As we begin our Thanksgiving Break, I am personally thankful for all the people who work and volunteer to make our Goshen school system such an empowering place for our 6,600 students.
Every day, teachers, support staff, volunteers, and administrators come to school prepared to provide the best possible learning experiences for our students. Not only do we work together to help students learn, but we also provide a safe, nurturing place for them to grow.
I know that GCS is much more than a school system! When I visit classrooms throughout our schools, I see teachers and volunteers working with students on academic content, along with social skills that students will need in the job market. I see staff members collaborate with churches and community groups to provide “weekend backpacks” full of food for some of our neediest students. And those same churches and community groups also provide much-appreciated support and encouragement for our teachers and staff. GCS has numerous quiet, caring individuals who take care of many needs – students who need jackets; girls who need prom dresses; a child who needs money for a field trip; a student who needs assistance to participate in extracurriculars, and countless other everyday needs that are quietly cared for by the many giving people in our school system and in the city of Goshen.
I am thankful for creative staff members who look for ways to motivate and excite our students: Our Robotics sponsors at GMS and GHS; for coaches who spend tireless hours teaching our young student-athletes not only a sport, but also what it means to be a good team member, have fun, and represent our community in a positive way; for Chess coaches at all of our schools; for brave, creative teachers who lead kindergarten and 1st graders in making their own Thanksgiving meal at school!; for teachers who instill in our students the love of theater; for students and staff who generously hold food drives for others in our community; for high school students who mentor elementary students; for music directors and young musicians who fill the air with song; and most importantly, for our teachers who teach with love and care every day to ensure that our students are well prepared for their futures.
I am thankful that there are too many examples to list! Our school system is full of wonderful, committed people and innovative programs that provide students with many opportunities for a future beyond our hallways. Additionally, I am so thankful for a community that is supportive, and generously contributes their time, talents, and money to provide the best education for all GCS students.
As we move through this season of Thanksgiving, I am simply quite thankful to be a part of Goshen Community Schools!
Dr. Diane Woodworth