The VIEW From Above 5

 Life goes on pandemic or not. I think I’ve said that a million times, mostly to myself, since the middle of March. With the Administrative Board (AB) set to meet this week and with “shelter in place” mandates slowly being lifted in some areas, it is time to take stock of where we are and where we are going. The AB will do just that as it considers the sale of our HQ property, a review of the 2020-2022 Available Fund budget, and how best to proceed with an international convention that is slated for a COVID-19 area that has not reached its infectious peak. Along with those major decisions the AB will engage in “foresight thinking” by sharing ideas and developing plans to implement down the road.

Key to this “foresight thinking” will be how COVID-19 has and will continue to impact the future of our Society. In many ways the “genie is out of the bottle” for us as a group where many members, if not most, have staunchly resisted change. Coronavirus has forced all of us to rethink how we live, how we act, how we think. We are not the same people we were in March 2020. We are not the same Society either. Yesterday (May 11th) we celebrated our 91st Founders Day. Today, I attended a ZOOM training session hosted by Dr. Lace Marie Brogden, 2nd Vice President, in preparation for this week’s first fully virtual Administrative Board meeting in DKG’s history. COVID-19 precipitated this change, not our Society membership. At least we had the foresight to address electronic meetings in our governing documents. Otherwise, business at the international level would have crept to a standstill by now. But more needs to be done. Staff members have worked from home since March 24th – a probable feature of employment going forward. The development of WFH (work from home) schedules and tech support are just a few considerations the Board will need to consider.

In some state organizations, where documents have not been updated in a timely fashion, carrying on the business of the Society has been severely limited. Actually, chapters are better off because the Constitution has given them the right to conduct business electronically and by mail. But the important piece is that we are now ready to take stock and go forward. We are poised to make the necessary changes to function in this new world. To avoid isolation we must embrace change. Humans need humans, but it may be a long time before hugs, handshakes, and welcome kisses are safe. Presently, it must be enough to see someone and to talk to them at a safe distance. People must be safe and stay healthy.

What “foresight” thoughts are crowding your brain as you consider your chapter’s future? Your state organization’s future? International’s future? This weekend while the members of your Administrative Board ponder the future, engage in reflective time yourself. Share your thoughts with other DKG members, with DKG leaders, with me. Having the thought is great, but it goes nowhere when it isn’t shared. Sharing is the first necessary step in effecting change and ultimately in pursuing a meaningful future. Stay safe and healthy!

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  1. We need to think outside the box. We have to let go of “this is not the way we use to do it!”The norm has changed and will continue. We need to serve our 21st century educators/key women. Technology will very much be part of this organization and we need to help those who are afraid to move on. Many organizations are trading regular conventions to online workshops and meetings. I know I will not venture out in July to Philadelphia but I would be part of anything done online. The future looks exciting.

  2. TSO has continued the business of our organization using GoTo meetings and Zoom. It’s amazing how focused meetings are when you have a limited amount of time . We also have saved the organization money by not meeting face to face. We have conducted Executive Board votes electronically, attended chapter Founders Day meetings via Zoom and my own chapter is having an online Installation of new officers on Saturday. Change is a good thing as it helps us to grow as a member and as a Society.

  3. As a current kindergarten teacher using distance learning, I am all about change and learning new ways to meet the needs of my 5/6 year olds and their families. Trying to invent the 'new normal' every day has been a huge learning experience for me. As we here in WA state are getting the upper hand on the virus I agree with teacherjap...even though I have registered, have a room and airplane tickets I do not want to venture to Philadelphia this summer. I am very saddened by this as my travel companions and I have been excited about this trip for some time . I have been to 6 Int. events and am sad to miss. Please continue to keep the health of all members at the top of your list. Thank you for your leadership during this challenging time.

  4. WSO continues to embrace the opportunity to utilize technology to do our organizational business. ZOOM has become the new meeting norm during this COVID-19 pandemic. Thus, we all have been challenged to think outside the box and work together to learn the best ways to present WSO business electronically, to teach lessons to our students when classrooms are closed, and to stay in contact with one another during the shutter-in-place orders. As a result, our WSO multi-generational members are rediscovering how to embrace these changes in positive ways. Since our convention was cancelled in April, our state held our Executive Committee meeting and our Executive Board meeting via ZOOM. Both meetings were well received and, overall, the meetings ran very smoothly. As well, my Eta Chapter Spokane has held a few ZOOM meetings. On Saturday, we will install our new officers and enjoy our guest speaker via ZOOM. At this time, I am still registered for Internationa Convention and have my plane reservations, but traveling to Philadelphia (which is still considered a COVID hot spot) and holding a large convention gathering there, could very likely put many in jeopardy for contracting the virus. Thus, I am concerned about the health of our members. However, I know that the Admin. Board is taking all these factors into consideration as they make the final decision to hold the traditional face-to-face convention or not. I would support an electronic version of the convention...I look forward to your decision and I thank you for your leadership.

  5. The WFH home changes are good! I believe COVID-19 has forced us all to consider how to conduct business remotely and in creative ways. The opportunity to integrate virtual sessions are beneficial not only during this pandemic but also during adverse weather events. I also agree that we must gently assist those who are resistant in moving forward and embracing technology. This is prime time to consider prospects whose world revolve around technology and bring them into the fold.


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