The changing of the guard at BEA
If there is one thing that is never going to change, it is the fact things are always going to change.
Change is inevitable.
Whether it is the weather, our jobs, growing old, technology or clothing styles everything changes.
There are some big changes going on at Blue Earth Area Schools.
One could call it the ‘changing of the guard.’
For the past several years there has been a fairly large turnover in the teaching staff.
BEA superintendent Dale Brandsoy remembers years when the district hardly had to hire a single new teacher. The staff was stable, with very little turnover, either from teachers moving on to other districts or from retirements.
Not so now.
The last couple of years there have been many teachers retiring eight last year alone. That makes for a lot of new faces at the school’s parent teacher conferences.
Now, besides the teaching staff, three of Blue Earth Area’s top four administrators are all retiring at the end of June.
When I have mentioned that fact to folks outside of the Blue Earth area, their first reaction is, “Wow, what’s wrong?”
My answer has been, nothing’s wrong. It just worked out that they all retired at the same time.
That will, of course, mean there will be a big change at Blue Earth Area Schools next year.
Change can be scary. But, change can also be good.
And, it can be an opportunity.
High school principal Jack Eustice has seen this with the new teachers. They bring a lot of new ideas and a whole lot of enthusiasm to the staff.
He says the melding of the experienced teachers with the younger ones has been a good thing. There has been a lot of good give and take of ideas and advice.
He also adds that BEA has been blessed over the years with some very good, high quality teachers.
That’s one thing that hopefully won’t change. And I think that is a goal of everyone involved with hiring staff.
With a new set of school administrators, it is inevitable that some of the ways things are done at the school are going to change.
But, BEA has always been known to be innovative and willing to try new things.
Over the years, the school has gained a reputation as being a leader in new educational programs and ideas.
And, having students who excell.
That was plenty evident at the recent Kiwanis Academic Awards Banquet.
There were 167 high school students honored during the program for various achievements. There were 42 seniors who received $47,475 in scholarship awards.
Most amazing were the 43 seniors who received honor cords, recognizing their high grade point averages during their four years of high school.
Six of those students were honored with gold cords, signifying they achieved a perfect 4.0 GPA or higher throughout high school.
I graduated from high school in a class of over 500, and I think there were just two seniors with a perfect 4.0 average. (And, no, I was not one of them, but thanks for asking.) Having six in a class of 100 is outstanding.
Blue Earth Area athletic teams are not only known for their prowess on the court and field, but also for their academic standards. They have often been honored with state recognition for the number of players with high GPAs on the team.
For instance, all eight senior girls on this year’s BEA girls basketball team made the Academic All-State list. Their cumulative GPA was 3.97.
The wrestling team was recognized with the Class A team academic title at the State Tournament, with a cumulative GPA of their top 10 wrestlers of 3.91.
Quite an accomplishment. And quite a tribute to BEA student/athletes, and to the Blue Earth Area schools.
The school staff and administration often refers to the high number of ‘student leaders’ at BEA. These are students who not only excel at what they do, but take the time to make sure other students are doing well also.
Eustice says these student leaders also help out with making sure everyone gets along.
While the faces running the school are going to change, the one thing that shouldn’t change is the dedication to giving a quality education to all the students in the Blue Earth area.
As principal Eustice says, that has always been the number one goal of the administration, staff, community and the students themselves.
Some things shouldn’t change.