I have been “working from home” since Monday, March 16.
We’ve been told that school will resume on April 15. The reality of that is still uncertain. I will begin online instruction on March 30.
When we left school, for what might be the last time of the year, on March 13, we were less than a month from our final yearbook deadline.
I have 3400+ students counting on a yearbook and 33 students to make that happen. We’re doing all of this virtually, with no in-person social interaction. They’re texting and calling for quotes. We can’t get any more pictures. We can’t use the cameras in the yearbook room. If students don’t have a yearbook laptop, they can’t design or do what needs to be done. Everyone is taking on a multitude of roles to make sure we get the book done.
I’ve sat at my dining room table, looking up student information for accuracy. I’ve identified clubs, and have tried to help the staff as much as possible. They have a yearbook to finish. I have a yearbook to finish.
This situation brings back everything about making the 2018 book. When we left school on February 14, 2018, we didn’t know when we’d be back, what the rest of the year would look like, how we’d finish the yearbook and what we would do. Our theme was “As One,” and that’s how we made it all happen. We were one staff and one school. We had one mission and one vision. We knew that it was out story to tell, and no one could do that for us.
Now, every school across the country is faced with uncertainty. Now, we are faced with making another yearbook “like this.”
It’s kind of cool how we just pick themes that really encapsulate the year. We picked “As One” for the 2018 book in April 2017. We picked “We’ve Got This” for the 2020 book in July 2019. These two themes couldn’t be more fitting for what both books and both years would become.
My heart is broken for my seniors. They’ve had such a shitty high school experience. They’ve now had to make two huge and historic books. I admire their tenacity, drive, dedication, work ethic and responsibility.
I always take out an ad in the senior ad section for the graduating yearbook seniors. I like to leave it as a surprise for them to find when they look at the book for the first time. I don’t know when I’ll see them again as a group, so I wanted to share it with them today.
It’s been a rough year and a bumpy ride to make this book. I know that when it’s finished, printed and distributed to the student body, they will see all of their hard work, blood, sweat and tears, and know that it was all worth it.
I’ve always been proud of them. I only bring students on to staff who can do the insurmountable tasks I put before them. I have very high standards and expectations for them. They always rise to the challenge.
We’ve got this.