Bermes named MLA’s Administrator of the Year
“School Administrator of the Year” is a noteworthy title, and one that can be added to the resume of Columbus Superintendent Jeff Bermes.
Over the weekend, Bermes was presented the 2017 School Administrator of the Year award by the Montana Library Association (MLA) in Billings at the group’s annual conference.
Columbus middle/high school librarian Norma Glock’s nomination letter praises Bermes’ support of the library.
“He is interested in making the libraries vibrant learning environments for all,” writes Glock.
Glock detailed all Bermes has done for the library, including updating materials, creating more comfortable seating, and joining online book and research databases. She writes that “he has taken library concerns to the School Board encouraging them to take action on promoting the library and making literacy a priority at all grade levels.”
More than simply supporting the library, the letter describes Bermes as a leader.
“Jeff is a special type of administrator who is easy to approach with new ideas,” it reads. “Trust in teachers’ judgements has raised the morale of the teaching staff immensely and has made our school a more pleasant place to teach.”
Bermes says that “it is the greatest honor an individual can have to be nominated by your fellow co-workers for the work you have done in the district.”
He attributes the award to the support of an outstanding staff, board, and community, and view it as recognition of the positive school climate and culture Columbus Schools possess.
As for libraries, Bermes views them as a vital function of the school. He says, “Libraries house the knowledge of generations and generations to come – to me, that is a very valuable resource as an educator.”
MLA awards only one school administrator award per year. According to its website, “the award is conferred upon a Montana school administrator in recognition of outstanding achievement and leadership in the development and promotion of school libraries.”
The 2016-2017 school year is Bermes’ second with the Columbus School District. Prior to that he was superintendent in neighboring Joliet.