Superintendent Kate MaguireAfter 33 years of service to students and families in Osseo Area Schools, Superintendent Kate Maguire has announced her intent to retire at the end of the current school year on June 30, 2018.

“My decision follows months of thoughtful consideration,” said Maguire. “District 279 is my home. I live in our community. My children went to our schools. I have enormous respect and admiration for the work that our dedicated employees do every single day to serve students. I often say that there is no other staff in the state of Minnesota with whom I’d rather work to tackle challenges and work toward improved academic outcomes for our students.” 

During her career in Osseo Area Schools, Maguire served in a variety of positions, including teacher, principal, director of human resources, director of curriculum, and assistant superintendent before she became superintendent in 2010. She was named 2014 Minnesota Superintendent of the Year by the Minnesota Association of School Administrators. 

In reflecting on her work in Osseo Area Schools, Maguire noted several examples of progress that she believes have had particularly significant impact. They include:

  • Moving to a standards-based instructional, grading and reporting approach that has since become widely adopted across the nation.
  • Expanding early learning opportunities, including implementing all-day kindergarten and voluntary pre-kindergarten.
  • Navigating to new grade spans that provided opportunities to support learning for students at all levels.
  • Focusing on racial equity and equitable student achievement for every student.
  • Expanding digital learning through the district’s first-ever technology levy.
  • Working with the school board to implement new systems for planning, financing, and executing facilities improvements that led to historic investments in school buildings to protect and improve the community’s capital assets.

Maguire particularly values the relationships she has developed with Osseo Area Schools staff, reflecting that she “grew up” professionally with many of them over the past three decades.

School Board Chair Robert Gerhart said, "The school board's confidence in and our relationship with Dr. Maguire is as strong as it has ever been. We are grateful for the leadership she has provided, and we look forward to this year of working together while we seek a worthy successor. Our school board members fully respect and support her personal decision to retire at the end of the school year. By announcing her intention this early in the school year, she has given us the gift of time to plan a thoughtful and effective approach to hiring her successor."

The school board will receive Maguire’s notice of retirement at the Oct. 24 regular meeting. Board members will soon start defining the process for identifying a successor. 

Alan Page and Garden City studentsThird-graders at Garden City Elementary drew inspiration from a local icon Sept. 19 as Alan Page, former Minnesota Supreme Court justice and Minnesota Vikings legend, visited the school to read students his book, "Grandpa Alan’s Sugar Shack."

Page, who authored the book with his daughter, Kamie, talked about his love of writing and the importance of learning from his mistakes. During his time on the Minnesota Supreme Court, Page told students that he often had to rewrite case decisions 30-40 times, stating that this process ultimately helped him grow as a writer.

Joined by David Geister, who provided illustrations for "Grandpa Alan’s Sugar Shack," Page shared with students his journey of writing the book, noting that he based it upon his very own “sugar shack”—a cabin up north where he makes homemade maple syrup.

With a storied career that has taken him from the Pro Football Hall of Fame to the highest court in Minnesota to launching the Page Education Foundation in 1988, Page encouraged students to work hard and learn from their mistakes.

“You have the ability to do all the things I’ve done—only better,” Page said. “You can achieve whatever your dreams may be.”

Advice as sweet as maple syrup.

PHOTO: Alan Page, former Minnesota Supreme Court justice and all-star player for the Minnesota Vikings, visits with students at Garden City Elementary on Sept. 19.