As we continue to work on our strategic plan for the upcoming three years, I am mindful that its goals are planned to be completed in 2020. One can play on the notion of 20/20: the articulation of clear or perfect vision and the excitement around planning for that clarity.
Having said that, the old saying of hindsight being 20/20 is an important one too. It is through experiences and contemplation that things become far clearer.
The importance of planning for the future by ensuring that there is some reflection on the past cannot be underestimated. As we came together this weekend for Alumnae Reunion Weekend, there was- as there always is at reunion time- much reflection about our School and how it informed who we, as Alumnae, are.
Zarin Machanda ’97, our speaker at our Alumnae Speaker assembly on Friday morning articulated that while our graduates do leave as intellectually curious women with courage and compassion, these traits come and go during various moments and stages of our lives. Zarin reminded us that, in addition to following through on our mission to ensure these important traits, St. Clement’s unique close-knit environment equally reinforced these characteristics for her. Our strong connectedness provided support during those days when the courage was lacking, the compassion forgotten, and the curiosity flat.
I have thought much about this since Zarin spoke. While we can plan programs, structures and experiences that nurture passion, courage and curiosity, we cannot plan for the ups and downs of life. As such, the uniqueness of our small, integrated grades 1-12 school is hugely significant in preparing our girls for the future. Our supportive, connected community can’t be found just anywhere.
Zarin reminded me that 20/20 vision is what we seek, but we must do so knowing that hindsight is 20/20 too.