Message From the Board

At Gardner School, we believe children learn best in community with other students and teachers. Our school, with its small enrollment, bucolic five-acre campus, and a team of dedicated education professionals, is wildly fortunate to have such a strong sense of commitment to this unique and special opportunity. We know our families share these values for their children. At the heart of this shared commitment between the school and home is an opportunity to create a sense of normalcy for our children as we navigate this period of uncertainty together. We have the power to support our learners while protecting ourselves, each other, and our students. As a school, we have implemented the many health and safety guidelines promoted by the Centers for Disease Control, the Governor’s office, the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, and our local Health Department. We have worked to develop policies and procedures to protect the health and safety of students and staff. We have purchased tents to increase our opportunities for outdoor learning. Gardner School is doing  everything possible to responsibly open our school campus in September.

We know families are helping their children learn to wear masks, have taught (and retaught) proper handwashing technique, have reduced their interactions with friends and even family in order to keep everyone safe. We understand this may be difficult for families and children – especially during the summer. And we specially appreciate that this is not an easy time to be a parent.

Our mutual commitment to in-person learning – this shared desire – gives our community inspiration to take an active role in delivering this opportunity for students. In order for your children to have the best possible chance to continue with in- person learning, we must all continue to fully comply with the State’s COVID-19 guidelines. Each member of our community can support this effort, keep each other safe, and gently hold each other accountable for practicing the healthy and safety guidelines. We know the precarious nature and the unknown variables are unsettling. And still, we each must do what we can to be vigilant in our observance of the Washington State Covid-19 Guidelines.

Our individual actions make a difference.
-Fewer, shorter and safer interactions are crucial.
- Staying home is still safest.
- If you do go out, keep it quick, keep your distance, and wear a face covering.
- Recreate and do business locally to avoid spreading the virus across county lines.
- Limit the number of people outside your household that you gather with every week.
- If you feel symptoms of COVID-19, get tested.

Our community’s behavioral choices can be a force for good, can reduce the rate of spread, and can help us keep our campus open. Together, we have an opportunity to practice love with its sleeves rolled up. We can wear masks, we will wash hands, we will avoid getting together in groups all in order to give our kids the best possible chance at a sustained, in-person learning opportunity. Let our short-term sacrifices reward us in the long-term. We are so excited to have each of your children here on our campus next week. Teachers and students will have the opportunity to experience the joy of a Gardner education. Thank you for your support, your commitment, and your enthusiasm for our school. Together, we will meet this unprecedented challenge together, in community.

Gretchen Grey-Hatton
Board Chair