St Paul’s School – a Global Community (& New Building Project update)
A Global Community
I hope you had a blessed Easter – and what a blessing that the snap lockdown didn’t go any longer than the two and a half days. It is certainly lovely to have all the students back on campus.
With international borders still closed, can I ask you to spare a thought and prayer for our international students on campus? These young men and women haven’t been able to go home and see their families since arriving back in Australia in January 2020. COVID-19 has been particularly tough on them, but I am so grateful that they are still with us.
A key aspect of our purpose as a school is to prepare resilient global citizens… There is no better way of helping a young person understand and appreciate that they are not just part of a local community, but also a global community, than by providing opportunities for friendships across borders. Tolerance and respect is gained when we seek to understand cultural differences and the real value different perspectives bring to our lives. Our School is becoming increasingly diverse, which is a wonderful thing: we are richer for it.
While we are incredibly blessed to be in Australia during this time in history, there are still many countries that are in lockdown with children who haven’t been able to physically attend school for months on end. As a result of the technology we put in place in preparation for last year’s lockdown, we have been able to offer online schooling to more than 30 overseas students. These young people join classes each day, sometimes starting far earlier because of the time difference. Could you also pray for these students? While a great opportunity for learning, I am sure they are missing the physical connection and the benefits that a real community brings.
New Building Project Update
This term, work will start on our new building project. The first stage will see new electrical conduit laid around the perimeter of the site. In the June/July holidays, Blocks 1 and 2 will be demolished and the building site established. Egress around the School will change for 12 months, but we will ensure there is directional signage to help you navigate from one side of the campus to the other.
Important Reminders – Student Illness and Absences
Procedure if your child is ill at School: If you child is ill at School, they must go to the Infirmary and the School will call you if they need to be collected. Students are not to text/call parents from the classroom to be ask to be collected. Please remind your child of the procedure if they do contact you from School.
Absences: It is important to note that attendance rolls will be taken during Tutor Group and Period 1 (as they are every lesson) and SMS notifications will be sent to parents based on unexplained absences as at the end of Period 1. Secondary students who are late for (or miss) Tutor Group need to present themselves to sign in at the Tooth Building. If your child is going to be absent, parents/guardians are asked to notify the School as soon as possible either by ringing Reception on 3261 1388 or by entering student absences via Parent Lounge. When students are absent for five or more days, parents are required to contact the House Leader or Director of Junior School.
Finally, thank you to all those parents who have offered feedback through the Annual Parent Engagement Survey (emailed to you on Tuesday 13 April). The survey will close on Wednesday 28 April. If you haven’t already responded, we would love to hear your feedback.
Dr Paul Browning