Last week, we welcomed all of our students back into school for the first time in fourteen months. It was a surreal experience. Our school is fortunate in that approximately 97% of our students are now joining us in person five days per week.
On the first day back, I was struck by something simple. Even though everyone in the building was wearing masks throughout the day, I couldn’t get over the smiles. Students. Teachers. Parents. Even with the masks on, I could imagine what the smiles looked like under the masks, because I could see everyone smiling with their eyes.
It was a beautiful sight to behold. Fourteen long stressful months to this point, but once again we had most of our students back where they belong, in the classroom learning with teachers.
Yes, there was anxiety. Yes, there were logistical problems. Yes, there were scheduling snafus, and staff concerns, and fires that needed to be put out.
But, it was a wonderful feeling to know that our school felt like a school again.
I’ll take those smiles under the masks any day of the week.