Dr. Ehrmantruat adds Town Halls

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Dr. Ehrmantruat adds Town Halls

The town hall meetings took place in the library conference room during each lunch.

The town hall meetings took place in the library conference room during each lunch.

Maggie Murnan

The town hall meetings took place in the library conference room during each lunch.

Maggie Murnan

Maggie Murnan

The town hall meetings took place in the library conference room during each lunch.

Maggie Murnan, Staff Writer

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The first town hall meeting at BSM, created by BSM President Dr. Adam Ehrmantruat, recently took place before Christmas break.

The faculty and staff were all invited to meet during their lunches to engage in conversation. “Town hall meetings are conversations, open-ended without an agenda, conversations among faculty and staff members about our school,” Ehrmantraut said. 

Town Hall Meetings are common practices in politics and business but are less common at schools. The intent of these meetings is to increase conversation among a group of people on important topics. These open conversations typically fall under two paths, one path is information, especially information about the future. The other path is ways that the group can improve. “The overarching intent of a town hall meeting is communication. You want a school where communication is strong and trust levels are high,” Ehrmantraut said.    

The faculty and staff highlighted that at a larger school like BSM, communication is necessary for the school to run successfully. The town hall meetings allow people to communicate with others they don’t see every day. The faculty and staff members hold a wide variety of positions at BSM, so the meetings allow each person to bring up issues or questions directly impacting their type of work. “I hope the people who have to make tough choices can hear more information about what’s happening around the school. The better we are informed, the better choices we can make,” Mr. John Groess said.  

I hope the people who have to make tough choices can hear more information about what’s happening around the school. The better we are informed, the better choices we can make.”

— John Groess

At the meeting, many different topics were covered. The faculty and staff used this opportunity to talk about the future of the school and ask questions. For example, they talked about wellness opportunities for faculty and staff and the plans and timeline for the new construction at BSM. “We also talked about the current homeroom situation and asked about plans for the 2020 school year,” Ms. Rachel Kuzma Olson said. 

Ehrmantraut and the faculty and staff seem to be on the same page that the first Town Hall meeting ran very smoothly. Important topics were hit and there was a high level of engagement. Ehrmantraut is planning on holding another town hall meeting next semester. “It was very collegial. I’m a big believer that when we take time to ask good questions and listen with an open heart, we can have our most impactful outcomes,” Ms. Anne Dougherty said.