© 2023 WNIJ and WNIU
Northern Public Radio
801 N 1st St.
DeKalb, IL 60115
Northern Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Perspective: Your summer assignment


The countdown to the end of the school year is in full swing. Parents, teachers, and students have differing options for desired outcomes from the summer break.

Naturally, there are differing opinions about what the best possible summer looks like. In “normal times” parents looked to keep kids busy, kids celebrated their release from the routine of school and teachers existed in a land between the year just ended and a new year yet to come.

But education has been changed. There are new roles for the major players. And because of the new rolls, summer needs to be different this year.

Teachers are essential, providing resources and direction for students and parents to understand the potential for growth that the self-directed summer provides.

Parents are called connect with teachers and invest in age-appropriate experiences to promote their child’s growth.

And students should be encouraged to explore a range of interests, planting seeds for their future education and vocation.

Summer is a break in the routine of school. It cannot shut down the pursuit of life-long learning that leads to a rich life. This is the time to make a thoughtful plan for the summer. This is the time to identify academic areas that can be strengthened. This is the time to learn about the communities in which we are planted and how our lives can have impact on the community. The countdown is not to leaving the classroom but to the launch of a summer of impact.

Don has recently retired after 45 years in Lutheran Education. He has been on a “listening tour” in 2022, and shares his observations on his Facebook page.