National Principals Month: Tim Beekmann

Please join us in recognizing Tim Beekmann, Principal of Eden Lake Elementary, for National Principals Month. We asked Tim a few questions about his motivations as an educator and leader. Here are his responses:

Why did you choose education?

Based on many conversations I’ve had over the years with other educators I’ve heard from a number of them say they became teachers because they absolutely loved school, played school at home, and just knew they wanted to become a teacher when they grew up.  For me, it was very different story.  School was not always a good or positive place for me.  Growing up in a smaller community in SW Minnesota I was racially different than everyone else.  I was wrestling with my orientation and also seemed to have very different styles of learning compared to my peers. I just never seemed to fit in no matter where I was or where I went.  However, there were a few teachers I had over the course of my educational journey that truly stand out to me.  They were willing to invest the time to try and figure me out.  They held me accountable and set very high expectations for all of their students. They made learning fun, never gave up,  saw the best in me even when I didn’t see it in myself.  They wanted me to succeed and most importantly...they made me feel welcome and that they truly liked me whenever I walked through the door.   I chose education because I wanted to try and be that type of teacher for other children and hopefully make a positive difference in their personal school experiences.  And now that I’m in my 30th year with EPS I certainly hope that is the case.  

What gets you out of bed in the morning? 

Not to be too overly dramatic but now that I’m 51 years old I realize there are most likely more days behind me than there are in front of me.  I view each day as a precious gift that must be appreciated, valued, and never wished or squandered away.  I have the distinct pleasure of working in a school and district where I get to make strong and positive connections with children, families, and staff members.  Being a part of a much larger community and doing what I can to help create, promote, and sustain a warm and welcoming educational environment for each one of our students is so important and that’s what gets me out of bed each day.