While Peters was technically on leave, he continued to be a presence in the school district, communicating with acting superintendent Ed Murray on a daily basis via phone, text and email. Peters also attended key functions such as data meetings with each school principal and the October Board of Trustees meeting.
Peters’ first official day back started at Laurens District High School where he attended a Meet and Greet for Todd Croker, president of FujiFilm Manufacturing USA, who was speaking at the school. He also interacted with staff and students as they welcomed him back from his absence.
At the October board meeting, Peters indicated he was committed to spending more time in the schools upon his return, citing the need to “see firsthand the conditions and needs at each school.”
Peters wants to spend extensive time in each school seeing the full day of operations and talking with teachers, students, and administrators. “I get a lot of energy from talking with our young people,” he said. “They don’t sugarcoat things and they know what’s working and what isn’t in the classroom. As an organization, our work is to provide the best possible setting for them to learn, and what they say matters a great deal.”
Peters also visited Laurens Middle School where he enjoyed a lunch with Randall Cheeks, a student recently recognized for his honesty in returning $20 that another student had lost. Peters said, “I am extremely proud of the honesty and initiative shown by Randall as he sought the owner of the money he had found. That is the sort of character we find in our schools every day but which rarely gets recognized.”
Later, Peters had one-on-one meetings scheduled with district office cabinet members to discuss specific goals for each department in the school district. “I am excited to be back in the office and I am looking forward to working with staff, students, and parents to create an exciting new norm in LCSD 55,” Peters said.
He was quick to thank the LCSD 55 Board of Trustees for their support during his absence. “It meant a great deal to me and my family that when I needed some time to make arrangements for my father’s care, the Board helped us,” Peters said. “I’d also like to thank the entire staff of the district and our schools for keeping our daily operations running smoothly while I was away.”