August 9, 2022

Kicking off a new school year!

In Louisiana, summer vacation for educators has long been over, and soon it will be over for students as well. Teachers and leaders are back in their buildings preparing for the start of the new year. Classrooms are being set up, teacher training is being completed, and routines and procedures for the first day are being practiced and refined. School operations personnel are finalizing bus routes, ordering food for student breakfast and lunch, and making sure the buildings are sparkling clean for the first day. It’s both a hectic and an exhilarating time.

For parents and caregivers, this is also a time of preparation. They are rushing to get school supplies and uniforms, trying to get their kids excited about the upcoming school year, and (if they’re anything like my family when my son was still in school), making sure kids are finishing up the reading that they didn’t do earlier in the summer. Most importantly, I believe, parents are hoping and praying for a good school year for their children.

My all-time favorite school picture was snapped four years ago when the IDEA team opened our first campus in Baton Rouge. It was the first day of school, and a photographer captured a sister and her two brothers praying before they walked into the building for the first time. When I first saw the picture, I immediately realized that hundreds of parents were taking a chance on us based solely on the promise that we’d provide stronger instruction for their little ones and an environment where their children would thrive and experience the joy of learning. Those parents were certainly hoping they had made the right choice for their child.

So, in this “return to school” blog, I want to offer up a few simple hopes and prayers for the upcoming school year.

- First, I pray for emotional and physical health, protection and safety, academic success, and a year of joy for our children.

- I pray for all the adults in whose care we place our children on a daily basis. Please bless them with patience, wisdom, compassion, and the ability to give themselves and each other grace throughout this school year.

- And, we’ve lost so much teaching and learning time over the past two years, that I’m praying as hard as I can for a year free from extended interruptions. So, please no hurricanes or major weather events. We’ve had enough. And, if it’s not too much trouble, please put this COVID thing to rest once and for all. Our children and teachers need to be in school every single day.

Let’s all pray for a successful 2022-23 school year.


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