“Being a Superintendent is a lot like riding a zip line.” Standing by a picture of her family (and herself) all holding their helmets, post zip line travel, Culver City Unified School District Superintendent Leslie Lockhart offered her courageous adventure as a reflection of her post. The ‘State of the District’ presentation on January 10, 2019 was representative of the happy landing.
The crowd at the Robert Frost was made up of many kinds of stakeholders in the district; parents, volunteers, teachers, employees, local business owners and students. All were drawn in by Lockhart’s narrative of stepping off the platform and flying – helplessly, bravely – into the unknown
School Board President Dr. Kelly Kent noted her awareness of how exclusive our happy landing is, at this point in time. Alluding to both the federal government shut down and the impending LAUSD teacher strike, her graphic of choice was an umbrella. “We have this as a symbol of how we focus on whole student accountability.”
A very thorough presentation by Associated Student Body President Falon Legaux covered the activities at the high school from record setting girls’ sports teams and academic achievements to Project Prom to the largest College Fair on the west coast. Legaux acquitted herself faultlessly as both a representative of the school and a capable public speaker.
Lockhart returned to the podium to cover the wrap-around effect of the district, from the preschools on campuses to the many extracurricular and support services offered. Acknowledging the need to both help those students overwhelmed by challenges and to open doors for those whose talents and gifts can flower with more cultivation., two words came back again and again – partnership, and community.
A short group interview with Mayor Thomas Small, Chamber of Commerce President Colin Diaz and Culver City Education Foundation Executive Director Melanie Mack had Lockhart asking about community connections and involvement at all levels.
The evening closed with a spirited performance of “We’re All in This Together” by the CCMS cast of the recent production of Disney’s “High School Musical, Jr.” with singers and dancers pouring down the aisles of the Frost toward the stage, enthusiasm personified.
While public education struggles to keep a foothold in Southern California, Culver City has found a very secure place to stand.