March letter from your Editors-in-Chief

This+new+school+year+year+presents+its+own+set+of+challenges+amidst+the+coronavirus+pandemic.+Newspaper+graphic+designed+by+Valerie+Wang.

Graphic by Valerie Wang

This new school year year presents its own set of challenges amidst the coronavirus pandemic. Newspaper graphic designed by Valerie Wang.

Dear Tide Readers,

It’s been a while since our last letter, and with the start of a new semester and many exciting Tide developments in the works, we felt it necessary to update you. Over the past month, the Tide has covered many unfolding stories in the MCPS community, including the race for the 44th SMOB, MCPS Superintendent Jack Smith’s resignation, the COVID-19 vaccine, school reopening logistics and more. Many of our diligent writers have been published on Best of Student Newspapers Online, the digital publisher of The Tide and hundreds of other student newspapers across the U.S. Some featured stories include students with frontline worker parents, RM’s reaction to the U.S. capitol attack, MoCo Against Brutality working to end school SRO programs and more. 

Not only have we continued coverage of relevant news stories, but we’ve also started a brand new Social Justice section. Student activism is an integral part of the RM community, and now more than ever, we felt it important to provide a special platform within our newspaper to highlight your voices. We’ve included articles from different sections to this new online page so that you can easily explore our extensive coverage of student activism, and will continue to publish articles highlighting diverse viewpoints in the RM community.  

Perhaps the most prominent topic in Montgomery County news is school reopening. On Feb. 9, the Board of Education voted that MCPS will start the process of returning to school in person today. As the county moves forward with the process of returning to school, the Tide is determined to continue promptly and directly reporting any and all new changes in this story. 

Undoubtedly, returning to school in the coming weeks will have monumental consequences not only on student learning but the lives of teachers as well. Many significant factors impact Montgomery County teachers, including COVID-19 vaccinations, contact tracing, the safety of their students and more. The Tide is constantly thinking about the best way to highlight the voices of everyone within the RM community, and one of our goals for the coming weeks is to feature more stories focusing on the impact of reopening on teachers’ lives. 

Finally, we wanted to address a recent event that has been weighing heavily on everyone in the RM community. As many already know, RM senior Simeon Mukuna was killed on Feb. 9. Simeon was a young man with a bright future and a caring, magnanimous friend to many. The sudden loss of one of our own has deeply shocked and saddened us all, and we felt it important to keep discussions open for everyone at RM. 

We offered Tide staff the opportunity to write a commemorative reflection of Simeon’s life, and we would like to extend this offer to the rest of the RM community. Any RM students or teachers who would like to reflect on Simeon’s life may submit their reflections using this form for publication in the Tide online and in an upcoming special edition print issue. As editors-in-chief of a student newspaper, it is our job to make sure all members of our school community feel represented and included in the Tide’s pages, and we want to make sure that anyone who would like to write about Simeon has an opportunity to do so.  

Tide staff have been busy covering major developments in educational news, working on an upcoming special edition print paper, preparing for next school year and unexpectedly mourning the loss of a fellow student. Needless to say, there’s a lot going on, and we want to hear from our readers. Anyone who’d like to write a letter to us editors-in-chief may do so here, or on the ‘Contact Us’ page on our website. As major news continues to unfold, our student journalists will work tirelessly to provide you with the most pertinent stories. 

Sincerely,

Eileen, Grace, and Mary