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Starting Point                                                 Page 6

 

Deft Handling in Harsh

Moments

No one moves into a leadership post in public life expecting to preside over the aftermath of a natural disaster or a crisis brought about by human behavior. Reality deals unfortunate hands, and even the best-hatched emergency response plans can’t prepare the chief leader fully for such situations.

In this month’s cover article “When Crises Call (page 19),” freelance writer Marian Kisch captures the professional and personal dimensions of crisis handling by superintendents in four school communities that faced a ravaging flood, a devastating tornado, the shooting of a principal in his office and a fatal car accident involving four members of the varsity football team. Education leaders thrust into such scenarios deserve our support and admiration.

A recent retiree from the superintendent ranks, Dan Woll, vividly recounts (page 23) the most memorable experience of his long career — a middle-of-the-night tornado that ripped apart the tiny community of Barnevald, Wis., destroying the single school.

We’ve also chosen to serve some important coverage on bullying and cyberbullying, subjects gaining increasing traction on the crowded education agenda. As Scott LaFee, a health affairs writer, reports in “The Political and Cultural Complications of Bullying,” outside forces sometimes dictate what educators can do to address such acts.

We particularly hope the articles about cyberbullying terminology, awareness strategies and intervention in matters of abusive off-campus speech will provide practical guidance.

Jay P. Goldman, Editor
Voice: 703-875-0745
E-mail: jgoldman@aasa.org

 

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