As a multi-million dollar organization, USD No. 113 does not produce a tangible product. We do not have a widget that can be evaluated to measure the effectiveness of our organization by the quantity produced. We do have measures in place that help us evaluate the effectiveness and efficiencies of our processes. Sometimes it is important to step back from the science of learning and to use our hearts and eyes to see what is in front of us.
As I observed and participated in the dignified and celebratory graduation ceremonies at our three district high schools, I was proud of our kids, our families and our educators.
The speeches and commentary from students and adults alike were filled with reflections and memories of how these experiences, learned concepts, and our values have shaped our graduates and can continue to have a future positive impact.
I am proud of the investment that we have made in the lives of each student who walked across the graduation stage. I am proud that we have invested in the lives of our kids. I am encouraged that our communities see the value of investing in the future of our kids. I am confident that our kids have the skills and abilities to build a better tomorrow.
USD No. 113 graduates have many goals and aspirations. Plans for USD No. 113 graduates include the following:
• 53 percent plan on attending a four-year college;
• 8 percent plan on attending a community college;
• 15 percent plan on attending a technical school;
• 17 percent plan on entering the workforce;
• 7 percent plan on serving our country in the military.
It is important for society and students to realize the investment is not done after the 12th grade. One of our goals is for students to be lifelong learners. We also realize that in order to be competitive in an ever-changing work force, students will need to be adaptable and able to learn new skills through their careers.
A conversation this past weekend with a visitor from outside of our district caused me to further reflect on being grateful for the quality of our students.
He is a business owner outside of our school district with connections to one of our communities. He is interested in hiring our graduates. There is no better recommendation for our schools, our families and our kids than employers with a desire to specifically hire graduates of USD No. 113.
Sometimes it is difficult to see the positives that surround us. Sometimes it is difficult to realize that these are the “good old days.”
We are in the process of building amazing communities, and we will continue to have amazing schools that serve those communities. Our “product” is our kids. Together as a team, our families and schools will continue to produce amazing products.