Accomplishments are important and I am a believer that if my accomplishments help others, I have been successful. In the mid-90s we were writing out report cards for every student. Your hands would cramp up and trying to find ways to say things briefly became an art. As I look back on where we are now, it seems very primitive. Now I click a couple of buttons to add the grade and another couple of buttons to add comments. The attendance and other details are built into the system. Even to the point where we no longer send out hard copies of them. Everything has become electronic. One of the first major projects I took on for my fellow teachers was creating an electronic report card. I had very few options and was building something from scratch. It had to be only one page and yet had to have everything that we were required to report. I turned to something that was new and decided to try and invent Montview’s first electronic report card. I went with the most modern software I could find for the task. Clarisworks was what I needed. I decided to go with the spreadsheet component so that I could create dropdown menu items so that people couldn’t mess it up. Teachers had to keep everything on a disk and hope nothing happened to it. At the end of each quarter, we collected the disks and then gave them back after we made a backup. It was the funniest thing in the world to watch teachers try to use them for the first two years. This was unprecedented and was watched by the district. Eventually, the district started offering the template to other schools.
I was so excited because I had spent many hours on the development. We were able to make things go much faster but teachers had to be careful not to write too much. If they went one line too far it created a second page and messed everything up. I listen to teachers complain about the system when they change one minor thing. I compare it to the complaints when we completely changed the landscape of reporting to parents. I am very proud of my efforts and within a couple of years we then started looking at student management systems. I still believe that my report card started the ball rolling and people saw the possibilities. The only people who knew I was behind this idea were the folks at Montview. I was honored to be a part of a community of teachers with a single goal: do the best for kids. I will take that acknowledgment from them as an accomplishment. I received the Mary Lou Midcap Award during my last year at Montview. It was an honor that I still cherish and consider one of my greatest accomplishments. My elementary journey is coming to an end and I will transition to the twenty-one years I have spent in high school. I have one last post on Halloween and it is a perfect time to switch over. Thank you if you have read my elementary stories and I guarantee you that the high school stories will be a riot.