The Power of a Hero, The Power of You

The Power of a Hero, The Power of You

To me a hero represents someone who emulates a life, skills or some other trait that we desire to be like or possess.  Often times we will read books, watch a video or attend a conference that may give us a path towards becoming more like that person.  Many times we come to find out that the more we try to mimic someone else, the more we fail. At times, we forget how much our heroes fail before they finally figure it out.  Is Michael Jordan your hero?  He missed approximately 9000 shots.  What about Babe Ruth?  He struck out nearly twice as many times as he hit a home run.  Pandora was rejected by around 300 venture capitalists before finally landing a deal.  Chemists failed 39 times before finally producing the wonder lubricant WD40.  What would’ve happened if Elizabeth Blackwell, the first female in the US to earn a medical degree, quit trying to get into medical school after her 29th attempt? (She got in on number 30).

We all have heroes in our lives whether they are professional, personal or in the things we enjoy doing.  Growing up I always loved baseball and my hero was Dale Murphy from the Atlanta Braves, yes, even in Alaska, Ted Turner inundated us with “America’s Team” and made Braves fans across the country.  I remember one specific time when a teammate and myself were arguing over who was going to be Dale Murphy in our soon to happen whiffle ball home run derby.  Throughout our discussion we each came up with our perfect and sophisticated argument for being Dale Murphy, “You can’t hit the ball far enough” and “I can hit the ball farther than you.”  Our “discussion” must’ve gotten a little heated because a third guy came over and simply said, “Oh yeah, well I’m going to be Timmy Ferris.”  His name was Timmy Ferris.

Fast forward life now for about thirty years and I find myself having heroes in my professional life.  I see Jimmy Casas motivate and inspire teachers and principals to be the best they can possibly be.  Glenn Robbins with his risk taking in the Ed Camp and Maker Space worlds.  Ben Gilpin on building relationships and how he opens himself up to the people he leads by being vulnerable.  It’s like wrapping up Superman, Batman and The Flash in one ultimate educational superhero and being that person; I want to be that person!  Then as you talk with your heroes a little more, you realize the struggle, challenges and failures they all went through to get where they are, it’s their story.  They just simply never stopped trying as they pursued their passion.  They were persistent and acted fearlessly.

Bottom line is that it is awesome to have heroes.  They inspire and motivate us to become better each and every day.  These three gentlemen who I was able to connect with are those inspirations for me and I know they have their own journey, just like I have mine.  I can’t hit the “easy button” and all of a sudden become the ultimate education super hero.  I have to remember Timmy Ferris and be my best self.  Who knows, maybe even I will become someone’s hero someday.

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Class Requests for 2017-18 Begin Monday, February 13

Attention everyone with a child who will be in high school next year (current 8th – 11th graders)! Our counseling department will be going through the class request process during the next few weeks. We use these requests to determine our offerings and craft our final schedule. Your son or daughter will be bringing the sheet that corresponds to next year’s grade home at some point during the next few weeks. We ask that you review the options with him or her so that we can plan for next year. Please remember that not all of the classes on the request sheet end up in our final master schedule as each of our offerings need to have a viable number of students.

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Leadership From a Kid’s Eyes

The other day my daughter and I were talking about her basketball practice and how it was going.  She told me that a freshman almost beat her at one of the sprints; you could tell it was one of those “I can’t believe it moments.”  So I asked her if she told her “great job!” or encouraged her in any way.  My daughter’s response surprised me a little bit: “But dad, I’m only a sophomore!”

What you may not know is that she may only be a sophomore, but she is a very good basketball player, one who much of the team already looks up to because of her skill and court leadership no matter their age.  Because I see her as a leader, I shared a story from my days as a high school student.  When I was a freshman in high school on the wrestling team, an older student from the team pulled me aside after the last tournament of the year.  This guy was a two-time, undefeated state champion who I admired a great deal.  He said to me: “Wow, you are such a good wrestler!  You have an awesome work ethic and the coaches love what you do.  If you keep doing what you’re doing, you will be way better than I ever was.”  After almost 30 years, those words are still with me and propelled me to a very successful high school, collegiate and coaching career.

After I shared that story with my daughter, her eyes became a little wider as she understood the point I was trying to make.  We talked about how she could step out of her comfort zone of just court leadership and translate that to peer leadership on and off the court.  She is starting to take those steps, sometimes slowly, of being the leader and encourager of her peers…no matter her age.

I don’t share this story because it’s a feel good story about my daughter and I; I share it because we have so many potential, young leaders walking through our hallways.  The question is now: how do we as leaders encourage our younger generation to step out of their comfort zones and lead their peers?  Sometimes it takes a word of encouragement, sometimes it takes a modeled behavior, sometimes it takes a story relating to one of their own experiences.  Whatever it takes is what we need to give as it is our duty to cultivate the leaders of tomorrow.  Let’s all take the time to seek out those leaders of tomorrow, develop them and build those positive relationships.  You never know, that person you develop could be the next coach, CEO, or even president.  We can facilitate the beginning of their journey.

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Free and Reduced Meal Program

Preparing for the 2014/2015

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District





Student Programs Applications for 2014-2015 SY


Households with income:  Households with income are encouraged to submit a KPBSD Student Programs Application (even if income is over the Income Eligibility Guidelines), because certain Federal programs base funding on the total number of students applying for benefits.  Parents can submit an application (one application per household) for their household BEFORE school starts – Please allow 10 working days for processing by the Student Nutrition Services Office.


2014/2015 STUDENT PROGRAM APPLICATIONS (cream with blue printing) will be available for pick-up by August 06, 2014 at all Kenai Peninsula Borough Schools, Public Assistance / Job Service and KPBSD CentralOffice.


Households receiving Public Assistance Benefits:  Households receiving Public Assistance benefits (Food Stamps or Temporary Assistance) DO NOT need to fill out a Student Programs Application IF they have received and turned in a School Meals/Direct Certification Notice from Public Assistance.  The Department of Education and Public Assistance will coordinate efforts to implement the Categorical Eligibility Process by also sending names of qualifying households directly to KPBSD / Student Nutrition Services (SNS).  Once your student’s name has been received and processed, SNS will send you a letter notifying you that benefits are available.


30-DAY GRACE MEAL BENEFITS:  Students qualifying for free or reduced meal benefits on the last serving day of the 2013-2014 School Year (May 21, 2014) may receive meal benefits for up to the first 30 school days of the 2014/2015 school year (August 19 – September 30, 2014).  The 30 day grace period allows students to qualify for school meals while their new application, School Meals or Categorical Eligibility Direct Certification Notice is being processed.  NOTE: If a student changes schools, a delay in receiving 30 day benefit may occur.


USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

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Nikiski Girls State Basketball Team

Nikiski Girls 2014 Basketball Team

The Nikiski Girls Basketball Team traveled to the State Basketball Tournament at the Sullivan Arena March 20 – March 22.


Alyssa Darch earned a place on the 3A State Championship All -Tournament Team. Only 10 players from the 8 teams represented at State were chosen. Alyssa scored 15 points and pulled down 17 rebounds in Friday’s game against Valdez.

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Master Schedule

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Skiing Uniforms


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The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District is holding Public Budget Meetings at the following locations:

  • Tuesday, February 18, 2014 at 5:30 p.m. in the Seward High School library
  • Wednesday, February 19, 2014 at 5:30 p.m. in the Soldotna High School library
  • Tuesday, February 25, 2014 at 5:30 p.m. in the Homer High School library

Everyone interested is encouraged to attend one of the meetings.  If there are questions, please contact Lassie Nelson at 714-8838.

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FAFSA Completion Event – February 6

The counseling department is hosting a FAFSA completion event February 6th during evening Parent Teacher conferences from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Parents and their students can bring in their tax information and get help filling out their FAFSA.

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KPBSD Public Budget Meeting

The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District is holding a Public Budget Meeting on Wednesday, February 19, 2014 at 5:30 p.m. in the Soldotna High School library.  Every-one interested is encouraged to attend.  If there are questions, please contact Lassie Nelson at 714-8838.

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