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They are amazing athletes off to an incredibly successful season on the playing field. On this episode of the Supercast, we catch up with the Mountain Ridge High School football team for an action-packed practice. And, we find out what it’s like to be the first female coach and defensive coordinator for the Sentinels.


Audio Transcription

Anthony Godfrey:
Hello and welcome to the Supercast. I'm your host, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey. The football players at Mountain Ridge High School are amazing athletes off to an incredibly successful season on the playing field. On this episode of the Supercast, we catch up with the team for an action packed practice, and we find out what it's like to be the first female coach and defensive coordinator for the Sentinels.

Coach Davis:
Down here guys, let’s go, let’s go!

Anthony Godfrey:
We're here at Mountain Ridge High School to talk with Coach Davis and a few players. We’re right here on the football field. Guys, introduce yourselves.

Football Players:
Introduce themselves

Anthony Godfrey:
Tell me a little bit about Coach Davis.

Player #1:
She's really nice to know. We love having her on the field. She's very positive to the whole team. She knows what she's doing football wise and she's just great to have around. Always positive.

Player #2:
She likes to kick our butts man, back in the summer conditioning. She knows how to work us, but she stays positive. Motivates us, helps us along the way. It's nice.

Player # 3:
For big guys like me, she's a, made me faster, taught me better technique with running. And I really appreciate that.

Player #4:
Likewise, she knows how to work us during the summer, during the conditioning. And I think that's helped all of us and she's always so enthusiastic. I think that really helps out our team. 

Anthony Godfrey:
It's obvious that you have a lot of respect for her. Have any of you had a female Coach before in football? 

Football Players:
No, sir. 

Anthony Godfrey:
And so when you first came on what did you think? 

Player #1:
You know, at first I was kind of confused, because football is mainly a male sport and so usually you don't see many females around. So first when I joined the team, I kinda was confused. But then once I got to know her, I knew that she knew what she was doing and that she was going to help us be the best that we can be. 

 

Player #4:
I wasn't exactly sure what to think at first. When I saw her, I was like, oh wait, we got the girl coach. I didn't know what to think. And then I got to know her, came to practice and it doesn't matter that she's a girl. Girl, guy, it doesn't matter. She's a great coach.

Anthony Godfrey:
Well, I love that she's worked you hard. It sounds like she's taught you a lot too. Tell me something that she's taught you that you didn't know before.

Player #2:
Oh, definitely mentality like between reps, like telling yourself you can do it and like just not getting tired. She showed us in a workout. One workout, we had a bad mentality. We did the same workout and had a better one that felt so much easier.

Player #3:
I think she's definitely helped. Like I said earlier with speed and technique with our running it's helped a lot. 

Player #4:
She's taught me a lot about being loud and how much just being loud and vocal at practice and our games, it just makes such a big difference. 

Player #1:
She teaches us the mental part of the game. So being able to stay focused and stay positive and be able to have self-confidence really helps us elevate all of our game.

Anthony Godfrey:
You guys are 5 and 0 at the varsity level, that's really impressive. And it's impressive for a relatively new school. I mean, nobody builds a program this fast. Why do you think things are going so well?

Player #3:
I say good players and good coaches. We've had players that stuck it out since day one, going from 0 and 11 to last year having barely 4 and 5, I think. And then this year being able to have a good start. It's just all the coaches and all the players, just being able to keep going and have that grit.

Player #2:
Yeah, just the development. We've had a lot of players that started varsity, sophomore, freshmen, and juniors. So they've just had a lot of varsity reps. A lot of the schools you don't play when you're a sophomore, unless you're like really good. So just all that experience and all the good coaching just helps us, I guess.

Player #1:
I think when you start from the bottom, you can only go one way and that's up. And I think we're on the incline and we're looking really good this year. We're excited.

Player #4:
Kind of going off of why it said we've got a lot of experience on the team and stuff. And I think a big part of it is just work. I mean, we're out here putting in work every day. I think putting in that extra work has really made a difference this season.

Anthony Godfrey:
Well, I really admire you guys because I know it does take a lot of work and it takes a lot of grit and it takes a lot of time and dedication. I'm really excited for you guys that it's paying off. #1 so far and it's going to be a fun season to watch. So thanks for spending time. I'll let you get out there and do some of that work you just described. Coach Davis, that's pretty awesome to hear that from your players.

Coach Davis:
Yeah, it's pretty awesome.

Anthony Godfrey:
Thanks for spending time with us. I know it's a busy, busy time and a great season so far. Tell us about your background in athletics and what drew you to Mountain Ridge?

Coach Davis:
In high school I was a track athlete and that earned me a scholarship to run at Utah Valley. So I did run on the team there. And then after that I got into Coaching. I coached track at my old high school, West Jordan High School. And from there I got a little bit more experience and I was asked to coach swimming and then I was asked to coach cross country. So those are the three sports that I've coached before football. How I got into football is Coach Meifu. I coached him in track. I was a young coach and his coach told him, “You’ve got to get tougher. You need to be faster.” So he came out to the track team and he and I had a great relationship. He was the hardest worker I ever had and remembered him throughout the years. 

He came back, and got a head coaching job at West Jordan. One of the Coaches said, why doesn't she come coach with us? And I just thought it was kind of crazy. You know, I've got all these other sports that I coach, but they talked me into it and I have never regretted that decision. It's changed my life. I feel like my personality is meant for football and my grit and determination and my competitiveness. I feel like I fit in right with the coaches. So I feel like I found a home. 

So when Coach Meifu got the job here at Mountain Ridge, he asked me to come and I thought that was a great honor because he definitely had a chance to get rid of me and he didn't. So he kept me with him. And so I'm here and it's been an honor to build this program from scratch.

Anthony Godfrey:
It is a great honor for him to choose you when he's got to build a program, like you said, from scratch, from the ground up. And it's tough to do at a new high school. Obviously you're doing a great job as a coaching staff and as an individual, you're having a real impact on these athletes. Do you think football is where you’ll stay?

Coach Davis:
Well, I never want to quit it, that's for sure. We'll see what the years say to me. But I definitely feel at home here. And you know, a lot of these boys, I give them the best of me every day, but they are my family. And these boys are, this is my family and I let them know every day. 

Anthony Godfrey:
I love that. Stay with us. When we come back more on the field with the Mountain Ridge High School football team and hear what the Coach is saying about the teamwork that's making the dream work so far this year.

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Coach Davis:
Get your hands on it guys. Get your hands on it. Stay on your feet guys.

Anthony Godfrey:
So tell me how a coaching staff is structured here and what's your role?

Coach Davis:
So my role is the sophomore defensive coordinator and I also work specifically with the defensive backs. So each coach here at Mountain Ridge, we have our position, we coach our position. We focus on that and we work together as a unit to make our whole program work. So we do have sophomore coaches and we, you know, we focus on our sophomore team and our new freshmen team that we brought in this year. So we've got 80 kids that we are in charge of just on the sophomore and freshman end.

Anthony Godfrey:
Just sophomore and freshman, that's a ton. And that's a great group of kids to build a program with. Do some of those kids see JV time as well?

Coach Davis:
Some of them do, our sophomores. You know, of course in football, you have injuries and throughout the season there's wear and tear on the body. So we'll send our sophomores up, you know, as things happen, the depth chart changes a little bit. So people come up and then they may come back. Our program is a progressive program, so we move up or, you know, you can stay in your spot and keep working at it. So we just problem solve along the way. 

Anthony Godfrey:
What type of preparation has gone into every time you switched sports, when you switch from track to coaching swimming and to coaching football, what kind of preparation do you do?

Coach Davis:
Okay. So I do coach swim here at Mountain Ridge, and so those seasons slightly overlap and I just have to put things in their place. I learn to be a football coach when I’m at football and I learn to be a swim coach when I‘m at swim. So I really focus on those things and keep them separate. And I keep, you know, each program separate and the disciplines. So I just focus. It's the same techniques that we teach our kids. So you put in the work when you're there,  and then if you’ve got to change gears and do something else, then you change gears and do something else. So these are all skills that we teach our athletes and I apply them to myself. It's a very busy life though.

Anthony Godfrey:
No question about that. What are some of the reactions that you get generally? It is out of the ordinary to have a female football coach at the high school level. What are some of the reactions that you hear?

Coach Davis:
So in the beginning, when I was first coaching, a lot of people just thought I was a trainer on the field. And like from referees, they told me to back up and get out of the coaches box. 

Anthony Godfrey:
You’ve had refs move you out of the coaches box?

Coach Davis:
I have had refs move me out, yes. So then, you know, I’m just getting in their face and saying “I'm a coach. I belong here”. So I think through the years, I think the community has gotten used to me being there. But I still do get some people surprised, “Hey, is like, is that a mom out there all juiced up?” “No, that's my coach.” So anyway, their misconceptions are there, but I think they slowly go away, but I don't focus on that. I just focus on our team and if I can get our boys to do what they're doing on the field, that's my focus when we're out there. 

Anthony Godfrey:
So what would you say to parents of a student who's considering playing football?

Coach Davis:
I would tell them to highly consider it. For me personally, I had a football coach that changed my life and it didn't happen on the football field. It happened when I did track in high school and that football coach was our late Rick BoJack, and I love him dearly. It was the first adult I had in my life that believed in me. I needed that desperately and he changed my life. So when I'm out here, coaching football, I am thinking about him and what he did for me. I try to offer that for anybody that comes and plays football. This is a great sport. It teaches you to problem solve. You're not gonna win every single rep. You're going to get beat and you’ve got to get back on your feet. You’ve got to try again and you’ve got to fight and dig deep. So these are all lessons that we carry you through life. Football may not always be played in their life, but the problem-solving skills that you learn here are going to be the ones that you will take through your family, your jobs, any type of adversity that you'll face in the future.

Anthony Godfrey:
He's someone who had an impact on people. There's no doubt about that. What would you say to a women who are considering coaching in high school?

Coach Davis:
I have been asked that a few times by women and my advice is my own experience. So my own experience coming into football was I focused on my strengths. I knew what I could offer. I, you know, I'm a whiz with speed. I look at shin angles. I know what generates power. And as I came into football, I didn't understand a whole lot about the scheme of it, I had to learn along the way. But I did know what created speed, and I did know what created power and I did know change of direction. So I was able to take my strengths and put that into the game. And then I grew from there. So if there's someone out there that wants to coach the sport, female, male, whoever has a desire, look at your strengths, come in with an offering and give all you've got.

Anthony Godfrey:
It's obvious that these players really respect you. But I've also heard that they don't want to let you down and you really stretch them. Tell me about that and how you do that.

Coach Davis:
I coach from my own personal experiences. They may not know everything about my life, but I do know that working through problems and facing adversity can change everything. If there are players that don't want to let a coach down that's a good thing. They're out there doing their best and they want that praise. And I'm definitely able to give them that praise when things go right. If things go wrong, I'm going to be their best support. I'm going to let them know they can do hard things and they can get through anything and get back up on their feet.

Anthony Godfrey:
Having an adult in their lives that expects a lot of them, and when they fall a little short, knows how to get them there is very, very valuable. And that's why they spend the time and energy they do to be coached by you.

Coach Davis:
Well, I'm the lucky one. So like I said, these boys get me through a lot in my life. So I would say that goes both ways.

Anthony Godfrey:
When they look back on their football experience at Mountain Ridge, what do you want them to take with them?

Coach Davis:
I want them to know that they're loved number one. That all of us coaches love them as if they're our own kids. So they need to feel love number one, and always know that they can come back to us. They need to know that this home is their home and they can go on to colleges and, you know, create families. They are always welcome back. The biggest thing that I want them to take with them is confidence in problem solving and to keep fighting through things and to celebrate life.

Anthony Godfrey:
That's awesome. Thank you for all the time that you dedicate. I know it's just a ton of time, but it's obvious it's rewarding for them and rewarding for you and the results are there too. So congratulations on a great season so far, and I know great things are ahead as well. 

Coach Davis:
Thank you. 

Anthony Godfrey:
Thanks again. Coach Meihu first of all, congratulations on a great season so far here at Mountain Ridge. 

Coach Meifu:
Thank you. 

Anthony Godfrey:
And that's a quick build of a program. 

Coach Meifu:
Oh, it's a work in progress. 

Anthony Godfrey:
It always is, I know. I understand you were coached by Coach Davis. Tell me a little bit about that.

Coach Meifu:
Yeah, Coach Davis. She was my track coach. You know, I kinda got put in a situation in high school where I was told I either need to get faster or I needed to switch positions. And so I decided to join track and she helped shape me into a good player,  and definitely fixed that problem.

Anthony Godfrey:
And you obviously did not forget her because then you hired her at West Jordan. Is that right?

Coach Meifu:
That's correct. When you have somebody that improves your career so much, you know, you don't forget those people.

Anthony Godfrey:
Zo you wanted that benefit to be available to your players here at Mountain Ridge as well, and you brought her over here. Like she said, you had your choice, you have your pick when you're starting a program and you chose her. That's a nice compliment. 

Coach Meifu:
Yeah, absolutely. One of our core values here in our program is all about trust and I bring on people that I trust and bring great value to our program. She was definitely a no brainer for me.

Anthony Godfrey:
I had the chance to talk with some players, and it's obvious that she's built trust with those players quickly.

Coach Meifu:
Yes, absolutely. I mean, again, that's what our program is built around is trusting one another. And yeah, she does a great job and they see the benefit too. I mean the year round stuff and the speed and agility, like they see it and you know, when they're getting value out of it, it's really easy to build that trust.

Anthony Godfrey:
She brings out the best in everybody. 

Coach Meifu:
Absolutely, yeah. And she'll challenge them. You know, and I think they know that she cares too.

Anthony Godfrey:
That's a great combination. She cares. And as a result, she gets a lot of work out of them. 

Coach Meifu:
Yeah, absolutely. 

Anthony Godfrey;
Thank you, Coach. Congratulations on the season so far and we're excited to see what happens next. 

Coach Meifu:
Appreciate it, and thank you. 

Anthony Godfrey:
Thanks again. Thanks for joining us for another episode of the Supercast. Remember education is the most important thing you will do today. We'll see you out there.

It is marching band season and that means a summer of hard work and dedication to music and marching comes to life on the football field and beyond.

On this episode of the Supercast, we take you behind the scenes to show what goes into creating precision and visual performance along with amazing music for students in the Herriman High School marching band.


Audio Transcription

Anthony Godfrey:
Hello and welcome to the Supercast. I’m your host, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey. It is marching band season, and that means a season of hard work and dedication to music and marching will come to life on the football field and beyond. On this episode of the Supercast, join us as we go behind the scenes with the Herriman High School marching band. Simply put, this will be music to your ears.

We're here at Herriman High School with the director of bands. I'll let him introduce himself and then we'll talk with some of his students and maybe even experience a little marching band for ourselves.

Brandon Larsen:
My name is Brandon Larsen. I've been at Herriman for, this is now my sixth year here. It's clearly my dream job or else I wouldn't still be here. I really love it here because I get to be with these nerds all the time. We get to make music together, and compete, and I get to see them grow and become better musicians and better people.

Anthony Godfrey:
In a band program, nerd is a term of endearment. 

Brandon Larsen:
Yes, I think we were saying dork is better. I don't know, but either way.

Anthony Godfrey:
My son is a budding band nerd/dork as evidenced by the marimba that I purchased on KSL and put in my basement. What do you love most about being director of bands here at Herriman High?

Brandon Larsen:
The kids. Hands down, the kids. Watching them grow. Some of the kids that are here, like, I've known Kaden since he was in fifth grade. I taught his older brother and watched him grow. Each and every one of them from barely being able to make sounds on their instrument when I'm visiting them at the middle school to now we have all-state musicians here. They're very, very high class and hard working musicians. It's fun to watch them grow and see the things that they accomplish. That's a hands down, easy, easy answer.

Anthony Godfrey:
And when you're working with students, the progress is obvious when they're becoming musicians. Because like you said, you can see what they could do before and what they can do now. That must be very rewarding because you don't always get that outward result as a teacher.

Brandon Larsen:
Right, and it's not always obvious to them. So it's fun to be the person who says, "you're doing great. Hang in there. I'm seeing progress every single day. I'm proud of you." It's fun. It's fun to see you grow. That's the fun part because at this level it's so incremental that sometimes you can't see the forest for the trees, but I'm the third party that can come in and say, no, absolutely, "think of the music you were playing even last year and what we're doing this year" and help them reflect.

Anthony Godfrey:
It's true. We don't give ourselves enough credit for the progress we make. We stay focused on what we still don't know, and yet when we look back, we've made more progress than we realize.

Brandon Larsen:
That’s the fun thing about music too, is that we're never done. We're never done improving. We're never done getting better. We have, like it says on the wall, we have a motto and a credo of  ‘nothing worth having comes easy.’ So, we really pushed through those kinds of things. So not only are they getting musical skills, but they're also getting skills that they can take into their lives as contributing members of society, and to their jobs and to school. That kind of resilience that comes with continuing to improve every single time that they come to our rehearsal. 

Another unique thing about Herriman is that we have a study hall. So we will start on Monday where they'll get an hour and a half of time that's booked out in the library, just for them, right after school. Before rehearsal, they will go in there and I will check their grades. I go through every single one of their grades, all 130 of them, and make sure that all of them are staying caught up. And if they're not, we're making plans on how to keep going. So we continue that support because we don't just want them to be good musicians. We want them to use music to become better people, and musicians, and students, and citizens.

Anthony Godfrey:
I love that, and there's no deadline like a performance. Anything live you have to be prepared and you have to get a mindset for being prepared or else it's just not gonna work out. You're not going to become a musician. 

Brandon Larsen:
Right, it takes so much repetition and that's where the resilience comes in, right? Because we repeat and repeat and repeat and repeat, and then I reward them with one more repeat, right? Like, ‘we're going to do this. You did it great, now do it one more time. Do it great again.’ I can already hear their eyes rolling behind me right now, but that's how they improve. So that resilience comes in when they're willing to do it one more time, and make that incremental progress.

Anthony Godfrey:
Well, thanks for all your hard work on this. I know there's really no season. It doesn't end. It's all the time. I just really appreciate the opportunity that you're giving these students. I wish I'd taken that opportunity. It's a little intimidating when you don't know the instrument. I'm glad that you obviously get involved when students are younger. When you've known students since they were in fifth grade, you involve yourself early on. Tell me a little bit about that.

Brandon Larsen:
Well, I see every interaction that I have with a kid as either an educational or recruitment opportunity. So I will go with the middle school directors to the elementary schools, just so that they know my face. I'm at the middle schools every other day.  When I have my prep hours, I'm over at the middle schools team teaching and helping out, because I want them to feel like once you join the music program, you're a part of it all the way through. When these guys have siblings and when I see them, I always look at them and go, ‘ you look like a new tuba player. You want to come play the tuba.’ It's not a question, that's what they're going to do. So just making those connections with their siblings. Kaden was unique in that he wanted to march way back when his brother was in the marching band. He wanted to do it and he couldn't wait. Didn't you get to march one year with Davin? 

Kaden:
It just barely didn't work out.

Brandon Larsen:
So his older brother, is I think, four years older than you? So it just barely missed.He was at every competition with his family, just wanting to be there. So all we did was elbow and say, ‘come on, man, join us.’

Anthony Godfrey:
Tell us your name. 

Kaden:
I'm Kaden. 

Anthony Godfrey:
And you watched your brother march? 

Kaden:
Yeah. 

Anthony Godfrey:
Do you remember what that felt like when you hadn't done it yet and you were watching him do it? 

Kaden:
From like the third grade, I knew about marching band, but like fifth grade was really when I got into the program and stuff, doing like parade band and stuff. Parade band is just like a little window into what the real marching band stuff would be. So when I was out there on the stands, watching all of them perform and do like crazy things that I'd never seen before, I was like, oh, I wish I was on there.

Anthony Godfrey:
And now you've been able to do that. What year in school are you? 

Kaden:
It's my junior year.

Anthony Godfrey:
Junior year, so you've got another good year ahead of you as well. What instrument do you play?

Kaden:
I play the alto saxophone most of the time.

Anthony Godfrey:
Now, Ashton, you're the grand poobah. Remind me what's the exact term? 

Ashton:
I am one of the drum majors.

Anthony Godfrey:
The drum major. Okay, now there are military terms throughout the group here, I understand. So I'm going to talk to some platoon leaders and some others. So as the drum major, what is your specific responsibility?

Ashton:
I am the one in the front of the band conducting and keeping time.

Anthony Godfrey:
Let's just say that during a game or a rehearsal, you did something just completely unexpected. Would they do what you asked them to do? How would you stop them? Could you stop them somehow? Could you give them a signal to stop or to go really fast or to go really slow? And would they do it?

Ashton:
It's hard to say, because right now their main focus is kind of their drill and like finding their dots and like finding where to go. So their eyes aren't up looking at us yet, but we, we want them to be so.

Anthony Godfrey:
So ultimately yes. 

Ashton:
If they’re doing it right and we cut off and like told them to stop, they should stop. Yeah.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay. Now, when they're practicing, they're on their dots. So how does that start out? What's your name? 

Huck:
Huck.

Anthony Godfrey:
Huck, Tell me, how does that start out when you're in the dot phase of things?

Huck:
Basically what happens is we just get this little sheet of paper and it's got all these like crazy numbers written on it. You just have to look at it. It just says, your first dot is at this spot on the field and you just go there. Then we just rep that a couple of times. Then we do the next dot. We do that and then we just keep going and then we'll start putting dots together and doing like chunks. And then eventually we just had the whole thing on the field and then we'll add music to it.

Anthony Godfrey:
So you connect the dots into chunks and then you add music. I think I summarized that too succinctly. 

Huck:
Yes. 

Anthony Godfrey:
So does the dot have a particular number to it? Like, is there a number assigned to the dot and you go, oh, I've got dot number 27. Here I go.

Huck:
Yeah. So each member of the marching band has a letter that signifies their instrument and then a number for what number of the instrument they are.

Anthony Godfrey:
What is your role? Are you your drum minor or what are you? 

Huck:
So I'm the percussion platoon leader.

Anthony Godfrey:
Wow. What does the percussion platoon leader do?

Huck:
So I'm over all of the percussion. So that's the drum line and then the front ensemble, who's just in the front. 

Anthony Godfrey:
What does the front ensemble play?

Huck:
The front ensemble. It's like the marimbas, the vibraphone, xylophone, all the auxiliary percussion. They do a lot of the sound effects and stuff. So there's like synthesizers where there's like pianos and they'll do like effects and stuff that go with our show.

Anthony Godfrey:
It is a pretty amazing production, all of the instruments that end up on the field so quickly and then back off. Tell us your name and your role. 

Skyler:
I'm Skyler and I'm the field commander.

Anthony Godfrey:
And what does the field commander do?

Skyler:
Basically I’m the head drum major. So there's three other ones, Ashton, Cooper and Laura, and then me. I am motivating the band, leading the band, I conduct on those big high platforms.

Anthony Godfrey:
Oh yeah, okay. What do you think of being on the high platform? 

Skyler:
It's fun. 

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah, okay. You're not clipped in or anything. It's just you up there. 

Skyler:
Yup. there’s a staircase behind me. 

Cooper:
There's a cage. 

Anthony Godfrey:
There's a cage.  Oh, is there a cage? 

Cooper:
He's got a cage. I don't. 

Anthony Godfrey:
And you're part of the percussion ensemble as well? 

Cooper:
No, I'm the other senior drum major. Ashton's one senior drum major and I’m the other one. Am I on the backfield permanently? Okay. So I'm on the backfield permanently.

Anthony Godfrey:
You just found out you're on the backfield permanently. Is that bad news or is that okay? 

Cooper:
It's news. That's fine. 

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay. Fair enough. What was your name? So I'm Cooper.

Cooper:
So being on the backfield is entertaining because my sound perception is different than anybody else because they're all facing the front field. Most of the rehearsal, I just run the met and deal with how off everything sounds and try to stare down Skyler and stay on tempo.

Anthony Godfrey:
So are you watching each other on the field also? So some of you were watching the tower commanders or the drum majors and the, sorry, I will get the terminology wrong every time. So you're watching at the top of the towers, but maybe some people are watching you, because they aren't, as they're moving around, they're not able to watch the drum majors. Is that correct?

Cooper:
Yeah, so being on the backfield, so I'm on the backside of the field. That was self-explanatory. There's a couple of sets in the show, mostly like the last half of second movement and the first half of third movement where the entire band is turned around looking at me while Huck and all the drum line is over there jamming out, having a great time. So basically that's my entire job just to be there for when that happens. 

Anthony Godfrey:
I knew you were involved with drums, and then I asked if you're involved with percussion and I expected that to be the same thing. What's the difference between percussion and drums? Is percussion anything you hit that isn't a drum? 

Cooper:
Drums are part of percussion, yes.

Anthony Godfrey:
So drums is a subset of percussion. Okay. This is very complicated, but very organized. I'm starting to understand. Okay. Tell us your name. 

Laura:
I'm Laura. 

Anthony Godfrey:
And what do you play Laura?

Laura:
Well, I'm the junior drum major of the band. So I'm also conducting.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay, so are you also on top of a tower?

Laura:
Yep. I am on a tower thing.

Anthony Godfrey:
Teach me a term that would make it seem like I am one of you because I'm wanting to be. So just teach me some lingo that I could throw out there when I'm walking through the parking lot at Corps Encore next time, that will make me seem like I really know marching band, like nobody else.

Laura:
Okay. So whenever we run any part of our show, we have to call the band to set. Which is when they have to stand at attention, basically with their arms up with their instruments depending on what they play or do. They’re definitely at attention and they have to be focused on us and not moving. 

Anthony Godfrey:
So that's calling the band to set. So how would you do that? 

Laura:
We just yell, “set.” 

Anthony Godfrey:
You just yell “set”.

Laura:
We just yell “set”. Sometimes we count down to give them more time to prepare themselves. 

Anthony Godfrey:
So this is good. When I'm walking, I would never do this to you guys now that we're all friends, but if I'm walking by a marching band at a random other school, I could say “3, 2, 1, set” and then they'd maybe do it?

Laura:
Maybe.

Cooper:
We could say that in the lunchroom and there are kids who would do it. 

Anthony Godfrey:
There were kids who would jump up and do it? So this is a way that you could tell who's in the marching band, just walking into any classroom. 

Cooper:
But you just need to listen to the music in the halls and see who's on step in the hallway. 

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay. Yeah. So let me ask you about that. Is it hard to resist walking in time? 

Laura:
It’s very hard to resist.

Anthony Godfrey:
Wow. Okay. So this just becomes a part of who you are wherever you are.

Laura:
Yep, very much. 

Anthony Godfrey:
Tell me your name and rank.

Bronson:
My name is Bronson and I'm the brass platoon leader and I am U2.

Anthony Godfrey:
You're the brass platoon leader? So with all these military terms, when they say you're the brass, that has a different meaning now. 

Bronson:
Yeah. So I'm in charge of all the brass instruments, the trumpets, the mellophones, the baritones and the tubas. I'm part of the tuba section, but I'm over all of the brass.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay. What's the brass like? How would you describe the brass group compared with others?

Bronson:
The brass are very interesting. 

Anthony Godfrey:
You're one of them, so you can be honest. 

Bronson:
Yeah, sometimes we act like complete fools. But when we have “platoonals'' where I get all the brass together and we play the music, they sound beautiful. Like this is one of the best brass sections we've had.

Anthony Godfrey:
So you sound great together and have a great time together it sounds like.

Bronson:
That is very accurate. 

Anthony Godfrey:
That's awesome. Tell me about the workload and the time that you put into being part of the marching band here at Herriman High School.

Bronson:
It is almost a full week commitment. We have rehearsals Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Sometimes throughout the season, we'll do pep band for football games and those are on Fridays. And then once we get into the season, we have competitions almost every Saturday. So really our only free days are Tuesdays and Sundays.

Anthony Godfrey:
And you have a lot of practices over the summer as well from what I understand.

Bronson:
Yeah, later in the summer, normally a couple of weeks before school starts, we have our first week of band camp, which is 12 hours a day, five days a week. So 60 hours in a week where we work together. That's when we start learning our music and start setting our drill.

Anthony Godfrey:
Wow. You spend as much time with marching band in the summer as I do with email, and that's a lot of time. Let's talk a little bit about color guard. Tell me your name. 

Carina:
I'm Carina and I'm the color guard platoon leader. 

Anthony Godfrey:
Tell me about the color guard platoon leader.

Carina:
It's definitely interesting because the guard has very different personalities all throughout. It's definitely different since we have three pieces of equipment. So everyone's doing different things at different times. 

Anthony Godfrey:
What are the three different pieces of equipment that you use? 

Carina:
So we spin flag, saber and rifle in the show.

Anthony Godfrey:
Flag, saber and rifle. And which is your favorite?

Carina:
My favorite to spin, I think would be flag.

Anthony Godfrey:
Flag looks like it's really, really hard though, because of the 'flagginess' of it. It would be really hard to spin that huge flag. Wouldn’t it?

Carina:
So flag is actually our beginner equipment and we always give it to anyone who’s new and trying different things out. 

Anthony Godfrey:
So the flag is beginner?

Carina:
Yes, it is. 

Anthony Godfrey:
Wow. Because you're not flipping it up in the air or why is that?

Carina:
It's one of the larger pieces of equipment so it's a lot easier to handle. With saber and rifle they spin really quickly, so it's just more advanced.

Anthony Godfrey:
And the saber is, for those listeners, it's not an actual saber, right?

Carina:
No, it is not. 

Anthony Godfrey:
What do people maybe misunderstand about being in color guard? What would be a misperception about being in color guard?

Carina:
I think a lot of people just kind of confuse us with dance and drill. We're pretty similar because we have to be in the same unity and spin at the same time and be clean just like they are. But I think a lot of the time they confuse our skillset with theirs and how we spin with equipment and dance with it.

Anthony Godfrey:
Stay with us. When we come back, we head out to the football field as they strike up the marching band. You don't want to miss it.

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Anthony Godfrey:
We're out on the field here with the band. You have a large crew, Mr. Larsen. How many students are out here?

Brandon Larsen:
Yeah. Right now, 130. When I started at Herriman we had 40. 

Anthony Godfrey:
Wow. 

Brandon Larsen:
It's come a long way. 

Anthony Godfrey:
Wow. Well, it builds momentum when it's a great program and kids are enjoying themselves, the word spreads. 

Brandon Larsen:
Yes, I certainly hope so. 

Anthony Godfrey:
So tell me, how is this divided up? Percussion, brass? How many in each group would you say?

Brandon Larsen:
We probably have 24 or so in percussion. Woodwinds are about 25, 26. Brass are the large majority at around 30, 35 and then color guard is another 20, 21 on top of that. 

Anthony Godfrey:
I love how many students get to be involved in this. It's awesome.

Brandon Larsen:
This is the Superintendent of our school district right here, Dr. Godfrey. We're going to make some music for him. Yeah? Get in your music arcs really quickly so we can do that. Let's go move it, move it. Yell set. You wanted to do that. Give them 3, 2, 1. 

Anthony Godfrey:
I don't have a band director's voice. I'll try to. 3, 2, 1 set! Wow, that's really good.

Brandon Larsen
Concert B flat scale. Tick, tick, tadas on the way up and then long notes on the way down, say yes.

Drum Major:
5, 6, 5, 6, 7, 8.

Anthony Godfrey:
What would you say to a student who is thinking about trying marching band or joining one of the bands here at Herriman High School or anywhere else? What advice would you give them? 

Cooper:
Just go for it. Like genuinely, I don't think there's a better organization in the school. I'm in choir and I have done theater too, and I think this is the most organized and just some of the most connected organizations in this school. Don't think that you're not good enough. We have classes if you're just starting and we're going to work you up. And once you're in, you're kind of stuck with us.

Anthony Godfrey:
So is this really like a second family after all the time that you spend together?

Cooper:
Easily. Sometimes it feels more like a first family.

Anthony Godfrey:
Thank you for all the time that you're putting into this and the way that you support each other. Thank you for taking the time and sharing this with me. I'm going to be yelling “set'' at classrooms and cafeterias and fields around the district to test what I've learned today. But what I've really learned is just how dedicated you are as students, to what you do in band, to academics and to each other. Thank you for that. 

Thanks for joining us on another episode of the Supercast. Remember education is the most important thing you will do today. We'll see you out there.

There are a lot of people who come together to make student safety a top priority in our schools. It is a combined effort on behalf of people who care.

On this episode of the Supercast, we talk to School Resource Officer Mike Ashley about his role in keeping kids safe and how students can help. We also share some ideas for keeping students safe throughout the year when it comes to their mental health and wellness.

Audio Transcription

Anthony Godfrey:
Welcome to the Supercast. I'm your host, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey. There are a lot of people who come together to make students' safety a top priority in our schools. It is a combined effort on behalf of many people who care. On this episode of the Supercast, we talk with school resource officer Mike Ashley, better known as Officer Ash about his role keeping kids safe and how students can help. We also share some ideas on student safety when it comes to their mental health and wellness.

We are here with Officer Ashley from the Riverton Police Department. He's one of our S.R.O.s - School Resource Officers. Officer Ash, thanks for spending some time with us.

Officer Ashley:
Thanks for inviting me. I'm glad to be here and I hope I can help out.

Anthony Godfrey:
Tell us what are some things for us to be thinking about as we look to keep kids safe at the beginning of the school year?

Officer Ashley:
Well, first of all, if they're grade school kids, we want to make sure that, if they're walking, we want to make sure that they know the route of how they got to school and the time it takes for them to get to school and back. Also with the bus, the bus schedule and to make sure they know what buses they're getting onto. Even the bus driver's name is always kind of nice to know. And when they're expected to be home from their bus, either going to school or coming back from school.

Anthony Godfrey:
So know the route, know the bus, and know the bus driver. What are some other tips, particularly for those students who are walking to school, what are some tips for staying safe that way?

Officer Ashley:
The other thing is know your phone numbers. Not just your mom, but your dad's, maybe your brother and sister, older brother and sisters. Know the neighborhood. Know what houses are probably safe to stop at if for some reason you feel uncomfortable with somebody, or somebody seems to be following you, or a group of kids are, you feel like they're bullying you. Somewhere you can go. Find those routes, those houses that you can maybe go to if you can't make it home.

Anthony Godfrey:
Which is something that we look at whenever we're establishing those safe walking routes in partnership with the city. Is there someplace that a student could go if they had some trouble on the way home, which is a fairly rare, but you always want to know that you have a refuge available to you.

Officer Ashley:
Yes, that's correct. If it's a home, that's great. If it's somewhere else, a business, a business that you know, that's a good place to stop. Calling a parent is always one of the best things to do. Go back to the school if the school's close enough. Just turn back and go back and talk to one of the teachers or the principal, or even the hall monitors. They're always out and about around the school.

Anthony Godfrey:
And if there is a problem, then students can report that to parents or the school or the police, really anyone who can then follow up.

Officer Ashley:
Yes, that's correct. If they call the parents, which happens all the time, they call the parents, the parents usually hopefully know the SRO, they call the SRO. If they don't, they'll call a patrol officer, the patrol officer will refer it to us.

Anthony Godfrey:
Tell me about students maybe reporting concerns that they have, or things that they've seen that they may be worried about or that they think maybe shouldn't be happening.

Officer Ashley:
In DARE, that's kind of what we teach. Where they need to go, who they need to come to. That they can be trusted or feel that trust between the officer or even the school staff. That they can tell us something maybe they don't want anybody else to know about. In the middle school, I actually go into each of the classes and talk about keeping our school safe. Oquirrh Hills has 1300 students. I tell the students that it's 1300 students, plus the staff that's here, that are supposed to keep our school safe. So if they see something that they feel we need to know about, that they need to report it. Instead of just an officer trying to keep the whole school safe, it's everybody working together as a neighborhood.

It's as a neighborhood that we watch out for each other and we care for each other.  We take pride in our school, we take pride in who we are. We want our school to be a good school where people feel safe to go to. It's nice. I always try to tell parents to have their kids come meet me, the SRO, the hall monitors and the staff, so that the kids feel like they've been introduced and they can come at any time, with any problem. If it's just getting your locker open, finding a class. I'm doing push-ups and sit-ups with them during PE. That's kind of the stuff I did this morning. So that they feel comfortable coming up to any one of us talking about any given stress or issue that they may have.

Anthony Godfrey:
And developing a positive connection with a police officer as a student is really important. It's a great, great benefit from having officers in our school.

Officer Ashley:
Yes. Like for me, I get to teach. I start with DARE, and this year I have my fifth graders as seventh graders. So they already know me. So they're like, "Hey Officer Ash!" and they're all excited to see me because we already have that relationship.

Anthony Godfrey:
So that's really an important part of keeping our kids safe and there are benefits long after they leave school from having built that relationship.

Officer Ashley:
I've had students when I was in the high school, that graduated several years ago, come to me and say, "Hey, remember me?" And I remember them. So it's awesome to see from second grade to graduating from high school. 

Anthony Godfrey:
And the hours are a little better as a school resource officer. Aren't they? I hope.

Officer Ashley:
Yeah, we're typically 7:30 to 3:30, but sometimes we work later of course. If we get reports of a missing child or a runaway. Our phone is always on, so that patrol or any other officers can call to say, "Hey, we have this issue or problem or concern about a certain student. We need you to give us information if you can, so we can locate them, or find them, or work out whatever issue they were having".

Officer Ashley:
Well the job never stops for anyone who serves students.

Officer Ashley:
Nope, Never does. In the summertime I like to go out and do block parties, neighborhood parties, business contacts. I'm hanging out at the park. I'm trying to keep that connection with the kids during the summer. And then a lot of times their parents are there, so I get a chance to meet with them and introduce myself.

Anthony Godfrey:
Well, I love the connection you've made with the community and the support that you give our schools. It's really great to be a partner with you and providing the best experience possible for students. So thank you, Officer Ash.

Officer Ashley:
Thanks for having me. I really appreciate it.

Anthony Godfrey:
Stay with us. When we come back, a conversation about the importance of mental health and wellness.

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Anthony Godfrey:
We're here with McKinley Withers and we check in with him on the Supercast on a regular basis because he does such a great job of keeping us in touch with how to take good care of kids in every way. Just to make sure that their social and emotional wellness is intact and that they're ready for the year. McKinley, thanks for joining us.

MdKinley Withers:
Thanks for having me. I'm happy to be back.

Anthony Godfrey:
This is a different year once again, from any we've experienced, things have shifted a little bit. Tell us what are some things that we should be keeping in mind to help kids feel confident going into the school year.

McKinley Withers:
This year there's a lot of talk about safety and feeling safe and being safe. I think it's important to not consider physical and mental safety as separate things. For students to be safe, it's best that all of them also feel safe. What that can mean, that could mean a lot of things. So that could mean, feeling safe, to feel free to have emotions, to express those emotions, identify them, talk about those feelings with adults or peers. That could mean safe to make mistakes. As many of them are adjusting to a new school year with new challenges, a new adjustment to the way that they're doing this again. Safe to try new things this school year as many of them tried new things with online learning or hybrid learning. Many students are going to be trying new things this year as with their teachers and their parents. Safe to be independent and feel like they can make choices and have consequences for their own choices. Then most importantly, I think we are all safer if the people around us feel connected to us and to each other. So we have to be able to feel safe around our fellow adults and our fellow peers in order to have that mental safety. That's the foundation of being safe.

Anthony Godfrey:
So safety comes from connection.

McKinley Withers:
Yes.

Anthony Godfrey:
And feeling safe really is rooted in a lot of those things that you talked about.  Being able to be independent, being able to make mistakes and to try new things. 

I participated in an exercise that was put on by teachers from Jordan and some other districts combined, where we were given activities that would be used in the classroom. It was interesting to experience it from the student side. I was given a sheet of multiplication that an elementary student would be given and I was supposed to do a timed exercise. Suddenly I'm thinking, 'I don't want to be the dumb one that doesn't know this, that doesn't get it done quickly, that doesn't get it done in time. I don't want to be wrong.' All those feelings kind of came rushing back that I hadn't experienced for a long time. It was interesting to experience that as an adult when we put students in that situation a lot, but we kind of forget what it's like, because we aren't always put in that situation ourselves. So maybe some empathy for how that feels to make a mistake, how it feels to try something new, and wonder if you're going to be good at it.

McKinley Withers:
Right, yeah. All of us are prone to forgetting what it was like when we were a lot younger when we first tried something.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah, but we also think we remember, 'oh, I've been through this. I went to elementary school.' We probably don't remember. The independence, how do we foster that?

McKinley Withers:
As a parent, we want more than anything to protect and ensure our child's safety. Part of that requires parents or caregivers to be comfortable allowing children to be unsafe and then make their own decisions.

Anthony Godfrey:
That's an interesting twist because you don't think about independence and safety being combined. That independence is risky. You see the memes on Facebook about 'I was raised in the wild in the 80s or whatever. You know, we were just turned free in the morning, and then we returned some time at night. Nobody knew where we were.' It's striking a balance I guess.

McKinley Withers:
The root of anxiety is not having exposure or experiences. So if we avoid, avoid, avoid, if we aren't able to go out and try new things and even fail and have it not be so bad. The reason we are often anxious about failure, or when that test was put in front of you, and you experienced what it's like to not be so sure if you could do your multiplication tables. I really, that was one of those moments as a Superintendent, you expressed safety and feeling, or expressing your emotions because that's quite the confession to your audience members that you were nervous in that moment. But afterwards we are feeling better because we faced the challenge. We did fail and it wasn't so bad. So we have to have those experiences in order to continue to try new things. If we protect, protect, protect, and avoid, avoid, avoid the anxiety, the tension, the fear just escalates, it gets worse.

Anthony Godfrey:
Well, that's something we can all benefit from. Failing or trying something new that doesn't work, even if it doesn't work, isn't going to be as bad as we think it is. Thanks again for joining us McKinley. It's going to be a great year.

Thanks for joining us on the super cast. Remember education is the most important thing you will do today. We'll see you out there.

 

It is a new year and a brand-new school for students at Aspen Elementary in South Jordan.

On this episode of the Supercast, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey gets a look inside the newly opened school with a stop in the principal’s office. Then, he has a candid conversation with some 4th grade students about their impressions of the new school and the importance of learning and making new friends.

Audio Transcription

Anthony Godfrey:
Hello and welcome to the Supercast. I'm your host, Superintendent Anthony Godfrey. It is a new year and a brand new school for students at Aspen Elementary in South Jordan. On this episode of the Supercast, I get to look inside the newly opened school first with a stop in the principal's office. Then I head to a classroom for a candid conversation with some fourth grade students about their impressions of the new school and the importance of making new friends.

All right, we are here at the brand spanking new Aspen Elementary school with Suzie Williams and April Thompson, her assistant principal. Suzie is the principal here and was principal previously at Eastlake. We have our principals assigned halfway through a school year to start opening a school for the next year. Here we are, the new school year is here and so is the new school. Tell us a little bit about it, Suzie.

Suzie Williams:
Well, it came quickly! You know, you anticipate, and I was able to be a part of the construction, and what I mean by that was they included me in the construction meetings. So I came out probably twice a month and toured the building and listened in on the meetings, which was so interesting.  I was able to give some input and work with the architect and  Hughes Construction. So it's been fun to watch this come from just as a skeleton to what it is now, and it's beautiful.  I have been at the District Office for the last six months just planning, ordering, hiring, and just getting ready to get us all moved in and have everything set up. I'm just excited that it's finally here cause we've worked hard to get it ready to go.

Anthony Godfrey:
You certainly have, and there are a lot of details to think about. I'm amazed at how great it looks. I was here at the skeleton phase as you described it. The grass is in, the landscaping is done, and the school looks fantastic. Now, April, you are a new administrator in a new school, starting a new school year. How does that feel?

April Thompson:
Everything is so new, so I'm just part of all the new. It's so fun to have the kids here because that's what has made the school the school. It's been a building, but now that the kids are here, it's alive.

Anthony Godfrey:
Tell me about the color and mascot phase of things. I see a turquoise theme going on here in your office.

Suzie Williams:
We're voting on that today. Each classroom is voting on the mascot and the colors. Right now I just checked, Alligators are winning.

Anthony Godfrey:
Oh, the Alligators, the Aspen Alligators. Yeah, wow. Well, with a little bit of flooding the last couple of days, that really makes a lot of sense. What are the color schemes that people voting on?

Suzie Williams:
Green and black was ahead, so far, but we'll see.

Anthony Godfrey:
Green and black, okay. Green and black with alligators would go along pretty nicely. I remember when Riverton High School was first looking at that and they were going to be the Riverton Raptors. That was one that was kind of a leader. Yes, but the purple color was also favorable. And when you thought about a purple dinosaur, that didn't work very well for high school kids, so they backed away from the Raptors but kept the purple. Anyway, for copyright reasons, we can't explain exactly why that would have been a problem, but I think listeners will pick up on that. What's the most exciting thing about opening a new school?

Suzie Williams:
To me it's been a little overwhelming, all the good people. It's been fun to, well, I've handpicked our staff and our faculty and oh, we have good people. And then the kids, you know, there's no kids at the District Office. It's not good, it's terrible. So it's been so nice to have the kids here. Our team leaders together, as we planned, we came up with our vision, which is "All belong, all learn, all succeed." Then we defined our mission, what that looks like. What does it look like to all belong, all learn and all succeed? So we're going over that with the students to help them understand what we're about. With the all belong, we've made an emphasis on learning each child's name. So we've had some fun story books about our names that the teachers are using this week to teach with. Then they've done some fun activities about learning the students' names and I'm making an effort to talk to the kids.  I truly do want to learn their names. So I guess the best part, the most exciting part, has been the people. Wow. We have good people.

Anthony Godfrey:
That's the best part of the job period. As I look out your window, I'm not exaggerating. I see in every direction, new homes going up. Tell me about the growth that you've already seen here at Aspen.

Suzie Williams:
Yeah, I've been a little bit surprised by that. Our projections were that we would start at 522 students. I was getting a little nervous because about 10 days ago we were still around 400. In the last 10 days we've enrolled about a hundred students. It fluctuates, it goes up and down a little bit each day. We were at 519 the other day, and then we dropped down to 512. That's to be expected. I think some students weren't aware that they were supposed come to a new school. So we're working all of that out. But yeah, so the projections are that we'll double in the next five years. So we'll see. I anticipate that we'll continue to enroll students.

Anthony Godfrey:
Well, be ready to memorize a lot of names in the future. Now you approached building community in a unique way. Tell us about that.

Suzie Williams:
So I drug our sweet Tina, who's our administrative assistant, that's who truly runs the school. She and I, over the last few months, we took one day a week and walked through the community. We went door to door, meeting people, and we had a little flyer about Aspen Elementary with our contact information on it. Most people aren't home, just because people work, so we always left it under their mat. Oh, we had a good response with that. I'll be honest, it scared me. I wasn't comfortable doing that, but we didn't have anyone who was disrespectful. They were always kind. Most people when they answered the door, had a little scowl, like 'what do you want?' But when we tell them who we were, their faces soften and that, 'oh, that's awesome.' Then we had the nicest visits.

I hired three people to be support staff here from people that we knocked on their doors. Because we mentioned that as well, that we need support staff, we're hiring, if you know anyone that's interested. So not only just to meet the community and get our name out there, it was just nice to build those relationships. We want to be school of choice because we have several schools around us that people can choose to go to. They don't have to come here, but we want to be school of choice, and we wanted to build those relationships early. Have people come to Aspen Elementary,

Anthony Godfrey:
It's a great effort, that's awesome. That's awesome. April, tell us about the building itself. What's a feature that really stands out to you as a particularly exciting feature to have available for teachers and students?

April Thompson:
Oh, there's so much, it's hard to choose one. The first thing that comes to mind is it doesn't matter where you are in the school, you get that natural light coming in. So they have the natural light coming in from the ceilings and it bounces off. It just really lightens up the school, which I love.

The STEM room is really exciting, having everything mobile so that the kids can go in and change and adapt to what activity there that they are going in. The Mindfulness room that is that something that will be really good for the kids, and we're excited about that.

Anthony Godfrey:
The Mindfulness room is the sort of thing that will start to become standard issue when you open a school, just because of the great positive impact that has on students. And the natural light. Learning in natural light is so beneficial, and it is nice when you can control that natural light with some good blinds too. So yeah, some nice features, Suzie, what stands out for you?

Suzie Williams:
Well, the same things April mentioned, plus the Kivas are nice. We have two large Kivas where we can bring in whole groups or the teachers can do small group instruction. So we're doing a new Walk to Read program where our aides will be working with small groups and to set up a table in there and work with small groups is going to be great.

The technology, we were trained last Friday on all of the technology. I worked in a school, an older school that was built in the 70s and we plugged things in. Well, I said 'overhead' the other day. Yeah, I said something about the overhead, and people said 'what are you talking about?' So I was amazed at the technology in this building,

Anthony Godfrey:
Like you said, you got to build the faculty and the community and the school from scratch. Years from now, where do you want the momentum you've created to take everyone?

Suzie Williams:
Wow, a great question. I hope this building culture will always be inviting. I hope that it will be a place that people want to come. When they walk in, they'll feel welcome. Then, you know, you think of academics. I want the kids to be successful here. So hopefully we'll build a nice foundation where that will continue on. I appreciate what the District's done with literacy. We have tools now that we just didn't have before with literacy. I taught 6th grade and I'll be honest, I didn't know how to teach a kid how to read. We read louder or slower or sound that out. I just didn't feel like I had the tools or I knew where to get the tools, and we have them now. Our Teaching and Learning department with the literacy has provided us with tools that we can now hone in on what kids are missing, which individual skills kids are missing, and then we have the tools to know how to help them. So I'm hoping that starting that foundation now, that that will just carry on where we can truly help these kids know how to read.

Anthony Godfrey:
Suzie, I'm so grateful to have you here as Principal. You're the right person to be opening this school. And I get to be part of that process of deciding how that works, and there's just no question that you're the person to be doing this. You and your administrative team are the right people to be setting this in motion, building this community and providing this great experience for our employees and our students. Most of all.

Suzie Williams:
Thank you. I do appreciate having Jarom Airhart and April Thompson here. They've been right beside us the last few weeks, getting this up and running and I appreciate them and our Administrative Assistant. She's carried a huge load.

Anthony Godfrey:
It takes everybody doesn't it?

Suzie Williams:
Yeah, absolutely it does.

Anthony Godfrey:
Stay with us. When we come back, you don't want to miss my conversation with some Aspen Elementary 4th grade students. Hear what they have to say about their new school.

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Anthony Godfrey:
We're in Mrs. Rick's class in Aspen Elementary school talking to some sixth graders, right? Fourth graders. I thought you guys looked more like sixth graders. No? Fourth graders. Okay, all right, we'll go with fourth graders. So tell me, what's it like to have a brand new school built just for you? Raise your hand. Whoa. All right, right here. What do you think about that?

Caroline:
Um, it feels nice and stuff.

Anthony Godfrey:
Okay, awesome. Tell me your name.

Caroline:
Caroline.

Anthony Godfrey:
David, tell me what you think about being a student in a new school.

David:
It feels good because it's a chance to make new friends.

Anthony Godfrey:
It is a chance to make new friends. You got a lot of great friends to choose from here. Toka, tell me about how you're feeling about being here?

Toka:
Good, like, everything looks way different though.

Anthony Godfrey:
Oh yeah, how so?

Toka:
Like the office used to be on the right side, but it's now like on the left side I think.

Anthony Godfrey:
So it's kind of like your previous school, but different.

Toka:
Yeah.

Anthony Godfrey:
That's kind of cool. That's a good combination. What do you like most about the new school?

Toka:
Um, that we have PE cause last year we didn't have P.E.

Anthony Godfrey
Ah, there's room for PE. I love it. Liam, what do you think?

Liam:
Um, it's nice not being the person that joins the school on the last year. Everyone's the first person so you don't feel left out.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah, I didn't think about that. Everybody's new. So what does that mean when everybody's new at the same time?

Liam:
Um, it means that a lot of people don't have friends and it's easier to make friends. Because in other schools that have been going for a long time, a lot of people have friends, but in a first year of school, a lot of people can make new friends.

Anthony Godfrey:
I love that several of you have mentioned making friends. That's really what this school is about is being connected to each other, being part of a community, making friends so that you can learn even better and make these great memories. All right, Luke, tell me about what what's on your mind.

Luke:
On the first day, everybody was kind of really nervous that they weren't gonna like have any friends and stuff.

Anthony Godfrey:
But being at a new school together at the same time, you were able to make friends quickly.

Luke:
Yeah.

Anthony Godfrey:
That's awesome. And everyone's nervous cause nobody knows where to go. Everything's new that way too. Ocean, tell me what you think about Aspen.

Ocean:
It's good because you get to exercise your brain a lot.

Anthony Godfrey:
Exercising your brain. I love it! Is it Caroline? Caroline, tell me what you think about being at Aspen Elementary.

Caroline:
I like it. At my old school there was some trouble and I'm just glad that I can like refresh my brain and learn new stuff.

Anthony Godfrey:
Oh wow, I'm getting lots of good catch phrases for Aspen. 'Aspen, Refresh your Brain'. 'Aspen, Leave your Troubles Behind'. 'Aspen, Exercise your Brain'. You guys have some great ways of thinking about making friends and learning. This is really exciting. You guys are very lucky. Della, how are things going for you?

Della:
Being at Aspen, it's a chance to see old friends and make new friends, and see the teachers that you had a long time ago.

Anthony Godfrey:
So you get to see some of the teachers you might know, some people you know, lots of new faces, a building that seems familiar, but it's different. Sounds like a great combination to me. All right. Grayson

Grayson:
So it's like an explosion of happiness. When you get into fourth grade, you see what I mean. It's like when you first get into it, you look at all the things around you and everybody that will be your friends. And it's just like an explosion of joy in your heart.

Anthony Godfrey:
An explosion of joy, happiness, and friendship. What could be better? You're in the right place at the right time doing the right stuff. This is awesome. What a great way of putting it. Yes, Caroline.

Caroline:
It's just good to know that there's only a couple of germs. There's not so many germs as if there's an old school, then they would like build up bacteria. It's just nice to know that you're in like a new school, not as many germs and stuff.

Anthony Godfrey:
So if there are germs, they're new, fresh and crisp germs rather than the old germs of previous schools. Very good. Okay, Quinn?

Quinn:
I like this new school because everything's so nice and clean. We have new teachers, and they're fun and nice teachers.

Anthony Godfrey:
Speaking of which, Mrs. Ricks, let's talk about what it's like to teach fourth grade at the brand new Aspen Elementary School.

Mrs. Ricks:
Teaching 4th grade at Aspen's been really fun. I didn't come from any of the schools that these kids came from, they're all brand new to me. So it's been great to learn their names and to learn about where they come from and what makes them special.

Anthony Godfrey:
And to have that chance to bring them together and make friends just like they were talking about.

Mrs. Ricks:
Definitely, I've already seen that. They've included each other and they're forming great friendships.

Anthony Godfrey:
Well, being with you guys today is a great reminder of why we do all the stuff that we do. This is exactly why we do it, for experiences like what you're providing for these students.

Mrs. Ricks:
Well, thank you.

Anthony Godfrey:
It's been a blast talking with you and with these students. I officially declare this as Superintendent, the finest 4th grade class in all the land. Congratulations! Thank you so much for spending time with me. You have a great year ahead of you. I know that. So enjoy it.

Thanks for joining us on another episode of the Supercast. Remember education is the most important thing you will do today. We'll see out there. Go Alligators!

He is a former principal of the old Bingham Middle School in Copperton, and the man who offered Superintendent Anthony Godfrey his very first job in education.

On this special 100th edition of the Supercast, Superintendent Godfrey takes an emotional trip down memory lane with his long-time friend, former boss and mentor, Dr. Al Zylstra.


Audio Transcription

Dr. Al Zylstra:
It's very good to see you.  

Anthony Godfrey:
There's nothing to say except it's so good to see you. I've been thinking about this ever since we had it arranged. We're here at Bingham High School to celebrate the 100th episode of the Supercast, thanks to everyone who's been listening along the way.  I thought there's no better way to celebrate the 100th episode of the Supercast than to invite Dr. Z, the principal who hired me as a brand new teacher into Jordan School District back in the 1990s. The way that he did things, and the way he led our school, and cared about everybody there has really shaped me as an educator, as a teacher, as an administrator and as a person and who I wanted to be and what I wanted my legacy to be. So it's a great honor to have you here, Dr. Zylstra. Thank you so much for taking the time to be here.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Thank you.

Anthony Godfrey:
I haven't seen you for probably, what's it been now? Since the reunion?

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Since the reunion, we were just talking about that. That was a surprise. Wasn't it?

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah, it was. I ran into you in Best Buy or Sam's Club or Costco or something.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
You needed a winter coat.

Anthony Godfrey:
Oh yeah.
Yeah, that's right, it was Costco.  People had just talked with me about the reunion and I was a rock star because I brought you, that's what happened.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
That was really something that was, it was special.

Anthony Godfrey:
Middle schools don't do reunions. That's the thing that I found remarkable. Nobody says, 'Hey, you know what? Eighth grade, I'd really liked to relive some of those memories.' Yeah, they do, when you go through eighth grade with Dr. Z though.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Yeah. Well, thank you. It was our pleasure to be there though. It was a wonderful reunion for those kids. How they grew up and improved their lives. It was great.

Anthony Godfrey:
The sad thing was going to the field and seeing that there was no building left. I get a little bit sentimental about buildings.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
I've been meaning to do that, but I, oh, I've had a hard time bringing myself to do that. A lot of good memories there.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah. A lot of good memories. We went through some tough stuff too at that time.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Yeah, we had three boys die in one year.  That was some tough stuff. And then the boilers kept breaking down and flooding the gymnasium and the cafeteria. But it was good, the community really accepted us.

Anthony Godfrey:
Especially since the pandemic, but just in general, as time goes on, we lose memory of exactly when things happened.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Some things get better, some things get better.

Anthony Godfrey:
It's true. How long were you principal at Bingham middle school?

Dr. Al Zylstra:
I think, five years, six years, and then I went to West Hills. I opened West Hills and I was there for three years, and then from West Hills, I went to Crescent View and finished my career Crescent View.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah, I remember you were at Crescent View.  When did you retire?

Dr. Al Zylstra:
When I was 62, in 1999.  Sometime in there.

Anthony Godfrey:
Sometime back in the 1900s.  Well, I gotta tell you, I have a lot of vivid memories of working for you and they shaped the way that I do things. Sorry, I do a lot of this now as I get older. You told people you love them before telling people you love them was cool.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Yeah. That's part of the podcast every morning. You're loved and we expect you to be great. Education is the most important thing you'll do today.

Anthony Godfrey:
And you said, 'we'll see out there' at the end.  I did a video for teachers this year that ended with, we'll see you out there. And every single one of my podcast episodes ends with 'education is the most important thing you'll do today. We'll see you out there'. What's interesting to me is that the first time we did this podcast, which this is the hundredth episode now. What's interesting to me is the first time we did this podcast. It's not as if I planned out, you know, 'what would be a good tagline?
What should I say at the end? Let me think back, let me try to come up with something.' I was just sitting there at the microphone and they said, "well, you need a tagline, you need to say something at the end of each podcast." And it just, it was right there. So it's, it's been right there at the surface every ever since. And it's just one example of the lasting impact that you've had on me and that I know you had on the kids that at Bingham Middle. You told people that you loved them, there were lots of hugs. There were lots of conversations about how are you doing? But there were also lots of conversations about what you expected of people. There were hard conversations about how much better you ought to be doing.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Well, when we went up to that school, it it was a tough school. When we got there it looked like an inner city school. It had graffiti all over the lockers and all over the rooms, the tiles were coming off the floor. You remember?

Anthony Godfrey:
I remember. They dropped from the ceiling. They drop on top of you in class.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
The linoleum floors would be spinning off all the time. The kids would walk on them and they would come off. When it would rain, remember the rainstorms? We had trash cans all through the hallway. There was a lot of great experiences in there, but this idea of having kids telling them that you love them is been something. When they've come back to see me, one of the things that they keep bringing up is 'you told me you love me.'

 While I was at Crescent View we were having career day. So a lot of people were coming into the school to speak at the different classes. I was at in the office working on my computer and as I turned around, I looked and I saw shiny boots, like paratrooper boots, and blouse pants. Obviously military coming to talk to our kids.  I looked up and saw this handsome, studly man standing in front of me with a uniform on and he had his parade tucked into his collar. He said, "Dr. Z", and I looked up and he said, "You don't remember me?" And I said, "Well, if you tell me your name, I might." He said, I won't give his name, but "Jonathan." And I said, "No, you're not the little Jonathan that I would have in my office every day, because you were too afraid to go to school that I would go to class with you." He said, "Yes", and I said, "Well, what did you learn here?" He said, "Every day that I was in your office, you told me you loved me."

And the transformation! If you would have said to me, 'that young man will end up being an army ranger when he's 20', I wouldn't have believed you. But it was that social connectedness with that child, letting him shadow me during the day, and letting him adjust to the school so by the time he was in the eighth grade, he was able to go to school every day. He had a safe haven with me and he knew that. And so that was just a fond memory of telling people you love them.

Anthony Godfrey:
Well, that blend of love and expectations was just really unique. And like I said, ahead of its time, because we didn't talk about social emotional wellness then like we do now.
And I know that was your focus. And it just became infused into the approach that I've at least tried to take as a teacher and as an administrator, because it was just clearly laid out for me by working with you.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Well, you've championed the cause. I remember the assemblies that we would have, how the kids would cheer you when you'd come out. Do you remember dropping out of the ceiling? You were in a harness and came down and I said, "where is Mr. Godfrey? Where's  Mr. Godfrey?"
Then here he comes. Then there was an assembly. 

Anthony Godfrey:
I do remember that. Again, don't try this at home or at your school though. That was like I said, the 1900s, we don't do that anymore. I loved doing the morning announcements with you. It was really something. I'm sure you remember, you gave me a budget and you said, 'go down, go to the music store, get some CDs.'

Dr. Al Zylstra:
We went together.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah, that's right. We did actually. We grabbed a bunch of CDs and we'd play those.  Now you can pre-program music in the passing time and all of that.  We did it old school with, with the CD and holding up the microphone to the CD speaker, just to kick off the day and kickoff the announcements. I wish, I wish I had some of those recorded. 

Dr. Al Zylstra:
And then we had the student of the day, the genius child.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah. Genius child. That's right. I forgot about that phrase, we called it the genius child.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
We had the g
enius child of the day. I had a star cutout for it and they had a piece of yarn around it, and they wore this big yellow star it said 'Genius of the Day'.

Anthony Godfrey:
And you would think that a 14 year old, eighth grader wouldn't want to wear a star around with yarn saying he or she was the genius of the day, and they loved it! Absolutely loved it. We went through a few candy bars too, as I recall.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Yes, we would always give candy bars, that's right.

Velarde! How are you?

Jeramie Velarde:
I'm good, how are you doing?

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Good to see you! You've grown up to be a big man now.

Anthony Godfrey:
Jeramie Velarde, who was a student at the time that Dr. Z and I were at Bingham Middle School and who now works for Jordan School District and has for quite some time, just joined us.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Jeramie was always a good boy. And he, and you know, he had a family that was supportive of the school and like most of the people in Copperton, they were very supportive of the school.  So it 's just a pleasure, so nice to see you again.

Jeramie Velarde:
Good to see you too, for sure.

Anthony Godfrey:
Jeramie works for the District if you didn't know that.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
I think I do remember it. And I think your dad worked for them too. He worked at the, he was a custodian at Bingham.

Anthony Godfrey:
When I was getting ready for those assemblies late at night, Jeramie's dad would be working. He would be the only other person in the building and he always put on headphones. So he'd be walking around with headphones on and I was practicing and it would not be hard to convince me that building was haunted when you're there at three in the morning, practicing for an assembly. Again, don't try this at home. But I was doing the last minute crunch, practicing the chords for the song. I was gonna play onstage and you'd be playing the guitar and you'd hear these sounds and you'd stop playing.
And like, 'what was that?' You'd start playing again, and then you'd stop. 'Wait a minute. What was that?' 

Then I went and found Lawrence, Jeramie's dad. And I'm like, "how do you do this?" He said, "That's why I wear headphones, so I don't hear what else is going on in school while I'm here." I got out of there. I went home where I belonged and you know, I don't think I stayed there super late again.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
That building creaked and moaned, creaked and moaned all night long.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah, it's all personality. Well, I lived in the apartments a few blocks away and sometimes I'd just stay late and grade papers and then I'd eat with the custodians. What are some of the things you remember about Bingham Middle Jeramie and being there with Dr. Z?

Jeramie Velarde:
Do you remember the, so it wasn't a field day, but all the kids walked out of class, went up to the field. It was like a walkout. I don't know why we did it. We just all planned it, organized it. Instead of you getting upset, you came out and I don't know, played games with us. It was fun. 

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Reorganized it.

Anthony Godfrey:
You kind of, you channeled it, is what you did.

Jeramie Velarde:
And then we tried it the second year, the year after, and it didn't fly over so well. It was like one and done, you know.

Anthony Godfrey:
No repeat performances allowed.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
I remember that.  We made big circles and had everybody hold hands, go around in circles. So they would, you know, we had two or three circles of kids holding hands all the way around. We talked about how important school was, and I had a bull horn, and we just went with the flow with the kids.

Jeramie Velarde:
I remember seeing you skateboarding to work when I was in high school, waiting for the bus. I'd see you skateboarding to work from the apartment to Bingham.

Anthony Godfrey:
That was true simplicity, being able to ride my Cat in the Hat skateboard to work. That was like simpler times, simpler times for sure. But it was great. I loved living up there and seeing the kids around the neighborhood that I either had in class or that I knew from class in previous years. I was single at the time and would just walk downstairs and have a burger at the restaurant that was right next door. I don't know what it is now. It was The Pit! That's right, it was called The Pit. You'd eat there, be thirsty for a long time afterward. That was a pretty salty a place to eat. But yeah, it was nice. That was my little getaway. I'd eat there most nights actually. But doing that, you'd see. You'd just, it was fun to be in the community that I was teaching in. Yeah, it was great.

Jeramie Valarde:
Well, it was great. It's such an eyesore now that the building's gone. 

Anthony Godfrey:
Is the building gone?

Jeramie Velarde:
The building's gone, and it's just nothing. Oh no, not The Pit. I'm talking about Bingham Middle, Bingham High.

Anthony Godfrey:
I go out there about every year, normally in the fall, and just kind of reminisce and walk around. I was on that field walking toward the street and somebody was riding by on his bike, and I'm sorry, I can't remember his name. He stopped, and he was like, "Are you Mr. Godfrey?" He had gone to Bingham Middle. He didn't live in the area, but he just rides his bike out by there. And he was talking about his brother and I remembered his brother. He had English from me and he's an attorney for one of the cities in Jordan District. It was just funny that I'm standing out there on a cold autumn day, just walking around that empty field where the school used to be, and a kid who used to go to school that are just rides by, on his bike out of nowhere. It's just, it's kind of a legendary place. I like that it's set off so I don't just drive by it every day. I like that you can just decide when you want to go and visit it.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Relax for a minute. One thing I remember going to Bingham Middle, early in the morning, there were always owls hooting. You remember that? There were always a couple of owls hooting back and forth. If you'd get there early in the morning those owls would be hooting. It was really a pleasure to listen to that, a good way to start school.

Anthony Godfrey:
I forgotten about that. I used to take papers to the park. I'd walk over to the park to grade papers.  I would just kind of sit under a tree and grade papers. There was one tree where there was always the same owl up in that tree.
He'd just kind of look down at me and twist his head in the weird way that owls do. Just kind of go, okay, go ahead. It was kind of a magical place.

That middle courtyard, I don't know if I ever went in the middle courtyard very much. But the birds were really loud in there.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
We had a lot of birds in there. But the owls, it was just a pleasure to hear those hooting back and forth. Yeah, that was fun. Good memory.

Anthony Godfrey:
We were talking about the tiles that fell from the ceiling, just randomly, you'd just be sitting in class. I think a few people use those as yearbooks at the end of the year and had people sign their tile. I'd love to see one of those. The sunken cafeteria. We don't have any of those anymore, down in the basement there.

Jeramie Velarde:
I remember running down those ramps. I had to get my Fanta, you know.

Anthony Godfrey:
That's right, that's right. Who were some of the teachers that were there at the time?

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Joanne Mattes was the Assistant Principal there.

Anthony Godfrey:
She lived just at the house next door. Right?

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Mr. Pietro, He was the math teacher. 

Jeramie Velarde:
Rock climber, wasn't he a rock climber? Mrs. Patterson, do you remember Mrs. Patterson?

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah, Candy Patterson. 

Jeramie Velarde:
Her son, Andy recorded my band. Andy Patterson. Yeah, he's like the recording guy.

Anthony Godfrey:
Yeah, he and his band, I'm trying to remember the name, I have the signed CD from them. They actually auditioned for Clive Davis at one point. But yeah, Candy Patterson passed away. 

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Jerome, Coach Jerome.

Anthony Godfrey:
Oh yeah, he worked in the District for a long time.

Jeramie Velarde:
I think he just retired.

Anthony Godfrey:
Did he?  James Sebaski taught history at the time.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Just right across the hall from me.

Anthony Godfrey:
On my prep, I would go and grade papers at the back of his class cause I liked his class. So I sat back as a teacher and graded and just kind of overheard some of those history discussions.

Earlier Jeremy, we were talking about the announcements. Do you remember what Dr. Z used to say on the announcements?

Jeramie Velarde:
I do.
He would open it with 'Good morning Bingham Middle' and then he'd close it every day with 'education is the most important thing you will do today.'

Anthony Godfrey:
I told you, everybody remembers. That's really something. You made the most of the opportunity that you had as a Principal to impact lives. You really maximized that. You could just feel that you didn't want any moment to pass without making the most of it.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Oh, thank you. I loved it. I was just telling you, I'm still using that tagline. I work with parolees and felons at the Department of Corrections, Region 4 in Prove. These are guys that have been in prison or many, many years in jail. So what I'm trying to do is to give them evidence-based information that they can hang their education to. What is needed for them is to have a behavior change. They've all had therapy for years and years and years. So when they come to class, I give them something that they can hold on to, something that they can use. Right at the top, education is the most important thing you will do today. Then I close it with the same thing, you know, don't waste the miracle that you survived. And then, education is the most important thing you'll do today.

Anthony Godfrey:
Well, we're all using it. It sounds like. When I was hired as superintendent I told the story of how you hired me into Jordan School District. Why don't you tell that story and let's see if we tell it the same way.

Dr. Al Zylstra::
You've probably told the better version.

Anthony Godfrey:
We all get to tell better versions as time goes on, don't we?

Dr. Al Zylstra:
It was the job fair at the University of Utah and we had people who were looking for jobs and we needed teachers. I needed an English teacher. So we were interviewing people and we had interview sheets and people had signed up to be interviewed for a job. I had interviewed my people that had signed up for English classes and I looked over to the side and you were sitting there looking at me and I said to you, "Young man, do you have an appointment?" You said "No". And I said, "Why don't you come on over? And I will interview you." You remember that? And then I have interviewing questions and then I'd ask a question and you just stared at me and you kept staring.
And I said, "You know, a good answer would be this." 

Anthony Godfrey:
Yes. I absolutely remember that. And the question that it was, was 'How do you need to improve? What should you do better?' So obviously, I wasn't very humble because at the time I couldn't think of any way that I could improve. I was perfect in every way. And you just said, "Well, a good answer would be to say 'I lack experience'". And I said, "Oh yes, I lack experience. And the ability to answer a question in an interview." Yeah.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Yeah, and I wrote that down and then I asked another question and you just kind of had that look on your face again.

Anthony Godfrey:
Now wait, I thought it was just one question.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
No, it was more than one. I was coaching, I was coaching here, and I said, "A good answer would be something like this." And you would say, "okay" and you would say it. We got through the interview that way, and I said, "You did a great job, I couldn't have done better myself."

Anthony Godfrey:
Ok, maybe I shouldn't have asked this question. The other part I do remember about it is that that was a time when it was really hard to get a job as a teacher, and it was hard to get an interview.  I really wanted to work for Jordan because I knew it was growing. I knew it was big and growing and I thought there'd be a lot of opportunities. So I went to this job fair and I ran in, everybody ran, it was like they were dropping the rope at Disneyland. I ran in to get signed up and I couldn't get a slot. So I went there trying to look as sad and pathetic as I could, because I didn't actually have a slot.  I went up and talked to you and you said, "Well I have this slot, but it's assigned to somebody."

I said, "Well, I'm just going to go sit over there in case he doesn't show up." So I sat, and that's why I sat and stared at you, just kind of waiting. And then you, I swear, I can absolutely see you just kind motion over. All right, come over. And I sat down and this guy walked up about 10 minutes later, that was supposed to be there for the interview and just kind of walked away because he realized he was too late.  I thank you for giving me that first job.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
You looked like a good one just standing there. 

Anthony Godfrey:
I remember I was late to the second interview, the Bingham Middle School interview, because Bingham Middle was so far out at the time. But you said, "Oh, everybody's late."  We just sat down and we talked it through and fortunately, fortunately, you took that chance on me.

Dr. Al Zylstra:
That was a great decision on my part, another one of my good decisions. One of the few.

Anthony Godfrey:
Would you do me the honor of signing off on this podcast?

Dr. Al Zylstra:
Jordan School District, this is Dr. Z, education is the most important thing you will do today. You are loved and you're expected to be great. We'll see you out there.

Anthony Godfrey:
Thank you.