A Message from Mrs Cohen

20 April 2017

Welcome all new families and welcome back all ‘old’ families to Term 2 in the Year of Possibility. I trust that you and your families had a rejuvenating and blessed Easter.

This term we welcome back Kaye Broadfoot from Long Service Leave and Sandy Cox who will be filling in for Katrina Cutcliffe who will be on leave for Term 2.

There are also a number of staff who are in Acting Positions whilst others are on leave:

  • Alison Bedford: Acting Deputy Head of Senior Years
  • Jennifer McPhie: Acting Head of Middle Years Science
  • Amy Theobold: Acting Head of Senior Years Science
  • Sue Watts: Acting Head of Physical Education
  • Jason Wisley: Acting Head of The Arts

We also welcome to The Glennie family, Franklin John Edwin Hede. Frankie was born on 12 April to proud mum, Crystal Hede, Head of Physical Education, and dad, Michael. Congratulations to the Hede family!

As you will have already heard we will no longer be taking part in the NAPLAN Online Trial that was supposed to be happening in 2017. We were to be one of 12 independent schools in Queensland to take part in the trial. We undertook a range of preparation and readiness activities to ensure that staff and students would be prepared for the online test. The independent schools decided to withdraw from the trial after concerns were raised by the Education Minister in light of unacceptable problems encountered during pilot tests were run by Ed Queensland. We are not prepared to have our students disadvantaged by the technology. (Since first writing this article, all states have withdrawn from NAPLAN online: http://www.smh.com.au/national/all-australian-states-abandon-online-naplan-due-to-glitches-20170419-gvnj6j.html )

Parker Palmer in his book, A Courage to Teach (2007), says, ‘There are no formulas for good teaching, and the advice of experts has but marginal utility. If we want to grow in our practice, we have two primary places to go: to the inner ground from which good teaching comes and to the community of fellow teachers from whom we can learn more about ourselves and our craft’ (p146). With this quote in mind and in the spirit of rising to challenges in the Year of Possibility, teachers will be welcoming colleagues into their classrooms to watch them teach. They will learn from each other by observing lessons and giving and receiving constructive feedback. This term I will move my focus from meeting with all staff to spending time in classrooms across both campuses, to gain deeper insight into the teaching, student engagement and learning that is happening across the school.

Wishing you a blessed weekend and week ahead.

Mrs Kim Cohen

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