In A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens writes, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness…” Those words meant to describe both the turmoil and hope during the French Revolution ring true today. I am in awe of the strength of the Yavneh community and I am in despair that we have been physically apart for two months.
Last week, we shared our guiding principles around returning to campus. Below is a more detailed look at the planning, process and goals taking shape for the remainder of this school year and for the 2020-2021 academic year.
Remainder of Current School Year – Remote Learning
We are saddened that we will not be able to gather on campus for the rest of the school year. While we are incredibly proud of the remote learning and community experiences our faculty deliver daily, we know how difficult and time consuming this is for parents. We know that nothing can ever replicate the vibrant and warm Yavneh in-person experience. We greatly appreciate your partnership in these efforts as we all do everything we can to support our students during this time.
We also know that not being able to be together, in community, for our usual end-of-year ceremonies and celebrations is a real loss for our families. We feel this loss deeply, as well. But we must have the health and safety of our students and families as our top priority. We will continue to be in touch with you about how we plan to mark all of our meaningful end-of-year ceremonies and events. We are committed to celebrating our students and their phenomenal achievements as we always do!
Planning for 2020-2021 School Year
Assuming conditions allow and we are able to follow all state and local guidelines, Yavneh is planning to resume some form of on campus learning on August 25, 2020. In order to ensure the health and safety of our community, our educational model is likely to look different. We also plan to do everything possible to educate any of our students that are unable to join us on campus for health or other reasons, through our virtual learning platforms.
Of course, the situation is evolving rapidly and we cannot know for sure what fall will bring. In the midst of so much uncertainty, how do we plan for what we cannot predict? Our goal is to ensure that in all scenarios, Yavneh remains at the forefront of schools in the Silicon Valley when it comes to health and safety, the quality of your child’s education, and the strength of our community. To that end, we recently formed a Contingency Task Force that is working diligently on a multi-faceted array of questions, possibilities and plans.
The Task Force is comprised of Zvi, members of our leadership team, members of our Board of Trustees, a physician, a faculty representative, Len Connely (Facilities Director at LFC), and me. We are informed by applicable governmental and health agency guidelines, discussions with scientific experts, and plans and practices being developed by other schools and organizations. Moving forward, we are going to create three smaller task forces focusing our efforts in three areas: Health and Safety, Educational Continuity, and Financial Stability. Please email me at [email protected], if you are interested in helping us in one of these areas. Finally, we have created an FAQ document that will be posted on our website and updated regularly.
I hope that you and your families stay healthy and well.