Visiting the past to appreciate the present

A couple of weeks ago, my wife and I attended a wedding in New York.  We always enjoy visiting the place where we both were raised – reminiscing about our childhoods and soaking in the memories. Long Island, New York in the 1960s was a wonderful place to grow up and proved to be a great place to be from.

Despite having wondrous memories of my years at Levittown MacArthur High School, I only made it back for my 20th class reunion. Previously when I visited the area, I would try to get a few laps around the track or – at the very least – make sure to always drive by once to relish the memories.

McArthur was a large school, with more than 800 in each class. It was easy for any of us, even me, to get lost or blend in with the masses. My memories of high school include teachers being impersonal, grumpy custodians and we always dreaded any interaction with administrators. I will, however, give credit to my football and baseball coaches, who took time to build relationships that motivated me to excel in school.

I was excited when I was recently offered a personal tour of my old alma mater by the superintendent whom I met this summer. While I knew the school from the outside looked exactly as it did in 1972, I also was surprised how little the three-story building had changed inside. I immediately compared MacArthur to our high schools in Lincoln and beamed with pride because of how well we maintain our facilities. I was impressed, however, with the engaging attitudes of staff and the energy of administrators. The staff there made the best of their situation, despite being in a building that is in dire need of renovation.

We are indeed fortunate to live in Lincoln, where our community believes in supporting our schools – old and new. Where we prioritize maintaining existing facilities and build to accommodate growth. I also know we have engaged and dedicated staff that work each and every single day to meet the needs of ALL our children.

One member of our staff that dedicated more than 20 years to the success of our schools and community was LPS Communications Director Mary Kay Roth. She retired earlier this week and I want to take a moment to thank Mary Kay for her incredible work with LPS.  While her retirement is deserved, she will be greatly missed.