From the Head of the Junior School

Dear Parents and Friends of the Junior School,

If you have not read yesterday’s weekly update email, the key messages were:

  • Gratitude to parents for your involvement in conferences/interviews last Friday and your assistance with sourcing supplies for Green Patch Day. The boys were very busy and engaged, judging by the volume of images posted on each activity’s Photo Wall. Take a look for yourself by visiting any of the twelve activities. All of these activities and instruction videos remain accessible for the weeks at home ahead.
  • Please continue to exercise your judgement and discretion as you manage your son’s wellbeing and fatigue. Whilst we do not want boys missing excessive amounts of remote learning, there is no lesson, task or check-in so vital that it is more important than his wellbeing. Class teachers will be understanding if a lesson or even a school day is too much to manage and will work with you to identify the priorities for your son if this is necessary.
  • Our special day next week is Thoughtful Thursday, where classes will undertake activities focussed on wellbeing, growth and community. The teachers will be planning activities that encourage, nurture and inspire mind, body and spirit. It is still a remote learning day and boys are expected to attend and participate.
  • We are greeting the State Government’s staggered timeline for a return to school in mid-Term 4 with cautious optimism. It is clear that some activities will be explicitly prohibited or need significant change under the government’s proposed conditions for returning to school. As always, we will follow NSW Health Guidelines as we plan for the safe return of students and staff.

As I write this, we are putting the finishing touches on instructions and an interactive Canvas page for this year’s Move-a-thon. In past years, this has been an activity completed at school, but the present circumstances lend themselves to an activity where boys complete as much movement as possible in their time over the coming weeks (including the holiday break). Hence, Monday will be the first of forty days when we are encouraging all boys to exercise, whether that be walking, riding, kicking a ball, swimming, doing the morning Health Hustle etc. They will keep track of their minutes moving and log them on our Canvas page to be able to see how they, their friends, and their class are going. To help motivate, there will be a number of Rebel Sport Vouchers on offer as weekly and overall prizes and the more boys do, the more chances they have to win! We hope this helps you to keep your son active and healthy in mind, body and spirit over the next five weeks. And this is where we need your help…please help your son to source some sponsorship for his movement, either as an overall donation or as an amount per number of minutes ($5-$10 an hour could be a guide). As in the past, we are raising funds for two sources, the John MacLean Foundation and the Junior School Auxiliary, and I want to commend both causes to you. JMF do amazing work enabling young athletes with disabilities to pursue their sporting dreams, some of whom are currently competing in Tokyo. They also provide many children who have disabilities with the equipment, coaching and opportunities to try and play sports so that they and their families can enjoy the benefits of games and community that we and our children enjoy. Last year, we partnered with JMF to provide specialised wheelchairs for children’s holiday sporting camps and we want to provide more this year. The Junior School Auxiliary provides extraordinary resources to the Junior School and in recent years, the Infants playground and Green Patch have been made available through funding from the JSA. A number of their fundraising activities have been curtailed last year and this year, so the Move-a-thon will help the JSA be in a position to fund further events for our community and resources for the boys.   

Finally, Happy Father’s Day to all the Junior School Dads for Sunday. I hope that your son has planned or negotiated to spend some time with you playing, cooking, backyard camping or doing anything that you both enjoy. We are already seeing some great photos on our Photo Wall, so please share your love for each other and fun times by taking a photo and posting it before next week.  

Mark Dunn | Head of Junior School

See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!

1 John 3:1


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