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Sunday, January 11, 2015

A Letter to My School Family

My Dearest Central Family,

It has been a fast paced semester as my first year in the Lead Learner role. A new semester brings new possibilities and new challenges. This has by far been THE fastest year of my entire career. Every day is a day filled with learning, and every day has helped me become stronger and more humble than ever before. I experienced failure, and learned from it. I have achieved goals and felt success from them. Learning about the children who fill our classrooms has been joyful and at some moments, heartbreaking. Each person who makes up our school has impacted me in ways that I will cherish forever. To you, my Central family...I owe you a huge THANK YOU... for many things. This is my letter of gratitude for helping me become the lead learner I am meant to be.

Thank YOU for allowing me to LISTEN.
I am very grateful for the opportunity to LISTEN to you each and every day. It is an honor to be someone you speak to in order to be heard. When I began at Central on July 1, I anticipated when the first person would walk through my office to sit down and talk. When others allow me to listen, I take it seriously and with much pride that I was chosen. Listening equates to learning, and I have learned so much because of listening to all of you.

Thank YOU for allowing me to FAIL.
Being a newbie certainly leaves room for failure, but I am a risk taker...and along with taking risks comes failure. I don't enjoy making mistakes by any means, but mistakes are a part of learning. I have made mistakes and will make more! You are an accepting staff of my downfalls, and know that I am vastly imperfect. I am grateful for your willingness to accept my failures and trust in me to make better decisions because of them.

Thank YOU for allowing me to CHALLENGE.
I strive to hold high expectations for myself and for those around me. You all know that about me, and you embrace it. I challenge you for several reasons, the first being because I want what is best for OUR kids! I challenge you because I want to invest in each of you. I want us as a school family to never settle for status quo. We are meant to achieve excellence; we are meant to be awesome. In order for us to achieve excellence, we must continually be challenged to grow, learn, and think outside the box. I am grateful to my school family for accepting my challenges.

Thank YOU for allowing me to DREAM.
My transparent nature does not allow me to keep my hopes and dreams to myself. I dream out loud, and feel blessed to work with a school family who embraces that. You all contribute to my hopes and dreams each day, along with our students and families. I tend to dream so big that at times I overwhelm myself, and my school family helps me stay grounded. I have huge dreams for us all, and look forward to making them a reality along with your own dreams for us. It is an honor to dream with you, and I am grateful for the opportunity.

Thank YOU for allowing me to LOVE.
It is not easy to accept new leadership because it requires trust. Love must live in any organization or it simply cannot be successful. Yes, we are a business of sorts, but that does not mean we cannot express love for each other. Doing this is my lifeline. I love to love people. It is how I myself become inspired. I am so grateful to you for accepting my need to love. It motivates me each day to make a positive impact.

Central family, you have become engraved in my heart. Teachers, staff, kids, and their families make up this very special place filled with love, support, patience, understanding, empathy, and dreams. I GET to come to this place five days a week and invest my time. What a blessing that is...what an opportunity to continue striving for excellence with amazing people. Let's continue to LISTEN, FAIL, CHALLENGE, DREAM, and LOVE together. The possibilities are simply unlimited.

Bethany (aka "Coach")

Resources Worth Reading

Student Motivation: Focusing on Excellence

What's Holding You Back?

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