Appropriate at this time of year to share some thoughts about the upcoming Victory Day recognition that has been a tradition at AAS for a number of years. As in the past, we will welcome special guests, local veterans, for this remembrance. This is particularly poignant given that this is the 70th anniversary of the signing of documents that signaled the end of World War II. CLICK HERE for a short one page summary of our school focus for this event and my thanks to AAS Russian teachers for their contributions to these general guidelines of the main idea behind our recognition and the associated messages.
It’s important to remind everyone of our adopted identity statement that provides critical subtext to our mission and vision and was an important part of our strategic planning in 2011:
The Anglo-American School of Moscow is an international learning community that is enriched by the local Russian culture and strengthened by the unique experiences and synergistic engagement of its students, teachers, and parents.
As you can imagine, this year brings greater challenges to this holiday given the current political climate. That means that caution is suggested in the context of the coming days. While we will likely experience the usual delays relative to traffic, there will also be another tone to the week ahead that could be challenging for us. There will be many opinions on both sides of the issues and many see this holiday as an opportunity to raise these points of view with some emphasis. As evidence of this, we have seen world leaders unfortunately cancel their participation in the events hosted here in Moscow, despite the milestone year and their active participation in prior years.
This year, we are reminding ourselves of the diversity of our community and seeking to respect the associated diverse points of view. It is our most important responsibility to provide a learning environment free from coercion and full of open dialog on all the world issues we confront — both as spectators and participants. We will encourage the aspect of our school culture that enhances the precept from our mission statement of “respect self and others”. We will be particularly aware of parent needs in this regard as concerns are expressed about children and developmentally appropriate levels of involvement in the issues associated with a complicated set of competing ideas.
As always, we encourage partnership and feedback on how we address this and other issues that we encounter together as a diverse community. You can contact me or any member of the administrative team though the usual channels.