“Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability.”
– Sam Keen
As another school year comes to a close, the weeks have been full of special events, celebrations, and farewells.
The farewells are difficult: we have to say goodbye to friends who have made our individual lives and the school community better. It is nice to know that it is easy to keep in touch regardless of where in the world those leaving AAS end up.
The special events and celebrations are fun, as we come together to enjoy each others’ company. All of the special events and celebrations require a lot of planning and work, and I thank everyone for their support in making them happen.
On Tuesday, we had the grade 5 and grade 8 Moving Up Ceremonies. Both events were perfect for the occasion. The events included speakers who reflected back on the 2021-22 school year and the years before that at AAS. While enjoying the ceremonies, I couldn’t help but reflect back on how long I have known many of the students. I’ve had the privilege to watch some of the grade 5 students grow since Pre-Kindergarten; and some of the grade 8 students since they were in grade 1. They have changed so much, as they should. I was discussing this with parents at the grade 5 ceremony, and one of them said that we (the adults) had not changed. I don’t feel that I have changed much in the past 8 years, but the photos from years past that pop up on Facebook would suggest otherwise.
At the same time that we are reflecting back on the past year(s), we are looking forward to the 2022-23 school year. In addition to the normal awesomeness of a new school year, next year AAS will engage in a process of reflection. AAS is accredited by the Council of International Schools (CIS) and the New England Association of Schools (NEASC). In August, we will begin the re-accreditation process. This process will include getting input from the AAS community on AAS’s strengths and how AAS can improve. While the re-accreditation process is taking place, we will also be working with a group called NoTosh to review the AAS Mission, Vision, and strategic planning. The work with NoTosh will also include getting input from the AAS community regarding AAS’s strengths and weaknesses. In the spring of 2021, we began the process of reviewing the Mission and Vision Statements. There was a dedicated group of Board members, staff, students, and parents who did some great work on reviewing the Vision statement. That group and everyone in the community will be invited to provide input as we work with NoTosh to continue this important work.
The 2021-2022 school year had its ups and downs, just as every year does. I won’t go into detail–I’m certain I don’t need to–on the downs. But, it is telling that many of the ups are the simple pleasures that we used to take for granted. Nobody knows what the 2022-2023 school year will bring, but I sure hope that it is full of simple pleasures, as well as great accomplishments and celebrations.
As we head into summer and I reflect on the 2021-2022 school year, I think of many splendid times. I am well aware that all of those splendid times happen because of you: the students, parents, families, and staff that make the AAS community. Thank you!
I wish you the best for a relaxing and fun summer with your loved ones.
This summer… “Do more things that make you forget to check your phone.”