To quote Alexander in the classic children’s book, it was a “terrible, horrible, no good, very bad” year. But in spite of all of the obstacles we faced in 2020, our school community pulled together like never before — demonstrating grit, determination, and remarkable resilience. We are proud of what our teachers and students have accomplished this year. And let’s not forget our parents, who stepped up to support our learners from home. Here are a few of the ways Fairmont flipped the script during this unprecedented year.
Pivot to Remote Learning
When our campuses shifted to remote learning last spring, we discovered that we were flexible, resilient, and willing to change. Zooming from our kitchen tables and home offices, we shared the things we missed as we figured out a new way to do school. Fairmont moms and dads, we couldn’t have done it without you!
No “COVID Slide”
As a result of the shift to remote and the disruptions it caused to the educational landscape, educators across the nation predicted students would experience an unprecedented learning loss, referred to as the COVID Slide. But Fairmont bucked the trend! Formative assessments showed that our students didn’t merely survive in the face of COVID, they thrived! Listen to what Kelly Robinette, Director of Date and Accountability, had to say about this.
When we were cleared to reopen for on-campus, in-person instruction last fall, we did so with a comprehensive plan to protect the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff. The fact that Fairmont was granted a waiver by Orange County health authorities speaks to the rigor of the protocols which were put in place to safeguard our community.
More than a few things changed for our in-person learners in the age of COVID. Mornings started by completing an online health survey and upon arrival at school, students were immediately greeted by temperature checks. Face coverings became the newest must-have school uniform item. There were hand sanitizer containers as far as the eye could see. In class, students had at least two full yardsticks between them and their closest neighbor. Our Roomers proved they were quick studies when it came to mastering our new health and safety routines.
Taking the lessons we learned about remote instruction last spring, Fairmont augmented our program to make it even more robust when we opened the 2020-21 school year, with the introduction of live streamed classrooms, and a heavy investment in supporting technology and teacher training. Fairmont’s Education and IT departments developed a remote learning approach which gave Zoomers a virtual window into the classroom, connecting them with teachers and classmates for an immersive experience.
Teachers Redefined Excellence
The efforts put forth by our teachers in 2020 were nothing short of heroic. In March, they pivoted in less than a week from in-person instruction to an entirely new remote platform … and they did so with grace and grit. Summer brought intensive training to prepare for 2020-21. During the weeks leading up to the new school year, our faculty logged a total of over 2,000 hours of professional development. And when school began in August, our faculty tackled the gargantuan task of teaching in-person and remotely simultaneously.
Fairmont has been rethinking education since 1953, so even with everything 2020 threw our way, we stayed strong! Our teachers were superheroes, our parents champs, and our students proved they aren’t just brainy. They are resilient, compassionate, determined…and ready for whatever the future brings. This year taught us more about who we are and who we can be when we work together. One thing we know for sure is that the #fairmontfamily is stronger than ever. 2020 wasn’t a year of setbacks at Fairmont, it was a time to shine.
Do you have any Fairmont 2020 success stories to share? If so, let us know below.