As we welcomed in the New Year of 2021, we also made the exciting transition into our two full days hybrid program for grades 1-4. This was a much-anticipated move for everyone in the community, students, and families especially as well as teachers. On behalf of the administration, I want to express once again our gratitude to our families for staying committed to our school and community as we navigated and continue make our way through these uncharted waters of a global pandemic.
CESJDS Links Blog
A guest blog sharing the voices, wisdom, and insights of the CESJDS community.
Contribute to CESJDS Links! If you are interested in authoring a blog post, please submit the form.
In December of 2020, a group of seven faculty members and one tenth grader had the opportunity to participate in the NAIS’s People of Color Conference (PoCC) and the Student Diversity Leadership Conference (SDLC). This conference is the flagship of the National Association of Independent Schools' commitment to equity and justice in teaching and learning.
Heading into winter break feels distinctly different this year. Usually, this is a time when families are getting ready to travel to near and far off places for a break from “real life” or to visit with loved ones who we have not seen for awhile. We create goals and expectations for what we want to accomplish over break and plans for how we will do just that. As in every other moment during these last nine months, we are heading into a strange version of a familiar moment in our lives with plans cast aside for a more “COVID-19” friendly one.
One of the manifestations of the CESJDS Core Value of K’hilah/Community is our dedication to close partnership with our families. Without a pandemic situation, we celebrate the role that both home and school play in raising and educating each child and, as a school, we want the working relationship between faculty, administration, and parents/guardians to be a positive and productive one.
When I think of 2020, an everlasting resilience building bootcamp comes to mind. The world has weathered natural disasters, an ongoing pandemic, systemic racial injustice, economic recessions, and more. In the United States we can add to that list an election year fraught with uncertainty, and political and civil unrest. There is no doubt that we are all exhausted from this bootcamp, and we know that developing resilience is key to managing and overcoming challenges.
As educators, we strive to provide meaningful and innovative experiences for our students so that they have the knowledge, skills, and confidence to be successful when they graduate from CESJDS. One of the challenges we face in education is that the world we live in today is dramatically different than the one we ourselves grew up in. To best meet the needs of our students, we attend conferences and various professional development opportunities, collaborate with colleagues in different disciplines, and stay up-to-date on the newest teaching research, tools, and strategies. However, that’s not enough. In order to provide our students with meaningful and relevant experiences, we need their insight and feedback. We need to put students at the forefront of our initiatives and give them a role in informing the decisions we make as a school.
Shavu-ot is that beautiful moment in our Jewish calendar when we celebrate both our love of learning and dedication to one another as a community. At JDS, we capture these feelings daily through our core values of Torah L'shmah/Learning for the sake of learning and Kehillah/Community. Students, families, and faculty alike were, and still are, sorely disappointed that we could not run our 8th Grade Capstone trip to the South.