Dear School Community,
I have always believed there’s tremendous wisdom in the expression, “Look before you leap.” So as soon as I was hired to lead New Brunswick Public Schools, I determined that to provide the proper long term strategy and instructional direction, I needed to meet and speak with a lot of people; including students, faculty, staff, and members of the community. So, I started off immediately on what I’ve come to call my “Listening and Learning Tour.”
I’ve made a specific point of visiting schools and meeting new people each day. To date, I’ve been to each of our 11 schools on multiple occasions, attended about 40 community events, and participated in more than 180 meetings.
From one school, after another, after another, I’ve been tremendously impressed by the level of calm and organization. In many cases, my visits have been a surprise, so I knew I was seeing the real school environment. It isn’t just orderliness that impresses me, it’s the enthusiasm of our administrators and teachers. They're excited, creative, and engaged, and these positive qualities are ultimately transferred to our students. It’s apparent that our teachers are eager to teach, so I’m confident our students are ready and eager to learn.
I’ve also made it a point to spend time in the community, whether stopping by barber shops for a haircut or running into a corner store for a cup of coffee. New Brunswick is a wonderful city with many resources and our level of diversity is our greatest strength. As an example, in addition to English, a total of 41 other languages are spoken by members of our student body.
Students learn from the entirety of their environment, not just at school. Our students are lucky to be growing up with what New Brunswick offers. We have history dating back centuries; there’s an outstanding university that serves as a beacon for learning; there are hospitals to ensure health and wellness; and there’s an opportunity to sample as wide a variety of ethnic cuisines as any placein New Jersey.
Our town, our community can provide a foundation for understanding and awareness that can serve each of our young people far into future.