On behalf of the Parents’ Association, I want to welcome all our new families to the community and welcome back our existing families!
While we continue to battle a global pandemic and face many other challenges in our world, I am thankful for our school and the strong community we are part of.
Being privy to some of the behind-the-scenes planning that occurred last school year, I know the attention to detail that went into each day was truly heroic. I am grateful that we have Head of School Michele Williams, our Medical Advisory Group, our talented educators and faculty members, and other specialists — all of whom are top, well-respected professionals in their respective fields — continuing to navigate through the layers of complexity on our behalf. More than anything, I am very thankful that our school provided a sense of normalcy and feeling of safety to our daughters during a time of uncertainty and fear.
Additionally, the Burke’s parent community remained deeply committed to reimagine and keep beloved traditions and activities alive this past school year. I was in awe at not just the talent of our community, but also in their willingness to deliver beyond expectations.
We will need to remain flexible to the changes in policies governing schools and other environments due to the pandemic. With the massive heavy lifting done this past school year by the administration and the Parents’ Association, our community and, more importantly, our daughters, will continue to benefit and grow.
At its core, the Parents’ Association connects the parent community with Burke’s faculty and staff. The Parents’ Association supports the school’s strategic goals, faculty and classroom initiatives, parent education, community building, and fundraising - always with Burke's mission fresh in our minds to educate, encourage and empower girls.
As we enter the 2021-2022 school year, I have three primary goals for our community during my tenure:
- Reunite safely: We got a small taste of this in late spring as the health guidelines permitted and it felt so wonderful! Gathering is crucial to deepening our relationships, especially to our new school families. Following what our medical advisory group recommends and our health guidelines permit, I want to encourage outdoor activities that allow us to know each other more. Additionally, we’ve had several early discussions about how to bring back our beloved traditions in-person, such as the Burke’s Festival. Stay tuned! When you receive these personal or community invitations: accept the invite when you can. Reach out and lean in if you want more. The time investment you make into these relationships’ compounds for all of us.
- Enlist more volunteers: Being actively engaged is critical to building our community and keeping Burke’s the wonderful, welcoming place it is today. A volunteer request link will be sent to each parent/guardian soon with a variety of opportunities. I encourage each of you to sign up for at least one committee. If there is a hurdle that is hindering your desire to volunteer, please let me know, as we continue to look for ways to break down obstacles, embrace technology, and make times and locations more flexible. I am also delighted to announce the trajectory of fathers leading a P.A. committee will triple this school year from where we were two years ago. Knowing how engaged our parents are within the community, it’s great to see this increased engagement on the PA leadership team as well!
- Support each other: Perhaps more so than other years, we need each other’s support and compassion. Our kids need it. As parents, we need it. Our teachers need it. Our administration needs it. Reach out. Encourage. Provide supportive feedback. Cheer each other on and lift each other up. We will continue to rely on our school and each other for stability, support, encouragement, and joy.
Lastly, I encourage you to reach out to me or to Vice President Amy Norman with any ideas, suggestions, and feedback. Your thoughts and experiences are critical to continuing to enhance our school. We are here together, and we all want to see our daughters and our community continue to thrive!
It is a privilege to represent the Burke’s Parent community as this year’s President. I look forward to working together to make this a successful and memorable school year!