Today Matters, Vantage Superintendent Blog



Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Non-Google Users--Update on Blog Access

Blogger has recommended posting a message that if you are a non-Google user, you won't be able to follow my blog on January 11 and thereafter.  If you would like to still follow my blog, all you need to do is sign up for a Google account and re-follow me. My Today Matters blog can still be accessed directly at, is posted to the Vantage Facebook and Twitter feeds, and will still appear on the digital version of AASA's monthly magazine, School Administrator, which can be accessed on the AASA (American Association of School Administrators--the school superintendents' association) website under "Bloggers" or "Superintendent Blogs". Scroll through the list of names until you find Staci Kaufman.

Our school district "went Google" a few years ago, and we love it. We've designated a teacher who is particularly informed of educational technology use, and used it to enhance instruction and to accommodate varied student needs, as well as to create a more engaged classroom. Vantage was pleased to be able to designate her as a full-time education technology specialist on our staff a year and a half ago. Mary Ann Falk has exceeded our expectations in this new position.

Her skills and knowledge in meeting our staff's needs and interests in increasing technology in their own classrooms, as well as helping our administrative and classified staff to use new Google tools and increase our use of technology has been a tremendous asset. Go Google if you're not already there! The Vantage district has gained a lot of efficiency and is seen as a leader in the use of educational technology and Google in our county and neighboring counties.

I especially like the effort Mary Ann has made to teach others in nearby school districts, how to effectively use Google and what it can bring to education and office procedures. Here in Van Wert county, we're submerged Google and loving it!
#IamCareerTech #GetTheEdge
Today Matters.

Monday, January 4, 2016

A New Year?

It's January 4, 2016. While it's a new calendar year, chances are any new resolutions or approaches I come up with for my personal or professional life will be identical or similar to previous years. I am, like it or not, a creature of habit--most of the time!  And while it's another new semester ahead for students and staff, it serves mainly as a chance to start fresh with lesson plans or homework and better attendance, less tardies, less visits to see Mr. Miller in the attendance/discipline office. It definitely marks for some people, the "halfway" mark to another school year's end. Not for me.

I have never been, and never will be, the type of educator who counted the days until a vacation or summer. To do so never occurred to me, nor did "counting down" appeal to me. Frankly I don't understand it, because I enjoy coming to work daily and doing whatever tasks are at hand--it doesn't matter how many days are left to do it in. Counting would probably add to my stress. . . That said, being an educator, both a teacher and an administrator, suited me. I'm so glad I was prompted to consider a teaching career during my business courses in college. June, 2016 marks my 34th year in education. I can still say I am invigorated by new challenges the superintendency, and the field of education, bring. It's exhilarating to have a new initiative to conquer (or at least launch). School administration has caused me to grow personally and professionally, and to have greater insight about myself as an individual. I can't imagine where I would be without the influence my career in education has had on me, as an individual.

So what will my new year's resolutions be? I know I am committed to cleaner eating, more frequent exercise, NOT training for a half marathon (at least not in 2016), and making some regular "me" time to read, paint, and recharge. 2016 will be about "balance".