As Thanksgiving approaches and my time on the School Committee comes to an end, I can’t help but think about how much I am thankful for at this time. First, I would like to thank my family and friends for all the support they have given me since I first decided to run for a seat on the School Committee in 2007. My husband, Tony, and sons, Isaac and Jonah, have been so incredibly patient, understanding and helpful. My friends have been there for me with much encouragement, humor and advice.
Second, I would like to thank my colleagues on the School Committee and the folks who work for the Cambridge Public Schools. You have taught me so much about Cambridge and education. I hope you will work together to make sure the Innovation Agenda is a success. And please focus on creating a culture of mutual trust and respect; have high expectations for yourselves and others; and always remember to think about the kids first.
I am also thankful for the many wonderful people I have met on this incredible journey. Cambridge is an amazing city, and what makes it so amazing is the people. One of the advantages of serving on the School Committee is having the opportunity to work with the professionals and volunteers who are trying to improve the education of our kids. I have been fortunate to visit all of our schools and attend countless events focused on our children, whether it is a fundraiser, sporting event, theatrical performance, meeting, graduation or ribbon-cutting ceremony. There really are some great things going on in all our schools, as well as the many out-of-school time programs throughout the city. Yes, we must figure out better ways to challenge those kids who need more of a challenge, and we must help our kids who are struggling, as well as all those in between. However, I would like to take this time to thank all of the teachers, principals, administrators, members of the School Committee and everyone else who work with our children. We spend an awful lot of time looking at what is not working, but we also need to focus on and celebrate what is working.
One of the goals of the Cambridge Public Schools is to build a safe, supportive and nurturing environment in each one of our schools, and I am convinced that positive reinforcement is an effective strategy. Since Election Day, I have talked to many people who have acknowledged their gratitude for the work I have done on the School Committee, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your positive feedback. This outpouring of appreciation and recognition has certainly taken some of the sting away and revitalized my inspiration to continue working to improve public school education. We need to instill this type of affirmation in our children and all the people who work with them, so that they will be motivated to do what they need to do to be successful.
It has been a true honor to serve on the Cambridge School Committee, and I will continue to do my part to help improve the Cambridge Public Schools.
Thank you and happy Thanksgiving.
Nancy Tauber, School Committee member