The day with Houston was fantastic. From his presentation to our high school students, assembly with middle school, and work with staff in the afternoon, all were engaged and left inspired. Our school is now experiencing a wave of R.A.O.A (Random Acts of Agape). Staff have been thrilled at the letters received from students written with specificity and the most genuine heartfelt gratitude I have ever seen. A few new letters appear each day and staff rush into my office to show me what was written. They are touched and then in turn seem to internalize the importance of spreading kindness and gratitude more intentionally back to their students and to each other. One of our classified staff members shared his letter with me yesterday and said that he had been at many jobs in the past and this is the first place where he really felt he belonged and was cared for. That letter spoke to him in so many deep ways that a student would take the time to recognize the importance of the guy who fixes the computers. When I received my letter, it was at a time I needed it most. The job of a principal is filled with incredible successes and challenges and on any given day one can feel that nothing is going as planned and there are more problems than time in the day to address. To get that little extra boost of gratitude from a student can really shift perspective back to all the progress and gifts that are right before our eyes everyday.
On this Thanksgiving eve, I wish to offer my immense gratitude to Houston and his entire team for personal and professional inspiration, for his authenticity and ability to connect with students and adults at all levels. The Character Strong curriculum has been well received and hopefully the benefits of his one day with us will continue for the weeks and months that follow. He possesses a rare gift.
Bethany Spinler - Bellevue Big Picture School, WA - Principal