Published in the July 6 – 19, 2016 issue of Morgan Hill Life

By Steve Betando

Steve Betando

Steve Betando

I feel proud and honored to be a part of Morgan Hill Unified School District as I reflect on this past school year and all the work our teachers and staff have done.

Every once in awhile I get a peek into the amazing work our teachers and staff do which often goes unnoticed. Those glimpses wake my appreciation for their work. The most wonderful part of all that has happened this year is the increase in student engagement. In my role, I have the frequent responsibility of talking with community members, agencies, businesses, and, of course parents. The feedback from these interactions reflect the excellent education and caring environment they all have created. I have received a flood of positive comments all year but there has been such a vast amount of positive input in the past couple months that I feel compelled to pass on their and my appreciation for you all.

Many spoke about individual successes they were involved with or heard about. Parents and students have shared personal stories of triumph with your guidance. The community groups and individuals give me appreciation for your efforts.

I received so many comments about positive personal experiences. From employees going out of their way to help people get what they need, to follow-up calls to be certain children are getting emotional support after a stressful event, parents appreciate what our teachers and staff do.
Student attendance is high. Graduation rates are way above and dropout rates are far below expectations. Our young adults are well prepared for their future. It’s impressive where many of our students are going including prestigious universities such as Stanford and U.C. Berkeley as well as into various branches of the military.

I’ve noticed our teachers and staff continue to seek ways to do things better and reach children deeper and more often. I feel more that the end of this school year is not a destination but a great milestone on our continued journey to create even more excellent opportunities for children.
I hope the public takes a moment to appreciate the hard work of MHUSD employees and reflect on their successes. I feel fortunate to be able to work in a progressive, high achieving, student-centered organization. I appreciate the support our employees have given our students, one another, and to all our leaders. On behalf of the community and our students, thank you!

Steve Betando is the superintendent of the Morgan Hill Unified School District. This column was based on an end-of-the-school-year letter he wrote to the employees of the district.