These past few weeks have been a huge challenge for all of us- from the absences, endless testing, tracking COVID-19 cases, and quarantine protocols, not to mention the Hunger Games-like atmosphere to procure an Antigen Rapid Test. It’s been a lot.
But there is a second front that we have been battling since the start of the pandemic- the mental health of our students. I do not need to cite the numbers; we have all felt or seen it in one way or another. Its roots are in the loss of connection and engagement.
The way we have endured the ongoing stress of this pandemic is to double down on what we know is best for our students, our learning, and our community. While we have worked to keep everyone safe and healthy, we have not lost sight of the importance of a connected community and engaging curriculum. Students begin each morning with a Morning Meeting, Advisory, or Circle Time (depending on the grade level), enabling them to be present, engage, check-in, and feel seen and heard. This allows our community to stay connected with one another despite the chaos and uncertainty that has been surrounding us all.
Not only is our hands-on curriculum and social emotional learning happening on campus, but we continue to plan for our spring field experiences, guest experts, and community events. Our 8th graders are preparing to go to Puerto Rico to build homes; the 4th graders are headed to Coloma to immerse themselves in the gold rush experience; the 5th graders will go to the Nature-Bridge Golden Gate Outdoor Program; we are working on rescheduling the 7th grade Hawaii experience; the all-school concert is being planned for April. Despite the limits the pandemic has imposed, there is still much to be hopeful and excited about.
We know how hard and exhausting these past 22 months have been. However, we will continue to prioritize a nurturing place of consistency and safety for your children. As always, thank you for your support, cooperation, and trust. Your partnership has made this all possible.