I have spent the past few weeks reading and writing reports and have been delighted and very encouraged to learn that our girls have adapted so well to their new way of schooling. Whilst I know that they have really missed the physical contact with their friends and teachers, they have been justly commended for their hard work, enthusiasm, focus and maturity. Many of them have also grown in confidence and/or independence over the year or have made significant efforts to participate more in lessons – all of which is excellent.
Our parents have supported their daughters magnificently, providing the technology and resources for them to access their learning whilst juggling the demands of their own jobs and dealing with the challenges that life has presented. I am also tremendously grateful to our teachers who have worked harder than ever, taken their IT skills to a whole new level and adapted brilliantly to a completely different way of planning, delivering and assessing their lesson. They have provided their pupils with some wonderfully creative activities, ‘virtual’ trips and competitions which I know have been very much enjoyed and have maintained a sense of community even though we have all been apart.
As we come to the end of the term, I think we should acknowledge how hard it has been for us all but also try to take forward the best from the remote learning period/lockdown. Perhaps we have felt more connected to friends, family or neighbours or more grateful for the things we used to take for granted. Could we continue to enjoy life without getting on a plane or using our cars so regularly or going shopping as much? Could we spend more time with our families, cook healthy meals for ourselves or take more exercise than we did previously?
Whatever September brings, I am sure that none of us will ever be so happy to return to Earsby Street! I hope that you all have a lovely and restorative summer and I will leave you with the beginning of this lovely poem, 'Continue', by Maya Angelou:
Into a world which needed you
My wish for you
Is that you continue
To be who and how you are
To astonish a mean world
With your acts of kindness
To allow humor to lighten the burden
of your tender heart
In a society dark with cruelty
To let the people hear the grandeur
Of God in the peals of your laughter
To let your eloquence
Elevate the people to heights
They had only imagined