Possip Spotlight: How Spring Lake Creates a Celebratory Culture

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Praise isn’t just a nicety. It’s the lifeblood of a thriving, joyful community. In the bustling Minneapolis-St. Paul area, Spring Lake Park (SLP) Public Schools embodies this joy by elevating Possip praise to unprecedented heights! Through a heartfelt conversation with leaders Erika Taibl (Executive Director of Communications, Marketing and Outreach) and Kelly Stewart (Coordinator of Learning Analytics), we learned about Spring Lake Park’s efforts to celebrate achievements and foster gratitude at every turn.

Erin Milligan-Mattes, Possip Reporter and a seasoned instructional leader who served in the Commissioner’s Office at the Tennessee Department of Education, shares best practices and advice from Possip Partner, Spring Lake Park Public Schools.

Listen as Erika Taibl and Kelly Stewart explain why Spring Lake Park chose Possip:

Using Possip to “Round” With Families

Spring Lake Park’s innovative approach known as “rounding” best demonstrates their commitment to employee recognition. Inspired by the healthcare field, where teams regularly check in on patients, Spring Lake Park leaders extend this compassionate practice to their staff. With genuine curiosity and empathy, they visit each employee and ask four questions:

  1. What’s going well?
  2. What do you need?
  3. Is there someone you want us to thank?
  4. Is there anything else you want to add?

However, with a student body nearing 7,000, extending this rounding to families would have seemed daunting. With the introduction of Possip Pulse Checks®, Spring Lake Park seized the opportunity to extend their caring touch beyond the school walls. Pulse Checks give families a routine, low-stakes opportunity to connect with SLP and round on gratitude and needs. It ultimately fosters a community where people feel seen, valued, and supported.

Listen as Erika Taibl explains “rounding” and how Possip provides fuel for employee recognition:

The Power of Praise

Spring Lake Park principals and district leaders use Possip praise to write thank you notes to employees, give shoutouts in staff newsletters, and elevate praise trends to the superintendent. While walking around SLP’s schools, you’ll see thank you cards, which include family shoutouts, pinned on desks and walls. 

See below for pictures of Possip praise being used during Teacher Appreciation Week:






The Power of Follow-Up

Embracing feedback is as essential as embracing praise. At Spring Lake Park, principals go the extra mile by crafting action plans from Possip reports and directly reaching out to families to discuss their feedback. These heartfelt conversations spark solutions and also foster deeper connections. They, strengthen the school community.

Listen to Erika Taibl highlight Spring Lake Park’s follow up cycle:

Advice for New Possip Users

Spring Lake Park offered advice on establishing systems for reviewing and responding to feedback for new Possip users:


  • Establish a recurring meeting for district staff to review Possip school reports and identify district-level trends.
  • Sit down with school and district leaders to review the first Possip Report together.
  • Assign one person from each school’s leadership team to lead discussion of Possip Reports throughout the year but divide follow-up tasks among the team.
  • Establish clear follow-up procedures between school and district leaders to ensure they avoid no double dipping.!
  • Publish the Possip 360 Script in the family newsletter the same week to close the feedback loop with stakeholders.

Spring Lake Park is a shining example of how listening, learning, and acting on feedback can create an even more celebratory school culture. We’re honored to stand alongside partners like Spring Lake Park as they cultivate joy and appreciation! Check out more more Possip Partner Spotlights here.

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