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Sharing our attitude of gratitude

Editorial by Rickie R. Harris

I would like to thank the entire Mustang community for their support and acknowledgement of the West Orange – Stark High School football team in our back-to-back state championship effort. I would like to give a special thank you to the City of Orange for the parade and celebration last weekend. It was outstanding! Additionally, thank you to Reverend Ronnie Crockett and the Mt. Olive Baptist Church for honoring our Mustangs.

Thank you to each and every fan who attended our football games, home and away, no matter the weather, in order to show support. Our Mustang Nation is the best! Thank you, also, to the members of our district staff who orchestrated the travel and all of the accompanying details for the football team and the student groups that also performed at games. Everyone did a fantastic job ensuring our students traveled safely to and from venues. We appreciate you.

Our district is also fortunate to have the support of outstanding community entities. I would like to thank the Stark Foundation for all that they do for our students. In January, West Orange – Stark Elementary students were included in a Stark Museum of Art multi-school project. Stark Museum of Art staff members were at our school for an entire week working with students of multiple grade levels in a mural art project. The students absolutely loved it and look forward to seeing their work on display later this spring. Also in January, students participated in field trips to Shangri La Botanical Gardens and the Stark Museum of Art. These activities expose our students to exciting avenues of education. We are thankful for this phenomenal educational resource and all that you do for West Orange – Cove.

The month of January also provided the opportunity to celebrate our Board of Trustees. It was School Board Appreciation Month in Texas. Thank you to Ruth Hancock, Linda Platt-Bryant, Tony Dallas, John Gray Jr., Demetrius Hunter, and Roderick Robertson for your service to this school district. School trustees are outstanding volunteers who give time and energy to support the success of all of our schools. They also support our administrative leadership as we work to move this district forward. We thank you for your commitment and service.

I also want to express our deep sadness for the passing, in early January, of Sarah Jefferson Simon, the Vice-President of our Board of Trustees. Mrs. Simon was an outstanding board member, an exceptional role model, and amazing community servant. Words cannot adequately convey how much she will be missed. We will always appreciate her service. She, as well as her family, will remain in our thoughts and prayers.

Finally, I want to say thank you to every individual that goes above and beyond expectation in supporting West Orange – Cove CISD and our efforts to provide an exceptional educational experience to our students. Many may believe that a single effort is unnoticed; but, it is not. We very much appreciate our staff, our teachers, our fans, and our community.

As contemporary author John Maxwell said, “One is too small a number to achieve greatness.” We are empowering lives through excellence every day!

Rickie R. Harris is the Superintendent at West Orange – Cove CISD.