Posted on: Wednesday 6 May 2020
Posted in: Videos and Conversations
Like many South-East Queenslanders, I enjoyed walks over the long weekend and smiled as hundreds took the Premier literally and spread picnic blankets on riverbanks, foreshores, near dams and in parks. Even the news footage captured scenes reminiscent of George Seurat’s best-known work, A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte.
By Monday morning, the Premier’s press conference announcement that students in Kindy/Pre-Prep, Prep and Year 1, as well as Years 11 and 12 will be able to return to learning in the classroom from 11 May, confirmed that we are beginning to emerge from the restrictions of Queensland’s Home Confinement, Movement and Gathering Direction. Welcome news for these students and their families, but no doubt a decision which will have created further concern or uncertainty for others.
I have written previously about the deepening of the relationships between home and school during this pandemic and extend my thanks again to our St Hilda’s community. A significant number of our parents have taken the opportunity to engage in conversations in recent weeks to discuss family needs during this economic downturn and share feedback on their daughter’s well-being and engagement with the current learning-at-home or learning-at-school environment. Others have connected with us to share their perspectives on the impact of current conditions on businesses, employment and community responses. These conversations provide the School with valuable insight. The impact of all decisions made to manage the health and safety of the community, and transition schools and businesses, whilst made in good faith, will continue to have the potential to impact each of us differently. Looking out for each other during these times and responding with patience and guidance will continue to assist in this shared experience.
Our welfare teams have been connecting with students and parents to discuss the needs of individual students. Can I please encourage parents to remain in contact with your daughter’s Head of Year or Form Teacher, particularly if circumstances change and your daughter would benefit from some additional support. Our Counsellor, Mrs Liz Giovas, and Psychologist, Mrs Jaclyn Clancy, can be contacted to discuss concerns with changing moods or behaviours; it is not easy to tell the difference between normal worry and more serious mental health issues. Initiating a conversation could be the beginning of valuable support for you and your daughter.
Monday 25 May is the proposed return date for classes to resume for students in Years 2-10. We are looking forward to welcoming the girls back, but also appreciate that Boarders return to campus will be determined by the advice of the Federal and State Health Authorities, and our ability to facilitate all requirements. It is important to also acknowledge that some students and staff with health conditions or living arrangements might continue to be vulnerable and may continue to work and learn from home. We will seek your assistance to understand your family’s needs as we progress towards these dates.
We will update parents as we continue to review our School’s operational procedures during this pandemic to incorporate additional advice from the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) to reduce the potential risk of COVID-19 transmission. You will also be advised of updates from the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA) with regards to curriculum and assessment.
I hope in sharing these considerations with you that you are reassured we are here to help and support your family as we navigate this difficult time together.
From School Captain, Edwina Thomson
From Junior School Captain and Vice Captain,
Charlize Hamilton and Clementine Henderson