There is no doubt that the events over the last year and a half have had profound effects on our students across the State. It is hard to believe that it has already been 18 months since we first started hearing about the mystery virus from China. The biggest blow to our students came when they were not able to return to school after Spring Break in the 2019-2020 school year. This was an unprecedented challenge for students and teachers alike. Though some schools had dabbled in virtual instruction, none of us were ready for that last nine weeks of school. We did our best to deliver instruction, and students did their best to learn, but it was a challenging experience for all of us to say the least. Regardless of our efforts, we ended the 2019-2020 school year with most of our students significantly behind in all content areas.
Like other rural schools in Texas, Rocksprings ISD started face-to face instruction at the beginning of this school year. However, there was an option for students to continue with virtual instruction until after Christmas Break. So while many students were back in the classrooms, teachers were still reaching out to other kids that were still trying to learn from home. As an educator, I think it is important to add here that I do not believe that a computer or any other technology can replace a classroom teacher. The relationship that is formed between a student and his/her teacher will help ensure success more than any computer program or textbook. Moving forward, I believe that it is imperative to have our students back in school. We saw a somewhat normal end to the 2020-2021 school year with no masks, regular field trips, and a full blown graduation, but there was still much to be done.