We had an important all-school meeting on Tuesday. We had hoped that everyone would attend, but for those that missed it, please go back and watch the recording.
https://us02web.zoom.us/rec/share/_91lLq7Qr1JIfLfM0mTGWPUMLJnLaaa81CcWq6Vbmk5ao3sNbILXb79qx0aMH4bz Password: ^2A2WgM1
It feels very impersonal to be writing this and not speaking it, but here is the message we needed to share:
The pandemic has hit everyone hard across the globe. What started as 3 weeks of stay-at-home orders has turned into months, and may indeed turn in to a year or more. Sadly, Navarrete’s Black Belt Academy is the latest casualty of COVID-19.
Master Navarrete and I did all we could, but ultimately we just lost too many students and it became impossible for us to pay our bills. We got a small PPP loan and spent all our savings trying to keep the school afloat, but recently, it came to the point where we are being forced to sell our home and our belongings and will have to leave the city that we have called home for a lifetime because we simply can no longer afford it.
The thought of leaving you guys without a school to train at was unimaginable. As a favor to us and our students, the Jaime family from Sacramento will be taking over our program. They have been in the ATA practically since the beginning, and are wonderful people whom we have known for decades. Chief Master Jaime’s daughter, Macey Jaime (5th degree black belt), will be the primary instructor. She is a very talented martial artist and teacher, and Chief Master Jaime (8th degree black belt) will be assisting her as well.
We need something from all of your though: PLEASE do not quit just because it won’t be us teaching you anymore. The Jaimes have put a lot on the line to move here and keep the school going in the middle of a pandemic and if you guys quit, it will put them in a situation similar to ours. They are only able to do this because Ms Jaime will not have a mortgage, insurance, and all the rest of the expenses we have, but they are not a wealthy family or corporation, but rather small business owners like us. Just give them a chance to win your trust and loyalty—they have a great deal more knowledge than we do and embody the same principles that are the cornerstone of our program.
We are not disappearing on you though! We will still be your primary teachers until the end of August, and will stick around for as long as Ms Jaime needs us to ensure a seamless transition. Ms Donna Boyer sent out a group email a little earlier. They are putting together a memory book for us to all share. They are asking for you to send any pictures you have or messages you’d like to share to them so they can compile it before we leave. You can email them to her at firstname.lastname@example.org
We also expect all of you to keep in touch with us! We want a whole school full of new Facebook friends and Instagrams to follow. Once our house is sold and you all are settled with the Jaimes, we will be moving to Mexico where Master Navarrete’s family is from. This will take approximately one month and a half. When quarantine is over, come visit us in Merida, Yucatan!
Making this announcement has been one of the hardest things we have ever had to do. We are so proud of all of you and thank all you parents for supporting us and your kids for the last 35 years. We will miss you all terribly.
If you need anything or want to reach out to us now, or any time in the future, please feel free to do so. We are so sorry that we were not able to make it through, but these truly are unprecedented times.
In case you don’t have them, here are our cell phone numbers:
Master Navarrete: (415) 517-4396
Mrs Navarrete: (415) 317-5193/ Personal email: email@example.com
We will have these numbers for several months until we get Mexican phone service and Mrs N’s gmail account will stay active going forward.
We want to thank each and every one of you for your dedication, loyalty, and love. You all are like family to us and that’s something that cannot be taken away, even if we are 1000s of miles apart.
With love and respect,
Master and Mrs Navarrete