Today was a day spent tying up loose ends before a week off. I always take the week off before Christmas to get ready for the festivities. It is nice to be able to indulge oneself this way – being the boss has to have some perks. And with a lot of kids in my house, I need the time. Also the kids are now out of school and there are not many holidays that I get to take at the same time as the kids.
Today started out at one of our local community schools with half of the dental team. The kids I was scheduled to see were not there – go figure! So after some calls we got the documents I needed to make a year end report, went down to the teachers staff room to help them get rid of some of their Christmas goodies, discussed some of this half of the dental teams concerns, (and saw some of the reasons for them in action), then headed home to strart writing my report.
We have some serious communication problems going on between the two halfs of the dental team that I have to help sort out. That is actually the main reason for the report. A few years ago I did the main administrative work for the program. Now it is administered by someone more detached. I guess my heart is in the program and I want to see it succeed, especially for the sake of the kids that are treated at the schools. So I am trying to take back some of the ownership of it and get the teams working together more harmoniously. Unfortunately, that means I have to do some confrontation – and I hate doing that. It just isn’t me! So I am trying to get the results I need to see without laying blame – by pointing out the areas that must be changed and improved.
One of the problems is working within a very limited budget. It hasn’t increased since the program started back in 1993/4. Salaries have increased. Supplies have gone up in price. So most of the cutbacks have come in the budget for my time and for parent/community involvement. Since the budget isn’t going to allow for much increase in my time, I am going to have to do some juggling to squeeze more time out of somewhere without it costing the program anything.
Anyway, I then had to run over to my office for a couple of last minute jobs. Got to talk to one of my friends who is very involved in the Francophone school. She is interested in how we are doing at getting our boys siblings over from the Congo – and of course since we are francophone we have the “droit” to enroll them in this school. She was telling about the Christmas program at the school. This year one of the teachers from Africa ( a Muslim) was Santa Claus and his young daughter was Mary in the nativity scene with a blonde,blue eyed, baby girl doll as Jesus!! What you can get by with in a small school where the majority are Catholic but the school is run by a board independant from the Catholic School Board. And best of all, it is so small it is like a small country school – everyone knows everyone else like an enlarged family. The drawback for our kids was the smallness and lack of sports and variety in the program.