Principal Profile: John Veit
Get to Know John Veit
1. What do you enjoy most about your job?
I love getting to interact with the kids. I'm awed by their energy, their drive, and the things they say and do everyday. Although I don't get the same interactions with kids that teachers do, I do what I can to get into classrooms and talk with kids as often as possible.
2. Who inspires you?
My colleagues inspire me. Our Rock Canyon feeder is a great group of leaders that I am fortunate enough to learn from whenever we have the opportunity to collaborate. The journey that is each school year would not be one to traverse alone. Being able to learn from them on a regular basis helps me grow but also reinforces who I am and what I believe in.
3. What was your first job?
My first job was working for my dad's janitorial business. I spent many a night and weekend cleaning a variety of different buildings from daycares, to banks, to car dealers. Definitely taught me a lot about hard work, efficiency and an attention to detail. I also got to spend a lot of time with dad which was great.
4. If you had the opportunity to pursue another career, what would you choose?
I think it would be something in the automotive industry. I don't know exactly what, but something where I get to talk with people and work with cars. I think I'd have a lot of fun with that.
5. What's an interest or hobby you have that not a lot of people might not know about you?
Well, I'm spending a lot of time working to finish my basement. I've spent so many hours on it, it has pretty much turned into a hobby. I love being able to build and make some thing. It means even more when doing this for my family. I've also learned a great many things about my house and myself (as not everything has gone exactly as planned...)
6. What's your favorite item on the school lunch menu?
Well, it use to be the chocolate chips cookies. Those things were the best. Now, I'd have to say pizza. Can't go wrong with a slice of pizza, some veggies from the salad bar and little ranch dressing.
7. Do you have any pets?
No pets. We've had discussions around getting a pet as a family, but haven't gone there.
8. What was your first car?
1988 Ford Ranger. It was a good little truck. I can remember driving that thing all over.
9.What advice would you give to a college graduate who is entering the field of teaching?
Stay focused on students. There are many distractions out there right now. As you work to find a job and start your teaching career, remember why you are there, the students. It is important to stay informed and be aware of the larger issues surrounding education, but always bring it back to the reason we all got into this field. And be sure to very respectful to everyone in the school, especially the office staff. The sooner you realize the impact they have on the school, the better off you'll be.
10. If you could be any superhero, who would you choose to be?
Batman would great. It would be great to have all of the gadgets and vehicles to play with. I'm a gadget person and would stay busy for a long time "playing with all of those wonderful toys".
CASTLE PINES- The moment you walk into Buffalo Ridge Elementary you can see and feel the pride and love for the school - from the student artwork and staff accomplishments hanging throughout the main hallway to a handful of parents helping inside classrooms. The school has quickly become a place where people gather, celebrate, laugh and learn.
“At any given time, you will see parents volunteering, parents helping with kids, parents helping with teachers and it just feels good to know we are welcome in the building and we can contribute positively to the atmosphere here,” says Valerie Miller, a Buffalo Ridge parent and PTO President.
Miller sat on the hiring board for their newest principal, John Veit.
“It’s been great to watch him build the staff to buy into the education of the kids here. The kids love him. It is just a great place to be and a great place for kids to get an education,” adds Miller.
Veit credits his laid back, can do attitude to his Midwest roots and his time spent between Iowa, Arizona and Colorado. He has spent his entire 18-year career working inside the Douglas County School District at both the elementary and middle school levels before becoming an assistant principal at Rocky Heights Middle School. Prior to last year’s school year, Veit was named the new principal at Buffalo Ridge Elementary.
In that time, Veit has worked to redefine Buffalo Ridge and rebuild the connection to the community.
“We really want to be sure who we are and what we believe in, and what experiences we want to take kids through,” says Veit. “So that has been our key focus, working through that identification and different work. We’ve put a big focus on writing this year, so we’ve been putting a lot of time in that focus over the last year and a half, defining what we want our kids’ experiences to be.”
“Another area in which we put a lot of effort is our showcase days. We have just about every parent in the building on those days— those are my favorite days,” Veit adds. “We have over 500 parents coming in and seeing their kids’ work, and they leave with smiles on their faces because of the product they see. They are really impressed by what their kids are doing. That’s the really cool part— when you see parents who are blown away and smiling,” says John.
In the last year and a half, the school has raised thousands of dollars to purchase items for the classroom, such as enough technology for every student, as well as to redesign the school’s learning commons, benefiting kids each day.
“One of the strengths of our school is our community and getting that parent involvement,” Veit says. “I know our community will move mountains for our schools. It’s nice to be able to tap into that and build those relationships. You see parents in and out of our building all day long. They come in and volunteer, work in our classrooms, they are working on community events, and they have a really close connection with our teachers. They know our teachers, they know our building and they really support us. I hope they know how much we really support them and that’s why they are supporting us. The relationship is huge.”