Principal’s Blog – 18 February 2022

Dear parents, carers, students and staff

It appears the students have returned to school quite settled and ready for all that a new school year promises to be. Their attention to their uniform and personal presentation has begun very well which is reflective of their respect to the College community and respect for themselves. The students have also been very diligent in wearing their masks so we trust they will maintain that expectation. I encourage families to provide spares for their child in case their mask gets lost or damaged.

The daily emails regarding COVID-19 case numbers at SFX is an expectation we are undertaking to keep the community informed of the situation. We haven’t had to provide a table of data as yet given the very low numbers. We are also wanting to protect the anonymity as announcing that one has COVID-19 can be quite embarrassing for the individual especially when one can catch the virus through no fault of your own.

I have mentioned previously the traffic congestion that occurs in the SFX precinct before and after school. There is the potential for grid lock in Barnard Circuit so please be patient. We prioritise buses and their access to the bus bay. Police may begin to patrol the area so a reminder that the bus bay is not a pick-up zone and people without disability passes should not be using the specially allocated parking zones, even on the SFX grounds.

One of our goals for 2022 is: ‘Every student will demonstrate growth in their learning’. Obviously, the classroom teacher has a significant role in that aim, however students are also expected to help themselves in meeting this goal. To this end, teachers provide Learning Intentions and Success Criteria in their lessons. The Learning Intention outlines what students will know, understand and be able to do in the lesson. The Success Criteria makes explicit the outcomes the students should achieve. These statements enable the students to take responsibility for their learning as they can see the goals of the lesson and check themselves how they are tracking. While teachers use the questions below, they can also be useful to use as prompts for your child at home.

  • What are you learning about in this lesson?
  • How are you doing?
  • How do you know?
  • How can you improve?
  • Where do you go for help?

Our second goal is: ‘To improve student outcomes by embedding a College wide approach to wellbeing’. SFX is well known for its approach to pastoral care and has very sound structures in place to meet the needs of the students and staff. We are moving towards being recognised as a positive education school and this will take some time. We engaged an expert in this field last year and encouraged by the fact that we do not have to make major changes to meet the expectations. In addition to our Counsellors, we ae partnering with UC in providing additional support to our students if they present to the pastoral care team. The feedback at this early stage has been very positive as the student encounter a non-teaching staff who is able to triage the most appropriate support for the benefit of the student.

Our third goal is: ‘Catholic identity continues to inform, form and transform the SFX community’. Obviously, this is a key reason for our existence and deserves a focus to ensure we maintain true to our mission. To assist we have a liturgical theme each year and so for 2022 it is ‘Be the light’. We are inspired by the life and teachings of Jesus and are challenged to be examples of compassion, honesty, mercy, courage, peace, justice, hope, forgiveness, and other such values. The theme of light is a powerful image for darkness is the antithesis of light and identifying the negative sometimes can draw us more fully to the positive. Our new Liturgy & Spirituality Coordinator, Mrs Joanne Reed, has already provided some inspirational and meaningful reflections on our liturgical theme for our community through the regular morning daily prayer.

Finally, best wishes to our F1 in Schools teams who presented their submissions to the judges last Friday. We are hoping we will get SFX represented at the nationals in the holidays. A big thank you to staff members Graham Stock, Gerry Elias and Steve Abigail for supporting the students in their presentations.

 

Best wishes

Paul Carroll

 

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