is a lot of great articles, blogs, and information on the web would be an understatement. Here are five great thoughts/resources from the past week.
1. Thank you to Dr. Mike Lucas, Superintendent from York Public Schools for writing the following blog post! Every public educator in Nebraska and beyond should take the time to read it. "When Did Public Schools Become the Enemy?"
3. From Omaha.com
"Coaches: Don't forget to remember the 'big picture' in youth sports"
4. From www.karikampakis.com
"10 Truths Middle Schoolers Should Know"
“Sportsmanship” is defined differently at every school and at every level of athletics. What may be acceptable at one school would never be allowed at another. However, what I believe we can all agree upon is that the root of sportsmanship lies in RESPECT for all of those involved with the competition (the players, coaches, refs, fans, cheerleaders, bands, etc). As you hopefully continue reading, I want to preface my thought by saying I am talking about high school athletics; not college, not professional, not even the local Y-Ball Wednesday night men’s league. My point of view may not be popular with some (Jay Bilas included) but I feel as if it needs to be said.
Milford Jr/Sr High Principal