Congratulations to our local schools, especially the staff, faculty and seniors who graduated this spring.
You all made it through one of the hardest years we’ve ever faced in education.
Many schools across the nation did not return to their classrooms until March or April of this year — one full year after the coronavirus pandemic shuttered their doors just after Spring Break in 2020.
In Johnson County, however, all nine school districts opened their doors, whether in August or September. And, despite the greatest odds, none of them shut down anytime this year because of a COVID outbreak.
As some have remarked, the only time the schools closed this year was because of Winter Storm Uri in February.
This year meant a return to normal — though differently because of social distance, face masks and frequent sanitization — for everyone. Students were able to attend prom, sporting events and even graduations, among other things.
As students across the nation missed these sorts of activities, Johnson County students were able to have a semblance of a normal year.
For the students to be in the classroom, it took much sacrifices from the staff and faculty. As Cleburne High School Principal Ben Renner put it during CHS’ graduation, they had to be ready to change teaching methods on the dime.
“You were asked to present lessons in multiple formats to reach the needs of our face-to-face learners, as well as our distance learners,” he said. “You always had to be ready at the drop of a hat to become a quarantine teacher, to prepare your lessons from your dining room table via Zoom to a room full of kids.
“I could see the exhaustion in your eyes and the weariness in your steps but your heart for your students never stopped beating and together we made it through to the other side.”
We bet all district principals would share Renner’s sentiments.
Congratulations to the seniors who watched the Class of 2020 miss so many important experiences and pushed to make sure the same didn’t happen to them.
It was definitely a year for the record books, and everyone pitched in to make it happen.