Westwood Way

Happenings In Panther Nation - February 2020

Several months back, our office staff was able to watch Kyle Penn demonstrate his juggling skills. I would like for you to take a few seconds to click on this link https://drive.google.com/file/d/108RLz6eJ05MUl9yX4AFzrjv7AX4HpAHG/view?usp=sharing and see his amazing skills!!

As I watched this video, I noticed that Kyle was very smooth in his juggling and did a great job of focusing on the three balls. He continued with his smooth juggling skills until the five-second mark. At this point, Kyle made a small bobble with his right hand and had to grab the ball a second time. This misstep caused a chain reaction that led to Kyle dropping two balls.

As you can see in the video, the juggling act is successful as long as Kyle can maintain his focus, and it is not hard for him to keep three balls in the air. And honestly, he does it very well until he attempts a slightly different movement. At this point, his rhythm and flow begin to deteriorate until, eventually, he loses control and drops two of the balls.

I began thinking about how our lives parallel this video. So many times, we are dead set on having control of every aspect of our life and juggling multiple tasks. We feel that we are the only ones that can accomplish each task at the level we desire, and this works well most of the time. The task of juggling life goes well until just like the video, we try to attempt a slightly different approach to a task, or we agree to take on an additional, responsibility and we begin to lose rhythm. Our workflow deteriorates until we feel like we are totally overwhelmed, and we feel like we are going to collapse from exhaustion.

If Kyle had allowed two other people to join him in his juggling act and had evenly distributed the balls, each person would have had to keep only one ball in the air. The other people may not have done it as well as Kyle wanted, but in the end, chances are they wouldn’t have lost their rhythm, and all three balls would have stayed in the air longer.

We can follow this same approach in our life by analyzing different areas and determining where we can release control and allow others an opportunity to shine. By empowering others around you to take on some of your tasks, it will enable us to maintain our rhythm and our workflow will not deteriorate. The result is that we don’t feel overwhelmed, and we won’t feel as if we are going to collapse from exhaustion.

Over the next several weeks, I encourage you to step back and analyze your personal and professional life and find areas that you can release to others. And after you have released these areas to trusted people, encourage them, coach them, support them, and celebrate with them as they help both of you have a much more enjoyable life!!


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School Board Update

During the February Board Meeting, the following items came before the School Board:

Dr. Kyle Penn discussed the 2020-2021 Budget Calendar.

Christine Bedre presented the proposed 2020-2021 Instructional Calendar. This was presented as a First Read and will be recommended for approval during the March Board Meeting.

Christine Bedre presented an overview of the guided reading program.

Mrs. Rosa Perez and Mrs. Shinnitta Forman presented an overview of academic progress on their respective campuses.

Christine Bedre presented an overview of the Campus Turnaround Plan developed by the staff at Westwood Elementary.

Mr. Stanford presented an update on the status of the Palestine Youth Athletic Association since the closure of the baseball and softball complex.

Mr. Stanford updated the Board on misinformation in a Palestine Herald Press article. The article stated that “The 2016 strategic plan was based on a Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) report and an engineering firm at no cost to the school district.” Mr. Stanford reported that this statement was inaccurate since the report cost the District $21,400. The article also stated, “the district should invite another independent report by an engineering firm to inventory the district’s needs, instead of an architecture firm that is under contract.” Mr. Stanford reported that this statement was also inaccurate since Sledge Engineering was not associated with an architecture firm and the District had not visited with nor entered into a contract with any architecture firm at that time. Mr. Stanfiord discussed that he had reached out to the reporter on multiple occasions in an attempt to correct the article.

The Board unanimously voted to approve the TAP report for Westwood Elementary.

The Board unanimously voted to approve Choice Partners to be Westwood ISD commodity partners for the 2020-2021 school year.

Teacher contracts were acknowledged as presented.

Administrative contracts were approved as presented.