Leadership Austin Engage Breakfast

On Tuesday of last week, I attended the Leadership Austin Engage Breakfast at The Long Center. This month’s topic was Solving for X: The Education Equation. The event was designed to “explore the current landscape of education in Central Texas – from early childhood to higher education – and foster a discussion about how our community can best address its problems, capitalize on its opportunities, and ensure positive results at all levels.” 

As an adjunct college instructor, the mother of a Kindergartner, and a self-proclaimed lifelong learner, I feel very strongly about this topic. I also frequently discuss with folks the inherent connection between learning and leadership. My favorite quotes on this topic are:

“Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.” 

~ John F. Kennedy


“It is what we think we know already that often prevents us from learning.” 

~ Claude Bernard

There were some key takeaways from the Engage Breakfast that I’m still reflecting on and am excited to share with you. I look forward to your thoughts and comments.

  • “Every child deserves to have the opportunity to pursue the career he or she wants to pursue.” ~ Dr. Denise Trauth, President of Texas State University
  • Feedback is most effective when it is timely.
  • A key part of the education solution is creating multiple opportunities. It is not a one-size-fits-all approach.
  • It truly does take a village to raise a child. What is the role of the village? How has that role changed over the last few decades?
  • If every child had a parent asking about her day and what she learned, this would make a difference. The importance of parents being involved in the education of their children cannot be understated. Parents should be the first educators of their children. How can parents be more engaged in helping their children learn?
  • When asked about what each of us as members of the community can do right now that will make a difference in the world of education, I felt committed to taking these 2 immediate steps: “Give yourself the gift of visiting a local school.” ~ Ed Vara and “Donate a book for a young child.” ~ Dr. Denise Trauth  What can and will you do to make a difference? 

A big thank you to Leadership Austin for hosting this important panel discussion. The next ENGAGE breakfast will be Wednesday, March 6 when we will take a look at public safety in Central Texas. Click here for more details and ticket information.

You can read the wrap-up and listen to the podcast of the event on Leadership Austin’s blog here

In closing, let us always remember, “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.”  William Butler Yeats   As a community, are we committed to filling pails or lighting fires in our students? Let’s empower them to learn and, in the process, forever light the fire of leadership within them. 

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