7/24 Starting the School Year Remotely

Dear Bosque Students, Parents, and Guardians,
I am sure many of you were glued to yesterday’s press conference with the Governor. Based on how COVID has continued to negatively track in our state, she has mandated no in-person teaching and learning until at least Labor Day (9/7). 
I am guessing that this news is both disappointing and reassuring for many of you. I am feeling both emotions equally, but stand in support of the health and wellness of our students, staffulty, and families, and I am grateful for our Governor’s ongoing commitment to public health. 
Our Educational Task Force met today to discuss the need to:
  1. Provide high quality, immediate, and ongoing professional development for our faculty that will keep building their capacity in delivering outstanding remote educational experiences.
  2. Provide clarity to our staffulty, students, and families about how remote teaching and learning will look different this fall, from last spring. I encourage you to revisit the Model 3: Remote Teaching & Learning webpage and familiarize yourself with the model, schedule, plan, and FAQs. I specifically encourage you to click to expand “Goal 2: Maximize In-Person Teaching, Learning, and Community” and then scroll down to “Core Expectations of Students, Staffulty, and Families During Periods of Remote Teaching, Learning, and Community” as this lays out the significant updates to the ways we will engage in remote teaching and learning.  
  3. Consider how we can most joyfully launch the new school year, given our current realities. I will be back in touch, likely next week, with further details on this. As always, Bosque will remain committed to community, on and off campus for the year ahead. 
Many of you are probably wondering what will happen after Labor Day. This will ultimately be dictated by how COVID trends track in the coming weeks as I have no doubt that the Governor will continue to prioritize public health if things do not improve. I hope that each of us will contribute to positive trending by wearing masks and reducing gatherings and travel. The Governor made it clear that she is eager to shift schools to in-person models as soon as public health trends allow. As the Chair of the New Mexico Association of Independent Schools, I met this morning with my fellow independent school heads. We are collaborating and communicating with the Governor’s office to ensure they are aware of the unique natures of our schools. Based on the size of our student populations, our low student to teacher ratios, our large and flexible campuses, excellent ventilation systems, and infrastructures, we are in a unique position to potentially deliver full-time, in-person teaching, learning, and community as soon as public health data allows. I will keep you updated as more information develops on this.  
In the meantime, I stand with you in disappointment that we will not be able to come together, as we hoped, under the cottonwoods of Sanchez Park for our first day of school. This is not the start to the school year we had hoped for, but we are committed to do everything in our power to honor Bosque’s (updated) mission and values, and to manifest our model of Challenging Education through these challenging times.  
As a reminder, the next parent/guardian optional virtual meeting will be held on Thursday 7/30 from 6-7 pm. Please check your email for log in details.
Don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions to any of us at any time.
Sending support to each of you and looking forward to the year ahead, in community. 
Jessie Barrie, PhD.
Head of School