School Views: Getting back to school
Happy New Year, Eagle County! I hope everyone was able to spend some quality time with friends and family over the holidays and find moments of respite to relax. All industries across the country are facing challenges as we continue to navigate the global pandemic and move into 2022.
We began second semester Tuesday, in-person, and are beyond grateful for everyone throughout our community who helped make that possible. We understand that we will face ongoing challenges, but we have a staff of dedicated professionals who are committed to our students. It’s difficult to know what the future holds, but I have faith that we will navigate these (potentially choppy) waters together and find our way through.
Staffing shortages continue to be a significant challenge, and are exacerbated by the recent spike in COVID-19 cases. We’ve known since the beginning of this school year that remote learning for individual classes, grade levels or even schools could be necessary with COVID-19 still present in the community. We remain committed to providing in-person instruction to as many students as possible and will limit transitions to remote learning to the smallest possible group of students when absolutely necessary.
There’s nothing like living in our small mountain community. We’re not afraid of cold temperatures, snow measured in feet or out-of-towners navigating a roundabout. We grow from adversity and celebrate our accomplishments together.
I’m eager to carry that mentality into the new year. I choose to focus on the possibilities, worry less about media-driven hysteria, and be compassionate toward those around me. I’m thankful for what I have, including (and especially) our amazing Eagle County School District staff who educate our amazing students in a truly amazing community.
Thank you all for your continued understanding and support as we move into the second half of the school year. We are prepared for challenges and will continue to do our best to provide in-person instruction, and pivot when necessary with kindness and grace for others.
Philip Qualman is superintendent of Eagle County Schools. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org