The Resplendent Taste of Excellence

“I have always struggled to achieve excellence.  One thing that cycling has taught me is that if you can achieve something without a struggle, it’s not going to be satisfying.”              ~Greg LeMond, Cycling Legend

Week 13 in Review

We tasted victory last week in many ways, and it was definitely sweet.  We tasted monumental success in our data teams meetings, and the flavor lingers like succulent chocolate or fine wine.   It’s amazing how great it feels when all the ingredients for an excellent creation come together, and we bask in its resplendent presentation.  Some teams are still refining the ingredients required to complete the recipe, but it is clear every team is close to a master creation.  Bravo!

Our celebration this week was not limited, however, to our professional development focus.  Monday our very own Student Council organized and operated a blood drive.  It was very successful not only in collection amounts, but in the quality and controlled way it was managed.  I don’t know if you have noticed, but this student group has really stepped up to meet the challenge of leadership and excellence in our building.  I hope you will join me in thanking and celebrating their impressive efforts.  Then on Wednesday night, St. Joseph Sports, Inc. presented Benton’s own Coach Dwayne Kimble, Cross Country and Track coach for 25 years, the award for Coach of the Year!  It is a tremendous honor, and we are very proud of the legacy that Coach Kimble has grown.  Finally, on Friday we were able to share in the proud tradition of Veteran’s Day with our JROTC and Marching Band participating in the local parade.  Additionally, we enjoyed the resplendent opening night to our fall musical, “Phantom of the Opera.”

It is very exciting to linger in the feast of excellence I see growing at Benton day by day.  We offer a buffet of options to taste excellence on so many levels – from seeing our students perform in class or after school to seeing our staff come together professionally as well as at social events– it is important that we all see and recognize excellence for what it is.  You are a part of something big that is happening in our school.   Cheers!

Week 14 – A Look Ahead

I’m excited for our future.  This week we have representatives from Apple coming to Benton to examine our readiness for the one to one laptop rollout.  I think we will begin calling the process BLIP: Benton Laptop Initiative Pilot.  I shared the need for an acronym or title with several students and, after a bit of refining, this is what they thought would work.  In considering what PR opportunities our roll out presents, they pondered all the “blip” noises that would go with pictures of our students and their own computers.  I loved the idea!

Friday brings our next CAMP Congress meeting.  Please send your students with information they want to send home in a Parent Newsletter from the student body.  I am so pleased with the leadership, ideas, and honest conversation coming from this group.  It is VITALLY IMPORTANT that you are allowing conversations to occur in your CAMP in readiness for these meetings.  Student voice is essential to excellence in our school.

We also had galvanizing feedback from our staff survey last Wednesday!  I am thrilled to share that an overwhelming majority of the staff is anxious to gather socially.  In the next few days, staff members have offered to be a part of planning staff activities.  If you are interested in joining these planners, please email me.  Look for upcoming details for parties and events you may want to join if it fits into your schedule.

To continue on our journey of excellence, don’t forget the enormously successful STAFF LUNCH. The next date for dining together is this Friday.  Pertinent information about the highly requested lunch event includes:  Theme: Thanksgiving;  and food assignments –

1.  SpEd, IT & FACS:  Salads/Breads,

2.  Sci, Bus & Libr:  Desserts,

3.  CA, FA & FL:  Entree/Main Course , 

4.  SS, PE & Counseling:  Veggies/Fruit,

5.  Math, Admin & Secr/support: Appetizers.

Department chairs should be getting together to organize cooperative dishes if needed.  I’m looking forward to this sumptuous week and our succulent future.  It reminds me of that avocado commercial on tv – what are you bringing to our “party?”   What do you have to offer when Benton answers the door?

Photos are CC from Flikr:  “Silverware” by cookieater2009; “Vintage Sterling Silver Birks Norman Pattern Luncheon Forks” by GranniesKitchen; “lookatyourself” by renedepaula; “Radikale Bibliophilie” by Helico; “Silverware Set” by Roger’s Wife.

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