We have survived a seemingly unending cold winter and finally we are starting to experience some warm weather in Northwest Ohio. The last month of school provides outstanding opportunities for all types of extra-curricular activities, field trips, end of year concerts, and most importantly graduation. May certainly has some important dates starting with Teacher Appreciation Week, Mother's Day, Memorial Day and Graduation Ceremonies. Findlay High School graduation is June 1st, 2013 at 10:30 am at the Kohler Center on the University of Findlay campus. On behalf of the Board of Education, administration and teachers, we salute our graduating seniors.
Teacher Appreciation Week: A week is set aside each May to thank important people in the lives of our students. Thousands of passionate and dedicated educators all over this country work tirelessly day after day to make a difference in our student's lives. Not only do they focus on academics, but focus on those "extra little things" that make teachers great. For example, teachers adapting lessons to an ever changing diverse student population, help children when they have family or emotional problems, and encourage and challenge them in extra-curricular activities. Building relationships and having great connections with students is absolutely essential to the well-being of our children. In over 37 years of education, I've had the unique opportunity to see and observe some great teachers and how they motivate children to succeed. Two examples of "Findlay's Excellent Teachers" received awards from the Findlay Rotary Club and received the Golden Apple awards. This year's winners were Ken Pressel, orchestra teacher for the district and Laurie Collert, vocational home economics and consumer sciences at Findlay High School. Both teachers exemplify the outstanding instruction that many teachers in Findlay City Schools do each and every day. We appreciate Rotary for their acknowledgement of the efforts of our staff.
Teachers help spark interest and to help young people follow a calling to accomplish something great against all odds. Dan Millman, in his book, The Four Purposes of Life, shares this story:
"In 2001 during a severe draught in Malawi Africa, 14 year old William Kamkwamba was forced to drop out of school because his family couldn't afford the tuition. It was all they could do to sustain themselves on one meal a day from their meager farm income. Young William spent his time in a nearby library fascinated with a book on windmills. Not knowing any better, he thought he could build a windmill for his village assembled from old car batteries, bike parts, tractor fans, and plastic pipes. Spent wood from local bubblegum trees would serve as a tower. His parents and everyone else thought he had lost his reason but there doubt only increased this young man's determination. Three months later William illuminated his family home with a light bulb powered by his first windmill. He later built four more in his village, including one at a local school where he taught others how to build windmills. This resulted in electricity for the village which enabled them to pump in their own water, a gift that became a village treasure." Williams's story is an example of a calling that many of our teachers possess as they watch their young students learn. Like young William, many of our teachers have found that calling and passion to illuminate the world of children.
May is also a time that we bid farewell to many outstanding educators who retire. At the time of this Superintendent's message they are as follows: Andrea King, Ann Potteiger, Becky Baratta, Deb Rollins, Deborah Kibble, Deborah Stall, Elsa Shrader, Janet Carey, Kathy Conine, Lisa McClain, Lisa Snook, Nancy Baxter, Rachel Topel, Ruth Waite, Sharon Pullom, Sue Arnold, Susan Davidson and Toni Leonard. As you can see there are decades of dedicated service to the students and community of Findlay. Their talents, passion, and expertise will be greatly missed and we wish them well on their retirement activities.
Please remember that on May 19th all three new schools, Donnell Middle School, Glenwood Middle School and Millstream Career Center will have open houses from 1-3pm.
Thank you again for your continued support of Findlay City Schools