When I was growing up the country faced a challenge with the Cuban Missile Crisis. My perspective about world peace was formed from this experience. So too, our children’s perspectives about health and wellness will take shape.
Years from now, our children will recant stories of these days. They will tell their children about the time when they had to stay cooped up in their homes. Some will tell of the hardships endured by their families as a result of lost jobs or lost loved ones. They will tell of their first experience with remote learning. My guess is that they will also speak about the closeness they had with their family. In time, this crisis will pass and we will return to normal, but the way in which live our lives will be different.
I believe that we will have a greater appreciation for our loved ones. I believe that we will cherish our face-to-face interactions. I believe we will better understand that computers are an imperfect vehicle for relating with one another and that technology must never be a replacement for human connectivity.
I have grown a deeper appreciation for my teachers who jumped in with both feet, unlike some districts where parents have been left to their own devices. I have had the opportunity to peek into your homes via Zoom and understand, even more, what good partners you are. I suspect parents are getting to know their children’s teachers better as passive participants in the digital classroom. When this is over, I believe we will be closer and perhaps more resilient.
During these days, we have seen the spirit of America and the spirit of Columbkille. The inherent calling to help others has been activated. So many have stepped up, donating and delivering food, checking on the elderly, sewing surgical masks, donating funds for families in need, etc. Parents have also given us such positive feedback!
I cannot wait for the day of our return to school! The children miss the school and we miss the children. With the Governor’s announcement yesterday that the statewide school closure has been extended until early May, we will continue our efforts for remote learning. In the meantime, I will poke my head into the digital classrooms from time to time. I will peruse the thousands of posts your children and teachers are sharing. These posts have distracted me from the news of the day and reminded me that our children are still the children that I saw some weeks ago, with dreams and aspirations, talents and personalities. Please also keep in mind our teacher’s personal lives when respecting time to respond to emails. We have requested that our teachers rest in the evening to be able to give their best to your children during the day.
I will continue to pray for our community and for all who will suffer during these trying times.