Dear Parents,

We keep on talking and hearing about the strange times that we are living in. What we really mean is that things are very different for us at the moment: for family connections, employment potential, our children’s schooling and for family and student wellbeing. On top of that, the immediate future for these things is still a little muddy. In light of this, the support that schools and parents need to give to students these days is critical to the upkeep of student wellbeing and the development of a resilient character.

We are not naturally trained for this, even though our perceptions and instincts as parents are valuable in determining the health and wellbeing of our children. We depend on the advice and information provided by health professionals to help us sort some of these things out. Schooltv.me is a valuable resource featuring the advice and information of renowned child psychologist, Dr Michael Carr-Gregg. Attached below is a link that provides information for parents about a range of common day issues that may affect your children such as anxiety, diet and nutrition, sleep, positive parenting, mindfulness and physical activity and exercise. All play a part in forming resilience in students in the pursuit of appropriate levels of student wellbeing. I recommend that parents explore this link which gives tips about dealing with teenagers during these times: https://schooltv.me/wellbeing_news/special-report-wellbeing-checklist-secondary

Pastoral Program

The college continues to provide pastoral lessons to assist students in dealing with the issues that are prevalent in the current world. Given the fact that remote learning means that students are online for a great portion of a school day (and beyond), last Friday we provided a lesson on cybersafety to ensure that students are capable of making appropriate choices regarding their place in the digital world and keeping safe. This coming Friday we will provide a session on establishing a resilient character to equip students with the skills and strength to deal with the challenges that life delivers.

The challenges of studying at home

How hard has it been to motivate students to sit for six hours and do remote schooling? As teachers, we are fairly realistic about what we can achieve and what we can expect in the circumstances. We know that some students find the going difficult because the normal school structures of support have been taken away from them and that the rigid routines that school provides are somewhat misplaced. Distractions and temptations at home are greater because students have more access to other technology, siblings, lack a proper work environment, and in some cases are not supervised; if so, the challenge of keeping focussed and on task is immense. Parents play an important role here as they can be the prime motivators and supervisors for their children, with the right approach. In the last Newsletter I gave some tips that would help parents establish effective routines and environment for learning. They are critical for the development of an effective study plan and I encourage you to develop them at home.

With best wishes

Ernie Pisani

Deputy Principal

Head of Senior Campus