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There's the old saying about walking a mile in someone else's shoes.

Today, about 30 educators will bring members of the business community into their world, and then trade places for the other half of the day.

The idea behind "Principal for a Day" is to allow business leaders to spend half a day learning more about the daily challenges principals confront. After lunch, the roles will reverse and the principals will plunge into the world of business, as well as into city and county government.

The event is part of the Celebrate Billings campaign, a collaborative community effort to make Billings a better place to live and work.

"The ultimate goal of the day is to pair educators with business people so we can understand how we impact business, and business people can learn how to best support education," said Jo Swain.

Swain is superintendent of Billings Public Schools and co-chair of the Celebrate Billings Education Committee.

Public and private schools from kindergarten up through college level will take part in the day. Principals from many of School District 2's elementary schools, middle schools and high schools will participate, as well as from St. Francis primary and upper schools.

Rocky Mountain College will also take part in the event.

On the business side, representatives of banks, investment companies, and retail firms will join in the day, along with employees of St. Vincent Healthcare and Deaconess Billings Clinic.

Yellowstone County Commissioners Bill Kennedy and Jim Reno will participate, as well as Sheriff Chuck Maxwell and Billings Fire Chief Marv Jochems. The Big Sky Economic Development Authority plans to take part, as well The Billings Gazette.

Business leaders will shadow principals and have lunch at school. Then the educators will spend the afternoon in a business setting.

At the end of the day, participants will meet on the Rocky Mountain College campus to discuss the day.

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