Relaunch

Returning to a blog after several months is like taking an old car out of storage.  There is quite a bit of maintenance work that needs to be done before it is running smoothly again.  First, you have to update all the software and go through all the thousands of spam comments to see if anything legitimate slipped through the cracks.  Second, you have to figure out how to resume the conversation…perhaps with a creaky metaphor about automobile operation, and you have to remember what it is like to write in this form.  Finally, once something is done, you have to reach out to former readers who have long forgotten your existence and beg them to return, promising that you will be a more faithful writer in the future.  It is a lot of work, and probably not worth it unless there is something fairly significant to make it worthwhile.

Well, today marks a double relaunch.  Not only am I relaunching the site, I’m relaunching myself.  After this Friday I will be leaving my position as Superintendent of Schools for the Diocese of Orange.  Leaving the position I’ve held for seven years (and a total of thirty-five years working in Catholic Schools in the Diocese) is a disorienting life event for which one can never be fully prepared.  It is the type of change that I have so glibly talked about for years.  Professions are more fluid than ever before, and I have been preaching that we all must be ready to remake ourselves to meet the needs of the changing world.  Now it’s time to remake myself, to relaunch.

I launched this blog seven years ago when I first became superintendent as a forum to discuss my experiences and my ideas about schools, education, and technology.  With this relaunch I want to talk about where I have come in these areas and others and where I see myself and education going.

While I will admit to some uneasiness (read white-knuckled terror) at this transition, I can’t help but also feel both excited and indeed lucky to have this opportunity.  So seldom are we given a chance to remake ourselves, to stop and reorient our direction to meet the realities of a changing world, or to take those changes in ourselves that have been happening for some time and break free of the chrysalis where this growth was protected (Oh my God! Is he actually using a butterfly metaphor?). Probably my favorite quotation of all time comes from Charles DuBos, “The important thing is this: to be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become.”  

I have treasured my time as Superintendent, and I have to admit, I will miss the simple clarity of that role, as challenging as it was at times.  I will mainly miss people, the people in my office, the principals and teachers, the children (not entirely certain how much I will miss the parents, but I suppose I will miss them too).  I will really miss the superintendents from across the state and across the country, some of the finest people I have ever met.  I hope that any new incarnation will allow me to cross paths with my friends again.

I’m not entirely certain what I will do next.  I have a million thoughts and few plans. I suspect I will be remaining in education, though I hope to use my skills in different ways, perhaps sharing with a broader audience.  I know that I immediately want to start writing again, hence the relaunch of this blogging enterprise.  I have always felt that writing helped me to best understand my own world while sharing my ideas with others, and I hope some will come along with me on this undirected pilgrimage called life.

As always, I invite your comments

Image: https://www.flickr.com/photos/mindfrieze/2664033713

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Date: Tuesday, 1. August 2017 18:18
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10 comments

  1. 1

    As you turn the page to a new chapter in your life, I hope with every happy discovery and challenging struggle that you find exactly what you are searching for. It is the beginning of anything you want. The opportunities are limitless!

    Wishing you the best and looking forward to see how your new beginning unfolds.đŸ¦‹

  2. 2

    Count on me for support, Greg! By the way, I am stealing that quote by Charles DuBos!

  3. GrĂ¡inne Mulholland
    Wednesday, 2. August 2017 4:30
    3

    Hi Greg,

    If there’s anyone who can figure out how to be a part of whatever the future in education holds, it’s you. That was a terrible sentence, but you get the idea. I’m sorry our schools don’t have you as their champion anymore, though. I always knew the schools, teachers and kids were in good hands.

  4. 4

    I will be your companion on your pilgrimage, as I have done for the many years past. Rest often with me.

  5. 5

    Great to see you blogging again, albeit under less than ideal circumstances. I hope you will inspire me to get back into my own blog – we can continue to debate the challenges and issues of CS. I look forward to continuing our collaboration and friendship.

  6. 6

    Looking forward to seeing the exciting things you will be called to do on this new journey! This was a great piece, inspirational and positive. Always enjoy reading your work.

  7. 7

    Great to see a new blog. Good luck in your future endeavors.

  8. 8

    Best wishes, Greg. You will do great on whatever path you take!

  9. Lucy Shufflebarger
    Thursday, 10. August 2017 13:18
    9

    You have been an inspiration and will continue to be in your new ministry. I look forward to reading about your future work on behalf of Catholic schools. God be with you.

  10. 10

    Greg,
    No matter where this new journey brings you, you will continue to inspire and make a difference. I am looking forward to hearing about the new adventures and to continue on learning from you.
    Best wishes,
    Carol Grewal

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