Principal’s Blog 16-17 Vol. 2
In the fall of 2008, which was my first year as Principal at Delavan Junior High and High School, I had a conversation with Mr. Kramer about Carnival. He essentially told me that it was virtually impossible for anyone to truly understand Carnival at D.H.S. until you have experienced it. I was puzzled by what Mr. Kramer told me and asked him to give me a little bit of information about the event. After he gave me a brief description, I thought I understood it. However, Mr. Kramer was right, I really did not understand it until after Carnival 2008 was completed. After it was over, I gained an understanding of how this one event captured the support of virtually the entire study body and staff. Further, I became amazed at how much time, effort, and work our student body and staff put into this one event. I was so impressed with how Carnival requires our students to work together towards successfully completing long-term goals (fundraising, lip sync, food both, auction items, and games for kids etc.). Successfully completing these long term goals takes time, planning, organization, practice, teamwork, commitment, sacrifice, multi-tasking, creativity, and compromise. I also learned that it is very common for each class to experience adversity during the Carnival season including disagreements, panic, doubt, and worry. However, near the end of the process, classes typically come together as compromise, teamwork, hope, and resolve prevail.
Now as I enter my ninth Carnival, I look forward to our kids experiencing the joy of working together to complete the long-term goals associated with Carnival. I believe Carnival helps give our school district a special identity as it is an event that provides lasting memories and brings the community together. I truly believe our Carnival experience is at the top of any real-world experience that other schools may provide. If you examine our District’s Mission Statement (In our quest for excellence, Delavan CUSD #703 will be a premier rural school district with graduates prepared for college and career success in the 21st Century) it is clearly evident that the Carnival experience fits with our mission. The success of our students in their future college and/or career fields will be dependent on many of the same important skills and traits Carnival highlights including planning, organization, teamwork, and commitment.
While in the heart of the current challenge and ahead of the excitement for the completion of Carnival 2016, I want to wish all of our classes and sponsors the best of luck! Further, I want to highlight an age-old adage of the “journey being more important than the destination.” As I am often asked about Carnival, I routinely rave about the real-world experience it provides our students, and then follow with same description I received in 2008, “You have to experience it to truly understand it.”
Dr. Matt Gordon, Principal
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