Message From the Principal
We made it!! Well done!
What a Term! I want to celebrate the finish and acknowledge the hard work everyone has put in. I want to acknowledge the tears shed by many, the hair pulling and the arguments. BUT I also want to acknowledge the golden moments of reading together, baking, riding a bike and those moments when you watched your child achieve something amazing! It has been such a term of highs and lows!
I have written and spoken previously – some may say relentlessly – about pearls, about grit and the like– the pain and the irritation in your oyster was creating a pearl of great beauty. That the pearl took much irritation and time to form, and that it is up to you to choose if it stays as an irritation or becomes a pearl. I’m sure some of you might be saying “Mrs Hastie I have a whole string of pearls by now!!” And you do! Treasure them – make it so that the difficulties you have faced through this time is turned into something beautiful and lustrous, of great worth. This is how we need to look at this term – will it be another pearl to add to your string?
Today’s newsletter is one of farewells! I want to honour our outgoing Year 12’s and the way they have finished their schooling. Instead of Year 12 being a pinnacle of their learning journey – a time of great work, of joy, of pain, but also exploration and adventure, it has been a time of zoom, uncertainty, change. They have certainly experienced plenty of firsts and lasts, but not the ones they were expecting. In the midst of this I have seen this cohort’s resilience, grit – and its sense of humour! Despite the shifting sands beneath their feet and the fact they have had little choice in the decisions being made around them, they have made the choice to get on with things. They have adapted, almost uncomplainingly – almost! They still face a hard battle ahead. It is not the relatively straightforward run to the HSC exams. They will have to continue to persevere to stay focused and engaged longer than any HSC group previously – seven weeks!. Again, another pearl to add to your string!
I want to particularly acknowledge the leadership of the outgoing team. They have been focused, they have had passion and vision and have kept going in the midst of this. In particular I want to acknowledge the team who worked to get our first NAIDOC celebrations up and running. They had a week of activities planned – a local elder was coming and there was a celebration of our First Nations people. Then the inevitable happened. They pivoted they developed an online celebration, and for that I thank them. I want to thank the Leadership team for the continued focus on supporting all students, through their wellbeing videos, their work in the Houses and for RUOK day. Again, plans had to be adapted and changed but they did it! They also had big dreams about developing a student representative group to help create more voice and engagement for all students, and institute House mascots, working with our indigenous community and our Junior school leaders to strengthen our House culture, but again this was put aside. They kept going, they kept leading – by serving to make our community better. Thank you!
I also want to farewell Mr Tony Wong, our amazing TAS teacher and Assistant Head of House for Allen! In his short time at the College, he has had an amazing impact on the students in his classes and House. His warm relational style and care for each person, his passion for design, for building and creative solutions has been inspiring!
He heads off to Macarthur Anglican School, where he began his teaching career, and we wish him all God’s very best in this endeavour – we will miss him!
To our families, rest well, take time to breathe, relax and enjoy your family, after a trying term – you deserve it!