End of the Year
Dear EARJ Community,
On this same day one year ago, we were in full Distance Learning, talking about ending a hectic school year and preparing to start fresh in August. We were hoping that 2020-21 would be more “normal”, and believing that we had learned everything we had to learn about the pandemic.
Little did we know the challenges that awaited us. Challenges that we have overcome together as a community and that have brought us where we are today: finishing another frenetic school year, still in the grip of the pandemic, and ready once again to start fresh in August. Because this is what we do at EARJ. We don’t give up.
At this time last year, we thought we would see the students and teachers back to school in August 2020. It didn’t happen. We were not able to reopen the campuses until October, when they returned and we were thrilled to see them on campus. We thought they would come back all together but it had to be on a rotation basis – but they were here! Schools were closed a few times, schools were open, but learning at EARJ never ever stopped.
We thought we would all have been vaccinated by now, children and adults. Not yet, but all education professionals will be vaccinated against Covid-19 next week. Children are starting to be vaccinated in other parts of the world, and we hope that soon they will be vaccinated here. We hoped that there would not be many interruptions to academic life due to Covid-19 cases in our community, but the cases came. Sometimes just a few, sometimes more. We worked hard to balance medical prudence with the desire to minimize disruption, and we tried so hard to get the students impacted back to school in a matter of days, ready to resume their activities. Sadly, we feared there would be tragic losses among our families and loved ones. Despite our fervent hopes and prayers, the past months saw this come true.
Nonetheless, we close the year with heads held high and spirits undimmed. We will be ready to start another school year as we always are. We will work over the break like never before to prepare the school for a brighter future. As writer Arhundati Roy said, “The pandemic is a portal, a gateway between one world and the next. And it has left us with a choice: We can choose to walk through the portal, …. dragging our old ideas and smoky skies behind us. Or we can walk through lightly, with little luggage, ready to imagine another world. And ready to fight for it.”
At EARJ, we believe that we need to be forward-thinking, embrace the things that we love, change the things that we don’t, and accept the fact that our culture as we know it has changed forever. And we are ready. Are you?
#staysafe and enjoy your vacations!