This year was a challenge for all, but showed us we can persevere


Lance Melching

Lance Melching

It’s not news to say that this past year has taken a toll on us.

We’ve all suffered in ways large and small.

For the school newspaper, it was a year without print, where we were often denied the chance to face challenges collaboratively, trying instead to make the most of planning sessions over an internet connection.

Though many of our skills seemed to atrophy, it was the missing synergy that had the greatest impact on our productivity.

We are at our best when we can work together, and a blend of virtual and in-person students working at social distance only added to the struggles.

It was difficult to accept that we weren’t the same and couldn’t excel in the same ways. It was difficult to accept that sometimes surviving is enough.

But now we find ourselves coming out on the other side and grappling with this ordeal that has shaken our confidence.

What have we learned, fresh off a bruising school year?

We learned that things do get easier, and skills and habits that slip can be rediscovered.

We learned that our stumbles were only temporary, and we are still capable of great things.

This is where I need to pause to brag on the staff, which won six awards this year in a bigger-than-state-wide contest despite the challenges of the pandemic.

The 2021 seniors have twice won “best high school news publication” during their time and never finished worse than second.

Senior Morgan Daniels graduates as one of the most awarded staffers in school history, having won multiple awards for her writing and her photography.

She and her fellow staffers struggled through this year as we all did, but we learned.

We learned that we can face these unprecedented challenges and find a way to rise again.

It is my hope that my students do not forget these lessons.

I hope that the next time fate deals them a blow that threatens to shatter their confidence in their ability to do big things, they can draw on this year.

When things got so difficult that they doubted they’d ever get back to where they were, I hope they remember how they persevered  and how they went so far.