APS Column: Looking back at a busy January

Published 5:37 pm Friday, February 9, 2024

By Dr. Joey Page

Austin Public Schools Superintendent

As the calendar rolls over into February, Austin Public Schools has many accolades and honors to talk about. First, over the past week, Austin Public Schools has been honored to welcome several notable guests to our District and city.

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On Feb. 1, Dr. Scott Woitaszewski and Dr. Todd Savage returned to Austin High School to share their insights on the importance of psychological safety and security in schools. It’s always a pleasure to learn from them about how to cultivate a positive school environment, build relationships, and encourage connectedness.

On Feb. 2, Austin Public Schools took part in a visit from the European Young Leaders, part of the U.S. Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program. It was a privilege to meet the delegation and highlight the amazing things happening in our District with a global audience. I spoke about our long-term strategic plan, Equity Coordinator Kristi Beckman talked about our success coach program, and Executive Director of Academics Katie Baskin shared the Packer Profile.

Next, Tieler Myers, a Spanish teacher at Austin High School, was named a Claes Nobel Educator of Distinction by the National Society of High School Scholars. Mr. Myers was nominated by one of his students for “making a significant contribution to their academic career.” The honor means Mr. Myers is now eligible to apply for the NSHSS Educator of the Year award.

And finally, our winter sports and activities are starting to wrap up their regular seasons and our thoughts are turning to the post-season. We wanted to wish all our Packers good luck as they work to move on to state level competition.

As we embark on the second half of the school year, I encourage our District to remain grounded in our Core Values. We are not just a school district; we are a priority-driven organization with a collective purpose to prepare all learners to make a difference in the world. In that spirit, we are dedicated to ensuring that our decisions align with our mission and our unwavering belief in the transformative power of education. I am grateful for your important role, whether you are a staff member, parent/caregiver, student, or community member.

Thank you for your ongoing support of our District. I’m excited to see what the rest of 2024 holds.