As many of my readers know, I decided to take the plunge and pursue an administration job. I am super psyched about all the learning I am doing this summer. However, I am going to be honest and say it’s hard. This summer is hard; hard for me, hard for my family, and hard on the people I work alongside of every school year. We are ALL navigating a new reality, the least of which is my new job. We are all worried and want to do our best for one another, but no one has all the answers and knows exactly what the other person needs.
I am reminded often by others to smile, to relax, and give myself time. However, time seems to be dwindling away and the work is getting more demanding. I am not going to stop chipping away at the work, but I am going to drop the water line and say this year is hard on everyone! Top down!
There are no easy solutions, magic buttons, or instruction manuals for reopening schools amidst a global pandemic. Thank goodness we’ve never had quite the same situation in schools prior to today when we have the ability to offer choice to our families to explore learning online or continue to progress in tradition education if that is what works best for their child.
All of us worry, all of us need reassurance, and all of us will remain in this together. We cannot let our fears prevent us from moving forward. Our students need us and deserve the best we can give them; virtually or face to face. Just like no two students learn the same, no two districts are reopening in quite the same way. The needs of the community, students, faculty, and administration are different in each district as well. We need to realize that no one is in the same boat, even if we are all on the same wild ride.
For now… I am adopting the MASK Mentality.
M– Make every moment count. Instead of getting caught up in the what ifs, I don’t knows, and we don’t haves, focus on the possibilities, the relationships, and the WHY behind your decision to be an educator.
A- Accept the feelings and fears of others. People have emotions that are all over the place regarding the reopening of schools, mask effectiveness, and Covid-19 in general. We don’t have to agree with everyone, but we do need to accept the fact that each person’s perception is ultimately their reality.
S-Seek solitude, practice self-care, and walk away from social media. Take time to regroup, read a book, or rest up for what is sure to be a super exciting year.
K- Keep kids first. We don’t have to have all of the answers today. What we need to have is the right attitude, a fail-forward mentality, and a focus on students and their needs. After all, Maslow proved if basic needs aren’t met learning takes second place.
As this year commences, I will don my mask and ensure I keep my MASK mentality on point.