Thursday, September 9, 2010

The First Day is Always Special

Last week my wife and I were in Seattle when one of my granddaughters began her first day of kindergarten. Such excitement and enthusiasm for learning! Her excitement was contagious and I found myself thinking about the more than 40 first days of school that I've experienced. They were always special.

At her school both students and parents were welcomed in many different ways. The day before people could visit the school, meet the teacher and become comfortable with the classroom. The morning of the first day the staff was very visible with lots of help for parents and students. The PTO provided coffee (it's Seattle!) and donuts. Teachers were available to talk with parents and greet students. And, of course, there were lots of opportunities for pictures.

But, once school began it was all business. Students were supported but the focus was clearly on learning while respecting the varied backgrounds and experiences of each student

Most importantly, our granddaughter came home excited about returning to school the next day. For me, that's the bottom line. I want my grandchildren to enjoy school and feel respected and supported by their teachers.

I hope all of you have a wonderful and productive school year. Remember the importance of making schools inviting and welcoming places whether you work in kindergarten or with seniors. Have a great year.

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