On July 1, I officially assumed the duties of transitional superintendent. I am currently spending time on learning as much as I possibly can about our community, our school district and our schools from many of the people who make this such a special place. I have a lot more to learn but I am looking forward to the year ahead and excited about the opportunity afforded me as superintendent.
My role during this transitional year is to serve in a manner that keeps the district growing and moving forward. You (we) should not expect less than we would if the person in this role had been here for ten years or hired to serve the next ten years. This has to be a year of continual improvement; we cannot afford to “push in the clutch” and coast. This is an important year for each of our students. It’s the only year they will be a senior, or a 7th grader or a 4th grader or a 1st grader. It is an important year for them and thus it is an important year for me.
In his recent writing, Michael Fullan, uses the term Motion Leadership to describe the kind of leadership actions that cause positive movement forward in individuals, schools and systems. That is what I intend to model and will encourage and support others to do so as well.
One sign of moving forward is to observe, as I’ve been able to do, the large percentage of our staff actively involved in professional growth opportunities this summer. Most of these workshops are capably led by WPS staff members. I’ve been impressed with the breadth of offerings, the cutting-edge and creative nature of many of the teaching and learning innovations being planned, the thoughtfulness the participants are bringing to the work and the understanding that the opportunity to engage in such collaborative work at the level provided is a unique benefit of being a WPS educator.
For the last eight years, this space has been filled by the professional, insightful, intelligent and warm voice of Cheryl Maloney. I’m sure many of you have rightfully come to rely on that voice for insight into the Weston Public Schools. For the next year, I will use this space, as well as other opportunities, to communicate with you, address key issues facing our schools and district, and inform you of new developments that may arise. However, this is a one-way channel; it is also important that I hear from you. We are currently working on ways for that to happen. As we get into the school year look for announcements about coffees with the district administrators and me, and an on-line, interactive “coffee” that will allow you to participate from home or office.
In the meantime, if you would like to contact me, my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org and phone number is 781-786-5210.
Enjoy the summer.
Dr. John Brackett