August 2018

I don’t know who first said, “Sending the kids back-to-school makes me want to cry…tears of joy,” but I find myself relating well to this thought the first week in August each year.  Don’t get me wrong, I love my two teenagers and the precious time we have to spend together.  However, I also love my two teenagers back in school.   
While getting back into the school-year routine is a little bittersweet, I am always encouraged by the fact that the schools in Johns Creek consistently rank among the best in the state and, according to the latest U.S. News & World Report High School rankings, are also once again among the best in the nation. 
Fulton County Schools have stocked the schools in Johns Creek with some the best educators, administrators, and staff any community could dream of.  And the proof is in the pudding, so to speak.  Year in and year out, our kids produce some of the highest ACT scores in the country, the most National Merit Scholarship recipients in the state, and our athletes continue to win state championship after state championship.
Of course another very important and key component to all this academic and athletic success is parent involvement, and we have some of the best.  The importance of helping provide focus and support from the Kindergarten level through Senior Year in all that our young people do is critical.  I believe the parents in Johns Creek set the bar high in all that they do to support both the students and the schools.
As much as we all do for this community in general, I do have one big ask regardless of whether or not you have children attending school in the city.  Please be ever vigilant as our young people make their way to and from school from the first day right up to the last.  
The city has partnered with a number of schools and outside organizations with a “Walk to School Wednesday” program, which we will look to expand in the fall and beyond.  In addition to those who already walk or bike to school, we are looking to help exponentially grow the number of those who participate in this program, as well as encourage more use of the school buses.  An important benefit to this program and increased bus riders is helping to mitigate traffic congestion by reducing the number of cars on the road with fewer drop offs and pick ups.
Speaking of cars on the road, as with each new school year, there will be many more new or first time drivers on the road.  Please be patient with them and try to remember your earlier years when you hit the road with your first drivers license.  It can be very intimidating, and sometimes confusing so let’s try to help them out.  
Let’s work together to send our kids back to school with a smile and encouragement for the upcoming school year.  I believe we’ve enjoyed their summer break to the fullest extent possible, and I am happy they have had some well-deserved down time from their academic rigors.  
Hopefully, life slowed down just a little for each of us, and provided important quality time with those we love.  In the blink of an eye, another year will pass and our young people will either be on their way out the door and headed into their next chapter in life, or one step closer at a minimum.  
Through it all, thank you for all that you do to help them succeed, and I wish everyone the best for another great school year ahead!