A Reflection in Gratitude...
 
With the abrupt ending of our time at school it is so easy to get lost in what we've missed out on...end of the year recitals and performances, Frozen Jr., Teacher Appreciation week, end of the year field trips, even the simple pleasure of seeing our Roland Park community in the hallways of school. 
 
If our focus is on what we've lost, it makes it harder to see just how great the 2019-2020 school year actually was.  In reflection, I wanted to highlight all of the amazing things that happened this school year as a reminder of all that our Roland Park Community has to be grateful for...
 
Our teachers came back school to find a teacher's lounge area "make-over" complete with new furniture, new appliances and a Keurig, courtesy of the PTSA.  Roland Park teachers deserve this and so much more.
 
The PTSA added a Little Free Library to the Playground area as well as a Read Box in the Front Office.  Our students were encouraged all year to take books anytime they wanted to read, whether at school or at home.
 
The PTSA, teachers, administrators and students worked hard to make this year's Hispanic Heritage Month and Black History Month celebrations special for the whole school and Roland Park Community.  They were truly celebrations to remember.
 
Parent volunteers assisted the school with its most successful "FUN RUN" fundraiser to date, raising over $51,000 for classroom and school needs and helping to fill the funding gap for needed supplies and programs. 
 
Parent volunteers and members of our PTSA Advocacy team, worked tirelessly this year to bring legislative attention to the frequency of lock-down drills, garnering support from our own State Senator as well as legislators from many districts across the state.
 
The Roland Park Foundation had an enormously successful year culminating in the Dragon Fire Ball held at the Epicurean (a special thank you to Julie Garfield for all of her hard work organizing this event for the third year in a row).  As a result of the hard work of the Roland Park Foundation and generous donations from our Roland Park Community, we will see updates to the Media Center, capital improvements to our outdoor areas, replacement of outdated technology and enhanced teacher trainings.   
 
Our school received a generous donation from the Iarossi Family and Wharton-Smith, Inc., along with funding from the Roland Park Foundation to complete an outdoor covered-court area that serves as a space for physical education classes and after-school sports, as well as outdoor classrooms and special events.
 
Both our MYP and PYP students consistently set the bar high in academics, testing at the top of the district in many subjects.  Our students also impressed us with their achievements in district competitions throughout the year.  Never have we been so proud of all that these kids have accomplished.  
 
Even in the midst of the recent school closing, our Roland Park Community continues to shine.  The school was able to pass out electronic devices to every student who needed one.  Our school has achieved 100% participation in e-learning by our students.  Quite an achievement. 
  
In the last few weeks, I've constantly been reminded how lucky we are to have this talented, loving, caring and supportive community of teachers, students, administrators, volunteers and parents.  The learning continues, the kindness continues and the reasons to be thankful continue. 
 
My hope is that now, when there are certainly so many reasons to mourn the things we have lost, we can continue to see all of these bright spots and reasons to celebrate the 2019-2020 school year and our wonderful Roland Park Community.