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It feels like yesterday that I was writing the back to school newsletter for the 2020‐2021 school year discussing the challenges and obstacles that we were facing regarding the pandemic and the plans that we were going to use to get through the school year. Now here I sit writing the May newsletter to start wrapping up the year, a year that we as public educators, as students, as parents, and patrons never want to face again.. The graduating class of 2021 will soon be walking across the stage and 3 months later the graduating class of 2034 will be walking into the school for the first time as Kindergarteners. By the way, in 2034, Mission Valley will be celebrating its 62nd year. 

For some of us, thinking back to yesterday is hard sometimes, however, if you can try to think back 13 years when our current seniors walked into Mission Valley for the first time….what was education like then? {Social media was a “toddler” and had not expanded into what it is today, the use of digital textbooks was in its infancy, the number of qualified teachers coming out of college were still enough to fill vacancies, state budget concerns and decrease of state funding were beginning to impact education, etc..} 

Now, think about what education will be like in 13 years when the Kindergarten students that will enter in August exit the building in May 2034. In these next 13 years everything around us will continue to change and evolve. Sciences and technology will continue to explode, societal issues will continue to challenge us and new ones will have evolved for us to deal with, global issues will continue to impact our lives, etc…. With these changes, we as the stakeholders in the education of our children must also seek new ways and ideas on how to address the educational needs of our children. 

I think the one takeaway from this past year is the power of adversity and the power of being resilient. Looking back over the past year one would see the successes that our students, staff, and school community achieved. Academic growth and learning still occurred as many of our students' tests scored showed, our students earned honors and recognition for both academic achievements, as well as extracurricular achievements whether it be competing on the local and national stage in many of our student organizations, or on the field/courts during athletic competition. In addition, several of our staff members were recognized for their hard work and dedication to the school and their programs. There is no doubt that this year was tough, it was challenging, and it created problems that we all had to work through and overcome. Life is about learning, it is about facing problems; and successful people are not people without life problems. At Mission Valley, students are taught strategies to be resilient. To be resilient requires identifying the problem, then be innovative and adaptable to methods to overcome the problem. 

Who knows, maybe this year was a test for us for things to come? If similar or greater challenges come our way in the future, I feel comfortable that we, as educators, as parents, and as people who want the best public education for our students & children have developed and learned new things that we can use to provide that education. We have learned that we can provide education remotely, that we can use technological resources to provide information and gather feedback without being face to face, that we can help provide nourishing food to students when they can not be at school, along with countless other things that have come about from being innovative and adaptable. In the famous words of Charles Darwin, “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives, it is the one that is the most adaptable to change”. 

Congratulations to the Graduating Class of 2021!!! Thank you to all who have helped make the 2020‐2021 school year a success and always remember: 

 Keep your thoughts on where you are going, not on where you have been. 

 Keep your eyes on your goals, and your head held high looking forward. 

 Prepare your mind that you will meet and overcome every obstacle, every difficulty.  No matter what happens……...Don’t give up!!! . Go Vikings! Stay Strong!!!

Thank you to all who have helped make the 2020‐2021 school year a success! Go Vikings!

William J. Clark, Superintendent/Director of Special Services