July 31, 2020 |10 Av 5780
Dear Barrack Community:
As we put forth our Barrack Connect: Path to Reopening, our fall school plan, I ask that we all reflect on what Rabbi Hillel taught us in Pirkei Avot:
אם אין אני לי, מי לי. וכשאני לעצמי, מה אני. ואם לא עכשיו, אימתי.
“If I am not for myself, who will be for me? If I am only for myself, what am I? If not now, when?” These three rhetorical questions are not independent from one another; rather, they are inseparable. Guiding us through this critical time in our history, they teach that we must be constantly mindful that not only are we responsible for protecting our own health and safety, but we are equally responsible for protecting everyone within our community, now and for all time.
In that spirit, our Path to Reopening informs you of every precaution we will take when we are on campus. It will not be possible for Barrack to open if each and every one of us does not observe these precautions even now, during the summer, including maintaining social distancing, consistently wearing masks, and ensuring that we all report any symptoms of illness or potential virus exposure so that we can each do our part to keep our community healthy. Before returning to school, in addition to signing our Barrack Handbook, each parent, student and staff member will be required to sign our Kehillah/Community Commitment, which will be sent to you shortly.
As a school community, we continue to be inspired by the ancient teaching of our school’s original namesake, Rabbi Akiba, who also taught in Pirkei Avot:
.חביב אדם שנברא בצלם אלקים
”Beloved is humanity, for it is created in the image of God.” In the midst of so much uncertainty, we have developed this reopening plan with love and care, mindful of the safety, health, and spiritual well-being of every student, staff member and teacher because we believe that every member of this community is imbued with a spark of the Divine.
Please note that we have moved up our Parent Forum to Thursday, August 6 at 7:00 PM and there will be a Student Town Hall meeting the following week, on Thursday, August 13 at 7:00 PM. Look out for Zoom invites for these meetings.
We are proud of our past and we are excited about opening our school’s 74th year. May we continue to go from strength to strength.
Shabbat Shalom. .שבת שלום
Sharon P. Levin