Happy Friday IA families,

In the spirit of the season of thanks, I would like to take a moment to share my gratitude for being entrusted to join your students on their educational journey. This month will mark my sixth month in the position of principal educator at Innovation Academy. It’s been a learning process for sure, and I have many sleepless nights trying to make sure we are on the right path.

Nevertheless, it has been an incredible first semester, and I have been so impressed with our students and teachers. Our teachers have taken on the herculean task of changing their classrooms to be project-focused. They have also been asked to develop compelling and exciting Flex Friday sessions where students can explore their passions. Even still, they have voluntarily taken on working with our incredibly active 60+ clubs!

Even with all these added requests, our teachers have still been able to build strong relationships with their students. I always ask kids who is their teacher mentor in the building, and I have yet to have a student tell me they haven’t built a positive relationship with their teachers.

I’d also like to take a moment to thank you, our parents and families, who have done all the work to get our students to where they can be successful at IA. Even when we have parents that disagree with a decision we make or a process we have, I can tell that the passion and conviction you have about any issue comes from your desire to see your students succeed, and I can always work with that. I hope you also know that when we do disagree, we are also coming from a place of helping your students be successful.

Finally, let me thank our students who are working so hard here. They have taken the rigorous curriculum and run with it. Even in the midst of the workload, they are excited to be here and want to help us develop this school into a world-class school that meets students where they are when they enter our building and then pushes them to be the best people they can by the time they graduate. I firmly believe our students will be the best prepared for the world they face after graduation. A large part of that comes from their willingness to work hard to make it happen.

I encourage you to have a conversation with your students about things for which they are grateful. Not only is it good to give thanks for the lives we have, but it also will make them happier and healthier.

I know my gratitude makes me happier, but the healthy part, I’m still working on!

Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

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