A Prayer at the End of School

Kapok Tree“When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different.You just know that your name is safe in their mouth. “  Billy, age 4

In May 2014, I wrote about Kindergarten’s presentation of The Great Kapok Tree by Lynne Cherry. The student narrators again this year seemed to be speaking directly to me. The sentence in the story that made the deepest impression on my heart this time was, “Surely you know that what happens tomorrow depends upon what you do today.” I know this to be true, but hearing it spoken by a child seemed to give it more importance.

As the end of the year grows nearer, the faculty and I know it will be difficult to say good-bye to the children we love and whose names we have held safely in our mouths. We have worked hard to teach them not just the academic things that one would expect a school to teach, but also the things that are more difficult to write into a traditional lesson plan. Love your neighbor. Walk away. Keep your friend’s feelings and body safe. Share. Use kind and gentle hands and words. Just try. Be brave. God loves you. And honestly, remembering these words may make the biggest difference in your child’s tomorrow.

I continue to give thanks to God for having the power to bring together the perfect combination of people for All Saints’ Episcopal Day School. We may never completely know why God chose us, but we can be certain that He believed that each of us was the answer to the prayer of someone else who was here also. My prayer this May is that we will thank God for the difference we have made in each other’s lives. And I pray that our students will grow into adults who will use their knowledge to do what it is right and just.

Cindy LaPorteCindy La Porte is the Head of School at All Saints’ Episcopal School, an early childhood program in Austin, Texas. First published in the May 2015 All Saints’ Episcopal School Newsletter, this piece is shared here with permission.