Remember when . . . We all have experiences that create lasting memories that we think about fondly, even as the images fade. I had a “remember when” moment last week as the district, community and parents came together to dedicate our new Central Office and Training Center. Long after the ceremony and celebration, the structure will continue to serve as a powerful symbol of what we believe about the importance of educating our children.
The new building is in the heart of the district, and was constructed to replace two separate facilities. One had been condemned, and moving from the other will allow us to work together much more efficiently, while also expanding public library services. It is noteworthy that even in this difficult economy, the district put together a financial plan that resulted in a state-of-art facility at a lower cost (over a 20 year period) than that of leasing and maintaining the previous locations. The creative financing, along with the improvements in the quality of the facility, might have been reason enough for a gathering. Yet, for me, the building was only an excuse for the real reason for the celebration: our students.
I hope the community will come into the facility to see the halls filled with photographs of our students. These images are on display as a constant reminder of why the work we are doing is so important. Paintings, sculptures, jewelry, and many other forms of art, created by our students, adorn the halls and are on display in the art gallery. At the entrance to the building, a sculpture of towering hands holding a globe (designed by a recent graduate and a high school senior, and constructed by a craftsman-employee) represents the district, community, and parents coming together around the importance of educating each child.
At the end of each day, and sometimes long into the night, I replay in my mind the experiences of the day. No matter what occurred during the day, I look for what seemed to be right on or what missed the mark. I believe that on this night, we got it right. We came together to view a new community asset. And we left knowing that it is our kids we celebrate, every grownup, every child, every day. “It’s up to us!”
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To view an online photo album of the open house and dedication ceremony for the new Central Office and Training Center click here: http://www.kckps.org/photos/openhouse/.