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Making a Difference – Story Honoring Mr. Bobby Mullins

By: Carol Wirwamaking-a-difference

According to worldly values, success is often measured by money, fame, or power, but, in reality, the greatest achievements in life are accomplished by doing the small things in a mighty way. As Mother Teresa so aptly said, “There are no great things, only small things with great love.”
This quotation powerfully describes Crockett County Middle School Principal Bobby Mullins, who impacts lives daily by humbly doing “small things with great love.” His passion for serving others and his desire to better the lives of children are making an unprecedented difference in Crockett County Middle School and in young lives.
Mr. Mullins is a role model who leads by example. He makes every encounter an opportunity to encourage and inspire. He treats his students, teachers, and parents with concern, compassion, and respect. As principal, he maintains an open-door policy that invites and encourages honest dialogue and communication. No one leaves his presence without feeling listened to, respected, and valued.
Mr. Mullins strongly believes that each and every student can and should achieve success. That belief was evident this past year when Mr. Mullins pioneered the adoption of a school-wide “Power of I” program. Principal Mullins provided an opportunity for his staff to learn more about this program by arranging an in-service training at school, as well as allowing all staff members to visit a school to see the “Power of I” in action. As a result, the staff is fully committed to the belief that zeroes are not an option, that all students will complete all assignments, and that students will be held to a high standard of achievement. Through Mr. Mullin’s leadership and example, students, teachers, and staff are inspired to be the best they can be.
One of the ways Mr. Mullins inspires others is to challenge his faculty to think creatively. He encourages his teachers to experiment with new and unique methods of teaching that focus students on higher-level thinking skills and hands-on activities. Consequently, a snapshot of classrooms during any one day at Crockett County Middle School reveals a science class creating replicas of plant and animal cells out of clay, a language class designing book report dioramas, a history class preparing travel brochures of the thirteen original colonies, and a prodigy class inventing their own board games.
This support to attempt new ideas that can better serve the students has led to Crockett County Middle School’s first time ever summer reading program. Not only does the reading program benefit the students who participate, but it also fosters an alliance and wonderful cooperative relationship with the county’s public library that has continued throughout the school year, impacting the students, the parents, and the community. Without Mr. Mullins, this new venture would never have been possible.
No entity can achieve without teamwork, and Mr. Mullins inspires his faculty and students to work together. New to the school this year are Cavalier groups, a mentoring program initiated by Mr. Mullins. At the beginning of every day, each teacher meets with a group of students who will be “his children” for all three of the middle school years. This allows the students to have a consistent adult figure with whom they can relate and on whom they can depend, ensuring consistency, support, and encouragement throughout the frequently turbulent adolescent years. So important is the outreach effort that Mr. Mullins has his own group of students, one that consists of at-risk children.
Mr. Mullin fosters the teamwork approach by other means, as well. He encourages the sharing of ideas and resources. He is persistent in seeking opportunities to find the needed resources for his teachers to teach. He never asks his faculty to do any task he is not willing to do himself. For example, to prevent his teachers and students from having over-crowded classes, Mr. Mullins teaches a class himself. He is a perfect example of leading by serving.
Mr. Mullins takes advantage of every opportunity to create positive relationships between students and teachers and to involve the entire school in teamwork efforts toward their goals. He instigated quarterly football, volleyball, basketball, and kickball games between students and faculty for students who reach their reading goals. This new event encourages school-wide reading, goal setting, achievement, and cooperation.
To Mr. Bobby Mullins, being the Crockett County Middle School principal is NOT a job; he is fulfilling a ministry! One day at a time, one encounter at a time, a child is encouraged, hope is renewed, a life is changed.