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Embracing the Complexity of Education

For generations we have summarized student performance in school with report cards. Parents hung them on the refrigerator, students sweated the final assignments of a quarter, and teachers would add handwritten comments.

However, our performance in school was evaluated by more than the grade . . . it was the communication between the teachers and the parents. It was the teacher’s comments; it was the conversations at conferences.

The performance of an entire school district is complex; it can’t be reduced to a simple report card. Yes, we must have accountability, we must measure performance, and we must continue to pursue improvement. You will get no argument from me about assessments and performance measures, but we must embrace the complexity of our work. Read More

Health Professionals Academy

There are eleven juniors and seniors with an interest in the health care field working at the ILC in the Health Professionals Academy. These students have interests anywhere from dental hygienist to paramedic to orthopedic surgeon. During a vital signs clinic the students were able to gain practical experience taking vital signs. They spent time in class learning what the vital signs are, the normal ranges, and various factors affecting each measurement. Students used standard blood pressure cuffs as well as an electronic cuff to obtain readings. Preparing students to be Ready for Tomorrow means giving them opportunities to practice skills in real world settings.

Elimination of BCD – Blame, Complain, Defend

In his book, Above the Line, Ohio State Football Coach Urban Meyer shares, “My advice to leaders: ruthlessly eliminate BCD. Instead of accountability, BCD creates a culture of excuse making and victimization – things that are toxic for your organization and performance.”

BCD – blame, complain, and defend – is often an immediate first reaction when we are confronted with difficult situations. For some, BCD has become a habit. It has become a default way of reacting to challenging events. But as Coach Meyer explains, “BCD has never solved a problem, achieved a goal, or improved a relationship. Stop wasting your time and energy on something that will never help you.” Read More

Girls on the Run

Many of our elementary schools participate in Girls on the Run each year. The Girls on the Run Program not only encourages each participant to finish a 5K run, it also teaches the girls how to get along well with others, how to be a good friend and how to handle difficult situations that they will encounter in life. Congrats to all of the girls for finishing the 5k on Saturday. Preparing students to be Ready for Tomorrow means giving them the tools to grow into successful community members. We are proud of them and also thankful to all of the parents and running buddies for their support.

Reminders as the Weather Changes!

This is an article Dr. Marschhausen wrote almost a year ago to the date. It has some important reminders as we see our weather get colder and the dreaded SNOW word creeps out again!

I’ve been asked several questions about our calamity days. It seems that the decision making process is a bit mysterious to some – especially the students who follow me on Twitter. There is no mystery – we put safety first, gather all available information, and make the best decision possible at the time. Here are a couple common questions from the past couple days, with my short answer to each. My goal is for our community – our parents and students – to understand the decision making process. Read More