Monday, September 28, 2015

Malignant tumor removed during Fayette school superintendent's 18-hour sinus surgery


Praise for UK Med 

This from the Herald-Leader;
Fayette County Public Schools Superintendent Manny Caulk underwent an 18-hour surgery last week to remove a malignant tumor from his sinus cavity, school officials said Monday.

Caulk, who became superintendent over the summer, said in a statement that "the good news is that doctors were able to remove the entire tumor. and I will make a full recovery."

School board chairman John Price, who has remained on the board while being treated for leukemia for the past two years, said Caulk had the full backing of the board.

"We knew from our very first interview with Manny that he was the right person to lead our district," Price said. "His spark, his drive and his passion remain strong. and we are thrilled that he is willing to work during his treatments."

Since moving to Lexington in August, Caulk had struggled with severe allergy problems, which led him to see several specialists.

He announced two weeks ago that he was undergoing sinus surgery.

"Had I not been offered the wonderful opportunity to become the superintendent of the Fayette County Public Schools, my allergies wouldn't have flared up, and we might not have found the tumor in time for such an excellent outcome," he said in a news release.

"I didn't want to cause a distraction from our important work while waiting for my prognosis," Caulk said. "Nothing is more important to me than doing what's best for our students here in Fayette County. The good news is that doctors were able to remove the entire tumor, and I will make a full recovery."

His recovery is expected to take weeks.

Caulk will remain on the job during his recovery, holding meetings via phone and Skype, and staying connected through email and text. He said he would schedule early morning medical treatments so he would be able to conduct the business of the school district throughout the workday, a news release said.

"Nothing will keep me from the important work facing our school district," Caulk said. "Nearly 41,000 children are counting on us to deliver a brighter tomorrow than they have today, and it will take every ounce of commitment and energy we have to make that happen."

In the news release, Caulk praised University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital, where he had the surgery, saying, "the men and women who work at the University of Kentucky Hospital are the best team."

Marlene Helm, who served as acting superintendent from January until last month, filled in for Caulk on Monday night at the regular school board meeting.

Caulk's letter to FCPS Families:
Dear FCPS Families:

Before I moved to Lexington, I thought that the best team at the University of Kentucky played on the hardwood at Rupp Arena. With utmost respect for Coach Cal and the Wildcats, I am now convinced that the men and women who work at the University of Kentucky hospital are the best team!

Thanks to them, my surgery last week was a success and I am making incredible progress each day.

Nothing is more important to me than doing what's best for our students here in Fayette County. I feel so strongly about keeping the focus on our students that as I headed into surgery I did want not to cause a distraction from our important work.

Now that I have all the facts, I want to share with you that during my 18-hour surgery last week, the doctors completely removed a malignant tumor from my sinuses. Had I not been offered the wonderful opportunity to become the superintendent of the Fayette County Public Schools, my allergies wouldn't have flared up, and we might not have found the tumor in time for such an excellent outcome. Tests have confirmed that there was no spread elsewhere in my body.

Truly, this has been a blessing in the Bluegrass. My wife Christol and my mother-in-law Mary have been by my side the entire time, and I expect to make a full recovery. I think I'm driving them a little crazy because I keep talking about work.

My progress has been steady and speedy and I will do my best to work during my treatments and stay involved in the daily operations of the school district. Thank you for all your well wishes, notes and prayers these past couple weeks. It is an honor to serve as your superintendent.

Every child deserves the very best our district can provide and nothing will stop us from delivering on that promise!

Your Partner,

Manny

Read more here: http://www.kentucky.com/2015/09/28/4061518_malignant-tumor-removed-during.html?rh=1#storylink=cpy

2 comments:

jpb5367 said...

If Dr. Helm is indeed serving as his "substitute", and by all accounts she is, why not just come out and say it? We are essentially paying 2 Superintendents right now but, neither is actually doing the job fully. With the KPREP score release, I expected we would hear something from Caulk but, instead, we hear from Marlene. Being sensitive and sympathetic to his condition is absolutely necessary however, being totally upfront about the capacity to do the job is also necessary. It's OK to be incapacitated and need assistance. It is not OK to go on radio silence while being "direct and clear that there is only one superintendent". The last thing we needed in FCPS is more fragmented information and poor communication. We can adapt and overcome but, we must be fully informed.

Richard Day said...

It seems to me that this is just one of those situations everyone would love to avoid, but life happens the way it happens. I'm feel certain this is extremely frustrating to Caulk. Coming in, hoping to make a big splash, meeting people, and seeing a big hole in the central Office staff (but at the same time, seeing an opportunity to select several key staff members), I'm sure he wanted to get his administration rolling. Now, it is uncertain how big a setback his health issues may cause, but it feels like he's been set back 6 months or so. He was expecting a 6 week recovery. Now the followup therapies will surely extend that time.

And let's remember that day-to-day conditions will dictate much of what he can do, regardless of what he may want to do. I'm not sure this is the same thing as radio silence - at least the way I tend to think about it (capable of responding, but choosing not to).

Marlene is a consultant at this point, and its good that she's there. But the district has immediate needs that must be addressed, and we may all find that frustrating for a while.

Thanks for the comment.