Dear New School Community,
“And that’s a wrap.” The 2019-20 school year is “in the books.” Or is it? One thing we know about learning is that a key element of the process is reflection. With reflection comes a deeper understanding, a way to make meaning, of our learning. We will not fully understand the experience of this school year until we are a little bit removed from it and take the time to reflect. The most meaningful reflection is one that expands like the concentric circles of ripples in a pond from self, to family, to loved ones, to not-so-loved ones, to community. The toughest, of course, is the “not-so-loved ones!” The process of perspective-taking, imagining the experience of those who are dissimilar from us, intensifies the impact of reflective practice. So, as you transition from the 2019-20 school year into summer, where you are likely already planning for the 2020-21 school year, I invite you to make the space for intentional reflective practice. While it takes time and requires that we slow down, it does deepen our learning and better prepare us for what comes next.
Whether you are celebrating the end of this school year with joyful exclaim, collapsing with a sigh of relief, sitting in the silent grief of what has been lost, smiling with quiet gratitude for what is, or something in between, you are not alone. I feel as if all of these resonate for me. I also feel a strong sense of pride and inspiration. I’m so proud of and inspired by our teachers’ efforts and persistence, by our students’ wonder and resilience, and by our families’ compassion and support.
Thank you. Thank you for sharing your experience, wisdom, and feedback with me. Thank you for welcoming me so warmly and kindly into The New School community. Thank you for your creative ideas and your steady support. Thank you for showing up when we need you. And, most importantly, thank you for trusting The New School with your children. I do not take that for granted, and we will continue to work to earn that trust.
I wish you a wonderful summer and look forward to the day we return to The New School campus together again.
With deep gratitude and unwavering hope,