Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Mr. Andy, Not Just a Custodian

From the day Mr. Andy was hired, I was amazed.  He was always so.....happy.  This past week, not only was he the 'happy' custodian, he was my transition person.  A transition person models positive behavior and passes on effective habits that strengthen and build others in positive ways. 

We just found out our second custodian would be leaving us for another job.  I knew it was coming, in fact, I was not the least bit surprised.  Unfortunately, the second custodial position is not full time and doesn't have benefits.  It happens.  However, in my mind, the administrative mind, I had to make sure this job was covered!  I couldn't have overflowing garbage cans or toilets that were dirty.  So when I asked Mr. Andy if he had heard the news, my lens shifted 180 degrees. 

Mr. Andy and I chatted and his response went something like, "Yeah, I'm happy for him.  I hope this helps him and his personal life.  We'll take care of things around here, not a problem."  Wow.  I was stunned.  Mr. Andy was looking through a lens that I had pushed aside.  I questioned myself a bit--I knew I cared about my staff, I knew that I was happy for him, deep down.  But was that at the top of my list?  Shouldn't it be at the top of my list?!

Thanks, Mr. Andy.  You truly helped me see things through the lens that I needed to see.  It's not always about making sure our floors are spic-n-span, but that our people are taken care of.  And we need to make sure we take care of our own.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Trust, Not Hope

Lately, I came across an interesting quotation:
'God doesn't need our hope, he needs our trust.'

As a Christian this makes complete sense.  As a parent and educator it makes complete sense as well.  Do kids need our hope?  Or do they need our trust?  I recall being a careful observer with our past school counselor.  A student was making poor choices in his treatment towards a classmate.  Before she finished her conversation with him, her words have never left me:  'Can I DEPEND on you to make the right choices in the future.'  It wasn't:  'Can I hope' or 'Can you do this' but it was a level of trust she was seeking out.

As we work with students day in, day out, are we creating environments of trust?  Or are we just hoping that they will fulfill expectations?  Do we set them up for success by setting the bar where it needs to be?