As I watched our school open this morning for the first time in five months, two words permeate my thoughts: fortunate and gratitude. Time and again since March, I have felt a ground swell from our community with those words at the epicenter. It sounds incredibly cliché, yet I can find no other phrase than “it takes a village” to embark upon this journey of reopening our school.
We have prepared for opening day for months. The summer was spent in professional development and planning to prepare for the safety of our students and employees. Our faculty and administration independently and collectively gained knowledge to protect and educate our students. Many of them have their own children who are learning virtually or on another campus. Yet here they are, sleeves rolled up, ready and willing to help…ready and willing to be on campus to educate our children. Parents, we are most fortunate to have this cadre of professionals committed to our students and our school. We are also fortunate that Rohan Woods is the place they chose to put down their educational roots. While our year will look different than any other, our faculty will continue to love, nurture, and help your children grow with patience and kindness as the fuel for their energy.
As parents, you have been quite remarkable over the past five months, going out of your way to communicate, “You’ve got this” and “We’re here to help.” Faculty and administrators felt the support and kindness expressed through the numerous notes, emails, and phone calls by our community members. Parents, you rolled up your sleeves as well, helping in any way you could to support our efforts and prepare for the coming year. We had families working in the science garden, taking it on as if it was their very own. We had dads power washing the Rohan Woods sign found on Bennet and literally taking apart the preschool playground equipment to ensure it was clean and ready for our little ones. A mom put the final touches on our mobile science cart so supplies will be readily available for instruction in the classrooms. Canopy tents lined our foyer that were readily donated by families for outdoor learning spaces to ensure the safety of our students. You will experience the expertise of an RWS parent who was an integral part of building the Google Classroom pages for every teacher. And as a community, we will benefit from the expertise of front line medical professionals who advised and guided us as we created safety processes and procedures – one of which literally walked from classroom to classroom providing feedback on safe, social distancing practices. The gratitude we feel for your support and help is overwhelming. Your collective efforts were instrumental in helping us confidently open our doors.
As you can see, I could find no other phrase that so perfectly articulates “it takes a village.” As a community we must all dig deep in following the three tenets of our mission…respect, responsibility, and leadership. The coming days may try our patience as we embark on this new year. But if we follow the mission of our school, we will not only survive, we will come out stronger and with great pride.
Our mantra for the year is We’re all in this together.