So, the other day I had the opportunity of a lifetime: I got the chance to chat with a couple of young friends – let’s call them DW and Binky. DW is the younger of the two and in primary school. She misses her friends and teacher and desperately hoped that she would be able to get back to school for at least a couple of weeks in June. Binky, a bit of a rough-and-tumble older student, was understandably in a “funk” because the extension of school closures in Ontario would mean that year-end events would be affected. Again. One of the teachers at their school, Mr. Ratburn, was equally unimpressed, discouraged, and tired after several weeks of virtual teaching.
It was disappointing to hear, however, that our Premier, Mr. Ford, was able to speak to DW’s older brother, Arthur, who though he may have tried, was unable to influence the big man’s decision regarding Ontario’s shuttered schools. The Premier was immovable, so we remain closed to in-person learning. A certain song comes to mind: “Every day when you’re walking down the street, everybody that you meet has an original point of view!” No truer words have ever been spoken about our pandemic world.
While you have been supporting your children and their teachers during weeks of virtual learning, we have been watching the road ahead carefully, especially with an eye to how we can make our year-end wrap-up as meaningful and enjoyable as we can for our students. Without a doubt, it has been a moving target for everyone.
With this week’s announcement, we know that we will not be able to resume any form of in-person classes this June, but we may have the opportunity to invite children back for some form of culminating gathering – outdoors and with the safety measures in place.
It goes without saying that our Grade 8s, the Class of 2021, are top of mind, as we put the finishing touches on our plan. We ask for your continued patience and understanding as we confirm details for the final week of school, including any invitations to the campus. We know that you are juggling your own complicated schedules and that your kids (and you!) have had enough!
Please stay tuned. We will share the details with you at the earliest opportunity in the coming week, after we receive further direction and clarification from the MLHU Healthy School Division regarding our proposed plan.
In the meantime, I say “HEY! what a wonderful kind of day. Where you can learn to work and play. And get along with each other!”
After all is said and done, maybe that’s the most important thing we will have learned all year!
Ric Anderson, Head of School