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First Week Was Emotional For Lucerne Valley USD Staff

Despite not having students on campus, the district’s school site staff is glad the 2020-21 school year is officially underway.
“As we open our new year, I see many positive things already happening,” Lucerne Valley Unified School District Peter Livingston told his staff via email on Friday. “I have heard a lot of positive feedback with our connecting and plans from families. As concerns pop up we are working together to solve them. Kudos to you all!”
LVMHS Co-Principals Kelly Boeing and Nate Lambdin
Assistant Superintendent Nate Lambdin, who also serves as a co-principal of Lucerne Valley Middle High School, said parents have expressed gratitude for how the school has connected with students, even if it is via an online program (Google Meet).
“I am so thankful to our community for their support of our school during this difficult time. Our parents have been there every time we needed to reach out for their support. They have diligently picked up learning materials to prepare their students for the first day of Distance Learning. Without their participation, we would never have had such a successful first week.”


“An overwhelming majority of students were present for our first day of Distance Learning and we received several calls thanking us for providing ‘a great day’ for their child,” Mr. Lambdin said. “Our teachers were delighted to see the faces of their students again.”
Mr Lambdin gave a message to the faculty and staff on the eve of the first day of the 2020-2021 school year: 
 “You are a truly an exceptional group of professionals — the journey ahead will not be easy. Focus on doing what you can the with what you have. Let’s try not to over-emphasize what may go wrong and focus on what will go right.”
Moreover, he said, “Here at LVMHS we believe we live on this earth, not to see through one another, but rather to see one another through.” 
“I truly hope you are somehow feeling inspired as we find ourselves ready to begin an unprecedented year of learning for ALL! Remember to extend grace to everyone along the way, yourself included. As we wrap our minds around what the next few days will look like, think back to what we try to do the first few days of every school year: build relationships and get to know our students, showcase our own love of learning and excitement, and establish routines and expectations. The same will be true this year as well, we just have to put a different spin on it!”
Finally, Mr. Lambdin said to his staff, “Remember IT WILL NEVER BE EASY, BUT IT WILL ALWAYS BE WORTH IT.”


LVMHS Co-Principal Kelly Boeing shared her sentiments and those of her staff:
“We all miss them so much,” Ms. Boeing said. “I think that is why you see EVERYONE working so hard to prepare for an unknown year, for an unknown return date. Every single thing we do, it is an extension of our love for our family.”
Here is what the LVMHS staff is saying:
“We just want you back in these seats, learning, laughing, and growing.” — Teachers And Instructional Aides
“We just want you back in the cafeteria, getting meals and laughing with friends.” — Food Services
“We just want you back in these empty hallways, yelling, running, screaming, and giving us cause to tell you to get to class!” — Security 
“We just want you to be back, back here, back where you belong. However,  until we are told it is safe for your return, we will work together preparing jovially and  sharing our excitements as  we get closer being with our LVUSD Eagles, Colts, and Mustangs!” —Your LVUSD Family
Lucerne Valley Elementary School Principal Ricky Anderson
Ricky Anderson, who is in his first year as principal of Lucerne Valley Elementary School, commended the entire school community.
“It truly has been special to see every level from classified, certificated, and administration working to provide a safe learning environment,” Mr. Anderson said.  “LVUSD and the community have rallied together to provide the best educational opportunities under the guidelines that have been placed upon us. The effort echoes the African proverb, ’It takes a village to raise a child.’”
 Mr. Anderson also shared a message with his staff, affirming that he and Assistant Principal Joanna Mora are there for them:
“It’s great to see you all again and know you are staying the course as we go to a possible hybrid or distance learning model. If you are feeling a sense of trepidation, those feelings are warranted. Please know we are all in this together and I have full confidence in your abilities as professional educators. Joanna and I are always here to support you.”
With all these positives, however, Livingston can still see the hurt many staff members feel by not having their students on campus and in classrooms.
“While we see this in both our students and ourselves, we must remain optimistic about what we are doing for the students we serve.”
Livingston shared a short excerpt from author Tod Bolsinger’s inspirational book, “Canoeing the Mountains,” to his staff.
Mr. Peter Livingston shown with students during a previous school year.
“Lewis and Clark and the Corps of Discovery were about to go off the map and into uncharted territory. They would have to change plans, give up expectations, even reframe their entire mission. What lay before them was nothing like what was behind them. There were no experts, no maps, no ‘best practices’ and no sure guides who could lead them safely and successfully. The true adventure — the real discovery — was just beginning.”
Livingston likened the experience of the Lucerne Valley USD staff to Lewis and Clark’s historic exploration.
“As we begin the expedition of our 2020-21 school year we are here to support you. It might be that you need to vent, you may need to share a positive story, you may have a question, or all three issues are present at the same time. We, as an administration team, are all hear to support. Thank you for putting everything on the line each and every day. I personally wish us all the best and know we all want the best for our students in our community.”