SPARTA, NJ – The staff at Sparta High School got together to put out a visual message to the students and their families at home. Principal Ronnie Spring said Spanish teacher Amanda Sachenski organized the teachers to send a photo, each with a different word in the message.
The note to the students began, “We wanted to send you a little something to remind you how proud we are of all of you!”
All together the photo collage spelled out “Dear Sparta students, We miss you all so much. You are amazing. Keep up the great work. Dream big. Smile often. And Stay Spartan Strong.”
Sachenski said she was inspired having seen a collage done by former colleagues at Hunterdon Central Regional High School.
“It brought me to tears because the kids are who I miss most throughout this [school closure],” Sachenski said. “I just wanted them to know that we miss them and hoped I could bring something positive to them in these tough times.”
As a Spanish teacher, Sachenski said the program is inherently social. Online communication works but it “just doesn’t seem to be the same.”
“We’re doing our best but I thought the collage was something I could do to make my students’ days a little bit brighter,” Sachenski said.
She was not alone in that sentiment. Sachenski said she reached out to staff members who might be interested, asking that they decorate a page and send a selfie. In less than an hour she had the whole message returned to her.
“It didn’t take long to put together after that,” she said. “The best was sharing it and seeing the students liking it. They knew we were thinking of them in a way that was not just about classwork.”
The Spanish teacher said the world language department, “while moving along, really misses the kids.”
She said based on the interactions and feedback shared during “class time” on Google Hangouts, everyone is okay, everyone is safe but “we can’t wait to get back to normal.”
Principal Ronnie Spring said, "I am so proud of our high school staff and students, and how they came together, supporting each other during this time. They truly exemplify what it means to be #SpartaStrong!"