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Teaching - A Deeply Human Activity

Year 11 College Captain Candidates 2021

I had a Science teacher in Year 9 who was a nice but eccentric man. He used to regale us with fascinating Science facts and some tall tales and true as well and I remember him fondly. A friend recently sent me a photo of us with the teacher that was taken at school a thousand years ago and in our 50th year we had a great laugh as we remembered the classes. Both of us have done okay so the memories are all positive – if a little funny!

I think most of us have had a teacher like that: perhaps not the most knowledgeable or technically proficient but their memory makes us smile when we think of them. I think it is true that we learn ‘people’ as much, or more than, we learn content and facts. That is not to suggest that the latter is not extremely important, more to posit that the former is perhaps more so. Teaching, in all guises, is a deeply human activity as it is all about connection and relationship and that is what makes the vocation a sacred privilege.


Parent, Teacher and Student Feedback Meetings

As this blog goes to print, over 100 ATC Teachers are meeting with hundreds of ATC parents and caregivers and students in our feedback interviews. The way in which it is occurring is new for all of us as we meet via Microsoft TEAMs. My experience in recent months as I have conducted dozens of enrolment interviews, met with staff, parents, peers and colleagues via TEAMs, is that we have learned to engage using this technology very quickly. I do think that while we have learned, we all also yearned for human connection and relationship and my experience has been that we are listening even more carefully in this forum. I hope that this rings true as these important meetings take place within the context of a most memorable time.

Semester One Academic Results

A focus of these conversations are the learning outcomes of Semester One. Success can be measured in numerous ways and across numerous criteria. One measure is the amount of Gold, Silver and Bronze Academic Awards in each year level. Pleasingly, the highest number of Gold Awards from a percentage of students in the year level perspective may be found in our Year 12 cohort. Further, 27.4% of our Year 12 students improved on their results from Semester Two 2019 to Semester One, 2020. Warm congratulations to the 95 students who will be presented with Gold Academic Awards from Years 4 to 12 this week, 63 to receive Silver and 65 to receive Bronze. These results, along with every student from Years 4 to 12 who receive Improvement Awards or have done their very best, can be likened to an iceberg, in that we can see the result but the hard work, commitment and effort has happened under the water. Well done to everyone, both awardees and those who won’t cross the stage but did their very best and achieved their personal excellence in Semester One.

Student Leadership 2021

A highlight of the past week has been meeting with the six Year 11 students who have been short-listed for the position of College Captain for 2021. I was very impressed by the Year 11 cohort in the way in which they engaged in the addresses presented by the candidates. Each young man spoke to their peers articulately and convincingly. It is always inspiring to hear what young people have to say and hearing from these students was most affirming of our young College and their understanding of our mission, our context and our culture. Each candidate also presents at an interview with myself, Mr Conor Finn and Tom, our 2020 College Captain. It is quite the workout! Each of the six students and their families should feel justifiably proud of these young men and the mature and thoughtful way in which they have engaged in this process. Above all, I have been inspired by their humility, naturalness and authenticity. Each of these six students and their Year 11 peers will be influential and effective leaders for our community in our 7th year in 2021. I look forward to announcing our third College Captain and two Vice Captains later in the week.

Sport

Another enjoyable weekend of sport was had with The Southport School and Marist College Ashgrove. Thank you to all parents for your support of the boys and coaching staff over the weekend. The various requirements for COVID Safe Plans may be somewhat challenging as there are different approaches and methods for different associations with whom we engage. Please be sure to track information via our College APP.

In summary, in terms of spectator support and processes at this stage:

  • GPS Schools are two parent spectators per player for outdoor matches and one for indoor and all schools are using the EVA Check in APP.
  • AIC Schools are no spectators allowed other than Open teams where one parent spectator is allowed for both outdoor and indoor sports. Different schools are using different entry processes e.g. Marist used EVA Check In on the weekend, but other schools have different processes that we will communicate on weekly basis.
  • GBC schools are reviewing their spectator policy for the commencement of Round One on August 1st. At this stage, GBC have elected to have one parent spectator at outdoor sports for all age levels and none for indoor. There is a possibility that the GBC will use the EVA Check In APP-they are currently reviewing this.
  • Club Basketball is allowing one parent spectator per student and the details of this are available on the College APP.

EREA Statement of Commitment to Child Safety

Finally, but importantly, Edmund Rice Education Australia have recently renewed and re-committed our family of schools to a Statement of Commitment to Child Safety. Please CLICK HERE to access the document, as we share in the privilege and responsibility of promoting the safety and well-being of the young people in our care.

Congratulations

I am pleased to share the news of the safe arrival of Oscar Sebastian Tabulo-Green, born on Saturday 18 July. Oscar is the first child for Sebastian Tabulo, Director of IT and his wife Teegan. Congratulations!

God Bless

Chris Ryan