The last day of school was filled with laughter and fun activities for grades 6-11. Some middle school students were playing on the Elementary play structure with such enthusiasm you could not help but feel their unencumbered joy. What a wonderful way to finish a challenging year.
It has been a brutally hard year with constant uncertainty. One thing I am certain of is that STEM collectively did our best to provide an exceptional educational experience. The resultant exhaustion necessitates a summer of rest and recovery for our community.
Predictions of a national and Colorado mental health crisis have our full attention as STEM plans for the Fall. Some of our students have not been in the school since spring break 2020. Bridging the anxiety of rejoining their classmates will require thoughtful and sensitive re-acclimation.
Frank DeAngelis has been a constant and wise advisor as a member of the group no one wishes to belong. Staff resigning is something he commiserates with as he lost 75% of his Columbine staff in the first three years. Last year, he advised me that years two and three will be even more challenging. When I met with Frank this past week, he mentioned that he cannot imagine my world with social media and said he would never have made it to the 10-year mark if social media existed in 1999.
Lost learning across the United States will be massive. A few of our students fell behind while many accelerated creating even more disparity. One of the goals STEM has for 2021-22 is to share with our families any data that partners us to help our children continue on their accelerated path STEM is known for across all abilities.
We are looking forward to a normal year for 2021-22 filled with students working on PBLs spilling out into the halls once again. Noisy children on the playground, in PE, and other specials always make me smile. I will miss that lovely student cacophony over the summer.
I wish for your family rest, recovery, and good health,
See you in August,
P.J. Eucker PhD
STEM honors all of our fallen United States military who made the sacrifice for our freedom on this Memorial Day.