There are all sorts of jobs in schools that are considered “behind the scenes” that often go unnoticed and are definitely under-appreciated. Custodians, Secretaries, and Teaching Assistants are just some that come to mind, but I want to point out one particular group with my post today, Data Clerks!
Sorting through a million pieces of data, communicating with parents, pushing information to all staff, pulling data for administrators, reminding teachers of deadlines, filing attendance, constantly checking and correcting our PEIMS data for accuracy, are all just some of the jobs that takes a very special set of skills and a very special personality.
So today, I celebrate the “Data Clerks” in AHISD for bringing the joy in one of the toughest positions across the district. We have certainly bonded this year through our many trials and learned a lot together.
Recently Tricia Corey and I paid them each a visit to say “Thank You” and declare them all an official a PEIMS Lady!
Enjoy the photos!
Veronica from Howard Early Childhood Center
Gina from Cambridge Elementary
Ashley from Woodridge Elementary
Michele from Alamo Heights High School
Not pictured is Flor from Alamo Heights Junior School who was on a much deserved day away.
Thank you “Data Clerks” for not only bringing the joy this year, but for being dedicated to doing the crucial behind the scenes work to make sure the district can achieve our goals! We definitely 🎶 “go together like rama lama lama ka dinga da dinga dong…As shoo-bop sha wadda wadda yippity boom de boom…” 🎶
A great friend of mine, Greg Garner, shared this blog with me this morning. This quote from the blog truly resonated with me:
So this year for Lent, I’m giving up criticism and self-loathing. I’m fasting from hopelessness and fear.
Not because anything right now warrants it, but because hope is an act of resistance.
This is why I decided to use the #BringTheJoy theme in my posts on social media and in my blogs this year, because bringing the joy and pointing it out is definitely an “act of resistance”.
I am fortunate to work in a school district that often brings joy to my day naturally, but I never want to take for granted that this is done with great intention and deliberation, not by happenstance. Every day. Bring the joy. Purposefully.
One of my favorite authors is Bob Goff. His writing is always challenging, positive, and engaging for me. His focus is usually on what “love does” and in one of his latest releases Goff writes:
…we’re known for our actions. The power of love is in the sacrifice and commitment it requires. Sacrifice and commitment always travel with love and action. Love looks like showing up with hands to help even when we don’t know what to do. Love looks like stopping by even if we don’t know what to say. Simply put, love doesn’t just think about it; love does it.
— Bob Goff, Live in Grace, Walk in Love (p. 13)
In my world love and leadership go hand-in-hand, so when Goff writes love, I often read leadership into it. The quote above struck me so much because I believe that leaders are known for their actions. If your actions are not telling the narrative of your leadership life, then perhaps you are not leading where you intended to go. Taking the time to reflect on your actions and the results on those around you has proven, to me, to be the absolute best use of my time in a day. That’s not just true for those in positions defined as “leadership”, but it is true for every single one of us.
Every day, teachers actions are leading students who are looking for a path. Every day, secretaries actions are communicating empathy to an often beleaguered staff. Every day, custodians actions are communicating care for each person they are around. Every day, technicians are communicating partnership with the teachers and students they assist.
Our actions ARE leadership, whether we mean them to be or not. Understanding that, and then accepting that, means that we change how we do. We make sacrifices, we establish new priorities, we commit to doing what it takes to lead those around us where we intended to.
I know this, if all of us took the time to reflect on our actions and then commit to leading by doing, this world would certainly be a better more joy filled place.
In 2018 I tried to blog for 64 days straight. There were 64 days left in the year and I really struggle with consistent reflection on the things in life. The world needed a little more love in it and so 64 Days of Love was created.
I made it 18 days. Which, honestly, was 17 more than any previous try at blogging consistently.
I did not blog at all in 2019. My posts on Twitter and Facebook were significantly down as well. A picture here, a comment there, a lot about Houston Astros games. That’s about it though.
I have spent a fair amount of time reflecting on how I want 2020 to be different than the previous 39 years of my life and it struck me that I need to focus more on finding joy in the things around me. I certainly am not a downer by any means, and I think I bring more joy to those who know me. But there is a lot about 2020 that will be worth celebrating, and there will be a lot of reasons we will NEED to find joy in tough situations.
So my 2020 commitment/resolution/goal is simple. I want to “bring the joy” to those around me. I want to point it out. I want to tell you about it. I want highlight the joy that is surrounding me in my day-to-day life. I want to change the trajectory of my 2020 (and hopefully some of yours) in an unmistakably positive way!
So with that, I am not committing to 64 days, but to a year of documenting joy. Not just here on a blog, but on Twitter, on Facebook, with postcards, with post-its, with anything I can–I am going to #BringTheJoy.