As we begin the 2011-2012 school year, I am excited to see our students engaged in learning and achieving high results. Minneapolis Public Schools teachers and staff members are prepared to promote student success and accelerate student achievement. We have been working to strengthen our organization internally and externally with a specific goal in mind: “Creating a culture of ‘yes.’”
We are MPS, and we are committed to our mission: We exist to ensure that all students learn. We are also committed to our vision: every child college ready.
A culture of yes in our classrooms will propel our students toward their goals. YES, you can achieve your dreams. YES, you are smart and successful. YES, you are special and have a unique ability to add to this world. YES, we value you and recognize your achievements. YES, we will support you by providing you with the tools and skills you need to flourish.
We are MPS, and we have a passion for the work we do. It is my goal to ensure that passion is met with an equal amount of well-tuned practice — practice in our craft of teaching and learning, practice in our work of operating a large urban school district, practice in our approach to leading others. Passion without practice cannot transform our vision into a reality.
My continuing priority this school year is to implement core strategies that will put a good teacher in every classroom, a strong principal in every school, and a high-quality school in every neighborhood. The key to that priority is promoting a healthy and productive work culture. We must ensure that our services to our students and families closely align with our mission.
My desire is to create a deep sense of urgency, ownership and shared responsibility among all staff for the academic success and well-being of students in the Minneapolis Public Schools. I envision a high-performing team where results matter more than process and where each one of us is held accountable for those results.
I am committed to creating a culture of yes in our schools and in our school district as a whole. This must begin with the way we lead, listen and engage our families and community stakeholders.
I am also committed to enhancing the experience of internal and external MPS stakeholders. We want to prioritize customer service as a value of Minneapolis Public Schools and to demonstrate that value by making sure all MPS stakeholders feel welcomed, respected and assisted. My goal is that everyone who enters our schools and administrative offices will see and feel the difference.
Our students, families and stakeholders deserve no less from us. We are ready to take ownership of the culture of our schools and offices, the learning in our classrooms and the success of our school district. We are MPS. We are open-minded, welcoming, conscientious, attentive, fun, interactive, collaborative, progressive and accountable. We are ready to say yes to every child.
We are MPS and we want to provide the best service to each family every day. Let’s make this school year a great year.
Bernadeia Johnson, Ed.D., is superintendent of Minneapolis Public Schools.