Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The Extravaganza in Review

If you have been paying attention to the MPS you know we just celebrated the start of a new school year in style! The "Main Street Band" performed throughout the morning and did an outstanding job of  keeping everyone's toes tapping and hands clapping. Main Street Band is a local band featuring a MPS teacher, Wally Maines and his brother Chuck. When asked to perform for our 'top secret' opening day extravaganza we told them, "we can't pay you, we can't feed you, (thanks to NJ code), but we will appreciate 'the daylights' out of you". They said yes without hesitation. If you aren't familiar with Millville, this may seem odd that they would agree to the terms but what makes this city great is that people around here will go out of their way to help each other. I greatly appreciate their willingness to keep everyone's spirits high with their talent.

Respecting the dreams and talents of our staff and students is a central theme this year. Sir Kenneth Robinson said it best, "education is not linear - its a great lie really, to think you start in kindergarten and march straight through college until you land in a great career. Those days are history". Instead, Robinson suggests that the arts and creativity are keys to the future. MPS is on a mission to become a world class school district. We believe to do so, we must create the environment for our students to learn to learn - so they can become 'life long learners'. We will embrace the creativity and respect our students' dreams!

Our opening day Extravaganza was awesome by most accounts. I am so happy that our risk to try something different paid off with good time had by all.

In my address, I shared the W.B. Yeats Poem “He Wishes For the Cloths of Heaven”

HAD I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
Inwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
W.B. Yeats (1865–1939)

I ended my address with "Very soon, our students are going to come into your schools and lay their dreams beneath your feet – please tread softly!"

I wish everyone a great new school year!