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Photo by Blake Wells

Headmaster's Message

Tim Grocott —

Kia ora koutou

Haere mai and welcome to everyone as we wind our way down to the end of Term Two. 

It has been one of those unique terms that every generation has, and they will always remember. 

Covid-19 emerged in March, grew in April, slowed in May, and as we get to the end of June, we remain hopeful that despite a couple of blips in the last few days that the pandemic has been well managed and maintained in New Zealand. All of us have played our part. Some have been front line workers, many have worked from home, others have fought hard to keep their business or jobs going, but all of us played our part and ensured our country has remained a safe place.

Personally, I found it hard working from home, and while it was challenging to lead a school without any boys or staff around, I enjoyed the lockdown. I took great pride in seeing how well our boys and staff responded to the crisis. The teachers were well organised and became more innovative with their online lessons, and the boys continued their learning, although some operated at slightly different times from normal. 

One of the things I enjoyed was being at home with my family. I do not get to spend as much time with them as I would like, so the lockdown was a chance for us to spend time together. It was great for our wellbeing and I hope many other families had the chance to reconnect also.

Unfortunately, this wasn’t the case for everyone, and I know that times have been tough for many. We have had some unfortunate events in our community recently and I really urge people to look after their wellbeing and take care of their mental health. There is a lot of support available and I encourage people to have a look at our website where we have a page dedicated to wellness https://sites.google.com/shirley.school.nz/wellbeing/home

Lastly, I would like to encourage the boys to focus on learning when we return in Term Three. For senior students, there have been some changes to NCEA, but boys are still going to have to work hard to achieve. Reports are coming out at the end of term for all students. The reports for Years 11 – 13 are more detailed and will provide information on progress to date and advice for the remainder of the year. It is important that boys read that advice and take it on as an opportunity to improve. 

There is still plenty of time, and the support is there for boys to achieve well in 2020, but it is going to take hard work and commitment to their studies. I wish everyone all the best with their learning. 

Tim Grocott.