The academic and spiritual foundation built here at The Franciscan School (TFS) is constructed year by year with the help of parents, teachers, friends, and all the others who have impacted our students. This past year has been difficult because interactions with all those people has been reduced, and distanced, and masked; while we have continued to provide academics, and academics is tremendously important, it IS NOT the most important thing that I hope they take away from TFS the year.
This year we found “non-traditional” classroom spaces on campus, planned for masking, designed cohorts for each grade, and coordinated making sure there was 6-foot spacing between students and faculty. In the end, our plan came together with hard work; cooperation among faculty and staff, parents and administration; and the faith that comes from working and attending school in a community that trusts and helps each other.
The relationships formed and built here are the most memorable part, and these interactions are at least as instructive as the academic portion of their education. It is the friendships, the classmates, and the “cohort companions” that have taught the students this year how to cooperate and relate well with others. These experiences, hopefully, taught all of us how to build and live in community together. I would say that all that our students have experienced, learned, and succeeded at as a member of the TFS community this year, and every year, is what they will use every day of the future. Everyone lives in a community, and by learning how to navigate and collaborate as members in that community, they will find how what they learned here will serve them well; because, out in the “real world”, we all live in community together each day.
We ask all of our students to take what they have learned as a whole here in the classroom, in the Church and in the study of their Faith, and through the impact they have had on the thousands of people they have helped through service, and continue to make a positive impact in the world. If they work hard, be kind, and focus on what is important to them, they will truly be the hands and feet of God on Earth!
It has been a great year, not quite like any other we have had, but great still! We are glad for the experience and the success, and we deeply appreciate the community we all share who never wavered in their support! Thanks all for a great year at The Franciscan School!