The Supt DishAugust 12, 2016
WELCOME BACK TEACHERS AND STAFF! The summer has flown by and it seems summers become shorter every year. As I mentioned during Rally Day, our maintenance and custodial staffs have been very busy preparing your campuses for the 2016-17 school year. Middle school has a new roof, several classrooms have new carpet, and air conditioners have been replaced as well as lighting in some buildings. Many thanks to these dedicated employees who work tirelessly in making our learning environment look like new.
I have received many thank you notes/emails about our keynote speaker, Riney Jordan. I appreciate your comments, but please thank others who where involved in the development of Rally Day. Many thanks to De Helmer, Debra Bauer, Jason Howard, and David Luna for their contributions with our Rally Day schedule. Also, I would like to thank our very own “Hall Pass” band, Jason Howard, David Luna, Neal Tolbert, and Jennifer Bridges. Their performance was fantastic and we do want them to perform next year if not sooner!
After everyone had left the auditorium, I stayed behind to assist Riney and his wife Karen. The Jordans are so appreciative of opportunities to visit school districts and speak to teachers and staffs. They have traveled and presented in almost all 50 states and several countries. However, Riney informed me that next Friday, August 18, 2016, will be his last speech. After many years of travel, he has decided to retire permanently to his farm near Hamilton, Texas.
I watched as many of you spoke with Riney after his speech, purchased his books or motivational items and get his autograph while visiting with him. It saddens me, knowing the impact he has had on us and on thousands of educators with his words of wisdom. As we have always had and always will have challenges in our daily and personal lives, Riney always puts things in perspective and reminds us to stay grounded. Students and family are important to us, and Riney reminds us of that.
During my career, I have heard many motivational speakers, from the east coast to the west coast, and international speakers. But none of these speakers can come close to inspiring educators as Riney has. I’ve had the opportunity to hear him present several times, and I always walk away recharged to work harder in our responsibility to educate our children.
Riney gave me a copy of his second book Wednesday. Kristi and I had purchased his first book and poster several years ago. I have referred to his first book several times over the years and have already read most of his second book. You can feel the compassion he has for children and people reading his books. I visualize him speaking to us as I read his book.
As we begin the school year, let’s remember how blessed we were that our friend, Riney Jordan, inspired us to teach with compassion and love. May our “Ambassador of Public Education,” Riney Jordan and his wife Karen, enjoy retirement!