Monthly Archives: May 2014

5 Lessons From My First Year As Site Principal

Just a few days ago, we celebrated graduation. The next day we wrapped up with professional development and teacher check-out.
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When I arrived home that night, I felt both exhausted and exhilarated.

It was a few hours later when I received the call that two of our students had been in a wreck.

When I made my way to the hospital emergency room, I talked to one of the boys who had a broken arm. The other was in surgery and in critical condition–they had placed him in a drug induced coma for the next few days as doctors monitored his head trauma. Continue reading

Interview With Rachel Skerritt

The following is an interview between Rachel Skerritt and me.image

Rachel is the Principal of Eastern Senior High School, a D.C. Public School. She was also the Principal Ambassador Fellow for the U.S. Department of Education.

My goal in posting interviews with successful leaders in education like Rachel is to inspire us to reflect on how our own choices, goals, and actions can affect our lives, our leadership, and our teams. Continue reading

Caring For Grandma–A Mother’s Day Tribute

This week I am taking a break from posting about school to reflect on some events affecting my family.
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As we just celebrated Mother’s Day, I am so thankful for my mom. But today I wanted to take some time to reflect on the mother who gave me my wife.

Thinking Back
When Missy and I married over twenty years ago, I remember the joy of being welcomed into her family. Her mother, in particular, was one of those care-free, happy women, who had learned to face hard times with a smile and trust God for what she could not control.

She had been a single mom since my wife was ten years old. And she had born the burden with grace. After Missy and I had kids, she became a doting Grandma–traveling from the next state over to see the kids, welcoming us for weekends and holidays at hers.

Over the past few years, she has begun to struggle with short-term memory challenges. Continue reading

Encouraging Positive Attitudes About Testing

Our teachers have been preparing our students all year for the testing window we are now in. tape-measure Many of those strategies included best practices like bench-mark testing, curriculum mapping, or introducing literacy standards across all subject areas–to name a few. Just like a good sports team must practice the fundamentals to be prepared for competition, these embedded curriculum standards must be in place for students to be successful.

In addition to the fundamentals, our teachers have also tried to encourage positive attitudes. I want to share two creative school-wide efforts they organized to motivate students prior to EOI Testing this year: Continue reading