Phone: 831-624-1821 x2790
Degrees and Certifications:
Bachelors of Arts in Mass Media Communication -- CSU San Bernardino Masters of Arts in Education Administration -- Cal Poly Pomona Clear Single Subject Teaching Credential (History and English) -- CSU Northridge
Mr. Jonathan Lyons
Welcome to the 2020-2021 School Year
For us here at CHS, the summer was a blur of preparation and planning for a year that will challenge the school staff our students and parents at home. You can find a full accounting of the weeks ahead below. If you will indulge me, though, I want to share some thoughts in advance of our opening sessions next week.
I am one of those people who finds comfort in the familiar and the routine. My family often makes fun of me as I tend to wear out my favorite shirts rather than hunt down new ones. When I do have to replace something, it is usually with the same version. I have been wearing the same style of shoes for about a decade. I know I am not alone in these tendencies, as many enjoy that sense of comfort knowing that shirt fits or those shoes don’t make your feet hurt. We call the old standards just that because we know they work and can be trusted.
Over the summer, when not banging away on my keyboard, I retreated to things that are in that comfort zone.
When I moved last year, one of the things that did not survive was my record player. For those who are not well versed in all things Mr. Lyons, music collecting is a large part of my downtime from work. My garage is littered with CD cases of obscure artists from my college radio days. And yet, my record collection sat dormant for nearly a year. Then, the pandemic hit, giving me a path back toward a familiar comfort. I bought a new record player. I dove headlong into scouring the internet for albums. When it became possible, I ventured out to used record stores, delighting in the simple action of thumbing through stacks of albums to discover hidden gems. Not only was record shopping itself a comfort, but I also found solace in the mere act of playing a record. I am something of a music snob, and the well-worn edges of that copy of “Layla” or the scratches on the vinyl of the used Pearl Jam record made everything feel a little safer. A little more familiar.
And yet, there is a problem with this sort of thinking. It is fine to travel in the areas we find comfort. After all, “Layla” is a great song. But this sort of nostalgia robs us of what we might be missing out on. Why am I not buying records of new artists? Why do I only buy old records of songs I already know? Where is the sense of adventure? What am I afraid of?
These are the kinds of questions, sans the records, we as a school now face with the coming year. I know as students, you all have become experts at managing all the demands of high school. You are adept at juggling chemistry class, basketball practice, and all the trappings of a vibrant social life. You have been exemplary in your ability to navigate all the pitfalls of teenage life while keeping up a robust Instagram feed. I know many parents are life scheduling acrobats when it comes to coordinating one child who needs to be at soccer practice while another has to be at dance rehearsal. We are culinary masterminds at feeding our families in shifts and on the run. What happens when the familiar is turned upside down? This is the challenge ahead of us. To step outside of the comfort of the known and embrace the possibility of this new normal we find ourselves in. While we have certainly lost a sense of usual routine, what has been unearthed, at least in my house, is a reconnection with our family. There are more inside jokes than before. There are more shared moments of silliness and deeper conversations since, at the end of the day, all we have is each other. Undoubtedly, we all would love to be preparing for a traditional, familiar high school year but, just like I need to seek out new music to balance my love of the classics, we must seek out new models to engage and inspire our students. This will be hard, but I am confident all of us are up to the challenge. As a CHS family, we will have successes and failures, and that is okay. I hope you will join me in looking forward to what might turn out to be one of the best years of our students’ lives. When it is all said and done, 2020-2021 may just be our classic album.