Humor                                                          Page 48


Leadership Lite


Aiming High … and Early
Third-grader Isaac Castaneda has set his early sights on a career in the superintendency. A story about Isaac, who wears a tie to school every day, and his lofty ambition showed up on the Facebook page of the Harlingen, Texas, Consolidated Independent School District.

The Greater Texas Foundation noticed the story and decided it wanted to help in the boy’s cause. They arranged for a special assembly at Long Elementary School, where the foundation’s president awarded the youth a $1,000 check toward his postsecondary studies.

In accepting the money, Isaac said: “I will make you proud of me.”


A Torture Test?
Imagine attending every school board meeting in a district for more than 28 years. Might qualify as a bad dream for many in education governance!

That was Sylvia Weed’s accomplishment as executive assistant to the last 10 superintendents in the Marble Falls, Texas, Independent School District. Her role included taking minutes of school board meetings.

Weed’s nearly three-decade streak ended in the middle of the 2013-14 school year when she said she had heard enough and retired.

Source: The River Cities Daily Tribune


Ownership Comes With His Title
Mark Hansen, one of the New Lisbon, Wis., School District’s guidance counselors, was giving an elementary guidance lesson about bullying. He asked the students whether they knew someone they could talk to if they were having trouble with anything.

The youngsters mentioned the expected staffers — their classroom teacher, the principal and the two counselors. Then one student who had seen Superintendent Dennis Birr at times around the school building and as an occasional classroom observer suggested this: “How about the guy who owns the school?”

While Birr appreciated the ownership stake he’d been awarded suddenly, he told students he doesn’t think he can claim the school as his own even if he wanted to.


Hands-On Attack on Truancy
Bolgen Vargas, superintendent in Rochester, N.Y., has been so alarmed by the school district’s high truancy rates that he’s taken to the streets to remedy the problem.

Vargas has been knocking on doors of homes and apartments to talk to parents of students who are missing school the most. He’s described it as a truancy blitz.

Local TV station WHEC captured the superintendent talking to a mother at one home, then walking out of the home with a student. He put him in his car and drove him to school.


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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