How has 2022 been for you? Singapore lifted almost all its COVID19 restrictions, masks became optional except on public transport and certain settings, large scale gatherings became more commonplace, and people started traveling overseas with a vengeance. Schools also welcomed a return to pre-COVID mode for many of our programmes – face-to-face programmes were welcomed with open arms, the National Schools Games – almost in its entirety – re-started, camps were organised, and parents and alumni could join in physical events.
While we should rightly celebrate the return to normalcy, we should also remember that despite the undoubted challenges wrought by the pandemic, we learnt many things that we can and should continue to practice, even in a post-pandemic world. What are some of these things?
- Practising empathy, collaboration, and affirmation, even if we cannot be in the same physical space
- Taking care of each other, especially those amongst us who need it the most – the last, the lost, the least
- Helping each other to be self-sufficient, so that we can help others
- Learning anywhere, any place, every time, even without a “teacher” around
- Being thankful for the blessings that we already have, instead of always doing more, looking for more, and asking for more.
We welcome 250 Sec Ones to the Meridian team in 2023. They are our first batch of Full Subject Based Banding students, and they can hope to trailblaze a narrative of more inclusivity amidst greater diversity. As a Meridian FSBB pioneer, we have faith that the positive learning experiences will nurture them to become better persons for others, and that the Meridian Way leads them to keys to open many doors in life.
As 2023 beckons, I congratulate the 2022 graduating Meridians for completing their journey with the school. The N level students received their results in December, and if you have done your best, and had nothing left to give, then you should be proud of the results that you received. If not, you still have a long and purposeful road ahead of you, and the choices that you make, will still make a difference in the lives that you can lead. We look forward to welcoming the 36 of you who are returning as Meridians in Sec 5.
I end as usual with wise words from others, this time from Mark Twain:
“In America, we hurry–which is well; but when the day’s work is done, we go on thinking of losses and gains, we plan for the morrow, we even carry our business cares to bed with us and toss and worry over them when we ought to be restoring our racked bodies and brains with sleep. We burn up our energies with these excitements, and either die early or drop into a lean and mean old age at a time of life which they call a man’s prime in Europe. When an acre of ground has produced long and well, we let it lie fallow and rest for a season; we take no man clear across the continent in the same coach he started in–the coach is stabled somewhere on the plains and its heated machinery allowed to cool for a few days; when a razor has seen long service and refuses to hold an edge, the barber lays it away for a few weeks, and the edge comes back of its own accord. We bestow thoughtful care upon inanimate objects, but none upon ourselves. What a robust people, what a nation of thinkers we might be, if we would only lay ourselves on the shelf occasionally and renew our edges…”
Hope your time laying on your shelves, has renewed your edges for another purposeful year ahead.