A Sad Announcement

One of our core values that sits at the center of our aspirations is our understanding of resilience. We know it through the words of Bounce Back, but it has been the cornerstone of all of our work in recent months as we face the challenge of fear and crisis. There are many aspects to resilience, but often the most important is how we reach out to each other in important and special ways when things seem the darkest and most dismal. Even with six decades under my belt, I still don’t fully understand the equation that inspires us to climb from the depths and find new meaning and direction out of the ashes of disaster.

Some of you know that our new band teacher, Emily Cleghorn, suffered one of the most significant of losses on October 3. She was notified on October 4th that her younger brother Samuel had been killed in a fatal motor vehicle accident. She boarded an airplane hours later to rush home. His obituary is here:

https://www.foresthillspalmcityflorida.com/obituary/samuel-cleghorn

A newly commissioned ensign in the U.S. Navy, it was clear that Samuel was about to launch into an inspirational career. Emily was devastated. But, in the true spirit of resilience, she took charge of all the arrangements for her young brother, working through all the details that saw Samuel returned home to Palm City, Florida with military honors.

But, the sad turn in this tale is that the challenges of this have resulted in Emily deciding that it would be best for her and the family she must now care for to resign her position at ASW. Emily described it as one of the most difficult decisions of her life and she is heartbroken that she will not be returning to the classroom where she was just beginning to develop the bond we all hold dear as a new Warrior. There is much more to this story of loss that is private to the family, but after a long conversation with Emily, it was clear that her resilience in this instance requires that she follows a different path and I have accepted her resignation.

Bounce back does not always take the shape we expect. Sometimes resilience means we must follow a different path. I know that I’ll retain memories of Ms. Cleghorn’s energy and enthusiasm and, even though it was a short sojourn, we will still count her as a Warrior, now and always. Search for her replacement is underway and members of band will get additional information shortly.

A Special Treat

Twizzlers – Yum!

Speaking of things that help us through the most challenging of times, I received a special treat from the Haim Family today in the afternoon and I’m in Heaven! One of my favorites from my youth, Twizzlers, arrived for me just when I needed them most. I’m pictured here remembering my long lost love of that fruity flavor, rainbow style! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! It was a welcome repast!

Aspiring Board Member Training

I’m about to send my message to those who signed up for our session tomorrow but wanted to give one last opportunity for others to still join us. Before 8:00a tomorrow, please.

If you would like to participate, you can sign up by clicking here: 

https://forms.gle/h9VnAN1f32wSRTvo6

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Aspiring Board Training and Epixpert Testing for Parents

Each year, I offer training sessions for aspiring board members. This can include our Board of Trustees, who are always recruiting new members, as well as service on other non-profit boards for charitable organizations. There is general information about serving on the board and specific information about how ASW governance works.

If you would like to participate, you can sign up by clicking here: 

https://forms.gle/h9VnAN1f32wSRTvo6

The BoT is always seeking candidates as new Trustees (U.S. citizens and Non-U.S. citizens) who could serve to fill open positions mid-year or run for elections in the spring. This process, overseen by the Board of Trustees Governance Committee is ongoing throughout the year. The link to that form is here:

https://forms.gle/2XwED5usBYeL94BB7

EpiXpert Testing for Parents

We are ready to deploy testing for parents onsite starting on Monday. Parents can be tested at school for the following costs:

Individual antigen test – 179 PLN (valid for 7 days in OK4School)
Individual PCR tests – 399 PLN
Individual Antibody tests – 85 PLN

The results will be reported through the app and payment can be done at the time of testing at the main entrance. We expect the deployment of pre-ordering via the website sometime shortly after the break. Parent testing would provide for access to cohorts if parents are also compliant with daily attestation through “OK4School”.

Once the website is ready, parents will be able to subscribe to weekly testing for a further discounted price. If we have sufficient parents that choose to participate, we can move parents to pooled testing and lower the price even further for the subscription. More information from Epixpert coming soon.

Events

I want to thank PTO again for helping to manage as we change some of our plans for the time between now and the October Break. As the notes below will share, we’ll need to forgo traditional activities, but still find some joy in the holiday. I trust PTO and parents to find some creative options that are safe and viable under the circumstances.

Final Words

I need you all to be thinking about safety out there. We are getting close to our break and case numbers continue to rise along with the reported numbers today in excess of 6000. Warsaw is on the verge of being declared a red zone. We have our own illnesses that we are tracking, although isolated and contained. For the most part, all of you are doing a great job of reporting on the app and keeping kids home when they are ill.

Please take my words as literally as possible: now is the time to STAY HOME (yes, I used capitals again). We are OK at school and I know you are doing everything you can at home to protect the community. The cases are being largely caught at the door or early enough to prevent spread. Stay safe and stay cautious. We can get through this together.

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PTO! PTO! PTO!

A big thank you to PTO for their amazing efforts in keeping a tradition alive and well with a wonderful weekend Raffle. I hope our live event on Sunday wasn’t too jagged for you and that we got enough announced to make it a fun and engaging afternoon. Thank you to all of the bidders and for the final tally: US$6265!!

PTO is planning away for upcoming events and I value their energy and enthusiasm. They are working hard to preserve our traditions in new ways, consistent with the challenge of a pandemic — no easy task! But, we certainly have the right people to take this on. You only need to look at the banner on their new “chalet” to understand how we turn lemons into lemonade. Please join me in thanking them for their efforts. Best way to thank them? – Volunteer!!

Students, similarly, are trying to find the silver lining of our restrictions and plan new ideas and involvement. At MS Student Council, one of the big questions was how can we do charity work and continue to serve others. We might not be able to organize a dance right now, but we are still concerned about how we can give back. Many are seeking agency under a new set of limitations — let’s not call them regulations — and the ideas are flowing.

As a school, we welcome collaboration and resilience. We love life and learning at ASW, always looking for ways to bring meaning and coherence to what we do!

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