It goes without saying that we are living in extraordinary times. We are all affected, and family life will not be as it was just last year for some time yet.
We are each called to conduct our relationships very differently and this has impacted on schools with new expectations around the numbers we are permitted to gather in, minimising close contact, the closure of particular facilities or amending how we use them.
We have changed our practices with the postponement or cancellation of camps, excursions, assemblies, sport, performing arts and cultural activities.
You have previously been advised of these in previous communications.
We are part of the broader Australian and Victorian communities and have fallen in with each and every practical step recommended throughout this period to the best of our ability.
We also began working many weeks ago on the systems for delivering learning remotely –teachers in one place, and students at home. I am confident that we are well placed to help students continue their learning growth in 2020. I can’t promise it will be just as good because the human element, the human interaction of schooling cannot be replicated across the internet.
However, you can be reassured that teachers, their leaders, and a vast array of support staff have worked hard to build a smart and sensitive system to continue to look after your sons and daughters as learners and as people. I am very proud of their hard work and their commitment to looking after their students.
I congratulate them for this outstanding performance.
What I would also like to do though is to invite you as parents, guardians and carers to play your role in making sure that if the Victorian Government does require schools to deliver learning remotely, your encouragement of your sons’ and daughters’ full participation in their learning will be just so important in making sure that this way of teaching and learning will be successful.
Our shared interest in the success of your sons and daughters will never see a more significant moment!
But, life will hopefully return to normal at some stage. We look forward to that!
My father was born during the Spanish Flu pandemic of the 20th century. His world eventually returned to normal, punctuated by World War II, but he lived a long and happy life.
My grandson was born during this COVID-19 pandemic. I believe that he will have the same opportunity in the future.
Until then, let us continue to work together to ensure that we make the best and make the most of 2020.