Looking Ahead

We are closing in on two years of pandemic life. I think back to the beginning of March 2020 and how different the world was -- how different we all were. Throughout the pandemic, “returning to normal” has been the aspiration touted by news outlets, political leaders, advertisers, and a lot of us. Lately, I find myself letting go of the idea of “normal” and instead looking ahead to our post-pandemic future with hope and anticipation. 

I am a different person, and Principal, than I was two years ago. I am not thrilled about the physical changes the pandemic has bestowed on me (the last two years seem to have expedited the ageing process); however, my commitment to the school, our students and the importance of education have grown deeply over that time. We won’t understand the full impact of COVID for years to come, but Greenwood has been determined to do all that we can to give our students the best opportunities possible to grow, learn and prepare for their futures. Together, we’ve navigated school closures and leveraged technology to keep our community close, even when we are apart.

We have planned and cancelled again and again; those disappointments have no doubt been very hard on students. But I believe having plans in place for Winter Outdoor Education was worth it. We have to be ready to take advantage of every opportunity that comes our way right now, even though there are sometimes variables (like Omicron) that we cannot predict. That’s why we continue to plan for our June Outdoor Education trips with an optimistic view to having these valuable outdoor experiences. As Dr. Lisa Damour explains, it is our job as parents and educators to protect children from hopelessness and promote hope for the future. I recognize that this can be a tall order given the challenges we face ourselves these days, but as Dr. Damour notes, “the stakes are too high not to try.”

The delayed start of in-person learning due to this week’s snow days was frustrating, and I am all the more delighted that we are able to be back in the building together today. If there is one thing I have learned over the years, it is that there is nothing you can do about the weather. Getting mad that it’s raining on your camping or canoe trip doesn’t change anything -- it just puts you in a bad mood. Being upset with the snow only hinders one’s ability to see its wonderful side. So, I’m going to put my snow pants on and get out for a walk; I can’t affect the weather, so I will find the beauty in it. Similarly, I can’t change the pandemic, so I will go looking for the wonder and beauty in the world and, with hope and gratitude in my back pocket, make the most of these precious days.

Greenwood College School

443 Mount Pleasant Road
Toronto, ON M4S 2L8
Tel: 416 482 9811
We acknowledge with gratitude the Ancestral lands upon which our main campus is situated. These lands are the Ancestral territories of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation, Anishinabek and the Wendake. The shared responsibility of this land is honoured in the Dish with One Spoon Treaty and as settlers, we strive to care for the land, the waters, and all creatures in the spirit of peace. We are responsible for respecting and supporting the enduring presence of all First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples. When away from this campus we vow to be respectful to the land by protecting and honouring it. We will create relationships with the people and the land we may visit by understanding the territories we enter and the nations who inhabit them.
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