School IS NOT Canceled

Jun 29, 2021

The poem below is my thoughts on why I think the headlines are WRONG and why the virus has not canceled school. Feel free to read it, but this poem was spoken and is meant to be heard.

The headlines say school has been canceled.
They’re shut down until this crisis has been dismantled.
Social distance measures have been dropped like an anvil,
And since you can’t guarantee every kid has a laptop, paper and pencil,
Classrooms are empty, parents are extra busy, and our students are going crazy,
because school has been canceled.
Except the one where that teacher dresses up and reads books to his 3rd graders,
And those that are sending students personalized letters in their weekly mailers,
And the ones making signs and celebrating high school seniors
Making sure they finish their education and don’t feel like failures.
There are also those schools providing free food for every kid in their areas,
Teachers and administrators bringing stability in all of this hysteria,
Like holding Zoom meetings and greeting every kid by name before they share,
Whose primary mission right now is to make sure every kid knows that they care.
Who realize this type school is not the same as it was before,
It’s not defined by learning content to get a high score,
But the motivation is creativity and finding new ways to engage students more,
Like hands-on activities and encouraging them to get outdoors.
It’s still caring for students who no longer walk through a door,
Like the teachers who are delivering students’ work from the trunk of their cars.
And are making time for virtual parent meetings from afar.
Or how about the music teachers giving their lessons online,
Having their students combine their music together on Skype,  
Or those math teachers writing problems on sidewalks in chalk,
For students to answer when they go out for a walk.
Or the science teacher using the school’s 3D printer to protect law enforcement when they cough.
Or my daughter’s preschool teacher who called my little girl just to talk.
Or all of those teachers who continue to be a rock
for their students
Don’t tell me school has been cancelled.
School is not a building or a location.
It’s a collection of people who are committed to meaningful relations.
And that’s something that doesn’t just dissipate when a virus spreads across nations.
Of course it looks different and there’s plenty of resistance.
But not getting together physically doesn’t mean relational distance.
We are being reminded right now of an educator’s persistence,
And the vital role they play in our society’s existence
As they keep striving to provide our children with assistance.
When this is all over we probably won’t miss this.
But for now we focus on what’s most important.
So let’s be loud and clear in case the media does not report it,
School is not canceled.

Did you like that spoken word poem? Check out this one:


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