It’s still a great time to be a Hawk!

February 4, 2020

Good afternoon.

First – I think we need to clarify that this is my personal blog. I’ve had it for several years and found it to be a valuable communication tool. Most recently, it has been a convenient landing spot for all SkyView HS communication. I will continue to utilize it in the future both as a blog and communication tool; however, I will likely not be posting here for some time as I take a moment of pause and step back from things for a while. Moving forward, I am fairly certain that SkyView will not be using this blog.

Second, it has been my intention to not post to my blog at all these next few months – to simply “go dark” and refrain from making any “statements.” However, I am receiving a lot of comments and being asked many questions, especially with regard to the parent meeting this evening. So here are a few quick thoughts in advance of that meeting.

First things first:

  1. I apologize for not posting something prior to my resignation. It was not my intention to catch you off-guard with this decision. Please forgive me.
  2. SkyView is not likely to ask me to reconsider my resignation. And if they do, I am standing by my decision and will not be returning. Let me see if I can briefly explain why.

Yesterday was the first day in many years that I woke up and three key things were different at the start of my day:

  1. I didn’t wake up at 3:00 in the morning thinking about SkyView, worrying about an email, or trying to process 100’s of factors that would impact a decision I needed to make (and would inevitably make me unpopular with somebody). That has been the pattern for the last several years, but yesterday I woke up after a good night’s sleep with my mind at ease and just laid quietly in bed to start the day.
  2. My wife and I had time to stand by the fire and drink a cup of coffee together. I wasn’t out the door before everybody else was up, I wasn’t rushing off to work to begin my day, and I wasn’t feeling the strain of a long list of items that needed to be accomplished.
  3. I was able to honestly kiss my wife goodbye without any stress or worries clouding my mind. Most mornings for the past several years my wife has been lucky to get a peck on the cheek, and even if she did get a kiss, my mind was already preoccupied with something “SkyView” as I headed out the door.

And then yesterday in the evening we stood by the fire together watching the snow fall outside. Our dogs were playing on the couch, and I asked how she felt about all of this. She smiled and said, “I’m just so glad you don’t have the stress anymore. I feel like I got my husband back.”

People are wondering what happened. …asking if I resigned, …speculating that maybe I was fired, … trying to determine what caused this. Undoubtedly, theories, opinions, and rumors about my resignation will be flying around and growing like a noxious weed in the heat of summer. I’m afraid you will have to decide for yourself what you want to believe. But here is the truth: I am fine.

And that being established, here are my “final wishes” and what I ask of the SkyView community:

  1. ADMIN: To my best friends Linda and Janet, Do what you must to get the SkyView community through this difficult time. I don’t need to say any more than that right now. We’ll talk again soon I’m sure…
  2. HS STAFF: Go be the best that you can be and don’t try to figure all of this out. Focus on teaching and honor me by being all that I have coached you (and allowed you) to be – as teachers and as professionals. Do your best to keep your emotions from getting the best of you and prioritize the education of our students. Take all of the lessons I have tried to instill in you these past 4 years and make the next 4 months the finest of your careers!
  3. PK-8 STAFF: I ask that you please respect the grief my team is experiencing and allow them a moment to get through this. I’ve led this team for almost 4 years and worked with some of these staff members for 7 years. Give them a moment to be sad – it will pass.
  4. STUDENTS: Go to class! Oh yeah: and graduate! Okay, okay – in all seriousness… The four years you spend in high school is a small part of life. This moment in time (whether you are happy, indifferent, or sad) is even smaller. The biggest and best in life is yet to come. Believe me! SkyView is offering you a huge chance to learn how to think critically and withstand the challenges you will inevitably face. Take advantage of this opportunity while you can.
  5. PARENTS: Some of you love me and some of you – well – don’t. …and that’s okay. Many of you have asked what you can do to help. Here is what I think you should do… First, go to the parent meeting tonight, listen to the plan leadership has for moving forward, and decide how you can best support that plan. Second, support my teachers with all your heart. I challenge you to take the rest of this semester and find any-way-and-every-way that you can to encourage them, support them, and motivate them to be the best that they can be. Remain patient with them, for they are not perfect – none of us are – but they come pretty close. Always assume the best of them. I cannot possibly describe with words how hard they all work and sacrifice every single day to do their best and to be their best. Please get behind them. If you are looking for a way to support me, please get behind my staff.

Look: I’m going to be okay. In fact, I’m going to be more than okay. My decision to resign has granted me a tremendous opportunity to step away from the stress and constant work that has robbed me of many precious things in life. I now have time to focus on my wife, my son, my health, and the many personal hobbies/interests that have fallen to the wayside in recent years. For that, I am glad. And for that, you should be glad for me.

Best wishes to you all. May our paths cross again someday. It always has been and still is a great time to be a Hawk!

With Regards,

JA Full Name Signature

Jon Ail,
Former SkyView HS Principal