What I’ve Seen
The conversation invariably comes up regularly. “What is going on?” “It’s a tragedy after a tragedy!” “This one has nothing to do with COVID.” If you didn’t know, Putnam City Schools is trying diligently to get our students back to full-time in-person instruction. So many things have conspired against this; it makes me think we’re victims of a plague.
You all recall that we started back to A/B schedule in January after diligently trying to make it work in November and December when weather conspired against us the first time. We start 2021 full of hope, only to soon be victims of the weather again for nearly two weeks in February. Now we have schools with busted pipes and flooded schools. Several classrooms in a few buildings are no longer habitable due to water damage. The schools lost books and furniture and teachers lost curriculum and personal items.
Having been in all our buildings this week, I can say despite this latest setback, spirits are pretty good. I was brought to tears in a faculty meeting this week as a principal described how her teachers pulled together and helped each other clean out classrooms and get set up in new places so that in-person instruction could happen again.
“Just figure it out” and “be creative” are phrases educators hear on a regular basis and for the most part, they do just that. But please take a moment to sympathize with these repeated issues our teachers have weathered this year. Flood, learning how to teach virtually, balancing in-person and virtual instruction, uncertainty about their schedules, and on. Oh, and COVID-19, which caused some, but not all of these issues, and makes teachers worry about their own and their family’s health on a regular basis as well.
If there was any question, yes, the teachers are working under all these conditions. They are trying to educate their students in creative ways, and yeah, they have actually figured it out, with a few hiccups along the way. Grace and patience are the words of the day!
March 4, 2021