Among the items, to my surprise, were about a dozen books designed to help people teach writing. Since I had been hired to teach creative language arts (mostly writing), I bought the books for a bargain price of $130.
This came at a time when I had been unemployed for nearly three months and was entering a job that would pay me $21,450 a year.It was something that would help me with my work and it was worth the investment.
I would never have thought of trying to get the taxpayers to foot the bill for it, and most likely if I had tried, I would have been turned down.
Apparently, I did not understand how the system works.
When the Joplin R-8 Board of Education meets Tuesday night, one of the bills it will be asked to approve is an expenditure of $24.54 for the book Grounded: How Leaders Stay Rooted in an Uncertain World by Bob Rosen. The documentation reads, "Book for Dr. Huff."
The book is described on its Amazon page:
A provocative, personal approach to leadership based on in-depth research with hundreds of executives around the world
Confronted by disruptive change and economic turbulence, many of today's leaders find themselves ill-equipped to manage the hazards they now face. They must contend with chronic uncertainty, cynical employees, and personal burnout. Most are poorly served by the prevailing paradigm that obsessively focuses on what we do to produce short-term results while sabotaging who we are as healthy human beings. Few have seen alternatives, until now.
Grounded proposes a new approach that's designed for actual humans who must grapple with these forces. This new paradigm speaks to our better selves. Based on the author's Healthy Leader model, it focuses on the six personal dimensions that fuel—and refuel—the world's top leaders: physical, emotional, intellectual, social, vocational, and spiritual health.
The book argues that leaders at every level can be more self-aware, develop their untapped potential, and drive significantly better results—for themselves, their teams, and their organizations.
Shows readers how to build a personal leadership model that works with their values, goals and capabilities
Features fresh stories from leaders in a variety of organizations including the New York Fire Department, PricewaterhouseCoopers, The Lego Group, and Medstar Health
Gives leaders practical tools to face their toughest challenges with greater skill, confidence, and impact
By developing themselves and mastering the six dimensions, readers can gain the stamina and strength to not only weather tough times but to achieve much, much more.
With job prospects uncertain, it is not surprising that Huff, pulling down $177,000 a year, not counting his speeches, decided to pass along the $24.54 cost of his book to the taxpayers.
As usual, though, C. J. Huff did not bother to look for the lowest price. The Amazon page shows he could have received a "like-new" copy of the book for four cents, plus $3.99 postage.
Those of us who do not have millions of dollars in taxpayer money to play with takes these choices seriously.
Still, isn't it refreshing to know that after seven years as the leader of the Joplin R-8 School District, C. J. Huff is trying to learn how to be a leader?