Schools Out Due to Coronavirus Outbreak; Reflection

Authored by:
Erika N.

Erika N.

We received an email from CIEE informing us that we had two options for the upcoming weeks. Option 1: Continue working in Madrid. Where we will be following the instructions and tasks assigned by our schools. Option 2: Ask for unpaid leave until April 13th. I was relieved to know that they weren't canceling our program. 
To be completely honest I am feeling a mix of emotions. The Community of Madrid has officially decided to shut down all of the schools. Students will not be attending school, but depending on what school you work at some language assistants still have to return. My school has decided that I along with my other colleagues must attend today. Once we arrived I had a dreary feeling. It is strange to walk in and not see all of our students beaming smiles to greet us. We all had a meeting with our Head Master. This meeting informed everyone about what to expect in the upcoming weeks. 
 Walking through the hallways the lights are turned off and the building is completely silent. I peeked outside our classroom window to see our neighboring school and my colleague/close friend stated: “look at the windows, they are completely covered by the blinds, and how strange it is to look at the playground without seeing students running around.” 
Everyone here is working on their designated tasks and making sure that they can help their student. I am always inspired and intrigued by the hard work and dedication that the other teachers have. I am currently working on creating PowerPoint and lessons. It is a nice distraction, especially because I can focus all of my energy on ensuring that our students will benefit from them upon their return. 
This is a great learning opportunity to learn how to embrace the unexpected. It could be described as a series of unfortunate events but somehow I along with a few other friends are learning how to roll with the punches. I must stay grounded and learn how to adapt to the current changes. One word comes to mind during a time like this. Resilience. I am determined to stay strong and resilient during this confusing time. Because at the end of the day I truly love living and working here. We will get through this situation. Thankfully I have a strong support group of friends, colleagues and family members. I will be patiently waiting for the upcoming news and the confirmation that our community is safe and our students can return to school.

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