The First Day of School

Sep. 10, 2020, from The Washington Post, comments from readers on school opening.


Sep 8, 2020: Today, students at the Middle School.  First time since March.

Not until the end of this week will anyone have any real notion of how many students will actually report in this time of Covid-19.  Similarly, only the future will tell which unusual bumps in the road there will be – Covid’s continuing impact on our lives.

I took the four-mile drive to the Middle School twice today, once about 8:30 and then another trip back about 1 p.m.  Neither trip did I even think of trying to touch base with my daughter, the schools Principal.  Anyone who has ever taught knows the dynamics of the first day; few of us can even comprehend how the Covid-19 Crisis makes Day One even harder.

The second trip a staff person was directing traffic at the entrance to the parking lot; there were school buses gathering; and traffic was being directed to the back of the school, apparently for 6th grade arrivals.  In the parking area were two signs, “7” and “8”, apparently for 7th and 8th grade, later.

My understanding is that today and tomorrow are orientation days for the 6th graders; Thursday the 7th and 8th graders make their appearance.  Everything was orderly.  I’m aware that today’s information may be outdated and superseded by tomorrow.  That’s how it is at this point in history.

The staff person and I chatted, but very briefly – his business was attending to parent traffic, probably some parents new to the school, as their oldest graduates to Middle School.

Years ago I was a junior high teacher, in the days when grades 7-9 were in junior high school.

Jumping from “Top of the Heap” in 5th grade, to “Bottom of the Barrel” in 6th grade is a major change in a youngsters life.  We all know this from our life experience.

I really applaud the apparent staged transition from elementary to middle school such as I was witnessing today.

There are lots of challenges ahead, no doubt.  But I think the faculty and staff are equal to the task at Oltman and the other schools now beginning.

I wish everyone well.

At some point I hope to be able to fill in the blanks about how it went today and this week and this month….

Oltman Middle School Sep. 3, 2020

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