I want to welcome you to the East Tipp Middle School community and take this opportunity to tell you a little about myself. Before coming to Lafayette, I resided in the small community of Baugo Township (Elkhart, IN). I am a former Jimtown Jimmy. If you know anything about that area, then you know that my first teaching experience with the Tippecanoe School Corporation at Harrison High School placed my “small fish” knowledge in a very big pond. I enjoyed my job as a special education teacher, my experiences as a coach, and the opportunities available to students at a “bigger” school. When it was suggested that I go into administration, it seemed like a natural step. Working as Dean of Students was a job that taught me a lot about myself and about the nature of students. It also solidified for me several core beliefs.
I view school as the focal point of a community. It is through the connections we make with our neighbors and friends that we gain the supports we need in order to learn. Students, parents, and members of the community should feel welcome when they enter a school. Students should have opportunities to invest themselves in activities as well as academics. Those who feel like they belong are more willing to make a commitment to the educational process.
I believe in the power of choice. There are many roadblocks that people encounter as they travel through life, but at each there is a choice to be made. Students have the right to choose to behave and to learn. Conversely, they have the right to choose to misbehave and close themselves to the opportunities to learn. It is our job as educators to help students see the choices that they have and to learn to make informed decisions. We are also charged with the duty to help them see the consequences for their choices. This is an integral part of the human experience.
The programs, traditions, and academic excellence that abound here at East Tipp are exciting! I hope to continue the excellence and traditions that have made this a great place to learn!