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Posted January 26, 2018

How Can I Help You?

In her weekly message, Supt. Reedy contemplates the power of those five works.

How can I help you?

It is probably the most common phrase used in public service.

In public education, those simple words take on much more meaning when the “I” is a teacher, principal, counselor or other district employee, and the “you” is a student.

I hear it over and over again when I walk the halls of our schools, sit in the offices of our administrators, visit our classrooms, cafeterias, playgrounds, nurse’s offices.

I recently heard a principal say it to a student who was new to the school and having trouble fitting in. I heard a substitute teacher say it to an administrator in reference to a child whose family was evicted from their home. I heard a police officer say it to a surly teenager who didn’t want to go to class.

I hear true compassion in these words. They are spoken by people who sincerely want to help, to make a difference in the lives of the children we serve.

That’s not always an easy task, and there isn’t always an easy answer.

How can I help you when your family is struggling to make ends meet? How can I help you when you haven’t had enough to eat? How can I help you when you’re sleeping on a friend’s floor? How can I help you when you live in fear?

As I mentioned earlier in the school year, one of my Big Five Priorities is Developing the Whole Child. This means providing safe and welcome environments for our students that remove barriers to learning, embrace individuality and connect to their community.

To develop the whole child, we have to ask – over and over again – how can I help you?

You ask. I’ve heard you. And for that, I say thank you> keep doing the hard but important work you do.

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