Newman professor John Burke wins a state superintendent award

Feb 13, 2020
Professor John Burke

Assistant Professor of Education John Burke received the Distinguished Service Award on Jan. 15 from the Kansas School Superintendent Association.

Burke is incredibly passionate about teaching and administration; so much so, that he is not only an assistant professor of education at Newman but also a superintendent for USD 261, Haysville schools.

“It is very rewarding to serve both as the Haysville superintendent and a part-time professor at Newman University,” said Burke. “I feel that I must really be on top of my knowledge and understanding of school and district leadership. Each position sharpens the other.”

Coming from a background of many teachers, Burke is constantly looking toward the future of education and hopes to inspire many students on their paths to teaching.

“I was brought up in a family of teachers and college professors. I was the only one that decided to become an administrator. I see everything through a teaching and learning perspective and I believe that I am helping to produce the next generation of school and district leaders.”

Despite his busy schedule, Burke has learned to make time for every opportunity he can.

He has carried his superintendent role for 35 years and has served as an adjunct professor at many colleges and universities in the state of Kansas.

Even after years of experience, Burke simply does not tire of teaching. He finds his work to be fulfilling and rewarding and added that he highly appreciates the opportunity to teach at Newman.

“I really love teaching my Newman students. Watching the students learn and grow provides me with so much satisfaction.”

Burke’s fervor for teaching and administration earned him significant recognition for his work.

“I have known about the (Distinguished Service) award for many years as it is given annually to one superintendent in the state. I don’t pursue getting awards. In this case, one of my assistant superintendents recommended me for it. It was presented in Topeka in conjunction with the Kansas Superintendent of the Year Ceremony.”

He was surprised when he received the award, as well as “honored to be in the company of the Kansas Superintendent of the Year and the other two finalists.”