As we move towards the Easter weekend, I have found myself reflecting on the symbolic importance of this key Christian festival and what it represents. Easter is the Christian festival that celebrates rebirth and new life, symbolised by Jesus’s resurrection and by Easter eggs. Easter heralds the onset of spring, traditionally a time of optimism and plenty. In normal times many of us would spend the holiday period with our extended families, playing in parks or on beaches. These are not normal times, but this doesn’t mean that the Easter message doesn’t have importance.
The past three weeks have reaffirmed my optimism about human nature and the importance of community. I have witnessed our staff going the extra mile to ensure that schooling continues for those students in most need and those whose parents are giving so much to the national effort. Our staff have obsessed about the welfare of our students and have been phoning home, delivering vital resources to all parts of the community and ensuring that education continues, even if learning is now done online rather than in person. Our senior staff have been humbled by the efforts of our community; the streets of Preston are deserted and families, even those facing the most challenging of circumstances, are supporting the national effort with discipline and dignity. This gives me optimism that once lockdown ends and Britain is reborn that we remember what it is to be a collective, to see ourselves as part of a society and not as competing and often alienated individuals.
The coronavirus crisis has inflicted unimaginable human tragedy, it has also displayed vividly, the best of human endeavour. It is important that next Easter, when we have returned to our holiday rituals, that we do not forget the lessons that this crisis has taught us about ourselves and what it really is to be human. Have a restful Easter with your families. Look after each other and be safe!