I would like to thank all students who have seamlessly transitioned to online learning this week. Reports from both the curriculum and wellbeing teams indicate that attendance has been excellent and students have been following the online protocols and are actively engaged in their learning.
When the NSW Government calls for a return to face-to face learning, it will be particularly important for us to know if any of our students become exposed and will therefore be required to complete a period of 14 days of isolation. In such a case we will do our best to provide access to remote learning. Any student who attends school, even with the slightest cold and flu symptoms, will be required to obtain a negative COVID-19 test before returning to school.
Tips to Boost Our Immune System
Last week, I reminded our community of the following tips to boost our immune system during the flu season:
- Eat vitamin-rich seasonal foods such as root and green vegetables, legumes and grains
- Seek out the sun to maintain levels of Vitamin D
- Regulate body temperature and processes by drinking plenty of water
- Maintain exercise levels even if competitive sport is suspended
- Defeat boredom – find a new hobby or rediscover an old interest
Reach Out to Your Support Networks if You Need Help
The Wellbeing team appreciates the difficulties faced by our community who are currently impacted by COVID-19 restrictions. Mental health and wellbeing changes over time in response to different stresses and experiences. Remember to reach out to your support networks; teachers, mentors, Heads of House, Psychologists and members of the College Leadership Team:
Deputy Principal – Student & Staff Wellbeing
Mr Patrick Brennan: email@example.com 9369 0713
Heads of House
Head of Aungier House: Mr John McCoy firstname.lastname@example.org 9369 0613
Head of Brennan House: Mr James Horrocks email@example.com 9369 0614
Head of Conlon House: Ms Cathy O’Sullivan firstname.lastname@example.org 9369 0611
Head of Green House: Mr Scott Coleman email@example.com 9369 0610
Head of Lacey House: Mr Damien Thompson firstname.lastname@example.org 9369 0609
Head of O’Connor House: Mr Matthew Barr email@example.com 9369 0612
Head of Quinn House: Ms Olivia Kite firstname.lastname@example.org 9369 0608
Head of Tevlin House: Mr John McCallum email@example.com 9369 0607
Psychologists Years 7 – 12
Mr Greg Cameron: firstname.lastname@example.org 9369 0645
Ms Tessa Prior: email@example.com 9369 0635
Psychologists Years 5 and 6
Ms Alexsandra McCredie: firstname.lastname@example.org 9387 5022
Ms Dawn Young: email@example.com 9387 5022
Ms Adele Cutbush: firstname.lastname@example.org 9369 0644
Professional Support Outside the College is Always Available When You Need it Too
Sleep is Crucial
I spoke at this week’s assembly about the importance of sleep, exercise and diet at times of change, anxiety and increased stress. Sleep is as important to our health as eating, drinking and breathing. It allows our bodies to repair themselves and our brains to consolidate our memories and process information.
Poor sleep hygiene is linked to physical problems such as a weakened immune system and mental health problems such as anxiety and depression. Boys should be getting at least eight hours of sleep each night. Good sleep hygiene involves a routine that includes no screen time an hour before bed and sleeping in a cool, dark and quiet environment away from any devices, particularly their mobile phone.
Physical activity has a huge potential to enhance our wellbeing. Even a short burst of 10 minutes’ brisk walking increases our mental alertness, energy and positive mood. Participation in regular physical activity can increase our self-esteem and can reduce stress and anxiety.
Even in this time of lockdown, I am seeing many of our students engaging in COVID-safe exercise such as jogging and cycling in Centennial Park, skating at Bondi Skate Park, football drills at Erskineville Oval and surfing at Bronte. I believe we have some of the most active teenagers in Sydney. We are blessed with a natural environment conducive to incidental and planned physical activity, and it’s great to see our boys taking full advantage of these spaces.
Hydration, Fruit, Vegetables – More Influential Than You Think
Eating a balanced diet with adequate hydration and plenty of fruit and vegetables helps to reduce the risk of sickness and disease. It also helps with sleeping patterns, energy levels, and your general health. A healthy diet also affects your mood and helps to manage your anxiety and stress.
The Importance of Students Attending Period One During Online Learning
As well as being the first teaching and learning period of the day, period one serves as the College’s mandatory recording of daily attendance as required by law.
Students who do not attend their Period One Google Meet will be marked absent and their parents will be sent a text message from the College indicating this. This often causes parents who receive this SMS anxiety and concern. This is escalated when parents are under the impression that their son is actively engaged in online learning. To avoid this situation please ensure your son is ready to commence his Google Meet at the start of Period 1. When we return to face to face learning, if he attends school after the bell, he needs to sign in late at the Wellbeing Centre with his student ID card.
Your son’s teachers and Head of House will monitor his attendance during the day and will notify parents if he is not attending his scheduled periods.
Mr Patrick Brennan
Deputy Principal – Staff and Student Wellbeing