The most frequent question people ask me at this time of year is, “How is school going?” or “How was the start of school?” I’ve been thinking that I could answer this question much better. Usually, I begin with naming things we have done so far (middle school campout, advisory retreats, first day of class, first day of activity, etc.). I think I’d like to start answering these questions and those like them as if I am answering this question instead, “How are the students?
In short, the students are wonderful. The building is vibrant with smiles and conversation, and the pace has quickened as students move from class to class and learn to gauge how much time it takes to eat lunch off campus. I can also say that:
- Students are learning. Based on my experience with students in my class, the classroom walkthroughs I do, and conversations with students, I am confident that students were engaged immediately in learning. When I listen in on classroom conversations, I hear the vocabulary of the discipline they are studying (and see a lot of smiles besides).
- Students are in relationship. Contrasting how the middle school students leave for camp with how they return from camp is always a joy. Watching students gather around tables in the lobby, the commons areas, and the cafeteria is always a reminder to me about how students come to know and work with with each other.
There is always a sense of the tentative and unsure as school begins; there are often kinks and confusions to work out; and at Crossroads, there always seems to be joy in the motion forward, joy in the discovery, and joy in the problem resolved. I value this about our students. Their confidence and trust is important and honoring.
So how is school going? How are the students?
School is going well, and our students are better than I could predict or imagine.
With great expectations,