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You say you wish you could call it an “unqualified success story”. I wonder how you define that. From my point of view, it really has been. Birds, other animals, and the wind all unintentionally take seeds and scatter them. Some of these seeds grow into plants that feed people and other animals. Some grow into strong trees that make homes for even more animals or provide wood that may build a house or even a sheet of paper that could be used to publish a book that will change a person's life. Some never grow at all. Does that fact take away from the effect of the seeds that did grow? I wonder because what you have accomplished at Brighton has been anything but unintentional. You have been the plant providing nutrition to young teachers. You have been the strong tree providing strength and shelter to more experienced teachers. That in itself provides an unqualified success story in my world. The students ARE the reason we are in education. We desire the best for them academically, physically, socially, and personally. Without support, young teachers may become disillusioned and walk away depriving students of the experience of a young, motivated teacher that could push them in ways another could not. Without support, more experienced teachers may get “fed up” and walk out, depriving students of their experience. But the greatest tragedy I can imagine is these teachers remaining without that support and the students enduring a year with a teacher that is frustrated and waiting until retirement. Worse yet, is this happening to those students again and again. During Take One, I commented that it would be a success if one child’s life was impacted positively. I still believe that. After reading the comments you posted about Take One, I cried. I saw success because teachers were impacted; therefore, I knew students must have benefited. You have been such an inspiration and voice of reason at times that you did not even know. You will be missed, but I believe the seeds you planted have grown and matured and are now producing more seeds. In my case I know it is true. I came to Brighton just after certifying as a NBCT. I have grown so much since then and I must give you credit for the impact you have had on me as an educator and as a person. I am sorry I have not said it more often. You will never know how often a small comment affected me. It has been an honor and a pleasure. Even though I am writing this to you personally, I am posting it here in the hope that it inspires those who strive to impact education and the world to remember, not to despise small beginnings. They can be a foundation you may never see.

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