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Urgent Optimism

March 13, 2020

These are challenging times. I want to assure the Saline Area Schools community, we will get through this time of uncertainty together, and things will return to normal. I realize and empathize with families, staff, and community members that are facing various types of challenges during this time. Challenging decisions made for the greater good sometimes have undesirable outcomes, yet I believe that we will overcome and get stronger. There are no simple solutions, no easy way to move forward, and no quick answers given the challenges we face today. 

On August 21, 2019, Saline Schools held its annual “welcome back” ceremony in the Saline High School Performing Arts Center. I shared a phrase that I use daily to guide my actions and decisions – “Urgent Optimism.” Jane McGonigal (contemporary American designer) defines urgent optimism for us: “Urgent Optimism is the desire to act immediately to tackle an obstacle, combined with the belief that we have a reasonable hope of success.” I embrace that definition. In the simplest of terms, this mindset is the belief that tomorrow will be a better day – regardless of the obstacles we face today. 

I strive to look at the big picture and welcome the opportunities that lie ahead, even when those opportunities appear to be roadblocks. With patience, positivity, and discipline, each barricade becomes navigatable.

I remain confident and optimistic that as a school district and a community, we can find a way forward and that tomorrow will be a better day. 

“When I was a boy, and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” ― Fred Rogers. Saline is a community of helpers. With urgent optimism, join those who help, seek positive solutions, and build each other up. I live each day grateful for the firm, supportive community that is Saline. Be well.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Diane Mukkala permalink
    March 24, 2020 11:16 am

    Thank you Scot for your optimistic message. I love both of those quotes!

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