2020: A Year to be Thankful for the Little Things
This year, our founder Amy wrote a letter to the Spectra staff thanking them for their hard work and dedication to making Spectra Centers the best it could be during such a crazy year. This year, as is true with everything we do, we dreamed big! In her letter, Amy reflects on how dreaming big has guided us through this year and brought us to our Campus two years ago. Amy truly believes anything is possible.
Covid-19 has been scary, stressful, and saddening. It has also tested each and every one of us. The Spectra Centers’ staff, our students, and their families have all had to make sacrifices to ensure the overall well-being of our community. For that, we are forever grateful. At times, the thought of Spectra Centers resuming in-person instruction felt impossible. But at Spectra Centers, we make the impossible possible and have continued to do so during this difficult time.
Amidst the Covid-chaos, we are grateful to be here and growing. We worked together to manage remote learning for a brief period of time and returned to the Campus successfully this fall for in-person learning, five days per week! Spectra Autism Center has been an absolute rock – keeping the doors open as an essential business since Covid’s arrival and learning to facilitate unending health and licensing shifts. Spectra Psych & Counseling Services have remained available as well; with an increased need for support in our community as we all feel the weight of the world on our shoulders.
Spectra families, thank you for your trust and for allowing us to serve you. Spectra team, we wouldn’t be who we are or where we are without each of you. Together, we are making a difference – small steps and big steps alike. Small steps can be tough and often forgotten, as they aren’t easily recognizable, but we must remind ourselves that we are still walking. Words may come slowly to our kids, if they come at all. Handwriting can be messy. Shoes are pulled on sideways (or tossed at someone’s head). This isn’t an easy path; it’s a ‘Yes, we can’ path. We’ve chosen it because it matters to all of us.
We are so grateful that you have chosen to be here with Spectra. Please enjoy this letter from Amy as she sits down to a cup of tea on the second anniversary of the new Spectra School Campus. We have come so far, as a school and a community, and we cannot wait to see how far we will go. Thanks for joining us on this journey.
With sincere gratitude,
A Cup of Tea With AKG
It was October 24, 2018 at 9:44 a.m. My phone will verify this through the endless stream of photos taken on that date. Each picture shows a semi-recognizable view of an area on the Spectra Campus. My realtor had happened upon the Campus unexpectedly, snatched the keys, and off we went to see what we might find. I didn’t tell a single Spectra soul, as we are creatures of habit, similar to a few of our kiddos, and no one had any indication that we were considering this type of move. You see, things like “ We’re leaving! Time to move!” aren’t always very-well received.
Besides that, on my first visit to the Campus there were rumblings that other parties were already interested in purchasing the property. Some of the big parties at play included names like ‘City of’ and ‘State of’. Hmph… it seemed I was too late for the race and I certainly didn’t have a ticket to the party. Given that things were starting to shape up – why on earth would I ever bother with something like a Campus? Let me explain.
Dream big. Sound familiar? It should. If it doesn’t, check out Spectra’s Values and our Handbook. That’s the first and foremost thing that I ask of you if you are part of the Spectra Family. Never, ever, do we think small. Never, ever, do we sell ourselves – or these individuals we have the privilege of serving – short of the potential that we (and they) have. This world is far too big to ever stop dreaming. As we dream, we always dream big!
True to myself, I explored every square inch of the Campus on that day with a “what if…” mindset. Every classroom was filled with stuff – closets, cupboards, shelves and LOTS of dirt. There were classrooms that couldn’t even be walked into because the overwhelming amount of “stuff” was literally stacked to the ceiling. The small gym was also well-stocked with PE equipment. A library?! I hadn’t even considered it. Don’t get me started on what I thought about a heated indoor saltwater pool for the kids! I’m sold. I’m in for all of it. The potential was unreal. I’d always dreamed of a campus since the early days when I started sketching up the Interdisciplinary Intervention Model. I didn’t know how to get it, but I knew I wanted it. The real question was – how?
I’ve come to many of these crossroads in my life, which is how we have come to meet the Spectra value “Yes we can”. I am one with a vision and I tend to follow my heart. This dynamic duo has required my willingness to embrace this value one hundred and one (thousand) times.
Remember? DREAM BIG. I smile as I type this, because the vision of what we stumbled through that first day is so surreal. So impossible. I think back now and it doesn’t seem true. That’s the beauty of this. I am a POSSIBLE girl. There is always a way. Thank you, sweet Jesus, and thank you to that small group of slightly crazy and very like-minded family and friends who believed in the plan and who generously came with me night and day for months to explore this adventure before it had even begun. It wasn’t pretty, it definitely wasn’t clean and nothing about it has been easy. But goodness, what a tremendous process and monumental benchmark in Spectra Center’s growth and history.
We opened the doors for Spectra School West almost three months later, on January 29, 2019 with 22 students. All the while, Spectra Autism Center remained up and running and Spectra Psychological & Counseling Services continued in full force.
And now, on this day, two years later, I’m happy to find a quiet place, a cup of tea, and revisit this journey to reflect on the details, the people, and the steps that Spectra Centers has taken forward since.
I am so grateful that you have chosen to be here with Spectra.
My thanks to you.