A thousand years ago, when I was a freshman at E.O. Smith high school in Storrs, CT, “passing time” provided a real life experience with the detritus that is slowed in a sludged drainpipe. The. panicked rush of smaller particles rushing by the slow amble of more massive bodies was soon after followed by the silence of staring lockers, blue and shining. The scene was particularly panicked for freshman because they hardly knew where to go, darting this way and that like summer gnats with giant backpacks.
Such scenes seem distant memory in the present August milieu, and yet the panic of rushing to the right virtual or real classroom seems all too familiar, as parents everywhere, all freshman to the current pandemic, scramble to get to… God knows where. Will they accept the hybrid model the public system? Will they supplement with tutoring? Will they pull their kid altogether and do homeschool tutoring? Will they form a pod? The panic has gradually ramped up, it seems, as the calendar pages have turned to August, and many have begun to realize that they need to commit to something that looks insane, one way or the other. Do I really want my 8 year-old home with me the entire year? Do I really want to risk my teenager’s life when there are so many resources available online? The rhetorical questions one asks oneself seem hollow and immutable, and yet it is time to move. Having two school aged children myself, in 3rd and Pre-K, we have wrestled with what to do, as well, and the conversations seem to spiral in on themselves, and yet we must act.
It is with this great sympathy that I hope I can ease this transition for so many worried parents out there. I can’t hook up a ventilator, or put an IV in, or even take a temperature (yes, even after three kids…. Ask my wife!), but I can help as many parents as possible navigate these impossible waters of change. I hope I can do the job well.