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On the Right Path

My wife had a significant birthday on the weekend and the restrictions had been changed at just the right time to have her four brothers, their wives and her 88 year- old Dad over for morning tea yesterday.

It was a wonderful occasion. It is amazing how welcome something as simple as morning tea can be and the ritual of gathering and celebrating so precious. I hope that these simple but powerful joys, whether it be visits from family and friends, camping or the gradual emergence of community sports and activities are re-entering the lives of your families and energising your spirits. Mine were certainly lifted yesterday by the presence of extended family.

Follow the Yellow Brick Road

A point of difference at Ambrose Treacy College is the central pillar of Service in the formation and education of our boys. In some ways, this has been a challenging element to gain momentum on this term. However, our intrepid Faith and Mission team have laid the path for us in the ‘Follow the Yellow Brick Road’ project for the remainder the term and school holidays. I strongly encourage all parents and caregivers to examine the details via the College App and to channel the Dorothy and Toto within your son to get him going on the path to Oz. In this context, Oz is 10 hours of logged Service. Along the way, they will use their brain, their courage, and their heart to be for others. Each suggested task is a golden brick to lay on the way to building the Yellow Brick Road. Thank you for your support.

Spot Closure Plan

The tracking of health data in Queensland continues to be positive but there is always a possibility that a person, either staff or student, may be diagnosed with COVID 19. At this time, it would seem unlikely to occur, but it is important to be ready and clear should the need arise. We have liaised with schools in New South Wales that have recently undergone Spot Closure procedures due to a positive result and re-visited our plan over the past week. Today, I have forwarded all parents and caregivers the Spot Closure PlanParent version. I would ask that you review this, discuss the process with your son and how it would work for your family. Homeroom teachers will review the Spot Closure PlanSchool version and discuss with their homeroom students this week as well.

Co-curricular Activities

Pleasingly, a further range of training and rehearsal activities are now underway. We are entering a challenging period where there are some mixed messages and perceptions about what may take place in community activity. Therefore, it is important that we all understand that all non-essential (outside of the classroom) activities in a school setting are currently under the 20 persons directive from the Queensland Health Authority.

We are planning for the possibility that Stage 3 restrictions will be in place from 10 July and that will hopefully allow for gatherings of 100 persons and for sport and music rehearsals, clubs and activities to largely return in full within some specific guidelines. I am pleased to note that the ‘100 persons’ arrangement when it is in place does not apply to the whole site and that ‘zones’ such as the SFX Centre, outdoor courts, Brothers Oval and Jack Bowers Oval will be able to be facilitated for 100 persons per each zone. This is good news as it will allow greater participation. However, the hygiene and safety requirements are such that it will make it very challenging to facilitate these zones with spectators meaning that it is likely that parental attendance will either not be possible or will be limited and highly regulated. I await further advice on this from our GBC, AIC, and GPS sport partner schools. This would be disappointing but necessary in the short term as the resourcing required to facilitate each game zone is significant as each zone will operate as a ‘bubble’ with sign in, sanitization, one-way movement and clean downs between each session. I will keep the community informed, but it is great to see the boys commencing training and rehearsing and terrific news that that the ‘100’ when it comes into action is not restricted to whole of site. Mr Damian Steele and his team will continue to be in contact regarding specific details. We ask that students regularly check SEQTA notices and parents and students monitor the College App for updated information regarding training and rehearsals.

Exams, Assessment and Reporting

It has been an unusual term to say the least. I am very pleased with how the staff have supported the boys and as we come into the final 13 days of classes, there is still much to do on the assessment front in some year levels. We have made some adjustments to provide more teaching time, and the Exam Period will now begin Monday in Week 9. The Years 7 to 10 Assessment Schedules will be released early this week and students are encouraged to display it in their study space as they prepare for their end of term assignments and exams. Monday to Wednesday of Week 10 will be an opportunity for further consolidation, review, and new material in their classes.

Our Year 12 students have largely completed internal assessment for now and are moving on to new content that is required for their external exams. As such, Year 12 students will not have classes in Week 10 of term, and instead will have intensive workshops to prepare for their external exams. Students are reminded that external exams in Maths and Science will form 50% of their result for that subject, and these workshops will further prepare them to successfully complete high stakes assessment. I congratulate and thank the Year 12 cohort for their leadership this term, particularly of our youngest boys. A Year 12 Intensives Schedule will be released early this week.

Well done to all ATC boys for hanging in there for what will hopefully be a unique experience in their education. I am sure everyone will enjoy the upcoming June/July break.

God bless.

Chris Ryan