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From Deputy Principal – Student & Staff Wellbeing, Mr Patrick Brennan

Deputy Principal - Student & Staff Wellbeing, Mr Patrick Brennan

Mr Patrick Brennan, Deputy Principal - Student & Staff Wellbeing

Return to Campus and Student Wellbeing

As our students begin their transition back to campus this week, with Year 11 and 12 returning for one day and the remaining year groups in a staggered approach during Week 3, the College will draw on its existing approach to student wellbeing as we move back to a familiar mode of learning.

Relationships are central to belonging and connectedness in the school environment. This will be an ongoing focus at the College through our wellbeing programs upon the boys’ return.

At the start of their first day back, time will be provided to reconnect with staff and students before the commencement of formal lessons. Members of the College Leadership Team and Heads of House will greet students each morning over the first two weeks as they enter campus, before attending year assemblies.

Getting back into the routine of lessons, breaks and wellbeing time will increase our students’ feelings of safety and security.

Explicit modelling and teaching of social and emotional learning, during mentor time, House and College assemblies and within PDHPE, will support our students transition back to face-to-face learning. A reminder of our College values and ethos will further enhance the boys’ mental preparedness to continue where they left off after the premature end to Term 1.

The value of student agency cannot be underestimated at this time, with the roles of our student leaders – Captains, Prefects and SRC members – given a high priority to provide all boys will a genuine sense of student voice during these dynamic times. On Thursday, 21st May, the College will announce mid-year Prefects for 2020, to further promote this important ingredient to student wellbeing.

Practically, the boys will be given confidence when they see some of the steps that the College has taken to ensure their safe return to campus. The College has deliberately aimed to be ahead of the game in terms of health and safety when it comes to our students’ safe return to campus. Examples include:

  • Temperature checks for all individuals coming onto campus.
  • Optional face masks.
  • Selection of classrooms which exceed government social distancing recommendations.
  • Water fountains disabled to only allow bottle refill.
  • The provision of additional water basins around campus.
  • The acquisition of one tonne of hand sanitizer.
  • Additional signage promoting social distancing and increased hygiene.

Finally, I publicly thank staff, students and families for their sense of commitment and hope in the face of great difficulty over the past six weeks. Nothing beats face-to-face learning for school-age students. Your positivity and ability to adapt to a rapidly changing education paradigm has been a gift to our community.

Stay safe.