People who know me are aware that I REALLY enjoy football. Having played, coached and spent hours (mainly weekends) watching, I consider myself somewhat knowledgeable. I am fascinated by the intrigue centered on strategies that create positive momentum and inevitably determine who will win, specifically utilizing strengths to compensate for weakness.
As Super Bowl 2019 grew closer this year, I was taken by the number of people who were looking forward to the Patriots losing. Many felt it was another team’s turn or that they just didn’t like Brady and Belichick. I kept asking myself: Was it perhaps because they had won too much? While I admit the final Super Bowl game itself wasn’t overly exciting, I personally always appreciate a study in excellence – and I did.
I am a systems guy with a belief that a great system will continue to produce solid outcomes, even against difficult odds, even with temporary challenging circumstances, even with team players of varying skills. Trying to avoid an argument with the people I was watching the game with, I kept pointing out that the Patriots had the better system. They may not have had all better players, but their team came together and played with distinction. I simply cannot cheer against quality performance.
I feel the same way about Lincoln Public Schools. In the last five years we have replaced more than 2,000 teachers, and several hundred administrators and related staff. Yet our system continues with integrity.
Despite attracting top talent to our school district, it still takes about three years to achieve proficiency as a teacher – and five years to achieve mastery. One might expect a drop in performance, but that isn’t the case. In fact, as reported in the recent state report card, we continue to improve and achieve at high levels.
This continued excellence is a tribute to the individuals who come to LPS each day committed to the work – and to a solid, quality system. I will continue to cheer for our winners.