Lewton: Grateful for opportunities Dickinson provides
Over the past few years, our schools have witnessed unprecedented growth in student numbers. With growth comes challenges, but also benefits and only an unknowing person could not see these.
One of the benefits has been the many different people that have shared their children with us. Children from all over the country and even the world have arrived to attain a great education at Dickinson Public Schools. With their arrival, our existing children have had the opportunity to broaden their horizons and learn among many different cultures not normally available.
Another benefit has been the parents of our new students and the companies they work for. Multiple times this year I have been approached by individual parents, oil companies, banks, construction companies and other organizations tied to our new economy, asking how they can help “our” kids (they are all our kids). Some have supported us with time and yet others with money and supplies. I want to thank our new neighbors; first for sharing their children with us and second for supporting our schools.
Not so long ago, the Dickinson Public School District was strategizing how they would react to decreasing enrollment, while our community was struggling with outward migration. Now we are engaged in the beginning of an exciting new frontier in the history of our school district and community. It seems as though every day we are confronted with a new possibility.
From a boy that grew up in Dickinson and southwest North Dakota, it has become easy to identify, yes, the struggles but also the great opportunities. It is so easy to get hung up on the struggles and too many of us do, including myself.
We think by having different ideas and different experiences we don’t have a common goal. Yet in my experience, we all share many common goals. Most important, we share the goal of doing what is best for our children and our community.
I am happy to have grown up in Dickinson most of my life, I am even more grateful for the challenges and opportunities before all of us. Adversity is a great thing, it builds character for not only individuals, but also communities. Please join me in continuing to make Dickinson a great community.
Lewton is the principal of Hagen Junior High School in Dickinson. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.