“When you take the time to listen, people will tell you amazing things.”
These were the words I heard from a professor at Aquinas College, where I earned a bachelor’s degree in English and communications in 2003. They have rung true for me as a reporter for a weekly newspaper, as a freelance writer, as a corporate communicator, as a wife and mom, and as a human.
Since starting at School News Network in August, I have heard many amazing things. I knew that educators would be an exceptional bunch, because I have school-aged children. Children are amazing and capable, but teaching a class of 20-30, none of whom are your flesh and blood, takes a very special person.
The devotion, grit, creativity, and passion that educators bring to their craft is astounding, and with each interview, I grow more impressed (to put it mildly) and more curious. I want everyone to come along and see the amazing things that I have the privilege of seeing: the principals who are shifting focus from suspensions to restorative justice; the teachers who are challenging their students to solve real problems in the classroom; the social workers who are finding creative ways to boost school attendance; and the school and district staff that support these endeavors.
It would be awkward and cumbersome to bring you to each classroom. Instead, I’ll do my best to tell the stories of our public schools. I’ll do this by taking the time to listen, and by sharing the amazing things I hear.
Aside from my work with SNN, my favorite thing to do is spend time with my husband Bill and our children, 5 and 6. We love to travel, camp, be with our parents, siblings, and friends, and plan for the next big adventure. My other loves include science, Irish music, cooking, and volunteering at our kids’ school. Vices include putzing too long in ALDI, being disorganized, and overthinking everything.