A message from Superintendent Tahiliani
to the entire EPS community
Good afternoon, EPS Parents, Families, and Guardians,
Thinking about Thanksgiving this year, I was reminded of the words of poet Margaret Cousins, who reminds us, “Appreciation can change a day, even change a life; your willingness to put it into words is all that is necessary.” I am not merely willing, but privileged, to reach out to you today to express my gratitude and appreciation for each and every member of the EPS community. We could not have endured the past nine months without you. Nor can we imagine our future without you.
This dizzying and disorienting year has challenged us all. Our health and security have been threatened; our social and emotional supports rattled; our cherished routines interrupted or eliminated. Our community continues to experience the full range of impacts wrought by Covid-19. But frustration, fear, and uncertainty are surpassed by your courage and resilience. You have been an inspiration. I never want to endure a year like 2020 ever again. But I will proudly hold onto the perspective I have gained by watching this community pull together and push ahead.
Do I have a lot to be thankful for? Never have I had more to be thankful for.
On behalf of Everett Public Schools, I have to begin by thanking our students. What has been foisted upon you during the pandemic is just shy of unimaginable. Public schools exist as places where we learn together, places sustained by proximity and interaction. In dramatically altering the formula, we have asked a tremendous amount from you in a very short period of time. I am in awe of how quickly and successfully you have adapted to the unprecedented 2020-2021 school year. Keep it up! We are proud of you!
While my thanks to our teachers, families, and staff are endless, there are some specific things that deserve mention.
To our teachers, I am most thankful for your professionalism, dedication, and collaboration. You have conceived, implemented, adjusted, and enhanced our remote learning model in less than half a year — an achievement that should not escape anyone’s notice. Along the way, you have developed and shared creative and effective ways to mesh the best of your abilities with the technology and platforms our eEducation demands. Every day has seen you make gains in how to best deliver education to our students under pressure-filled circumstances. You are a credit to our district and your profession.
To our families, I know I speak for our entire district when I thank you for your patience and resiliency. Covid-19 has created innumerable challenges for you, many of which have been exacerbated by the absence of full-time in-person teaching and learning. To say this year has been disruptive does not begin to explain the difficulties you are navigating. This makes me all the more humbled by how understanding and cooperative you have been, and the degree to which you have supported your students and our staff throughout this process.
To our staff, I thank you for your versatility and creativity. The pandemic has created a multitude of issues and obstacles, across all facets of our district. From operations and logistics to professional development and scheduling, we have had to develop new solutions to new problems. Talented professionals are nimble in the best of times. But this crisis has asked us to take the idiom, “Thinking Outside the Box,” to new levels.
This space does not permit me to delineate all of the great things that our community has done, collectively and individually, to make the best of an unsettled situation. All of your efforts have created an environment that is allowing our confidence to grow and our capacity to expand.
In closing, it is my simplest and sincerest wish that you have a safe, restful, peaceful, and enjoyable Thanksgiving holiday. I encourage our students and teachers to take a deserved break from their Chromebooks and laptops and spend time with loved ones. Whether you are renewing family traditions or establishing new ones, enjoy the long weekend. It is a pleasure and honor to be at your side as members of the Everett Public Schools.