Dr. Armbruster Director’s Message – March, 2019

Believe it or not, after 7 months, my wife Sandi and I are pretty much moved back into the house and loving every bit of the remodel. The pain and the angst of the process are all but forgotten each time we walk into the new kitchen or bathroom and smile.

We have spent the past few days “Marie Kondo’ing” our stuff. If you don’t know who she is, and you have a bunch of stuff that really doesn’t “bring you joy” anymore, I would recommend looking her up and watching a couple shows ☺. We have gotten rid of literally truckloads of things we have had laying around the house for 20 years and have never used or even looked at for that matter. I actually had a bag of phones going back to my first flip phone all the way through a Samsung slider and beyond-LOL. Somehow we haven’t missed any of it at all.

That being said, I can’t believe we are entering the final quarter of another school year. If someone had told me 32 years ago that I would still be in education in 2019 I would have just laughed, and yet, here it is.

I am sure when the first “vocational” school opened in Orange County 85 years ago, no one could have imagined what we would become today, and even more, what we will become in the next 5 years as we move through Vision 2022 and beyond.

Every journey has a starting point, and the rest all depends on the steps we take along the way. When Sandi and I started talking about our kitchen remodel last year, we had no idea it would end up involving the entire house, nor did we realize that we would end up with the amazing home that we now have.

We absolutely had a plan, but as we moved forward, that plan evolved and changed as we gained new information. One thing that didn’t change was our purpose of creating the best house we could create within the budget, time, building restraints and other items that we faced along the way. Sandi and I are really happy with what the final product is and we feel more at home than we did before.

So it will be over the next few years here in OCPS. We will keep evolving, and keep moving forward. Change is coming, but as we take each step and as we gain new information, we will continue to adapt and adjust, and hopefully, like Sandi and me, we will look at the new CTE that we have created and we will feel more at home than we do now and we will be proud of the work that we have done together to make OCPS CTE the best in the nation at Changing Lives Through Education for our students, for our community and for us!

On another note entirely, I wanted to share that one of our local Representatives, Carlos Smith, took time to visit us recently at our Mid Florida Campus. He spoke kindly of what we do in OCPS during my recent visit to Tallahassee and said that he would like to visit one of our campuses. True to his word, Representative Smith joined School Board member Johanna Lopez, Senior Director Alex Heidelberg, Assistant Director Felicia Boyd, and me, for two hours recently.

We educated him on our students, our staff, our goals and mission, as well as our funding concerns. He took it all in and was truly impressed and supportive of what he saw. I thank him for taking time to learn about us at a much deeper level than most do. We must continue educating those who make the decisions, so that, like Representative Smith, they have a good understanding of what we do.

We can’t take it for granted that everyone knows what kind of impact we are making in CTE, we have to take proactive steps to ensure that they do.