In the history of “first days back to school” (at least my personal history), this is by far the best start to the school year yet. I have thoroughly enjoyed seeing our teachers, staff and students return, our new students and teachers settle in and our pre-K children adapt to school life. Even the tears for our littlest ones as they leave Mom or Dad for the first time are a part of September and a fresh beginning.
I was coming back up the entrance drive after dinner on Friday night for the Randolph/Pine Valley football game and I was struck once again by how beautiful our campus is and how proud I am to be the Randolph Central School Superintendent. We have the most amazing students, a supportive community with involved parents, a spectacular staff, a dedicated faculty, a hard working administrative team, and a caring, responsive Board of Education.
I cannot imagine a more ideal group with whom to talk about learning with passion, innovation and leadership. We are embarking on a mission to reshape learning, to bring along all of the good things everyone is already doing and to learn more together about best teaching practices.
Teachers are working together in Professional Learning Communities, groups of 2-6 teachers who study different practices that will improve their own teaching and impact students in positive ways. We are examining questions like “why we do what we do and how do we know it’s working?”.
We’re thinking about the opportunities we give students and about providing them with learning experiences that allow them to create, to problem solve, to collaborate, communicate and explore those things about which they’re curious. As an administrative team, we’re supporting teachers in the classroom, paying more attention to learning than to facility request forms, and continuing to learn together about best leadership practices.
I’ve visited most of our classrooms in these first two days, just to say hello and welcome back. I’m already seeing wonderful things from our teachers as they implement best practices, use new technology, and challenge our kids in interesting and meaningful ways. And we’re just getting started!
If you’re interested in our Admin Team’s welcome back message and reading more about where Randolph is headed this year, you can check out our opening day slides here. And if you want to ask questions or talk about your ideas, please comment or drop me an email—-I’d love the chance to talk with you!