We are living in a global health crisis, and one of our main priorities is to stay healthy. However, our utmost priority is to ensure that people around us are healthy too. This crisis has presented an opportunity for each of us to practice empathy, including even our youngest students. For example, our broadened perspective now includes the importance of taking our neighbors’ health and wellness into consideration, beyond our own self-interests. By isolating ourselves, we sacrifice some of our own needs to promote the good of society. We are all learning this lesson first-hand. However, despite these challenges, I am confident that our students and staff will continue to persevere and succeed. We see examples of this daily and I discuss this in a recent video on our South Orangetown Central School District Communications YouTube Channel.
Beyond empathy, our students have demonstrated resilience, persistence, and a will to succeed. Our Tappan Zee High School valedictorian and salutatorian are good examples of how we can succeed by focusing on our goals and working as a team. While each of these two students has exemplified themselves individually, each acknowledges that it was through the love and support of their parents, classmates, and teachers that enabled each to shine ever more brightly. In this sense, when a few of us shine, we all shine. None of us can do this by ourselves. The stronger our connections are with each other, the more we can achieve. That is why, now more than ever, it is especially important to stay connected. On this related note, I hope that we will continue to build relationships with each other during this crisis through the use of online technologies.
Our South Orangetown YouTube channel is one of the several ways we can stay in touch. In this week’s YouTube video, it gives me great pleasure to introduce the valedictorian and salutatorian of the Tappan Zee High School class of 2020. I admire these two individuals for their hard work, talent, and, above all, their positive outlook. Please take a moment to watch this week’s video and join me in congratulating Jason Olszewski (Valedictorian) and Hannah Ahn (Salutatorian). Be well and stay safe!