It is hard to believe this is my final Middle School Newsletter for 2021. This year has been so challenging for our school community; as we experienced the highs of camps, assemblies, awards and assemblies, and the lows of snap lockdowns and the gruelling extended lockdown most recently experienced. I’d like to thank each and every member of our community who support our wonderful College, and will continue to work with us to build back stronger than before.
Return to Onsite Learning: A Challenging Time
Our students have been back onsite full time for four weeks now. During this time, not only have students, teachers and parents needed to tackle exhaustion as we return to routine, but also an ever-changing environment of COVID positive cases cropping up, and changes to COVID restrictions and processes without warning. This may result in us experiencing worry and feeling on edge. This is amplified one hundred-fold with young adolescents. Our kids are struggling to navigate the face-to-face world, shake off their commitment to social media platforms, build stamina to concentrate in the classroom, get enough sleep, and respond to anxiety from adults around them. That is a lot for a young person. Expect them to sometimes act out, push back against rules and routines, and feel tired and even withdrawn. If you are worried about how your child is coping, I suggest:
- Reaching out to the College so we can help
- Enforcing a bedtime that is appropriate for their age
- Limiting social media after 7 – 8 pm
- Giving them a voice and making sure they are listened to
- Allowing some downtime on the weekends if you can
Most importantly, even when it’s hard, we need to try to remain calm and patient, and recognise that each and every one of us is trying to do the best we can.
Routine and Boundaries: Uniform
As noted in my last correspondence, students need to feel safe, emotionally and physically, in order to catch up on learning. For the College, this means a time of recovery, a focus on relationships, and re-establishing routine.
One of these routines is wearing our uniform with pride. We hold high expectations of all members of the College community, and know that when our students choose to put on the uniform in the morning, they are sending a message that they care about their community, have pride in who they are, and choose to belong to something. We know the next couple of weeks will be hard to access uniform supplies, or perhaps your child is having a growth spurt, but please communicate with the College so we can support. Please be reminded that students should not have facial piercings of any kind, and Year 7 and 8 students should be wearing their blazers every day (with the exception of PE days). The purple spray jackets are only to be worn when raining, and only with PE uniform.
Tuesday 7th December – Orientation Day and Meet the Teacher Day. Students will meet their Home Group Teacher and new classmates for 2022.
Wednesday 8th and Thursday 9th December: Early Commencement. Students will take part in learning for the following year
Friday 10th December: School-based Activities. Students will need to empty their lockers on this day. Anything left behind after this day may be disposed of.
Monday 13 th December: Middle School Excursions
Tuesday 14 th December: 4-6 Swimming Carnival/ 7-8 Funfields. Final day for students.
Lastly, I’d like to thank this wonderful community for their continued support in educating our young people. A special thank you to our Parent Advisory Group; unfortunately, we were not able to meet as often as I had hoped. Thank you to our School Council Representatives for all that you do, and of course, our wonderful staff that make my job so much easier.
I wish all families the best for a safe and happy Summer Break, and look forward to a much happier and productive 2022.
Middle School Principal