One-day principals get taste of running a school
Chamber event helps citizens experience school duties
The question Sandy Grade Principal Rachael Georges students asked her most often on Thursday, Oct. 22?
Whos that guy?
Well, hes the principal, was her reply, to which shed get a stunned respond of, But what about you?
On Thursday, the Sandy Area Chamber of Commerces Career Education committee sent nine community members into Oregon Trail School District schools to serve as Principal-for-a-Day.
Rob Stewart, owner of Red Boot Branding in Sandy, spent his morning visiting classrooms, having lunch with PAWS award winners and even at one point sweeping Sandy Grades cafeteria floor.
He said the experience reminded him that his initial idea of principal as the stony disciplinarian that you didnt want to see during the school day is no more.
All the kids know her name and were coming up to give her a hug, Stewart said of George during a luncheon following the mornings events. Its a completely different way of teaching and bringing kids up in a community.
While Stewart was experiencing the little ones of Sandy Grade, Waldon Hagan, Mt. Hood Community College vice president of Student Development and Services, spent his morning trying to navigate the massive halls of Sandy High School.
First, I was taken by the expansiveness of the school, Hagan said with a laugh.
Once he got used to the facility, Hagan sat in on a presentation of Say Something, a campaign by Sandy Hook Promise to help reduce violence among adolescents by urging students to report if they feel someone may hurt themselves or others.
Immediately following the serious conversation about how threats are often seen on social media, Hagan took part in a more lighthearted lesson. During a morning geometry class, he was approached by students engaged in learning the names of triangles by introducing themselves as either a right, acute or obtuse triangle.
But what stuck with Hagan the most following his morning at SHS was the many different hats he saw Principal Kim Ball wear as she went about her daily business.
It was a wonderful, eye-opening experience of what principals do, Hagan said.
Many of the other Principals-for-a-Day expressed similar sentiments.
I learned to respect you guys a lot more, said City Councilwoman Olga Gerberg after she shadowed Kelso Elementary School Principal Katie Schweitzer.
At the luncheon, Barb Clare, a member of the chambers Career Education committee, asked participants to share what they learned.
I think people get a lot out of this, Clare said, adding her hope is that participants take what they learned back to their businesses and neighborhoods and let others know what a typical day is like for the hard-working staff Oregon Trail School District staff.
While George circled the cafeteria once more, greeting kids and solving problems, Stewart commented, Shes got to be exhausted at the end of the day.