The “Spirit of MSM” has never been more evident than in these last few weeks. Our world as we know it has changed forever and we have had to rapidly adapt to emerging circumstances.
Our community has been resilient. We certainly have had our challenges and while I would never profess that we are perfect, I am so proud of the way that everyone has supported and encouraged each other. It has been a time of immense growth for all of us.
I have observed our staff respond to the call of bringing the MSM student experience into family homes. Staff have role modelled what it is to be a lifelong learner, embracing different forms of technology to create meaningful learning experiences for our students. We have engaged in professional dialogues and collaborations that have elevated to a whole new level as our staff have shown their commitment to continuous improvement. They have demonstrated what it means to be a risk taker and an innovator. The best interests of our students always remain at the heart of our decision making. Thank you to our amazing staff!
I would also like to acknowledge and thank our awesome IT Team. They have been working long hours to respond to requests for assistance from students, parents and staff. They have been patient and understanding and no request has ever been too much trouble. We are so grateful to you.
To our beautiful young women…I am so impressed by you all! Your teachers are full of praise for the way that you have engaged on-line. I have been inspired by your creativity and the positive way that you have responded to the challenges of “Learning at Home”. I know how much you have missed physically being with your friends. We are looking forward to welcoming back the Year 11 and 12 students next week!
I was reading a research paper last night produced by the Alliance of Girls’ Schools Australasia. It stated:
The pandemic has demonstrated that the life skills needed to navigate this crisis are the attributes that future employers will seek, including creativity, communication, collaboration, empathy and emotional intelligence.
I have observed you, our young women, developing these skills. Your engagement in the on-line classroom learning is an obvious example, but there are many other ways that you have continued to refine these skills.
The Year 12 students participated in a “Glam Up Friday” last week recognising that Saturday 2 May was to be their Charity Ball. It was fabulous to see students and staff partake in this on-line activity. The ability to share a laugh is so important in these times. I admired the way the Year 12s could see a “silver lining” making reference to things like “the weather is too cold anyway!”
On Tuesday I “sat in” on a College Choir rehearsal, which was such an uplifting experience. There were 51 students participating in the on-line rehearsal and your passion for singing
was evident. This could have been a logistic nightmare, but under the tutorage of Ms Dias, it was a music event in itself! I could see that you were really enjoying yourselves!
Under the guidance of our Pastoral Leaders, your Pos-Ed lessons are a way of checking in with each other. I am enjoying watching the various programs evolve on-line. (Yes... I have joined your TEAMS!) The buddy program with the Year 11 and Year 7 students is thriving. Your encouraging comments to each other demonstrate the “Spirit of MSM”. The Year 10 students have been focusing on positive emotions, while the Year 8 students are engaging in positive self-talk and have created some amazing “affirmation cards”. Year 9 Class Captains have instigated “Fun Fridays”. The Year Level Assemblies have also been important ways for you to connect and communicate. I understand that some of you have even organised to catch up for “virtual lunches”.
Meanwhile, our students who are on-site have been upbeat and they have shared with me that they feel well supported. To find some “normality” the staff and students participated in a sausage sizzle last Friday – thanks to our maintenance team for suggesting and organising this.
Life at MSM has continued, albeit in different ways. I wanted to thank parents and carers for your support at home. I know that many of you have taken a very active interest in what has been happening on-line and we have appreciated your words of gratitude.
My prayer is that during this challenging time your family bond has been strengthened as you have treasured the gifts of enjoying sharing meals together, inventing games, taking walks/bike rides as a family and importantly engaging in conversations.
Finally, I wish all our mothers, grandmothers and special women who take on mothering roles a very happy day on Sunday.
In faith and love