During the past eighteen months, the world has experienced an extraordinary degree of separation. We have been separated from our classmates, friends, family, colleagues, and community. The force that created the separation is silent and unseen but nevertheless has upended our sense of progress and security.
Throughout history, great trials have always resulted in unprecedented responses. Albert Einstein once described the phenomenon, “In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.” Today’s challenges present us with the unique opportunity of rebuilding our inclusive community, the focus of our theme for Inclusive Schools Week 2021. We have recognized the individual and organizational necessity of inclusive beliefs and practices and find that we are committed to restoring and rebuilding a shared community of learners, educators and leaders.
The Year 2021 offers an exciting pathway to:
- Strengthening our commitment to inclusive education;
- Extending previous successes
- Redirecting our talent, time and energy to Improving our practices, outcomes for students and their families and the condition of our community.
Rebuilding requires a blueprint that guides construction from a solid foundation to the roof—a blueprint designed with active engagement from our students, their families, educators and the community. Two-way communication is critical to determine priorities for needs and to create a design that works.
Rebuilding demands the right tools. Teaching resiliency is a powerful tool to help combat the fears and uncertainty of constructing a new environment—one that restores and revives the basic human need to belong. Rebuilding emphasizes the need for quality materials and resources to upgrade services that take inclusion to the next level for student success.
We look forward to hearing your stories and lessons learned from your own rebuilding process. We will share those success stories through the Inclusive Schools Network, so together we can continue the work of supporting successful inclusive communities worldwide!