This is a letter of gratitude as we begin warming up our collective thankful and grateful season!

First, our Fuller Street Families who had to scramble when we could not keep our building open due to staffing shortages due to illness. People pulled together and worked to adjust and we are so grateful for the seamless transition to at-home packet-based learning until we can get our staff back next week. I am hopeful we are rounding a corner now. As I write this, today is the first day we have not been consumed by CoVid reporting and other illnesses. I am hopeful we are beginning to work through the surge and we appreciate the grace and adaptability shown by our families.

Next, all of our families who were impacted by the loss of four routes this week. Again, families stepped up, managed rides, and got our kids to schools despite the loss of those routes. We know it made for some really long drop-off and pick-up lines and we appreciate people being so good to each other as we made the best of a difficult situation.

Additionally, our staff has been incredibly adaptive, flexible, and tenacious working to ensure we covered for teachers who were ill, parapros shifted buildings and covered gaps we haven’t been able to fill all year, and more people got in touch with us to become substitutes for us in the future. Key Cleaning increased their sanitizing treatments and the food staff worked to adapt meal times through disruptions. This too is gratifying and inspiring as people pull together.

Finally, my administrative team worked exhaustively to be in many places and ensure coverage for our buildings. This was a major extension of effort and I know it is their spirit of servant leadership that gave them the energy and strength to just keep going these past two weeks.

Some of you may know my stories of working as an extended community in Fargo, ND and Moorhead, MN to keep our towns from going underwater in the big Red River floods of 2008 and 2009. Those were amazing and inspiring efforts by entire communities as well, but those efforts consumed a few weeks, and then life pretty much returned to normal. As I reflect upon all that has transpired over the past 20 months, the scope and duration of this is incredible and yet, we journey on together. This is truly a community-wide long haul to get through and it is my privilege to see so much of the best in everyone.

In these challenging times, know I am profoundly grateful for all of you who are stakeholders in our beloved district of Maple Valley. As our holidays begin, I just wanted to thank all of you reading these words for what you continue to do to help us get through.

In gratitude for who we are as a community,
Dr. B