person chained to desk

In late October, the annual New Jersey School Boards Convention is held in Atlantic City, NJ. A collection of school board members, vendors, lawmakers, board attorneys, and yes, Superintendents.  It’s typically a whirlwind of activity, but some of the best learning are the side conversations with my colleagues. There are 591 Superintendents, and often we are on our own island when it comes to work.  The face to face time is celebrated.

At one gathering, about two dozen of us starting talking and we weaved into the topic of attendance.  Not student attendance, not staff attendance, not administrator attendance; attendance of superintendents in their districts.

One of my colleagues had a board member inquire about her attendance over the past year. She is very active on social media with educational best practices and often shares with her followers what she’s doing and where she’s going.  Most of her activities are done on her time; when other events or opportunities (that benefit her district) arise, she’ll either put in a request for school time or just take personal or vacation days.  However, despite her vigorous work ethic, her productivity was questioned due to the fact that these endeavours took her out of the office.