Next week will undoubtedly be a week rife with emotions as we prepare for several historic moments around the country. On Monday, January 18, we commemorate the 92nd birthday of the civil rights leader and great orator, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. While we will observe this day as a federal holiday, I invite our Beauvoir community to pause and remember Dr. King’s enduring legacy of justice and equality and consider ways to honor the gift of “service to others” in our homes, our school, and our community. In addition, we will be witnessing the inauguration of the 46th president of the United States, Joseph R. Biden, Jr. and the first woman of color to step into the role of vice president, Kamala D. Harris. We have always observed this date as a school holiday, and I hope you find time to talk with your children about this historic moment that truly speaks to Dr. King’s beliefs and aspirations.
At the same time, we cannot ignore the sadness, anger, and confusion surrounding recent events in our nation’s capital, coupled with the ongoing concerns about COVID-19 and the unimaginable loss we have endured globally. There can only be brighter days ahead.
While we wrestle with these realities, let us remember that our own students can offer us hope for the future. This first week back in the New Year has been a beacon of light and a welcomed distraction for many of our faculty and staff as students returned to their learning environments. Morning meetings between students and teachers led to shared tales of lost teeth and tooth fairies, virtual birthday celebrations, new puppies, and holiday memories. These were refreshing conversations amid the many challenges and uncertainties we face and served as good reminders of what truly matters to our Beauvoir community—the joy and preservation of childhood.
It is important to note that, while we cannot control the pandemic any more than we can control the choices of others, there are many things we can control. It is particularly fitting at this time to look to Dr. King and his legacy as an example of perseverance, unity, honor, and compassion in the face of loss and unpredictable times. Every day at Beauvoir, we take action as a school community to educate our children in the values we hold dear; model for our children the gift of service to others; and envelop our children with love, an appreciation of who they are as individuals, and the understanding that their physical and emotional well-being and safety are our foremost concern.
I leave you with the words of Dr. King and the promise that can be realized through peace, hope, and inspiration.
Use me, God. Show me how to take who I am, who I want to be, and what I can do, and use it for a purpose greater than myself.
—The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.