Dance in the Rain

Author: Dr. Tracy Canter, Superintendent Iraan-Sheffield Collegiate ISD

As a traditional school leader, we were trained to “take charge” to have the answers and push forward with a smile on our face. Never let them see you sweat! What I have learned in my years of leadership, is that there is not just one way to lead; and the approach varies by the day or even by the minute. And… that sometimes, it is ok to let them see you sweat…

Every person within our school district is a leader; one thing is certain during these challenging times and that is, our communities are looking to us to have the answers and to be the stable and in an unstable world. Our leadership, right now, is to reassure our communities that we have not lost focus on preparing our students for today, tomorrow and the future. Building educational opportunities that will allow our students to flourish and attain each of their dreams, regardless of what is going on around us. While we continue to provide exceptional educational opportunities that will challenge and grow our students, we remain vigilant in the safety and security of everyone within the school district and community.

This pandemic has brought to life the adversity that we all face, but there are still great days mixed in these tough times… It has forced a new way to look at school and we have the opportunity to capitalize on the tools that are now ever present for us and our students. We must be intentional in seeking out those great times and focusing on how we can build upon that. We are aware that what worked yesterday, may not work today. That’s ok.

As we move forward the pressures of school do not diminish, but they grow. From finding bus drivers, to class schedules, financial difficulties, student growth, teacher moral and safety in our schools. We all walk along this path and sometimes it’s ok, to not be ok… the anxiety of “school”, compounded by the pandemic and all that entails for our students, and staff is sometimes seemingly overwhelming. But this shows that we’re alive! That we care, that we are looking for solutions, ways to improve and that we want the best for our students and our community. Remind yourself that we can’t give into the uncertainty, but live in it!

Now more than ever we have an amazing opportunity to reimagine school in the way that it should be! Take those chances. Our schools are a place of growth, experimentation and yes, even failure and frustration. Turn those failures, frustration and anxiety into “not yets”. They are not an end, but the next beginning. It will not be perfect, and that’s ok. It is ok to mess up. It is ok, to not be ok at times. It’s not ok to give up! This work is hard work and sometimes we have to be able to see that, know it, live in it for a moment, but keep moving forward. We have to be able to acknowledge the situation and take the good from it and move on. Even the rain clouds have a purpose and sometimes we have to just dance in the rain!

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