Search This Blog

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Steering the ship... #SAVMP

As I reflect on the awesome responsibility of leading in the field of education, I must first say that education is the best profession in the world. How many professions have the privilege of enhancing the lives of people that will shape the future. It is there that the enormous responsibility lies. Every day that we enter the classrooms, our words and actions do have a huge impact on our students.

When I look at the different positions that I have held (teacher, coach, athletic director, elementary principal, high school principal, assistant superintendent, and superintendent) I often wonder what impact I have had on the students and teachers that I have taught or lead. On occasion, I get a note of appreciation, an email, or a phone call that confirms my calling. You see, I do consider my position as a calling. I can only hope that the people and students that I am fortunate enough to lead are able to glean from that calling and the passion I have for my position.

I went through a very dark and deep valley last spring in which,  I was able to witness something that was not planned. It was at a board meeting where some 20+ parents attended and all were there in support of me. There were about seven that voiced that support. As I listened to them saying such wonderful accolades on my behalf, tears began to come into my eyes. That was a confirmation to me that told me I am doing something right. As leaders, we understand that it will often be rocky roads or unsafe waters. However, we must stay the course of doing the right thing for the right reasons, and what is best for students.

I lead because I care. I care first and foremost for the students. We can actually mold lives, build character, and motivate performances. I care for the administrators under my watch. They have an enormous responsibility to carry out the plans that I have given them. I care for each teacher that personally touch students' lives on a daily basis. They are my heroes; they are the ones on the front lines everyday, planning, facilitating, and teaching. It is through them that makes the difference in kids' lives. It is them that build relationships which impacts the students to do remarkable accomplishments. I believe all of us have at least one teacher that we can name, that made a difference in our lives. As we understand it is not about the money but about those students that tell us that we made an impact on their lives.

I lead because it is in leadership, I can make a difference. I can only pray that the difference I make is a positive one.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Setting Sail

The following is truly a step of faith and going out on a limb. I know I would have never attempted writing a blog, if not for my PLN on Twitter. There are too many to thank and for fear of leaving some out, I will choose to say a huge thank you to all of my colleagues and especially my #TLAP PLN. You just don't know what kind of impact you have had on my professional life through our chats in the evenings. I will be forever indebted to you. Many of you think I am much more than I am and I'm truly honored and humbled by your thoughts of me.

I must begin with a book that has had a tremendous impact on my life, See You at the Top by the late Zig Ziglar. I had the privilege to sit under his teaching the course (The Richer Life, now Born to Win), listening to hours of his tapes, and attending seminars he presented. The book and he gave me the inspiration to reach higher and attain more than I ever thought possible. And most recently, the book, Teach Like a PIRATE, by Dave Burgess has invigorated my professional life and outlook. The book has enabled me to get know some of the most progressive and innovative minds in the educational field. Sometimes I am in awe of your thoughts, practices, and ideas. You make me realize I have so much to learn and strive for my in career.

I should finally and most importantly want to say thank you to my wife of 38 years. She has been my rock and advocate throughout my whole career. She willingly moved from city to city, house to house, as I advanced through my coaching and administrative career. We have been in different school districts (she a little more) and towns across Texas. As a result, we have made friends and gained colleagues which has enhanced our lives. She has been my best friend and my cheerleader my whole life. With her spiritual gift of encouragement, she has definitely made me want to achieve more than I ever thought possible. I am forever grateful to have her as my wife and life for these past 38 years. We have two beautiful (both inside & out) daughters, one grand daughter and another grand baby on the way. I am so blessed.

I also want to thank all of the professional educators that I have either taught and coached along side or had the privilege to lead. Many of them have made and impact on my professional life.

As a teacher, coach, and administrator, where would I be without the students that I have had the opportunity to touch their lives. They are the only reason I continue as an educator. They give me the motivation and inspiration to come to work each day. I absolutely love what I do.

As I reread the above, I believe that I must say and acknowledge my lord and savior Jesus Christ. He has been by my side through my valleys and mountain tops of which I am so thankful. Without Him, I am nothing, with Him, I am everything. John 3:30