In 2020, when we first announced cancellation of classes for a week, due to the dangers of COVID, students, as we expected, were over the moon. Even if lockdown and quarantine entailed us to stay at home, it also meant no classes and no work; hence, all fun.  Little did we know that the one week would turn into a month; the month to several more months; and as we all know it, a whole school year.

And here we are now, onto the SECOND year of full online classes.

So what now?  I can easily tell you how prepared the school is, in terms of its systems and academics.  The VOLT program was and is a huge success; and this summer had been a continuation of these efforts.   But instead of detailing all the new and improved features, I would like to let you know that we recognize the challenges that the “SECOND year of full online classes” brings.

If the kids were ecstatic of the week-long quarantine 2 years ago, this time, the desire is to get away – to be able to go out, and to be able to interact with classmates face to face. Not being able to do so, puts a certain kind of gloominess in the picture.  The school realizes this.  The teachers have the same sentiments; and I’m sure the parents are concerned as well.  We’d like to assure you that we are here to support you. As in a song, we are all in this together.

This year, we are highlighting in the curriculum Socio-Emotional Learning (SEL) to help students deal with their emotions.  We are strengthening the Guidance programs of counseling, sponsorship and Comprehensive Growth Series.  We also have Certified Mental Health First Responders in the persons of Ms. Viola Villena (Deputy Principal) and Ms. Rhena Gonzales (Student Services Head).  Furthermore, we have incorporated in the school calendar monthly Wellness Day for students; and guided mindfulness in their daily schedules.

It is in this line that the teachers and staff took time and effort to try to reach out to the students by producing a fun and free-spirited music video to kick off the school year, covering the song “Best Day of My Life” by the American Authors. Particularly dedicated to our children, and posted on the first week of classes, this powerful performance hopes to inspire students of hope, positivity, and energy.  Our message is simple:  Despite the challenges that this year brings, in the end, it is still our choice to make every single day, the best day of our lives.

Let us all be thrilled of the possibilities this year, Academic Year 2021-2022, because anything can happen!  Who knows by the end of the year, we could be back in the campus? Anything is possible.

Donnabelle L. Atienza, Principal