The SCN Encourager – Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The day the earth stood still (sort of) –

Yesterday the topic was integrity (darn it!), so I feel I must not stray too far afield – at least not today. Perhaps later in the week I can return to my usual writing habits. I’ve been reminded that top notch writers don’t need to rely on artificial embellishments and fibs. Well, good for them. Me? I need a full bag of tricks.

So while this aura of integrity lingers, I’ll describe my brief “earth stopping” moment without any exaggeration. 

Incredibly – last Friday – one piece of school crisis planning advice I wrote about a few weeks ago actually worked! For me! (And yes, I was as shocked as I’m sure you must be.)

The setting was this: As I got up to get ready for work last Friday, I thought to myself that if ever there was a day to go without shaving and fussing about over what to wear, this was it!  It was Record’s Day. Classes were not in session, busses were not on the roads, and no home athletic contests were scheduled for later in the evening. Friday seemed like a perfect dress-down “don’t shave, wear jeans” day.

It was easy to shift into low. But then I started feeling kind of guilty (wimpy, I know). After all, hadn’t I just written about being prepared for a possible school crisis at any and all times?  So despite the little red devil guy on my shoulder repeating, “there are no kids in school today, there are no kids in school today…” I knew I should try not be more hypocritical than usual. Rats! I went ahead and shaved, showered, and put on my normal school communicator attire.

Although the difference between “comfortable weekend wear” and “really looking sharp” is negligible in my case, it felt good to be prepared. Even though it seemed like a waste of time (“there are no kids in school today”), I figured that if I had written about the value of preparation, I’d better do it.

I arrived at my office at my normal time, eager to get going on a couple of items that are easier to stay on top of when our schools are closed. And, wouldn’t you know it? By mid-morning the media was calling us all hot on the trail about a school incident (totally news to me) that supposedly took place earlier in the week.

Long story short. Working with my superintendent and other team members for most of Friday, we were able to carry out what was needed of us.  And, since I had to go on TV again – now twice in less than a month – I can’t tell you how much more confident I was this time around.

So there was my “day the earth stood still” a-ha moment. I discovered that because I had written previously to you about being prepared, I was more mindful about getting prepared last Friday morning. Therefore, I actually was more prepared to step up when the chips were down.

Thanks for allowing me to butt into your schedule for a few seconds on Monday-Friday. If I wasn’t writing to you regularly – I wouldn’t be thinking regularly about the things good school communicators do, er . . . in my case, should do.

Thinking about what we do as school communicators – and then sharing with you – is a process that helps me ratchet my game up a bit.

To show you my appreciation, I may keep this integrity thing around awhile. But don’t bank on it.

Tom Page, SCN managing editor
01:22:13 6500





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