In Service

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The BBC/PBS television show Downton Abbey finished its six-year run in mid-February. Like many of you, my wife, Kelly, and I became avid watchers of the show. In the process, I became aware of a phrase that is both very British in nature and quite specific to the Victorian Age and early 20th century. The phrase is in service; a phrase the aristocracy used to identify those serving in professions as butlers, maids, cooks, footmen, etc. To be in service did not mean to be in servitude; in fact, service jobs were highly sought because they offered very stable employment and often carried some prestige in the villages and hamlets. Individuals employed in service were proud of their profession.

I often tell the superintendents who compliment us for going above and beyond that we are a full-service organization. Buddy Echols’ favorite phrase about Region 10 was “Service is our middle name.” While we can find humor in those phrases, there is also real meaning to them. When the Region 10 motto – Students, Service, Solutions – was chosen, the Strategic Planning Committee made sure the middle word was service, not services. Our organization is about providing acts of assistance, help, and aid because we are action-oriented; we don’t just focus on delivering a product. Our role, which we fulfill exceptionally well, is to be in service to the young people of Texas through our work with schools and educators. I take pride that I’m in service.

Students, Service, Solutions

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