To the Indiana Association of Public School Superintendents:
You’ve heard it said that a good beginning makes for a good ending. Or in other words, the work of Indiana Superintendent’s during June, July, and August sets the tone for a successful launch of a new school year. Just as I have, I’m sure you’ve been asked a time or two, “What do you do during the summer?” or “Don’t you have the summers off?” After swallowing hard and taking a deep breath I politely respond about such things as school budgets, hiring staff, inspecting school buses, repairing school buildings, strategic planning, ordering supplies, School Board retreats, summer school, professional development, curriculum reviews, and so on. Thinking I’ve hit a home run and sure I’ve communicated the wow factor, I’m met with a glassy stare and the response, “Oh.” And then I pull the dagger out and we go on our separate ways continuing to fill our grocery carts.
As your students and teachers once again fill your school classrooms I hope you’ve had the best start to a new school year ever. For me seeing students in the classrooms reminds me of my first love; teaching children. I can remember my first day of school as a third grade teacher like it was yesterday; anxious nerves but filled with excitement and great anticipation of officially starting my career calling. As Indiana Superintendents, our classrooms are now filled with adults: teachers, principals, bus drivers, aides, and many others who help carry out our mission. Our staff members need the same level of passion, support, and engagement from you that you once promoted while serving as a classroom teacher.
Never underestimate the value of leadership. Good leaders inspire people to have confidence in their leader, but great leaders inspire people to have confidence in themselves. The Indiana Association of Public School Superintendents exists to help you become that great leader. I look forward to seeing you at upcoming association events. And I hope that your “summer off” translated into a smooth start for the 2015-2016 school year.
Scott Hanback, Ph.D.
IAPSS President 2015-2016