Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Joplin Schools - Great Things Happening!

In the aftermath of the tragedy of the May 2011 tornado, our city leaders have worked tirelessly to help the community heal and rebuild stronger and better than before.

Nowhere is the determination to move forward in a positive direction more evident than in our public schools.  Throughout the past sixteen months the administration and school board have worked tirelessly to ensure our district provides the best educational opportunities not just for today but also for many years to come.

Recently the district has received several awards as a testimony to their dedication to our kids and our community.  I'd like to take a minute and share a few of these awards with you.

Dr. Angie Besendorfer, Assistant Superintendent of Joplin Schools, was nominated for the 2013 Women in School Leadership Award at the annual  AASA (American Association of School Administrators) conference in California in September.  Dr. Besendorfer has worked tirelessly to help plan the school district's four new schools as well as keep the curriculum strong to ensure each child reaches his or her fullest learning potential.  Not only is she extremely passionate about education, but she is also one of the most dynamic speakers I have ever listened to.  I am so proud that Dr. Besendorfer received this prestigious nomination, and even more proud that she represents our school district and community on a local, state, and national level.

During the 2011 football season, ESPN produced a show about our program and the challenges our students and coaches faced immediately after the tornado.  This program, "Outside the Lines", recently received an Emmy award in the editing category.  The district recently received its very own statuette to add to the trophy case in the new high school.

And still the awards keep coming....

Two weeks ago, at the annual AIA (American Institute of Architects) convention in Washington, DC, the architectural group who designed the interim JHS 11/12 campus - Corner Greer Associates and its partner, DLR Group - received the first place award from the Committee on Architecture for Education for its innovative design of the interim high school campus.

Finally, this past weekend the Missouri Association of School Administrators (MASA) announced Dr. CJ Huff, Superintendent of Joplin schools, as its Missouri Superintendent of the year.  His leadership and dedication have helped students and our community move forward after the tragic storm in May, 2011, and this award is well-deserved.  Our community is fortunate to have such highly qualified leaders as Dr. Huff and Dr. Besendorfer to help lead us in our rebuilding efforts.

I want to extend a sincere "thank you" to all who have made, and continue to make, such selfless contributions to help our community become better and stronger than it has ever been.  Please feel free to express your gratitude as well in the comments section below.


  1. Fantastic! So thrilled to hear that things are moving forward in Joplin! (DId you ever get to do your coffee date?) DYING to know. ;-)

    1. Thanks, Renee! Amy and I have not had coffee yet :( Silly little distractions in life! We are working on re-scheduling! We will have to drink a toast to you a'la Starbucks-style when we get together!