Monday, September 30, 2013

It is the Same All Over

I hope you had an opportunity to enjoy the magnificent weekend in some way. Looks like a few more days of nice weather before the true fall settles in.

I had an interesting weekend. I went to Buffalo for a wedding and to check in with our college son at the University at Buffalo. I did not know anyone at the wedding except for the bride and groom, so when we sat down at our table for dinner my wife and I met three other couples, one from Rochester, one from London, Ontario, and one from the near the Fingerlakes area. After we went through all of the small talk (nice weather, how many kids, how old are they, etc...) the conversation settled into children and what they (and their parents) are dealing with.

At this point in the conversation these couples had no idea that I was a school superintendent. Each couple described their biggest challenge as trying to keep their children from being cyber-bullied and from them cyber-bullying. This was seconded by the fear of the parents who had daughters and the possibility of them interacting with people on the Internet that were not known to them.

I sat back and was stunned, but probably should not have been. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and all exist in most places in the world and anyone with access can connect and interact. The conversation ended on a positive note with none of them blaming the school system but rather mentioning how they all needed to continue to step up and be involved in their children's lives so maybe they would stay away from some of the negativity that the Internet can bring.

When they asked me what I did for a living, I told them and thanked them for the case study. I then told them that the school should be a parent partner, as well as some of the curriculum that has to be covered (at least in the U.S.) related to cyber-bullying. What a neat experience!

While I was there the Marching Band held their annual Tournament of Bands and by all accounts the night was jam packed with happy patrons! Great music, great food, and great company; what more could you ask for?

If you don't follow me on Twitter but your son or daughter does and comes home with a joke or one liner be advised!  I put a joke up one day and then visited the high school. The students really wanted me to post a joke of the day to get them going, so I am going to post a clean, safe for work or school joke on my Twitter account until I run out of them.  Hopefully I can find enough of them to make it through the year.  Anything to keep the students connected!

I will be attending a ton of events and meetings this week, so I will probably run into many of you. This week is also spirit week at the high school as we lead up to Homecoming this Friday.  This is going to be a great week!