One of the strongest aspects of the CEC Middle College of Denver is its diverse, dedicated and talented staff. Ask any student and he or she will tell you that it’s the teachers and administrators who make a difference at our school. Because of the smaller population of CEC, staff and students get the chance to know and trust each other along their educational journeys. This week DoSomethingReal.com highlights the leader of our school.
Take a moment and get to know our principal, Scott Springer.
“I want to be a drummer. I want to be a drummer.” These words form some of my earliest memories as a little kid. As I grew older, my passion for drumming stayed and my language changed to, “I want to be a professional drummer.” Much to my father’s disappointment this was my career goal all the way through high school and my first year of college. After my first year of college, I began thinking I could be a professional drummer without paying expensive tuition each year just to receive a ‘piece of paper’, a degree, that said I could play drums. However, my passion for music went beyond just playing. I wanted to understand as much as I could about music. At that point, I also realized that I enjoyed teaching private drum lessons, so I thought, “Why not combine my love of playing with my ability to pass my knowledge onto others? “ I changed my major from Music Performance to Music Education.
Three years later, I was teaching middle school band for the Denver Public Schools at Kunsmiller Middle School. At the same time, I was playing with a jazz group, Medicine Bow Quartet, in clubs all around Denver, Boulder, Glenwood Springs, and many other towns around Colorado. Needless to say, I wasn’t getting a lot of sleep during that time, but I was doing two things I loved – playing and teaching.
I spent the next 13 years teaching music after that at Horace Mann Middle School and East High School. During these years, I continued to go to school, earning my master’s degree in music education and a second master’s degree in school administration. I was asked by DPS to be part of the leadership academy, although I really had no intention of ever being a school administrator. But, before I knew it, I was interviewing for an assistant principal job at Lake Middle School. I got the job and began my career as an administrator. I loved working at Lake, but my passion for music and the arts remained strong, so, after a couple years, I found an opportunity to be an assistant principal at the Denver School of the Arts. It was a great place to see just what a really good arts education can do for students.
I never thought I wanted to be a principal, but opportunities present themselves and it’s always good to keep your options open and to keep growing, so, when the principal job at CEC opened, I decided to pursue the opportunity. It wasn’t really that much of a leap. Kids at DSA are pursuing their love of art, and the students at CEC have the opportunity to pursue their passion also. I love leading a building where students can begin to explore and then prepare for their career aspirations.
CEC is a wonderful place to come to work each and every day. The school is filled with dedicated teachers and students who are truly involved in their own education.