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Jason Petry, Sanders Memorial Elementary School

Good Morning Mr. Browning, Dr. Scanga, and Mrs. Poe,

My Name is Lauren Wilson. My husband Bob and I have 3 children, two of which have been fortunate enough to attend Sanders Memorial Elementary school in Land O Lakes since it re-opened as a STEAM Magnet school 5 years ago. They are now in 5th grade, 3rd grade and soon to be new Kindergardener! The reason for my email to make you all aware of how AWESOME the principal, Mr. Jason Petry truly is. I'm not sure how I can throw his name in the hat for "Principal of the Year, " but this is the best way I know how. 

Every morning you will find Mr. Petry in the trenches of the dreaded Car Line...except...he always has a huge smile on his face and makes it FUN! He has a giant Bluetooth radio outside blasting music so when the kids first step foot on the campus, they're instantly in a good mood, and just want to dance. Some days is 80's /90"s themed (which the parents love :blush: other days it's what the kids are listening to. In the month of December, you'll find him in car line dressed as the Grinch, or Buddy the Elf. ..the kids LOVE IT!!  When we do our annual school fundraiser, he divides the school into two teams,  turns into the famous " Petry Alien" dressed in an all green leotard and competes with our assistant principal to see which team can raise the most money. At the end they have a huge "War of the Worlds." showdown with inflatables outside and tons of activities for the kids to participate in. I realize school isn't  all about "fun," but gosh...just like we adults want to work for a boss that allows us to let our hair down and blow off some steam, these kids WANT TO LEARN AND DO WELL because they have a leader that infuses his school with enthusiasm, morals, work ethic, and "Work hard, play harder" mentality.

Our eldest son has ADHD and some sensory issues. We've had to reach out to Mr. Petry over the years about various issues we have had with him, where we've needed him to intervene, or advise us. He is always super quick to call us back, talk to us like friends, and resolves the problem immediately. In this society and in the microcosm of the school district in particular, we like to recognize or praise the person or entity with the most "change" or "gains." The D school that's now a B school. FSA scores that were low, that are now high, showing through Data the rise on the graphs. But what about the "status quo," schools? The ones that aren't the squeaky wheels?  the ones that are just always great and expected to stay that way?  Sometimes those Principals are the ones that don't receive the recognition they quite deserve. My Petry is one of those Principals that is loved by his administration and staff, which in turn makes his teachers love their jobs, which in turn makes the students love to learn from happy teachers, which in turn makes parents happy that their kids love to go to school. The trickle effect is real! Now my biggest problem is where to send my son next year for middle school that will even come close to comparing with the loving, collaborative, family that is Sanders Memorial Elementary run by the best Principal in the county.                                                                                                                          

Thank you for you time!

Lauren Wilson

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