Gutsy

Lane Headshot (small)My grandfather was a large imposing man. At least that is what I was told. By day, he was a fisherman; in the evenings, he was a boxer.   I grew up hearing stories about this quiet man. He was determined that his family would have all the things that are really important. These things weren’t riches or creature comforts; rather, they were the ideals that build strong character. Grandpa Francis did not speak many words, but his actions made clear what he expected. “Primeiro a familia” (family first), “trabalho duro” (hard work), and “servir a Deus e ao próximo” (serve God and your neighbor.)

The influence my Grandpa Francis’s legacy has had on my life may be showing up these days. I certainly embrace the values he taught. Perhaps the fighter is showing up in me as well. I would like to think of my response to the school finance challenges that we face as “just doing my job.” Still, Yael T. Abouhalkah, a columnist for the Kansas City Star, called me “gutsy.”

The gutsy descriptor had me thinking of the lessons I learned from by grandpa; not the quiet soft-spoken side of him, but rather the man who entered the boxing ring every night.

I tell my students that it is critical for all of us to stand up for what we believe. I believe strongly that public education is critical for all citizens to have access to the American dream. I live by straightforward, open, and transparent communication. If that’s gutsy, ok, I’ll accept that characterization.

Standing up for what you believe isn’t always easy. Education is so vitally important to every citizen, to our economy, and to thriving communities, that it’s worth stepping into the “ring,” even when you’d much rather be napping on a beach somewhere. I am proud to follow my grandpa’s example. I have but one prayer: “Lord, please don’t let me end up with those cauliflower-shaped ears!” Remember, “It’s Up to Us!”

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8 Responses to Gutsy

  1. Sally Murguia says:

    Thank you, Dr. Lane. I believe we can honor your leadership best by adding our voices in the current debate.
    Looking forward, we can also stay informed and vote responsibly in every election. Your reflection brought to mind my own grandmother who was a career elementary teacher in Kansas. For her, a witness to women’s suffrage, voting was sacred. It is up to us to work with you, emphasis on joint effort.

  2. Monica Crowe says:

    So very proud to have you as the superintendent of our district. I have seen the changes we have gone through as well as the struggles. As parents we don’t always know what you go through, but as informed parents we understand your struggles and support you.

  3. laura keller says:

    Thank you Dr. Lane for your dedicated leadership and support of the Community of KCKPS. I believe in the continued success of mission possible and with your “gutsy” momentum that continues to inspire us to our dreams and aspirations here. Keep Up the good fight!! Thank You again.

  4. Andrea Richardson says:

    It is up to us!

    Thank you Dr. Lane. You’re an inspiration, more than you know!

  5. Mary Alice Kelly says:

    I’m always proud of your stance/blog posts on issues that effect our school district and its employees!

    I just keep reminding myself that I make a difference in someone’s life daily.

    Keep on being “gutsy”!

  6. Mike Schmalz says:

    Dear “Gutsy”, Just recently I read the Staff Intranet statement about, “frequently asked questions”! I was was wondering about some of the statements, questions and answers, such as the statement of the governor seeking to justify changing the funding formula, ultimately reducing the funds available to the dist.! How does this affect the different areas and percentages of the budget, such as; Instruction, food service, Support services and all that falls under that category? Does it, or will it affect the Operational budget, as well as the Capitol outlay budget? How can we better inform our Dist.Employees, Community, and parents of this, and are our comments really considered, when it affects us ALL, financially?? I don’t feel like ALL the numbers are spelled out enough for us to understand, why we are made to take furlough days, when we have a contingency funds that can pay for some payroll, as it did in 2011! I feel that if our leaders truly care about their employees, as they say, they would not create more of a burden on them financially! We have already taken reductions, and have NOT received pay increases since 2008, While our leaders have received increases before they decide to give themselves furlough days! We also have to pay increases in health care every year, and increases in the cost of living, when in the past those pay increases we received only covered the costs of these increase’s! So, can you explain to me how a finance EXPERT can help me have a family income contingency fund of 3-6 months, with all the cut to our salaries??? Seems like we have plenty of funds in the Capitol outlay budget, with all the new schools, and other projects around the dist., is that where our salaries go when we are cut pay? Why not cut more Positions, such as teacher leaders,counselors, paras, The ARTS dept., Sports??? Or have them funded by volunteers, grants, community service, or school and community raised funds??? Seems there is a lot of negativity in the air with all the uncertainties, and unexplained decision making processes!! ” My prayer is that God will see this through, and help those in need! Thanks for All you do!

  7. Brenda Stacer says:

    I also agree that we all need guts to stay in the game. I am proud to say I have plenty of guts myself. This is another case of “Do as I say not as I do!” I also pray that grace is given to ALL. I have also seen that some staff makes sacrifices so that the rest of the District may thrive. The staff has children too! All children matter. Great mercy and grace on this school year 2015-16. Something has to change. For all to make a better learning and working together environment. Go to Topeka for the betterment of all who are doing the best they can considering the “no money” situation.

  8. SUSAN GINGER says:

    DO YOU THINK DISTRICT 500 WILL EVER HAVE SCHOOL IN SESSION ON WEDNESDAYS EVER AGAIN???
    I BELIEVE THIS IS JUST A DAY OFF THAT WAS SUPPOSE TO ONLY LAST A FEW YEARS 5 YEARS BEING MAX.
    I AM DISCUSTED BY THE WAY OUR DISTRICT HAS AN EXTRA DAY OFF ON WEDNESDAYS AND NOT ORGANIZED AT ALL AND YOU WANT FUNDING….
    SHOW SOME NEEDS FOR THAT FUNDING. WORK A FULL INTIRE WEEK & LET OUR CHILDREN ATTEND SCHOOL LIKE THE NEIGHBORING DISTRICTS DO.
    HAVE YOU EVEN PROVED THAT DAY IS STILL NEEDED BESIDES EXTRA MEETINGS & SESSIONS THE TEACHERS HAVE ADDED TO THEIR ADGENDAS WITH OR WHAT???
    DON’T YOU THINK THAT DAY & TIME SPENT TEACHING OUR CHILDREN WOULD BE BEST SENT & MORE REWARDING????
    I WAS CONTACTED 4 MONTHS BEFORE SCHOOL ENDED LAST YEAR TO ENROLL MY CHILD EARLY FOR THIS YEAR..
    IT WAS SO DISTURBING THE YEAR BEFORE AND THE EARLY YEAR SET UP FOR 2015-2016 WHY CAN’T YOU BECOME MORE ORGANIZED LIKE THE GOVERNMENT OFFICES & THE SOCIAL SECURITY OFFICE EVEN UTILITY COMPANIES CAN ORGANIZE BETTER THAN DISTRICT 500.
    DISTRICT 500 COULD LEARN A LOT FROM BONNER SPRINGS DISTRICT, PIPER DISTRICT, JOHNSON COUNTY DISTRICTS AND ETC.
    I AM DISABLED & STAY AT HOME. I HAVE A VERY HARD TIME WITH APPOINTMENTS & ALL THE MEETINGS PLUS TACK IN DOCTOR DENTIST & NOT JUST FOR MY CHILD. SOMEHOW THIS DISTRIC T NEEDS TO FIGURE IT OUT. THE DISTRICT COULD AND WOULD DESERVE MORE FUNDING IF THEY COULD ORGANIZE BETTER ENROLLMENT. GIVE THE NEWEST BUILT SCHOOLS TO THE LITTLE ONES & THE OLDER BUILT SCHOOLS TO THE OLDER STUDENTS. COME ON IF I CAN EXPRESS INPUT & IDEAS SO CAN YOU EDUCATED DISTRICT 500 EMPLOYEES ESPECIALLY SPEAKING ABOUT THE BOARD OF EDUCATION & THE SOCIAL WORKERS….BELIEVE IT OR NOT YOU NEED TO LOOK INTO SOME OF YOUR SOCIAL WORKERS. IF MY EXPERIENCES ARE ANYTHING LIKE WHAT OTHER PARENTS ARE DEALING WITH THEN THESE SOCIAL WORKERS NEED TO LEARN A LOT MORE & HAVE SOMEONE DIRECTLY OVER THEM TO MAKE SURE THEY ARE CONNECTING WITH CHILDREN & THEIR PARENTS IN A MORE RESPECTFUL BUT ALSO UNDERSTANDING MATTER. BEING A SOCIAL WORKER OR TEACHER & WHETHER THEY A DEGREE TO BE A SOCIAL WORKER DOES NOT MEAN THEY HAVE PEOPLE SKILLS. SO WHAT IS SO IMPORTANT ABOUT ENROLLING YOUR CHILD FOR THE NEXT YEAR BY THE ENDING OF SCHOOL THE YEAR BEFORE. IT WAS A GOOD TRY BUT DID NOT SUCCEED!
    YOUR WEDNESDAYS OFF FOR A FEW YEARS TO 5. I BELIEVE IT’S BEEN WAY OVER 5 YEARS.
    YOUR SOCIAL WORKERS THAT I HAVE COME IN CONTACT WITH OVER THE PAST 20 YEARS HAVE HARDLY ANY PEOPLE SKILLS IF ANY AT ALL.
    CHECK THE RECORDS & GIVE THE PUBLIC THE TRUTH ABOUT DISTRICT 500. AS I WISH NOT TO BE IN YOUR DISTRICT BUT I AM STUCK HERE UNLESS YOU WANT TO BUY US A HOUSE IN SOME OTHER DISTRICT.

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