Hafa Adai yan Tirow Wami, CNMI!
I am honored to serve you as the CNMI Public School System Commissioner of Education, and to partner with our students, educators, families, and community to ensure we meet the Public School System’s mission. We are deeply committed and excited to see the transformation of this mission into actions. Together, with you as our partner in education, we will navigate the direction for our young generation and the future.
As “Leaders of Learners” in a Students First district, we are also committed to understanding our students and their experiences in our schools. My work as COE will be guided by a tenet put forth by Stephen Covey in “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People”. He says that leaders must “first seek to understand, then to be understood”.
PSS has achieved success at many levels. We want to maintain the strong legacy that the school district and community have established for our students. The Navigation Pin plan is designed to enable me to quickly and effectively listen to and learn from a wide range of people involved - directly and indirectly - in public education.
As your new commissioner and a lifelong learner, I will use what works for our students and to find solutions for areas for growth in the system. As our partners in education, I want to hear from you on how we can better prepare and support our teachers, administrators, staff, and parents for the critical roles they play in each student’s life. I look forward to this opportunity to listen, learn, and partner with you. As "the village that raises the children", we can increase educational opportunities for all CNMI PSS students to be successful. Let’s Drive the Mission!
To develop in students, skills for independent learning, responsible citizenship, and productive employment; and to provide the community with educational, vocational, and recreational resources.
Our PSS Vision is student-centered, student-focused. It is a highly-effective educational environment where everyone focuses on excellence. Respect, fairness, transparency, confidentiality, and shared governance are a part of every aspect of the Public School System.
Respect / Respetu.
We believe everyone should be treated with respect. Even in the most difficult interaction, we will always display respect with all involved.
Fairness and Transparency.
Fairness is our guiding decision-making principle. In every decision we make, we will ask others and myself if the decision is consistent with basic standards of fairness.
Fairness often begins with a transparent, well-described process for making a decision or resolving an issue — a process that everyone can understand. Some decisions themselves may be unexpected, but there should be no surprises about how decisions get made; and everyone in our community deserves to understand why decisions are made in a particular way.
We don’t believe in secrets. We do believe very strongly in honoring commitments to confidentiality. Keeping secrets means not revealing information that should be public. As a leader, a teacher, and an educational researcher, We know how essential it is to respect everyone’s privacy.
We will practice shared governance at PSS — many different groups have input into most of our decisions: students, faculty, staff, trustees, alumni, and the larger school community. The great advantage of shared governance is that it promotes the inclusion of a rich body of perspectives into decisions. This broad input can greatly improve decisions which are made, but there still needs to be a person or group whom ultimately make the final decisions. Shared governance is not easy, and what it means is often misunderstood. Shared governance does not mean that decisions are ultimately made by popular vote — no complex organization can run that way. Most importantly, he/she had an opportunity to participate in the process.
Good leaders have high expectations for themselves and for those they serve. I hold those I serve and myself to the following eleven expectations:
1. Be Child Centered
2. Be Professional
3. Be Enthusiastic
4. Be Visible
5. Be Collaborative
6. Be a Communicator
7. Be Forgiving
8. Be Positive
9. Be Proactive
10. Be a Positive Role Model
11. Be Organized
"The virtue of Service goes very deep in my heart. Being kind and generous with my knowledge gives me life. I grew up in a poor family in Chalan Kanoa District 1. I know how to survive. I AM ALFRED BORJA ADA.
I bittot setbisio gof diduk gi korason hu. Karinosu yan geftao ni tinigu hu mu na lala'la yu. Dumangkulu yu gi pobli na guma. Hu tungu lu ma'la. GUAHU SI ALFRED BORJA ADA. FEGU-TUHU."
Dr. Ada's journey started when he was a counselor at the Northern Marianas College before becoming a classroom teacher. After serving as a classroom teacher, he then went on to becoming a school principal, first at William S. Reyes Elementary School, then lastly at Kagman High School. Understanding the needs of the youth of the CNMI, Dr. Ada then took a position at the CNMI Public School central office as the Career Technical Education Program Manager. A few years later, wanting to go back into the classroom to reconnect with students, he served as a licensed substitute teacher and a Literacy Coach. As our CNMI Public School System Commissioner of Education, Dr. Alfred Ada is grateful to serve the students, parents, teachers, and PSS staff and is ready to lead the system into a new era.