Pat Sheridan Little School Director
Remawrks Each fall, the school year begins in late August or early September. Just as summer begins to bring cooler nights and the evening song of the cicadas we are thrust into a schedule of “school night” routines. On those late August nights I sit on the back deck and listen for the cicadas. As they approach the end of their short time on Earth they sing louder than ever. Are they singing in protest or triumph? Do they know what’s coming? The school year begins moving toward us like a freight train. As the train bears down we begin the ritual of making lists and buying everything new. Our supplies are crisp, sharp, shiny and bright. They promise organization and accomplishment. We will keep our books covered, our notebooks color coded and our assignments neatly recorded in our planner. Our devices will be synced for ultimate precision; we will not miss any communication and will not fail to respond in a timely fashion. It feels like we are in control. The days begin to move forward. Each week seems to contain more to do and less time. By now the weeks are passing quickly and filling up with homework, rehearsals, practice, projects and friends. Some classes are our favorites; others are much harder and require more work. Things shift a few weeks later – such is the cycle of a school year that shrinks and expands on a schedule to which we are not privy.
I have always considered this roller coaster of a calendar a gift to those of us fortunate enough to be part of the life of a school, with its undeniable demands that come in predestined spurts. The school year is a beautiful cycle of beginnings and endings. When the final measure is taken, we celebrate the highs and let the rest flow beyond memory. No matter the challenges we faced, the losses we suffered or the heights we achieved, the year concludes with a sense of satisfaction and joy. The cycle of a new year begins, as it should, with anticipation, promises and shiny new stuff. It ends, as it should, with an acknowledgment of hard work and success, a few less-than-stellar moments, and memories of lessons, friends, tears and laughter. For 36 years I have been part of The Bryn Mawr School’s reassuring and reliable school year cycle. I will miss the excitement of the beginning and the bittersweet relief of June. I know that each new school year will continue to carry students and teachers forward to great heights. You will count the days in June. By mid-summer you will look forward to the next new year and will carry on with goals and hopes and dreams to guide you. I wish you Godspeed.
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