Assistant principal returns to roots

BLUE EARTH – Two years ago, Al Cue took the job of assistant principal at Blue Earth Elementary and Middle School. With the blessing of the school board, he will be back in the classroom this fall.

“The school board and administrative team have been nothing but supportive of me,” Cue said. “I very much appreciate the opportunity I was given, but I think I need to follow my heart.”

It is leading him back to teaching.

“I’ve found out over those two years that I really enjoy being a teacher in a classroom,” he said. “I visit classrooms now and I just want to stand up and start teaching. The close connections with the class and homeroom are something I miss, as well.

“And I love the ‘Aha moments’ when a student gets it, if they’ve been struggling with a concept and all of a sudden it clicks with them,” Cue said. “I like teaching the academic lessons, but I like the life lessons as well. It’s the life lessons they really need.”

“I have three to four years left until retirement,” Cue added, “and I enjoyed the teaching side more than the administrative side, and I just want to get back in the classroom.”

He will bring quite a bit back with him.

“I think I’ve gained a lot of problem-solving skills through management. I’ve gained a healthy respect for the administrative role,” Cue said. “Being in and out of the classroom, I got to see a lot of great ideas and some things that didn’t go well.”

Cue taught for 29 years before moving into administration. He is still licensed as a teacher for K-6. As of now, he does not know which grade he will be teaching in a few months.

“No idea yet; that will be Mrs. (Melissa) McGuire’s decision,” he said.

“I had fifth grade probably half of those 29 years,” he said. “Then I got sixth and that was an adjustment, and I learned how to enjoy sixth as well. Each grade has its challenges and bonuses.”

Cue has remained active in extracurricular activities, coaching girls basketball.

“I’ll continue that,” he said. “I’m open to other positions.”

Would he consider going back into administration?

“I’m not going to say never,” Cue hedged, “but I don’t have those plans at this time.”