The crowd roared and the gym shook as Chandler’s ‘A’ Volleyball team beat Flintridge Prep on Thursday afternoon.
Fans occupied the bleachers, flag football was played on the field, and for the first time in eighteen months, interscholastic sports returned to Chandler. Setting up and maintaining an interscholastic sports program is more difficult now than it was pre-covid. Athletic Director Bill Anderson, Director of Advancement Joan Bravo and staff members Nancy Hutton, Jennifer Johnson and Jessica Leyva supported by COVID Coordinator Maureen Short have spent hours making sure Chandler is compliant with health department youth sports protocols, collecting vaccination records, monitoring testing, checking parents on to the campus and working with other schools. Putting on any event at school during the pandemic requires jumping through a lot of hoops. It’s a labor-intensive endeavor, and we believe it’s worth it for the good of the community.
Extended Care Director Alycia Brown said that Lower School students in afterschool cheered on Chandler’s Middle School team during the flag football game on Wednesday afternoon.
“We were back together again. Parents were supporting; kids were happily playing or watching. It was great to see everything going ahead as it should after all the work it took from many people to get us here. It was a wonderful scene. It gave me a peaceful feeling.” At the first grade parent party on Friday night, one parent mentioned that when her son came home on Wednesday he couldn’t stop talking about the football team, and how he wants to play football when he is in Middle School.
Nothing about the present circumstances feels normal, but we are dealing with a new reality that does not appear to be ending anytime soon. Programs need modifying, events have to be revised and some restrictions imposed as we stay focused on our highest priority of keeping everyone in school all year. Chandler parents also need in-person connections with the school, and by allowing vaccinated spectators on campus for games and vaccinated parents to attend on-campus class parties we are providing those opportunities. We will look to offer more as the school year proceeds.
Not having a lunch service Monday through Thursday adds an extra burden to a parent’s day. From the school’s point of view, there has been a dramatic reduction in food waste, and students have more of a lunch break because they are not lining up to collect their food. In a straw poll on Wednesday morning Middle School students voted overwhelmingly for the lunch service to return. Parents at Friday’s parties agreed. There will be no changes until the beginning of January, but resuming the lunch service for the second semester is high on our agenda. As with sports, there will be a lot of hoops to jump through before that happens, and we appreciate your patience.