Looks Like We Made It!

As we head into the summer during what has been an incredibly challenging school year, I cannot help but take time to reflect on the amazing work that has taken place despite the pandemic. Who would have thought that we would also now have to add a heat wave to cap this year off! Yet, the human spirit once again has shone through and together we have demonstrated the ability to bounce back and rally from adversity.

I have just recently read the book, Calm Within The Storm, by Dr. Robyn Hanley-Defoe, that shares a number of insights with respect to resiliency. A quote from the book that resonated with me states, “The sun will never reveal as much about yourself as the storm does.” You learn a lot about yourself and your organization as you experience adversity.  I am proud of the way our community, educators, and students rallied together to keep our schools open and accomplish so many amazing things while doing so.

If you get a chance, I recommend that you take a look through the Strategic Plan on the Langley School District website. It not only provides an overview of all the educational and operational goals but also shares a number of success stories from the past year. The school district continues to make tremendous gains in transition rates, and literacy, and numeracy skills. In addition, the work on establishing compassionate learning communities will continue to address the work that still needs to take place with respect to Anti-Racism, Truth and Reconciliation, and support for our LGBTQ+ community. Furthermore, considerable work is underway to provide systemic understanding and supports to address mental health for staff and students. I am also excited about the increased number of outdoor classroom spaces established this year and the upcoming opening of Donna Gabriel Robins Elementary school.

This last year served as a reminder that “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.”  (Helen Keller). We managed to keep our classrooms safe and still enable students to experience events such as sports days, year-end celebrations, and grads in different, but still meaningful ways. We demonstrated to students that life can challenge all of us at times, but it is important that “we see ourselves as capable of doing hard things.” (Dr. Robyn Hanley-Defoe)

To the end the school year, I wish all of our families a safe and relaxing break. I hope you take time to reflect on how these challenging times provide you with an opportunity to consider what you are grateful for – family, health, friends, a beautiful community and province, the ability to provide support to those in need, even the chance to be gather once again and meet face-to-face.

All the best,

Gord Stewart

Superintendent

To get an overview of the 2021-2021 school year, watch Langley School District’s year in review video below: