Humor                                                        Page 48


Leadership Lite


 Leadership Lite
Some Gratitude!
Before he left the superintendency of the Hampden-Wilbraham Regional School District in Wilbraham, Mass., for a new post, Paul Gagliarducci began planning an $80 million project to build a new high school adjacent to the aging, half-century-old school.

With the opening of the new building, demolition began on the old site. Gagliarducci, now leading the schools in Bozrah, Conn., isn’t sure whether construction workers were trying to make a snide statement about his tenure when they deposited the sign from his former office in an annex of the old school in the location depicted at right.

Quipped Gagliarducci: “As I mentioned to friends, funny how soon people forget when you retire!”


Silent Protest
Anyone who can endure 54 years of service as a secretary to public school administrators obviously learns a few survival tricks along the way. Juanita Dickenson picked up her share as a support staffer at Flint Northern High School in Flint, Mich.

Now retired, Dickenson, 71, told this story to the Flint Journal:

During the heat of the Vietnam War, students at the high school took to wearing black armbands as a form of silent protest. A teacher joined them. The principal ordered Dickenson to compose a harsh letter to reprimand the teacher. She demurred: “I didn’t think that should matter. I felt how the teacher felt.”

But not wanting to lose her job for disobeying an order, Dickenson purposely crafted a poorly written letter, leading the principal to order rewrite after rewrite before finally giving up.


Not a Clock-Watcher
A finalist for the superintendency in Orange County, Fla., was forced to cool her heels for nearly an hour awaiting the start of her interview with the board of education.

“Does anybody know any jokes?” School Board Chair Bill Sublette asked as he and others waited for a missing board member, Vicky Bell.

When she did turn up, Bell explained that two days into daylight-saving-time, the change still hadn’t registered on any of her clocks and time pieces.

(Source: Orlando Sentinel, Orlando, Fla.)


A Food Reviewer, Too
Charles Maranzano, superintendent of the Hopatcong School District in northern New Jersey, readily accepted the cafeteria taste test that was tossed his way recently.

A Hopatcong High School senior, appearing at a school board meeting, complained about school lunch meals that “are boring and rather bland” and chicken nuggets that “taste like cardboard.” He concluded by challenging the school board members to eat their lunch at the schools for a week. Maranzano volunteered himself.

The first day, dining at an elementary school, he tried the peanut butter and jelly sandwich and the nonfat chocolate milk, a particular object of student scorn. The next day, at the high school, he went for the taco salad, and on day three he opted for a deli wrap.

Maranzano’s critique? “This isn’t mom’s home cooking,” he told the New Jersey Herald with tact. “But it’s cooked by local moms, and they eat the food here, too.”

Short, humorous anecdotes, quips, quotations and malapropisms for this column relating to school district administration should be addressed to:
Editor, School Administrator
1615 Duke St.
Alexandria, VA 22314
Fax: 703-841-1543

Upon request, names may be withheld in print.


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