The Student Perspective: Let’s All Listen 

Dear Hill-Murray Community,

For the last year,  you’ve been reading my perspective on a variety of topics and issues impacting our wonderful school and our amazing community.

Surprisingly, people often stop me and thank me for my President’s Perspective, delivered like clock-work to your email in-boxes every other Friday.

But this week, with the new school year kicking into full gear, I realized once again the importance of the student perspective.

Two 7th grade students stopped by my office to visit with me. We connected about their day and eventually agreed that since we both had some work to get done, they would do their homework while I would get caught up on emails.  It was very sweet and we were all very productive!  Being in the presence of students is a joy, being able to spend time together talking, listening to their perspective, working together and simply being together is a gift.

At the end of each all school Mass, an upper level student gives a “To Be A Pioneer” speech, an opportunity for student leaders to share faith and values. This week Senior Tessa Dostal delivered an incredibly thoughtful speech to the entire student body that touched everyone sitting so intently in the stadium bleachers. I felt so blessed to be able to hear a student’s perspective that cut to the core of our Hill-Murray values.

Tessa’s message was to embrace failure, live in the moment and accept change in our lives. As she said, “Your good days are temporary; appreciate them. Your bad days are temporary; learn from them.

I strongly encourage you to read Tessa’s entire speech. 

It’s funny, but after 25 years as an educator, I still forget that students can be the REAL teachers – if we just take the time to listen. And, this week, I decided the time is now.

Look for more perspectives from our students throughout the year as the President’s Perspective will periodically be “taken over” by a student or two. I will share their speeches, writings and possibly even their social posts!

I think it’s important that we all have an opportunity to hear from our students, whose messages, as I was reminded of  again this week, are often more interesting, more impactful and more profound than mine.