On July 1, I officially finished my first year as a Superintendent.
It was awesome. It was amazing. It was the beat-down of a lifetime.
To say that I got my butt kicked this year is putting it lightly. While I heavily relied on my teaching, Assistant Principal, and K-12 Supervisor experiences (and of course all of that schooling stuff), it was still a dim lit path with no answers being in stone.
Now that we are in summer, I’ve taken some time to reflect on my year. Here’s what I thought: I was doing great until state testing arrived. After state testing, I made my mistake. A big one. I pushed. Hard. Really hard.
Why is this a mistake? In my case, I pushed my teachers so hard this past year, and they went with it. Most realized they were way behind the curve and saw a need for change. They adapted, they worked so hard, and they tried. After state testing, many were tired. I saw it as an additional 24 days of school and saw some starting to slide and shut off. Instead of targeting individuals, I went mass emails and tried to rally the troops and lead the charge. It completely backfired, and I ended up having a semi-mutiny on my hands. Even worse, those that were doing a modicum of work and were so lost to begin with began to stir the pot even more… and they went for the jugular. If I wore the wrong shoes, I heard about it. If I blinked the wrong way, I heard about it. Granted, the completely useless just focus all of their energy on finding fault and deflecting people about looking at them, but I gave them free ammo. Not cool.
So, the year ended, and I took two weeks off. BEST. IDEA. EVER. I played video games. I watched awful TV. I got back to the gym. I went for check-ups that I put off forever. I played golf. I played with my puppy. I lived like a normal human being. It was needed.
Coming back refreshed, I had the time to digest and process all of the decision making, pitfalls, and pros that I went through.
The summer vibe in a school setting is a wonderful one. It’s nice to reflect, recharge, and reorganize your thoughts for the following school year. It’s a time for the educational phoenix to rise again and prepare for whatever come sour way. I have grown, I have learned, and now it’s time to move onward.