Helping Anniston’s schools
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Oct 09, 2012 | 2027 views |  0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The day after the Aug. 28 election, I found myself in a novel situation as a newly elected Anniston school board member. “What now?” I asked.

By 10 o’clock that morning, I’d started the first round of phone calls to the seven city schools setting up face-to-face meetings with each of the principals and the superintendent. I also contacted the mayor-elect and the city councilman for my ward.

My main purpose in meeting with these educators was to (1.) establish/build relationships of trust with each individual; (2.) identify their top priorities/goals for the year; (3.) identify any obstacles to reaching the stated goals; (4.) determine how I, as a member of the board, could assist them in achieving their goals. As I met with these dedicated individuals, I found them, without exception, to be caring and genuinely concerned about the welfare of their students. They were realistic and honest about where their schools currently were and had a clear vision for the future.

Recently, I spent several hours reviewing training materials from the Alabama Association of School Boards as well as reading published research on characteristics of high-performing schools. One of the key ingredients of high-performing schools is the responsibility of all to educate students. Along with teachers and staff, “parents, businesses, social service agencies, community colleges and universities play a vital role in this effort.” The real work of school improvement is up to each one of us. Please contact me at if you can lend a hand. 

Donna Satterlee Ross
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