I quit wishing and started taking control
When I had hope I quit wishing my life to be different.
Instead, hope gave me the belief that I can change it and the energy
to take consistent action to just that. I came to understand that
my life at the present moment is not to be endured but lived.
Sometimes the greatest discoveries about ourselves come through turmoil.
Life is a journey of self-discovery and often darkness leads to see with
our soul not our eyes.
Hope, When I didn’t give up by David and Heidi Cushieri
During these tumultuous times, I needed some inspiration so I reverted to this small book on hope. We all need hope that we will overcome this pandemic. We need hope that during these times, our sons, our family and our staff are safe and healthy. We need hope that our online learning continues and helps all of us remain connected.
The past three weeks has changed the landscape in which we live not just our teaching and learning landscape but the ways in which we, as ‘social’ people, communicate and interact. Archbishop Fisher addressed this ‘social distancing’ by stating that is an unfamiliar term because we are social people. He preferred to call our distancing from each other as ‘physical’ distancing because during these times we as a community need to ensure our ‘social’ connection more than ever before.
This is the fifth Sunday of Lent. A lent where we have realised the frailty of life; the significance of family; the importance of ‘social’ connection; the consideration of others; the issue of inequality and the need and reliance on each other.
The gospel reading from Sunday speaks of the wonderful event of the raising of Lazarus from the dead. His sisters were overjoyed, and many people came to believe in Jesus. However, something more wonderful happened in Jesus‘ own death and resurrection. At Easter, we look to the wonderful event of the resurrection of Christ to provide us nourishment and hope for a better future.
During these uncertain times, we are encouraged to pray for all people, especially as we approach Easter so that they may see the wonderful works of Jesus. Whether it be acts of kindness, acts of justice, acts of solidarity, acts of forgiveness, acts of selfishness or acts of courage, we need to see the work of the Holy Spirit to illuminate the spirit that lives in all of us. It is through these acts that we will be able to overcome the challenges of COVID-19. The Lord places his spirit in all of us; and we live.
Online learning is a challenge for students, parents and teachers. The College has provided crucial information to all its members regarding online learning. Whether it be how to establish good habits; following a regular timetable day; setting up your area of study; good hygiene habits; maintaining constant communication with teachers especially if work is too difficult or it is becoming overwhelming because of the distance or being mindful of the individual’s wellbeing, The support we provide each other during this period cannot be underestimated. I encourage all students and parents to regularly communicate with teachers or other peers as we learn from a distance.
My thoughts and prayers are with everyone but in particular our Year 12 students. It has been three weeks since we were able to meet with Year 12 as a group. Hopefully, they were pleased with how they completed their Semester One assessments. The Half-Yearly Reports should be available as scheduled and hopefully students will receive the grades they deserve as a result of the quality study they put into their assessments. There was great news last week that the HSC will continue in 2020 however, what is unclear is the manner in which the HSC will proceed for the remainder of the year. This is especially of concern for all practical classes and VET courses. NESA has yet to inform schools of the direction it will take to support students undertaking these courses. We hope to inform our parents, students and staff of the outcome of meetings scheduled for this week. At this point, our online learning is mainly through CANVAS and students and teachers are remaining connected through this means. Some teachers have ventured into the online videoing classes through our Microsoft Teams. If our current online learning continues into Term 2, our delivery to our Year 12 students will change with an expectation for online videoing for all classes. More information about this will be forthcoming via notifications in Canvas. I would encourage all Year 12 parents to visit the NESA website.
With all events cancelled as a result of this dreaded COVID-19, I am finding it difficult, as normally I would be reporting on the outstanding contribution made by staff and students to the co-curricula program of the College. I am ever hopeful, that we will return to College events in Term 2.
Please stay safe, stay healthy and care for each other during this time.
My prayers are with all of you. God Bless.
Mr M. Ronchetti