Sunday, October 29, 2006

An Extraordinary Day in Fairfield

Early on Thursday morning, October 26th State Unit Nine UniServ Director Carol Hauptert and I left Ottumwa headed for a day in Fairfield. Upon our arrival at the Fairfield High School we were introduced to Superintendent of Schools Mr. Triplet and High School principal Tom Voorhees.

With schedule in hand, we were off to first period in Mrs. Staci Ross’s Government class. Here Mrs. Ross is pictured (at right) as she made my introduction to her class filled with seniors. Students had prepared a list of questions the day before to ask about my duties as ISEA president and about my experience in serving in the Iowa House.

As first hour at the High School came to a close, we were off to Pence Elementary where I spoke to the combined 5th grade classrooms about evidence of the upcoming election and what motivates individuals to run for public office. Pictured with their homeroom classes are Michele Weber (on left) and Jennifer Donels (on right).

We were next off to Washington Elementary where we were greeted by Principal Joe Carr. Principal Carr made gave me the greatest introduction when introducing me to the two groups of 5th grade classes in the school’s Media Center. Thank you Principal Carr for your leadership! Students came prepared with questions about my service in the Iowa House and how legislation really does get enacted. Pictured with their 5th grade homeroom classes are Melinda Lyon (on left) and Sharon Leach (on right).

The third elementary building we visited was Lincoln Elementary. At Lincoln I had a chance to first visit with the 5th grade homeroom of Tari Euling. Here (pictured below at left) Tari is pictured with her homeroom of 5th graders.

Also while at Lincoln Elementary I was able to share a favorite read aloud with Sue Carr’s 1st grade homeroom. They were delightful students and such great listeners! Here Sue is pictured with her 1st graders (at right, below).

UniServ Director Carol (pictured below on right--on far left) and I then got to have a special lunch with staff in the school’s lounge. Staff had pitched in together to buy pizza for a staff luncheon. Not only did we enjoy the special lunch, but of course the staff very much enjoyed the pizza too! Thanks for your generosity and thanks for the chance to visit with Lincoln Elementary staff about issues important to you! While at Lincoln Elementary Principal Sue McCracken stopped in the lounge to introduce herself too.

Back to Fairfield High School and to the 5th hour class of Mrs. Staci Ross. Students (as in 1st hour) were most engaging. It was a huge class-every seat was filled!

Following 5th hour, an interview had been set up with local radio station KMCD. Here I am being interviewed by KMCD reporter (at left) Emily Humble.

My school day ended back in Mrs. Staci Ross’s 7th hour Government class. I don’t know if it was the fact that this was the last group of the day or that the students were exceptional (I am certain that they were very bright!), but I had the most fun of the day visiting with this group of seniors! Here (pictured at right) a few students were dressed for the Red Ribbon Week theme of wearing red. After having had the chance to visit with the seniors of Fairfield High School today, I’m convinced Iowa is in great hands with students in Fairfield ready to step up and be Iowa’s leaders!

At the end of our school day in Fairfield we headed to the Fairfield High School Media Center for a reception hosted by the Fairfield EA. Here we were greeted by our host for the day Diane Goudy, Fairfield EA President. Diane Goudy, (standing at left) is pictured here with teacher associate and her good friend Karla Rebling (on right).

The reception began by enjoying delicious home-made goodies, fresh coffee and juice. Several dozen educators as well as Superintendent Triplet attended. My remarks were taped to be played at a later date on the local cable access channel too.

Fairfield EA President Diane Goudy is not only a great association leader, but a tremendously respected educator/leader in the classroom. Diane finds out during American Education Week (November 17th) if her work towards National Board Certification is successful. In addition, the Fairfield EA membership increased from 92 up to 106 members. I just don’t know how you do it all, Diane! We had the most fantastic day in Fairfield due in a large part of the planning by President Diane. Thanks too to the awesome team of Fairfield educators for opening your classrooms and sharing with us the great things you continue to do every day!

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