First Things First

Welcome back!

I hope everyone has enjoyed their first few days back at school. I have loved meeting with faculty and students. It has been a smooth transition as we start the 2017-18 school year in full swing.

Of course, there is business to take care of. New Chromebooks are being registered and passed out. Students are finding their lockers, memorizing schedules, and learning their lunch pins. Teachers are ready to dive into their content. I am diligently trying to remember names and not get lost as I walk the halls (I think I have it down finally!).

After we are all settled, it is time to put first things first. The most important thing faculty will do this year is building relationships with our students. I hear them doing great exercises with their classes as I pass or stop by. Some are allowing students to come up with their expectations for the class, and even for the teacher. Others are goal-setting for short and long term. Some have built relationships in years past and continue to engage students.

The motto, "We Are Kennedy, We Are Family," isn't just words; it is what we live by. As a Kennedy family, we will practice kindness towards each other. We will learn to love each other, even on days when that seems hard to do. We will forgive mistakes (as we all make them). We will try our best to live up to the expectations set, knowing we may fall short from time to time, and deal with those consequences, big or small.

As we said goodbye to Mr. Gillen last year, I was struck by (though not surprised by) the common thread of the memories that former students shared; always based on his faith, his kindness, and how he treated people--strangers and friends alike. While he taught many academic lessons, it wasn't the content that his students necessarily remembered--it was how he made them feel. Welcomed. Valued. Respected. We Are Kennedy, We Are Family.

As we start this year with our goals and hopes of what it will bring, let us remember to put first things first. We choose Kennedy as a place to feel at home, surrounded by the good things of life-- faith, family, and friends. Thank you for the warm welcome and kind words I have received. I am working daily, along with our amazing administration, faculty, and staff, to enrich the culture that was established over 50 years ago. You Are Kennedy, We Are Family.


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