Polk County Schools staff and faculty enjoyed a motivation-filled day as the 2022-23 academic year began with a convocation at Polk County High School.
A common theme – We Serve – ran throughout the talks presented on Aug. 23 to faculty and staff gathered in the PCHS auditorium. Superintendent Aaron Greene presented that concept as the core theme for the year ahead as the district focuses on serving students, families and the Polk County community as well as peers employed within Polk County Schools.
Board of Education Chairman Mike Ashworth welcomed all in attendance and thanked the group for its efforts in recent difficult years. Ashworth also extended encouragement and thanks on behalf of all Board of Education members, including those in attendance – Sherry Page, Judy Jackson and Rob Parsons.
The focus on We Serve, Greene noted, echoes Polk County Schools’ mantra of “Doing What’s Right for Students.” He urged faculty members to remain student-focused and to respect and support all.
Greene urged faculty members to “know your why,” to remember why they choose to become educators rather than pursuing higher-paying positions outside the teaching profession. Several staff and faculty members from throughout the district then shared their “why,” talking about why they teach and why they specifically choose to do so in Polk County.
Each speaker’s why centered on serving kids and feeling rewarded by watching them achieve. Each also praised the opportunity offered by working in Polk County Schools, one of the state’s top districts, to do just that.
Greene shared a quote from Denzel Washington to conclude his remarks: “At the end, it’s not about what you’ve accomplished. It’s about who you’ve lifted up, who you’ve made better. It’s about what you have given back.”
Logan Weber of Weber Associates then offered the day’s keynote speech, “Winner in You.” Weber talked about the value of focusing on bringing your best performance every day, that each person can control their attitude and that attitude is contagious.
Mountain View BBQ served lunch to the convocation attendees, and then the group concluded the day by taking part in professional development sessions throughout the afternoon.