In speaking of children, Gibran’s Prophet says: “You may house their bodies, but not their souls, for their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.”
But it was our dreams, the actual dreams, or ideals, of a handful of parents and teachers that created the Blacksburg New School. We dreamed a school where children would be respected, where they would be educated in a non-competitive, non-sexist environment. A school where children would learn to care for one another and for the earth; where they would learn to believe in the possibility of world peace, and to work toward that belief. We dreamed a school where children would love learning.
The first children of the New School are now in their forties. Hard to believe. Three and a half decades of dreamers have kept the Blacksburg New School going, and have made it grow. Dreams and very, very hard work have led to this happy day.
There are long afternoons and evenings of stories we could all tell about the hard times, the funny times, the scary and triumphant times and the truly remarkable people who created the on-going community of the Blacksburg New School. But “The Prophet” also says, in speaking for and about children;
“You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you. For Life goes not backwards, nor tarries with yesterday…”
So, no tarrying with ‘yesterday.’ This event, this day, is about ‘tomorrow.’
I am very proud to be standing here, on this day,-- so long after the dreams began—with today’s students, parents and teachers as they begin their ‘house of tomorrow’—the NEW Blacksburg New School.
Congratulations to you all.