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Superintendent's column: Passion, choice are what lead to success

By BY ROBERT JAKLICH
Sept. 7, 2013 at 4:07 a.m.

Robert Jaklich

It has been said that passions, only passions, can elevate the soul to great things. As I travel across our "612 Square Miles of Excellence," I am constantly amazed by the level of talented, passionate individuals I encounter with each and every visit. As we reflect on the first two weeks of school, it is clearly evident that we are surrounded by exceptional students, outstanding employees, supportive parents, a visionary board of trustees and a community that truly values the importance of education for all students.

A wonderful example of student success with passion can be found at Stroman Middle School with teacher Matt Hilbrich and his students. Last school year, a number of tornadoes hit areas of Oklahoma, causing massive damage and loss of life. Hilbrich's students began a drive for food and toiletries to help those in need. All total, they sent 160 pounds of supplies. Recently, they received a letter from the Regional Food Bank Foundation in Oklahoma City that read: "Your students' generosity and compassion help give Oklahomans the strength to move forward. The maturity and kindness shown by your students in reaching out to help others, regardless of their circumstances, is remarkable and so important as Oklahomans come together to rebuild and recover." We are extremely proud of Mr. Hilbrich and his students. Their generous actions serve as a reminder to all that in the middle of every difficulty comes an opportunity to do something great.

Another opportunity to do something great is reflected in the efforts of our campus and KidzConnection parent liaisons. Through their tremendous efforts in connection with Faith Family Church, they were able to provide more than 2,000 VISD students and families with the necessary school supplies to begin the school year. We would like to thank our parent liaisons and Faith Family Church for creating such wonderful opportunities for our students and families. Their focus on "Every Child, Every Classroom, Every Day," serves as a terrific example and reminds us all that the difference between becoming successful or not begins with extraordinary determination.

Marion Wright Edelman once stated: "Service is the very purpose of life. It is the rent we pay for being on this planet." It has also been said that life is like a game of tennis - those who serve well enjoy the most success.

On behalf of our board of trustees and the entire VISD, thank you for your service as a "champion for our children."

We realize that choice, not chance, determines our destiny, and we appreciate your choice to believe in us.

Robert Jaklich is the superintendent for the Victoria Independent School District. Contact him at 361-788-9202 or through the VISD website, visd.com.

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