Last year, during second week of summer school, we had a complete administration change. I knew who the principal was going to be, as our local school council had selected him, but I did not know who he was bringing in as the assistant principal.
I was introduced to her first thing on their first day. Her name was Karren Ray and she had come from a position at the Central Office of Chicago Public Schools. I will admit when I heard this I was a bit worried. Central Office is all about implying the strict rules and regulations that CPS has set forth, but our school environment is so unique and never really "fits" those specific guidelines. I couldn't have been more wrong. Mrs. Ray has been the biggest blessing for an administrator and person to come into our school. Her way of leading is something that cannot be explained, and is something I hope to be one day.
Being both a former special education teacher and part of Central Office has given her insight of both worlds. She is always full of energy and knows just how to talk to people. She has made it a point to form special relationships with each of her staff. She is not just your boss, but a "mom" as well. She always asks about how you are and about the things going on your life. She will be the first person to tell you "thank-you" and compliment the work that has been done. She gives productive feedback and is always eager to learn herself more about things we know.
Being from Central Office, she is the "Data Queen." Any situation that happens in our environment or related to our school, good or bad, she probably has a spreadsheet for, accompanied by a graph. She knows how to track any situation and is always ready to "fight" for her staff and school. She complies information supporting our school's vision and learning objectives and always shares them with us and our community.
She is beyond FANTASTIC and I can only hope to be like her when my administration days come. She is a true leader and her openness and heart has gained the respect of an entire staff in just moments.
|Mrs. Ray and her fellow Polar Plungers representing Northside Learning Center- Even new to our school, she beat all of her staff in her fundraising efforts!|