Four and a half months ago when we started school, I was filled with excitement about us all being together back in school. At the same time, I feared that school would feel less like school and more like a dystopian novel full of weird rules, limits on social interaction, and masked faces.
I am very grateful that school during this first semester has actually felt like school—full of life and energy, very human, and rich with opportunities for kids. Thank you to our kids for your amazing adaptability and to our educators for your innovation and commitment to make it all happen. If you have a moment, check out this wonderful video featuring many of our students and educators sharing some of the things they learned during 2020.
Our team spent much of the summer preparing for our return to campus, knowing that it would be a start to the school year unlike any other. From the beginning, our priority has been the health and safety of our entire community. Physical, emotional, and social wellness has been at the center of every decision we have made.
The pandemic has undoubtedly taken much away from our school that we miss: traditional IASAS events, Classroom Without Walls, choral singing, interscholastic sports, and the opportunity to spend time with whatever friends you want to be with that day. Nevertheless, I cannot help but see our glass as more than half full.
Working within our health and safety constraints, our educators have been creative, collaborative, and dedicated in focusing on what we can do. Below are just a few of the ways our educators have changed their approaches and created meaningful opportunities for our students and community.
We hired a group of alumni to support our small recess groups. One advantage has been that every student has the opportunity to be part of a group each day and gets to meet and interact with new students.
Our fine arts and Model United Nations teams were able to host a successful digital IASAS event.
Our high school theater department created a series of productions that were recorded and shared. Check out, The Show Must Go On.
Choir classes got creative and focused on songwriting, handbells, and music theory.
Our middle school team held their first Eagle Days to provide students the multiple opportunities to focus on teamwork and social-emotional intelligence.
Activities and athletics have provided students time to connect socially and to pursue their interests.
Senior parents have celebrated our seniors this semester in several fun and meaningful ways.
Looking forward, we have already begun planning major events like Interim Semester and graduation. We are excited to see how these opportunities will evolve as Singapore continues to update its safe management measures. With the implementation of TraceTogether, we are hopeful that we will be able to continue to phase in more opportunities for our community.
While 2020 was not what we expected, we have grown as a community and I am grateful for the support each of you has provided along the way. I hope each of you is able to enjoy a restful winter holiday with friends and family!