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Embracing Complexity

October 26, 2013

I learned how to simplify complexities during the three years I taught special education in LaPlace, Louisiana. I broke down subjects like algebra and works of Shakespeare into small, manageable pieces that appeared easy and less intimidating. I made them accessible, pretty, and simple. We know that life doesn’t work like that.

One of the reasons I love working at St. Andrew’s and being around St. Andreans is because we embrace life’s complexities, regardless of how challenging and unattractive they may be. We faced them head on in a week filled with tremendous happiness, success, loss, and sadness. Tad’s thanks speaks volumes of the place he describes as “the core of his being” though I suspect, based on this obituary, that his father influenced much of that core. Tad shared moments of his father’s last days with students this afternoon in Chapel. With students giving him their rapt attention, Tad softly shared how the time away gave him opportunity to conclude that St. Andrew’s was indeed good. Then he asked us who wanted to join him in making it great.

Two days earlier, Dr. Muqtadar Kahn spoke from the same pulpit about his experience and hope for the struggle for democracy in the Arab world. The next day, Governor Markell told students that showing up is just not good enough anymore and that their opportunity required them to lead a life that matters. Will Speers described their visits beautifully yesterday.

Parents Weekend was, by all accounts, an absolutely spectacular weekend and we thank you all for celebrating and supporting the entire student body. We took a breather on Monday with a well-deserved free day, but we aren’t planning on resting. There’s much more work to be done.

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