After two months working from home, the Whitefriars Community is now beginning to resemble some type of familiarity as Year 11 and 12 students officially returned to school just over a week ago.
School buses slowly arrived to a recognisable, yet slightly different welcome. Our Principal, Mr Murphy, along with Leadership Team members, now welcome our students each morning. Wishing our boys a good morning as they sanitise their hands and are reminded of practicing social distancing as they begin to head into class – the first visible sign of how life has changed for us all in recent times.
To say that our returning students have happily returned to school on site is understatement. Their excitement to see their friends, their positive attitudes and enthusiasm to be back on campus has been incredible to watch. Teachers are commenting on how these qualities are already beginning to reflect in their application towards their learning and their interaction with fellow students and teachers alike. A feeling of appreciation about the opportunity to finally be back in a physical classroom environment and how learning together with their fellow students is an opportunity that is not the being taken lightly, has been experienced by many staff members.
So, what have we learnt since returning to school? Although early days, we are learnt that our Senior Years students are independent, resilient young men who have developed an appreciation of their school environment. Feedback from students and teachers has highlighted the boys’ are relishing the ability to ask questions to clarify information as well as collaborate with their peers to resolve questions. The students undertaking practical classes has also allowed for learning opportunities to be developed with face-to-face instruction.
Whilst there have been personal challenges for some over this time which is to be expected, support and assistance will continue from the College as it always does for our student’s wellbeing and academic studies. As they continue to move towards the end of Semester 1, the Home Learning Program experience and recent return back to onsite to school has proven that our young men here at Whitefriars are more than capable to meet and work through whatever may lie ahead for them. We warmly welcome our Years 7-10 students back to school today so that they too can continue their learning.
Mr Mark Ashmore
Deputy Principal – Teaching and Learning