School doesn’t start until Wednesday, but all of the employees at Great Bend USD 428 were on the job Monday for the annual Back to School Bash.
Meeting at Great Bend High School, they were treated to breakfast and a performance by the GBHS Marching Band. Then it was time to get serious — in a joyful sort of way.
Khris Thexton served as interim superintendent for most of 2017, but on Monday he started his first semester as USD 428 superintendent. As he walked onto the stage in the GBHS auditorium, he was greeted with a standing ovation.
“If we’re going to have a great year, I’m going to need a sign,” Thexton quipped. “You know, something like the sun being blotted out today.”
Later in the morning, staff would take a break from in-service training to attend the Business Showcase in the Panther Activity Center. This Chamber of Commerce welcome has become part of the annual Back to School Bash. This year, the Chamber staff handed out free glasses for viewing the eclipse later in the day.
This year’s in-service training came from Joe Coles, a former educator from Cimarron, whose morning topic was “One Team.”
There were words of inspiration from Thexton and from Assistant Superintendent John Popp. Staff also got to meet with National Education Association representatives from the GB-NEA.
Above all, Thexton reminded the staff, “Our mission is to educate and prepare all students to become responsible citizens and life-long learners.” And, he added, “It’s going to be an awesome year.”