For many students, the school year is over. And that means school is back in session. While it may be back in session, some things shouldn’t return to “normal”—and this includes the increased student mental health issues that have plagued schools over the last few years.
While the holiday break is a much-needed break from our fast-paced, busy lives, we always seem to return to our old routines. This time of year brings back the stress of school and work, along with the stress of homework and tests. The new school year brings with it a slew of new rituals, including the fight to avoid a yearly sleepover in your child’s room and the search for a new car seat for the new baby. But is there a better way to handle stress and anxiety? Many people think so, but researchers have not yet found any evidence that says so.
It’s not that we don’t want you to return to the “normal” life you had before the pandemic, but as you know, now everything is different. Society has been changed, and it shows in many ways. The most obvious is that everything is changing, and most things are changing for the better. People are working together more now than ever before.
School is out for summer, and students and teachers are counting down until the first day of school. Students are anticipating their favorite activities, and parents are looking forward to their summer vacation. But for many students and parents, the school year is not going to be like they are used to.
As parents and teachers prepare to return to their classrooms this year, they’re likely wondering what will happen to the school environment and what changes they should expect. While many things may remain the same, others may be altered, and many things are set to return to normal. It’s important to note that no matter how you feel about schools returning to the way they were, all the changes will positively affect your child’s academic success.
This year, my school has closed down for a while. Your school might be doing something similar. School closings can be disruptive, stressful, and expensive. So, when they return, there’s a lot to be done. There are things you should do and things you shouldn’t.
After the first few weeks of school, after a long vacation, it’s easy to relax. Taking care of all the daily tasks becomes second nature, it’s easy to lose track of time, and it’s easy to believe that everything will be back to normal soon. Even so, there are some things that shouldn’t return to normal—especially when it comes to student life.
The last thing we want is for people to be so scared and so broken that they miss out on the chance to learn, grow, and thrive. That’s why it’s important to keep in mind what the word “normal” means when you’re thinking about the schools that reopen after a pandemic: it’s an idea that’s based on what we’re used to, rather than what we must do — and, as any parent knows, it can mean dramatically different things when your child is no longer in school.
The start of a new school year is an exciting time. For the students, it’s the start of a new chapter in their lives and the first step towards adulthood. For the teachers, it’s the start of a new adventure, as they get to meet the new students and chart their learning progress. For the parents, it’s the beginning of the search for a new place to live and the start of the planning for the huge family move that will take place when the new school year starts.
As we get ready for the first day of school, we can’t help but question, will the routine be the same? Will the kids act as they used to? Or will the sunshine have faded away, and the television shows air only in low light? The truth is, we can’t say for sure how the school year will play out, but we can say one thing for sure: things will never be the same.