In this week’s article, I will cover two very different topics.  First, I would like to comment about the Leadership in Educational Excellence Awards.  In addition, I would like to extend an invitation to the public to offer feedback on our educational programs.



I would like to take time to share information about an annual recognition program in which the ROCORI School District participates.  The program, sponsored by our regional service center, Resource Training and Solutions, is intended to honor the work and service of teachers across Central Minnesota.  

The teaching event is affectionately known as the LEEAs—short for the Leadership in Educational Excellence Awards.



This award is intended to be a celebration of the successes of our district teaching, administrative, and other professional staff who meet the criteria.  As outlined in the criteria for the award, the ROCORI School District seeks to recognize exemplary performance and leadership qualities in the award nominees. Nominators are asked to view the recognition process as a means to honor staff who give “above and beyond the call” on behalf of students.

Any staff member in the school district is able to submit nominations for the award.  Previous award recipients, however, are not eligible to receive the award a second time.  The district does not break the award down by building, location, grade level or any other format, but does encourage a broad array of nominees and candidates for the recognition.



Because the award is intended to recognize exemplary performance, the nomination form includes a set of criteria to help staff members select or consider nominees.   The criteria offered as guidelines for the LEEA awards include:

The honorees must be administrators, nurses, full-time, licensed PK-12 classroom teachers, counselors, and specialists (media, speech, special education, gifted/talented, etc.)

The honoree should:

*serve as an example to inspire fellow colleagues, students, and their communities  through positive leadership and attitude toward the educational field;

*possess a thorough knowledge of subject matter;

*demonstrate a leadership in curriculum development;

*provide a positive role model for students and staff;

*be an exemplary instructor who recognizes students as individuals and motivates them to reach their maximum potential;

*show genuine respect and concern for others;

*seek to improve personal and instructional effectiveness through continuing education and staff development activities; and

*contribute to the implementation of the district mission.



For 2016, the ROCORI recipients of the LEEA recognition include Paul Court, Kelly Ebnet, Brian Herrig, and Stephanie Randolph. 

Paul is a Math teacher at ROCORI High School.  Kelly teaches Fourth grade at the Richmond Elementary site.  Brian is a Global Language (Spanish) teacher at the secondary site.  Stephanie is a music/vocal music teacher at the secondary site.


The ROCORI recipients were honored at a banquet at the St. Cloud River Center Convention site on Wednesday evening, October 26.   More than 500 recipients and guests gathered for the celebration to honor the Central Minnesota Leadership in Educational Excellence Award winners! 

The program included remarks by nationally recognized speaker and author V.J. Smith.  Mr. Smith honored the recipients as teachers who demonstrate that they care about others—if they did not care, they would not be nominated! 

In addition, Mr. Smith encouraged audience members to have an attitude of gratitude.  He used the example of an elderly Walmart cashier as a gracious and thankful person who made an impact on every guest and customer he encountered!  He cited the fact that customers would willingly wait in a long line at his counter as evidence that he had a positive effect on guests.

Congratulations to the ROCORI recipients on this leadership honor!



The ROCORI School District will host an early morning meeting on Wednesday, November 9, at 7:30 a.m.  The meeting will include information about the ROCORI academic program at each building.  More importantly, those in attendance will have opportunity to ask questions about the academic program and offer feedback on our system.

The meeting is part of the district reporting process for the Minnesota Department of Education’s World’s Best Work Force (WBWF) initiative.  As part of the WBWF requirements, the district must share information about the academic work of the system.  Within the reporting process, community residents and parents must be afforded opportunity to comment about or offer feedback on the educational programs.

Community members are welcome, and encouraged, to participate with the meeting on November 9.  It will be held in the District Board room near Door 11 of the secondary building.