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GUEST COLUMN: DCSS Superintendent: We will rise during these challenging times

Without a doubt, this has been an uncommon year for the Demopolis City School System. Our students, staff, and community have worked through multiple “once in a lifetime” circumstances since we started this school year back in August, during what was one of the hottest few months in Alabama history.

Demopolis Superintendent Kyle Kallhoff

Regardless of the events we faced this year, this school family and community lifted each other up and found the strength to persevere. When we tragically lost our two DHS students back in October, the community came together to support our River City Blue family like never before. Then in February, when Mother Nature took our beloved substitute teacher and friend, once again Demopolis was there to prop up family and loved ones. Now, we are faced with a world pandemic known as COVID-19.

This respiratory disease caused by a novel (new) coronavirus that was first detected in China, has almost disrupted everything that we know. With all of the uncertainty we have faced this year, love and faith continue to be the constants. Love and faith are constants that cannot be altered by earthly things. Love and faith are undefeated, have never lost a battle since the beginning of time, just ask Moses, Noah, and David. I have faith that this coronavirus will run its course and things will eventually get back to normal. However, I also know that the sooner we practice social distancing, limit our gatherings, and practice the suggested hygiene recommendations, the sooner normalcy will return.

From the education standpoint, I do not know what the other side will look like. I am not sure how we will celebrate the class of 2020, the same children who came into this world immediately after 9/11, but I do know they will be celebrated and honored. I do not know how we will make-up lost instructional time and possible state assessments, but I do know there will be a plan and it will be different than anything else we have done before.

Once again, we are challenged with uncertainty and we will lean on the undisputed champion, love and faith, to help us get back to normalcy.

— Kyle Kallhoff is the Superintendent of Education for the Demopolis City School System.