You may think that magic is only found in fairy tales or the movies. But, sometimes walking into a child care program or enrichment classes, you feel something magical. It’s not the location or the activity, it’s the love of the people who are teaching or running these programs that makes it feel magical. These are the programs that people want to be involved in because love creates a welcoming, safe environment where people are accepted for who they are.
We’ve interviewed many districts over the years and watched for news stories of the love staff have for their programs, children, and their communities. Recently, in Education Week, a teacher wrote an article called “What Happened When I Committed to Loving My Students Unconditionally” and it was awe-inspiring. Kyle Redford mentions that every teacher says that they love their students, but sometimes it’s a hard task. Redford decided that for one year he would love his students the way he loves his own children. It changed the students and Redford.
Reading through that story brought to mind the other paths we’ve crossed. We were lucky enough to do a video interview with Mary Wold with the Osseo Kidstop Program in April 2017. As she talks, you can see the love she has for the program and the families. Staff members like Wold give the Kidstop Program the magical ingredient.
Eleyo interviews new customers that come on board and we’ve learned each program is different except for that magical ingredient, love. One of the questions we ask is “What makes your program special and stand out?” One woman from New York immediately replied, “I think the love we have for our children. I have a wonderful, wonderful, wonderful staff.”
Love isn’t only found on the front lines, but you can also find it behind the scenes within staff members most of the community may not always see. When we asked Myrna Meunier about her journey to becoming the business manager at New Ulm Public Schools, her response was “It really fits for me because when I look back to the places I like to spend my time, it’s school. Even though I’m not working directly with kids, I really like kids and making sure they get the best to succeed. That’s how I ended up in the education field and I really don’t see myself leaving. Making sure the dollars are there so that children have the best education is what is important.”
We hope that as you look around at your program, you can see the love that your staff has for the community. It’s that magic ingredient that becomes contagious and helps your program and community grow. You could have all the funding in the world for your program, but if your staff aren’t in love with it, how will your community love it?