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Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.

Winston Churchill

Success and Failure

While I was on leave last year I was drawn to a text covering the life and words of wisdom from Winston Churchill.  What was most remarkable about the man was his ability to maintain a positive and tempered attitude to some of the most significant issues that faced the world.  

It can be easy for us to be bound up with the complexity of the tasks ahead of us and the anxiety and burden of people’s expectations of us.  Interestingly the lives and biographies tend to have one common theme:  Perseverance.

It is often said that it is not the skill of the individual that is the key to success but the fortitude for a person to get back up after a failure and to put in hard work.

I have been somewhat awed by the commitment of our staff over the first half of this year and impressed with the hard work our students have been putting in to their studies.

As we venture near the second half of the year I would encourage our college community to take hold of our successes and with determination, press on for ‘the prize’; further, take hold of our failures and with determination, press on for ‘the prize’.

Staffing

Throughout this term we have been interviewing prospective staff in various roles throughout the school.  Marilyn and I both believe that the selection of staff is one of the most critical decisions we will make as school leaders. We have been encouraged by the quality of applications and will advise you as soon as final selections have been made.

To best serve the needs of students within the school, we are likely to change some teacher roles to ensure that teachers are teaching in their skilled area of teaching.

Timetable

We have also been working on a timetable change proposed for the start of term three.  The new timetable should reflect a number of key requirements that have come from discussions with teachers and students.  In particular we are hoping to achieve a number of outcomes:

  • One teacher will teach one class, one subject.
  • Teachers will teach in their chosen academic field.
  • Senior students will be provided one or two study periods.
  • Each senior class will have at least one double period.
  • Junior secondary A and B classes will run concurrently to enable movement between groups.

We recognise these outcomes are somewhat ambitious. We are hoping it will provide a sound and stable learning program for our students.

Uniform

I have had many students, parents and teachers discuss uniform with me and provide me with suggestions, critique and preferences.  I am intending to meet with a student sub-group to discuss these issues and seek some direction for our future.

Once I have completed the student consultation process I will be keen to meet with up to four parent representatives from lower primary, upper primary and secondary to complete the process.  

The final phase will be to propose any changes to the school committee to establish any, if at all, change to the uniform policy.  

In the interim I am asking parents to support our current uniform and hair length policy.  Recently we have had a number of students wearing non-uniform or sport jackets.  We are allowing students to wear plain white shirts underneath their shirt and jumper if they are cold.

Vision

By the end of this term I will have formally documented my future vision for Southern Hills Christian College.  It will be my intention to share this vision with our parent community early in term three at a morning, afternoon and evening presentation.

After five months at Southern Hills Christian College I am confident about our progress, comfortable with our achievements and excited about our future.

Questions

There are always opportunities for us to improve.  In particular it is my intention to ensure that our communication is exceptional.  If you do have any questions about any aspect of your child’s learning please feel free to contact the school office or arrange to meet with me to clarify any issues and help us improve.