Just Keep Going...

 We are a few short days away from officially completing the first month of the school year. It doesn't feel like that is possible, and it also doesn't feel like it's only been a month. As with any first month of school, there is always a fun-loving grace period where everyone is happy to be back in school, catching up with friends that they haven't seen for a few weeks. This period is generally followed by meltdowns of students and staff who are facing real-life challenges that are suddenly more complex with the additional requirements of schools opening. And then the meltdowns are followed by the realization that we are officially back in the swing of things and everyone is reminded that working in a school is more challenging than ever. There was a time that most adults remember school as being a place where you went every day, learned some letters and numbers stuff, had some recess/lunch/social time, enjoyed gym class, or hated gym (and we shouldn't even call it that anymore), and then did something after school that either involved a school club or sport or hanging out with friends at home. School today may be completely unrecognizable to most parents and the student experience is not what we lived and further, the staff responsibility is not what many folks experienced when they started working in education. Even within the last 10 years, the responsibilities have changed drastically. The fact is, teachers are wired to want to help kids, in every way possible. In today's world, the definition of help has gone far beyond the need to educate and make sure students can understand basic skills of the academia world that will help them as they grow. Learning in a school has become social skills, communication, language, coping skills, and so much more. It has become adults working in skills having the burden of increased worry and anxiety about their students and what they need to ensure that they can just attend school and have a chance to grow. It has become about food security and making sure kids are nourished enough to be able to focus in school. The stressors of working in a school have become much more than worrying about whether or not our children pass a test. There is not a teacher who does not worry about their students in some capacity every day of the week and spends many hours a week feeling helpless and anxiety-ridden because they aren't doing their job. This is that time of the year when we begin to truly know what our kids need which can cause anxiety because of wanting to be perfect all of the time. The fact is, no one is a superhero and we can all only do so much to help. But, your so much in helping a kid is more than most any other person can give. And if we all can find a way to keep going and continue helping kids in little ways, those little things add up to big things, if we are all contributing. That's our schools, community, and homes. Yes, this time of year is tough, and it may get a little tougher as we get into October. But, as the tough gets going, it can be overcome if we just keep going!

September 26 - Half Day

As a reminder to families, TOMORROW, Monday, September 26 will be a half day for students in grades k-12 for the professional learning obligations of our staff. Please mark your calendars and plan accordingly. More information is available through your child's school.

Oneida County Clean Up Day

During the weekend of October 22 and 23, the Oneida County Youth Bureau will be holding its annual Intergenerational Fall Clean-Up event. They are looking for children of all ages to come together and assist community members in need of help with basic Fall clean-up tasks, such as raking, sweeping, and collecting debris. If you have an interested student, student group, or community youth group, please contact your child's school or the Oneida County Youth Bureau for more details.

OPWDD Transition Assistance

The New York State Office of Persons with Developmental Disabilities is currently communicating with schools and families regarding ensuring that all students who can benefit from their services are aware of the department. New York State is a leader in transition services for students leaving a school setting and entering post-secondary educational institutions or the workforce. If you have a student in high school who you feel may benefit from their support and guidance upon graduating from high school, I encourage you to visit their website at https://opwdd.ny.gov/community-involvement/school-transition-students-developmental-disabilities. Our school team is also working with OPWDD to help connect families as their students transition from high school to post-secondary endeavors.

Rome Lions Club Craft Show

On Saturday, October 1, the Rome Lions Club will be holding it's 4th Annual Craft and Vendor Show at Rome Catholic School. The event will run from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and is free to the public. To view their event flier, please visit our Peachjar at https://app.peachjar.com/flyers/2323918/districts/32521

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