It’s the evening before the First Day of School – my 14th as an educator and my 34th overall. Each year brings a list of challenges and triumphs and by June, I’m usually pretty exhausted and very grateful for a summer break. This year, with a new school and a new position, I’ve been more excited than usual. However, the last two weeks have been very, very busy. I have been in-and-out of the school numerous times, unpacking my office, meeting staff, and preparing materials for our First Day Professional Development sessions. There have been dozens of emails regarding plant department and contractors, engagement with our board’s Multi-Year Strategic Plan, reminders about budgeting items, health and safety issues, staffing…. that list goes on, and on, and on. The paperwork has already started to pile up, too – despite every effort to mitigate Messy Desk Syndrome.
There has also been an excitement in the building. The enthusiasm in people’s voices as they prepare for the new year is awesome and it’s one of the things that recharges my own batteries. This is important to me because I know that once the year starts, my batteries will be under constant strain. It’s a reality of the job; our schools are busy and the needs of students, colleagues, parents, and the community are genuine. The days can be long and the reality is that the Office can be an isolated place. A reflection I made last year was the need to escape that isolation and get out into the school. Paperwork and reports are important, but being visible in the school is (in my opinion) way more important. It’s easy to drown under that messy desk but it’s important to prioritize and ensure the batteries are at a healthy level. So, with that in mind, some goals:
- I will be in the halls and in classrooms every day. I was pretty successful with this last year at B.A. Parker, but I am not sure what this goal will look like this year.
- Building relationships with others will remain my highest priority. I can’t help talking to people so this will hopefully come naturally.
- Gonna (and gotta) keep moving. Walking halls, climbing stairs, and visiting the gym have to be key parts of my daily routine
- Writing, reflecting, and sharing (like I’m doing now) will keep me in a good place
We’ll see how well I meet these goals as the first days, weeks, and months pass – but I am forever an optimist!
Best wishes to everyone for a very successful 2019-2020 school year!