Principal's Corner

 
Firsts and Lasts 4-09-19

April 9, 2019

With our move to our new campus on Jones Road just months away when we will have a new campus name and a sleek 21st century look, we are fully immersed in the season of “lasts.” We’re in our last nine-week mini-mester as Windfern School of Choice since the school’s opening in the fall of 1995. Recently, we enjoyed record fundraising at our last annual spring Windfern Chili Cook-off that benefits graduates with scholarship opportunities. April 1st we took our last faculty and staff picture in our last new t-shirts bearing the Windfern name. (Check it out!) April 12th we welcomed educators from our home campuses and our Instructional Support Center for our last Windfern Lighting the Way Staff and Student Luncheon. Later in the month, we’ll have our last schoolwide Windfern Easter egg hunt. Most importantly, on May 29th, we’ll celebrate our last Windfern graduation.

Please understand though…we do not intend to abandon these Windfern traditions. They are an integral part of Windfern’s culture. As the principal of Windfern since 2001, it is all-important to me that we seamlessly transfer the campus culture we have evolved since the school’s opening in 1995 to our new campus on Jones Road. Our school community culture is pivotal to student success and our schoolwide events are a significant contributor because they always put students in the limelight. We want students to have an educational experience at Windfern that feels different and therefore, draws them into the mainstream of the school’s lifeblood. We want students to feel a sense of belonging to our campus, no matter what its name is. We want students to feel a gravitational pull towards the center of our campus and to want and even need to come to school.

So as we approach the close of our 2018-19 school year, we say our farewells to some of our Windfern “lasts” but look forward to our “firsts” at our gorgeous new campus! Take care, one and all, in our Windfern school family and CFISD community!

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Finish Strong 2-28-19

February 28, 2019

As we approach spring break, I encourage students and staff alike to finish strong by bringing their personal best to school every single day. To do so, it’s important that you check your attitude each morning and regardless of your personal circumstances, challenge yourself to embrace as positive an attitude as possible. That is obviously easier said than done, but the truly successful people in the world will tell you that 90% of their success has to do with their positive outlook on life and learning to address life’s issues with an uplifting mindset.

With the start of spring break on March 9th, students will have just completed final exams for three-semester credits. Aaah! What a feeling of accomplishment! When they return to classes on March 18th, they will have three more semester credits to secure. For some, the March to May mini-mester will be their last in high school and will be punctuated by their graduation on May 29th! By the way, our May graduates will be the last students to participate in a Windfern graduation. In August when we move to our newly renovated campus, we will have a new campus name. We are anxiously awaiting to see the name revealed.

Susan Calda, our Director of Instruction and Penny Fitt, our assistant principal, accompanied me to the campus renovation for a hard hat site visit to see the progress being made by Krystal Ford, our project manager, and her fine team. We cannot say enough to highlight their expertise, experience, and good will.

To make the move from Windfern Road to Jones Road, staff members are already starting to clean out files, binders, and books from yesteryear. Teachers have shown me papers they found from as far back as 1978! The new montra…less is more! 

A Nostalgic Look at Windfern 1-27-19

January 27, 2019

As we returned to school on January 7th, it occurred to me that this would be the last time we would begin a spring semester at Windfern School of Choice.  By August of this year, my staff and I will welcome students to our new location at 13102 Jones Road. We will have a new name (still to be determined by our School Board) and will be rebranding our school to include an expanded campus size, a larger student population of 500, and career certification programs including welding, plumbing and later two or three more. 

However, the new campus will retain the “campus of choice” profile that requires students to complete an application, secure home campus assistant principal and counselor recommendations and participate in an interview and orientation to establish standards of academics, attendance, behavior and most of all attitude.  We will continue to teach students that every day they have a choice to make the most of their circumstances no matter what they are and to carry with them into every situation the “Whatever It Takes” attitude for winning the moment. 

As I write to you, parents, students, district colleagues, and community friends, I have a deep and abiding sense of fulfillment and gratitude for the remarkable eighteen years I have spent as Windfern’s principal…remarkable not because of anything I might have accomplished, but because of the students that walked through our doors looking for a different way to approach high school.  Their stories have been etched in my memory and their hardships and triumphs will always have a place in my heart.  I will remember their laughter in our hallways, their tears in our offices as they worked through challenges, and the jubilant smile they wore as they walked across the graduation stage to receive the diploma they so richly deserve!

I will try not to cry as I leave my office and turn out the lights for the last time, but I expect that will be more than my sappy Latina self can handle.  Instead, I hope, I will look forward to the sleek, modern, very 21st-century environment that will be our future with each remarkable student who walks through our doors with his/her eyes gazing towards graduation.  To our future!

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