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It was no surprise, but that doesn't stop the in-school classrooms delay from being a disappointment

Dealing with the pandemic causes nearly all of us headaches, heartaches and a general sense of "what happened to my world." But I can't think of many jobs I would rather not have during this COVID summer than being a lead school administrator.

Most of us have the benefit of generally knowing what evenironment we're presented in order to do our jobs. For schools, though, they've had to shake off the reeling feeling of what they went through in the spring in order to make a sound plan for the fall — all while facing a floating, shifting reality. Prep for in-school classes, remote only, a hybred ...? All this while not having the capacity to fully make THE decision. That call would ultimately be the governor's.

It's hard to blame the governor — well, I guess many don't have any problem doing that — but balancing the want-to with the should-do when it comes to COVID-19 is a thankless, arduous task. But last week, the governor made the decision for the districts: until some substantial improvement in made in harnessing this virus, there will be no in-classroom education. It didn't come as a suprise as the state, like most of the country, struggled with rising COVID stats throughout July. We need to change the trajectories before we can change the course of our lives out this COVID-dominated nightmare.

But our school districts in the county have have had the task through the summer to prepare for what might come. In order to get some firm footing, 509-J determined that they won't even consider in-class students for six week after school starts. The public can make plans for that too, for better or worse.

OK, worse. Everyone hoped for a return to normal.

When I'm looking for a silver lining, something to comfort me when the world seems amiss, I think of the William Faulkner quote upon receiving the Nobel Prize for Literature. "I believe that man will not merely endure: he will prevail."

That will be the case against COVID as well, in due time. Every day scientists are getting closer to treatment medicine to help people survive the virus, and to a vaccine to keep people from getting it. It won't be long.

Meawhile, 2020 will endure, the year of living dangerously and educating remotely. We'll tackle it, we'll indeed prevail.

- By Tony Ahern


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