As we return for the last stretch of the school year, I am confident in sharing that I would not have anticipated at the start of the school year leaving for or coming back from our spring break quite the way we are currently. We will be wrapping up the 2019-2020 school year in uncharted territory. I am completely humbled by the extraordinary moments in each day that now punctuate our lives. I would guess that I am not alone in that at the beginning of the school year there were varying degrees of excitement, hope, joy and trepidation/angst that ensued as we quickly move through activities on the calendar - meetings, classes, courses, programs, breaks, traditions, celebrations, challenges and maybe thinking about what comes next or going on autopilot rather really remaining completely in the moment - despite building on to a daily practice with mindfulness. Case in point, I had a list of topics for this column picked since November that just don’t seem to fit right now.
It is definitely clear - we are experiencing something unprecedented on a global scale. Any minor inconvenience I might be having with wanting some more fruits and vegetables or other food or comfort as a choice, or acquiring a spare mega bundle of toilet paper have been summarily placed in stark contrast with the reality going on around me during a time of social distancing and staying at home. This reality puts into perspective a “gift of time” and what each of us can make with it. The emotions of embarking on a new path of eLearning bring up similar emotions to starting the beginning of the school year. How can we be creative and make a difference and embrace something new while being unsure? So many members of our community are working every day to support others, donate funds and organize efforts of support, and research solutions. Each of you have been heroic in your efforts! Regardless of who or how old you are in our community each of us has been called upon to show flexibility, be brave and compromising, give up something, show patience and be resourceful. There are so many sentiments of kindness and gratitude going on to take the edge off of a troubling time. I am reminded that when facing uncertainty it can help to be confident so am sharing a brief video that can help our students be reminded of how to be confident: 3 tips to boost your confidence
So WELCOME BACK! We will all need to face challenges with confidence and celebrate our successes and roll with any failure and setbacks. Our teachers have worked tirelessly to help prepare and make the best learning environment possible to support your children and young people across the divisions; along with a staff of seasoned educators, professionals and other employees with outstanding skill sets and boundless optimism we embrace this challenge. With you and your efforts at home and in your daily work, we will do our best to make learning special and milestones memorable, even though they might be different.