Cedar Reader

Cedar Park Middle School - March 2021

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Redefining "Behind" In the Pandemic

As a principal, I hear from parents, community members, my staff, and even the news about how our kids "will be behind" when this is over. I understand that sentiment and thinking. I'm a parent. I know what it means to constantly compare my son's learning and growth to all kinds of benchmarks. Physical growth; emotional growth; social growth, and of course, academic growth. Measuring academic growth often becomes primary and the one we focus on the most.

Maybe, this pandemic is an opportunity to value other growth that may be a bigger key to future success. How have our middle school students grown? They are more resourceful, they are more in tune with their emotional health, and they know the connection to family and its value. Even though they fight with their sibling(s) incessantly, they have spent the past year creating memories and bonds that will last a lifetime.

Our middle school students have learned how to use a Help Desk, tell their teachers when they need help logging on, teaching parents how to navigate technology, and even how to take small breaks when they need them. They didn't have a teacher over their shoulders showing them how to navigate Canvas, and through persistence and trial and error, they learned.

They have had to be an equal partner in their learning more than ever - this is a good thing. It's not perfect, but they have built tremendous skills for resilience, self-reliance, judgement, and intentional engagement. No, it has not been perfect, but we need to embrace the good and the growth.

Will our kids be "behind?" Maybe. Behind whom? If we are all behind, then who is ahead?

Instead of thinking about the deficits of this time for our kids, we need to embrace the human and self-preservation talents they gained. Think of yourself in middle school - could you have navigated this? No. I argue that they are navigating it much better than we are as adults.

We need to get back to school. Our kids need to see each other and connect with their teachers and school. They need to have in-person interactions and experience joy. We all want this. But, we need to be careful and not measure them by the same ruler that will judge them as "behind." They are not. They are learning and growing in ways that we could never have imagined.

That matters.

Important Dates for March

3/3 @ 5:30 PM - Cedar Park New Parent Night

3/4 @ 5:30 PM - Cedar Park New Parent Night in Spanish

3/10 @ 5:30 PM - Cedar Park Hybrid Learning Q&A Session

3/15 - Parent Survey for Hybrid/CDL due to District Office

3/22 - 3/26 - Spring Break: No School

Hybrid/CDL Parent Q&A Session

Wednesday, March 10th, 5:30-6:30pm

This is an online event.

Join us for an information session that will give you details and answer your questions about the specific format for hybrid and CDL learning at Cedar Park.

Link to Zoom

Topic: Parent Meeting Room

Time: Mar 10, 2021 05:30 PM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting


Meeting ID: 356 154 5230

Passcode: Parents

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Sunset HS Hosts Mental Health Event

This event was planned for last year but due to Covid -19 we were unable to host the in-person event. We are looking forward to engaging with David and Heidi in an interactive webinar format.

Come learn the secret to staying calm and how to best help when those you care about need your support. Presented by David Kozlowski, Child and Family Therapist and Heidi Swapp, mom, and entrepreneur from the "light the fight" podcast.

Please join David Kozlowski and Heidi Swapp, for an evening virtual community event to learn how to partner with your children, help them combat anxiety and depression, and build high-quality relationships for life.

Here's the link to our smore publication


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