Congrats to the CSS community on successfully completing the 2021-2022 school year. I am so grateful to the parents and faculty who have warmly welcomed me to CSS and partnered with me to make it a successful year. I hope that your summer months are filled with rest and fun for all! As we wrap up not only another school year but also a week filled with numerous celebrations recognizing our graduating seniors, I'd like to dedicate the remainder of this letter to the Class of 2022.
This is a class that has had to embody the idea of resilience for almost their entire Upper School careers. Of course, the pandemic had a significant impact on this treasured experience. Yet even smaller things, including a May snowstorm on the day of their planned senior prank, required them to be innovative and resilient. One thing is for sure, they have learned how to react positively and productively to the dynamic world in which we live.
They arrived in El Pomar in 2018 and had the gift of one pre-pandemic year before their high school experience got turned completely upside down. Having this one “normal” year, thankfully, gave them the opportunity to fully witness and engage in the culture of the Upper School at CSS – in all of its intended glory. This year, they became my instructors in the traditions that make The Colorado Springs School so special.
I will be forever grateful for all that they've shared with me, and for the vision they have for the potential of our wonderful community. And, I will carry that with me into the next school year, as we strategically plan to promote future meaningful community connections among students, faculty, and families.
Michelle Obama once said, “grief and resilience live together.”
No doubt – a significant portion of this class’s Upper School journey was disrupted – a true loss and something worthy of grieving. I wish things had been different for them, however, I will not dwell on that wish; I know they do not. They acknowledge it, but also tap into their resilience, make new plans, and make the best of everything. And, this life experience will serve them well in the future.
As they embark on a new journey beyond the walls of CSS, I have hope for what lies ahead for them, mainly because of what I see in this graduating class. My hope for them is that they will continue to gain the skills and experiences they need to meet the challenges of our world. I am confident that they will. And, we need them to!
Given the challenges they've faced, I'd like to leave the Class of 2022 with this quote from Maya Angelou: “I can be changed by what happens to me. But, I refuse to be reduced by it.”
Without a doubt, these 18 graduating seniors will not be reduced by any circumstances they encounter. They will rise to every challenge and innovate the solutions they need to meet obstacles. I think I speak for all CSS faculty when I say we will be here to celebrate every victory you have, and we hope you will continue to share your achievements with us so that we can!
Congratulations, again, on your graduation!