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I trust this message finds you and your family well. Perhaps you are at home with your kids, still able to work, or doing a combination of both. Whatever the case, I’m sure your world looks a little different this week than what it did a month ago.
With the enormous amount of coverage on Coronavirus of late, including plenty of emails from me, I wanted to avoid talking about the pandemic directly, but rather offer a few observations I have made of late regarding our school community.
The task of moving our school to an at-home learning platform is something that we have been preparing for the last few weeks. In saything that, it wasn’t until the Premier’s announcement last Monday that the reality of the situation set in. School as we knew it for the next few weeks or possibly months was about to change in a big way. The changes would not just affect us as educators, but parents, carers and students too. As a school that prides itself on maintaining quality teaching and learning and a positive sense of community, the challenge in how to maintain that was (and remains) very real.
As you read this article, the shift to our At-Home Learning procedures has already been made. From Kindergarten to Year 12, teachers are interacting with students through instructional videos, resource kits and multiple platforms where crucial feedback on student work can occur. I’m sure we will be ironing out bugs as you read this, but we are up and running which was our immediate goal.
The observation I really wanted to make is around your response as our parent community. For the first time in multiple generations, parents and carers are being asked to keep students at home and to support the learning of their children as best they can. Let’s rewind a month or so and take stock of what a massive shift this has been. Yet in the midst of all the communication from our end, the response from all of you has been nothing but gracious, patient, accommodating and encouraging. As the Principal of PCS, can I say on behalf of all our staff thank you for your response to this crisis.
One of the large unknowns in any organisation is how different stakeholders will handle change. I know there have been plenty of questions (sometimes without answers), anxieties and a fair chunk of unknowns, however I congratulate and thank you for the manner in which all our parents and carers have conducted themselves these past weeks. Your accommodating nature has allowed us as staff to greater focus on our central mission, to teach your children well and to keep everyone safe, healthy and happy as best we can.
I don’t know what the next six months will look like, however whatever the landscape, we will remain committed to providing you with quality teaching and learning opportunities the best we can.
You’re a great bunch PCS. Have a great week and let’s stay in touch.