A slice of Shalheaven: Coming and going… and going…

Lexi Gelb, Editor-in-Chief

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I’ve got one foot out the door, and the other firmly planted in the Student Lounge. It’s a long stretch, and even after two years of Yoga Minyan, it’s difficult.

As a second-semester senior, the combination of having my academic year slowly peter out and having my school change quickly, and often unpredictably, in front of my eyes, is a strange one.

Between the lower schools’ closing down and the abrupt departure of Rabbi Weinbach, it’s been a tumultuous year even for Shalhevet. I’m ready on many levels to graduate, but the thought of leaving the school in such an uncertain state makes me uncomfortable.

I don’t doubt Shalhevet’s ability to stabilize. The school is constantly evolving and redefining itself, not unlike its existentially perplexed students and staff. Shalhevet is on the precipice of a truly new era, and for seniors who have invested so much in it over the years, it’s strange to not know what the future holds for our soon-to-be alma mater.

This year, the administration tested out a new policy: after third quarter, seniors only needed to attend AP classes and Economics. As a result, some teachers seemed to catch senioritis faster than seniors, and most seniors were noticeably absent from school for the majority of the day. One morning, Town Hall had three seniors (and one was Jeremy Lowe, the outgoing Agenda Chair).

With everyone coming and going at different times, we rarely see each other. I’ve lost touch with teacher-friends – a long-planned trip to Coffee Bean with Rabbi Richler has yet to happen – and underclassmen friends, and even senior friends. To paraphrase T.S. Eliot, senior year isn’t ending with a bang, but a whimper.

For the rest of the school, however, it seems as if the end of this year couldn’t come fast enough because there’s been too much action. Unlike the seniors, who are experiencing an anticlimactic period of quiet detachment, the Shalhevet communivty is wired and apprehensive, trying desperately to follow the latest Shalhevet news amidst confusion and ambiguity. With all the tumult, people are just looking forward to the summer to absorb what’s happened so far.

Everyone has a different vision for the perfect Shalhevet, and everyone will be especially eager to put in his or her own two cents now that there are so many changes and decisions to be made. Over the summer, the Shalhevet community will keep buzzing about their ideas, anxious but a bit excited to jump into forging Shalhevet’s future.

Everyone except Shalhevet seniors, who will have already ended that chapter in their lives, will now be looking toward a new one.

For this year’s seniors, it seems like there is no cure but time. Soon we’ll be headed to Poland and Israel, where we’ll reconnect with each other and have our problems put in proper perspective.

When we come back, the hoopla of graduation and our busy summer schedules will likely keep us active, happy and bonded until we all split at the end of the summer. We’ll put our gripes behind us, get over our ennui and move on.

But we shouldn’t forget about tying up loose ends. Now is the time to finally talk honestly with that teacher you’ve always disagreed with, that friend you didn’t really appreciate until now, or that classmate you’ve always respected.

After going through four years of Shalhevet, your criticism (keep it constructive), praise, reflections and observations actually mean something, and with Shalhevet’s state so undecided, sharing it could definitely have an impact on the future of our beloved school.

So Rabs, when’s our Coffee Bean date?

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