Hello Everybody! I feel like the Beatles’ The Long and Winding Road should be the soundtrack for this final newsletter piece of the year (feel free to cue it up if it’s handy!). The last 11 weeks have seemed about as long as the first 25 as we’ve all dealt with, given an upheaval in our lives of crisis proportions never seen by most people. But we have come through it to reach the end of the school year – today! 

This is normally a joyous day to celebrate at school! There are three unusually energetic Morning Meetings every year: the first one, the one after Holiday Break, and what would have been today’s. I hope some of that positive energy bubbles up in your home on Friday. At least everyone in the school got to see Ms. Rosanne’s legendary video that captures the entire school year in all its myriad facets. It truly is one of the highlights of the year – the community, nostalgia, pride, laughs, and tears this viewing experience brings us annually. It will be able to view soon if you didn’t get the chance to do so this afternoon.

I also want to thank all of you who attended our Parent Coffees this week. While we certainly don’t have all of the answers regarding the start of next year, the community came out in strength, asked good questions, and showed their support in ways that mean a great deal to us. What we can promise you is the continued creativity, perseverance, and dedication to your child’s education, personal growth, and well-being that will always be synonymous with a St. Francis education (be it in person, remote, blended, or on the moon!).

If you missed the Middle School Morning Meeting video on Wednesday, Shelly Jones shared a video she took on her phone the last day we were in school before departing for remote learning. I was outside with her, as we allowed the kids to have one final recess together before dismissing for the undetermined amount of time that ended up being the rest of the year. What some of the 8th graders decided to do in those final precious moments speaks volumes about how they feel about each other. We watched, lumps in our throats, with pride. Wyvern pride. 

And finally, on a personal note, I’ve been writing articles for the newsletter for many years as either your Middle School Head, Assistant Head, or Head of Campus. And this is, in essence, my “sign off.” I couldn’t have imagined circumstances like this. But regardless, one of my favorite personal phrases about St. Francis is, “It’s what we all wish school was like when we were kids.” That was true in December of 1989 when I arrived, in 2000, in 2010, in 2020 during a pandemic, and I’m sure back at our inception in 1965. And no virus is going to change that.

It has been an honor, and I look forward to where the winding road takes us all next year.