Kia ora e te whānau
It has been a very challenging week locally, nationally and internationally. Respect, Truth and Justice certainly come to mind when considering the actions in Wellington and also the Ukraine. I am very aware that there will be members of our college community who have been personally affected by these events in some way. Add to that the increasing numbers of covid affected families, and life pre-2020 now seems very precious and a very, very long time ago! Please keep in your prayers those directly affected by the aforementioned events.
We now have a number of students who have tested positive for Covid-19, and if there has been a potential risk to other students and staff we are letting these people know to watch for symptoms. We also have five staff currently isolating at home for household reasons and this is causing some pressure for classes. We do ask that you continue to be patient with us because there are likely to be bigger changes to learning in the next couple of weeks. Hybrid learning has begun, however, and isolating staff are making contact via zoom with students at home who are also isolating. These teachers may not be your usual child’s teachers, but they will be doing a check-in to make sure our isolating children are coping with online learning and google classroom materials, as well as checking in pastorally. In some mainly senior classes, the isolating teacher is teaching their class via zoom with another teacher monitoring the class at times throughout the lesson. Who could have predicted this would become our new normal?! As always, if you have any concerns for pastoral or learning reasons, our chain of communication is to the Kaiārahi (pastoral teacher) first.
Thank you for supporting our busy office staff with clear, effective communication about absences. Giving us a prediction of return to school date will certainly be important for us in the coming weeks if we have to merge classes, or potentially roster home some year levels.
Yesterday was Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent. Usually we would come together as a whole college community for this liturgy, but the red setting prevented this. Instead, all out pastoral classes took part in the same online liturgy. Unlike a couple of generations ago, the focus for Lent is no longer just about giving up something, but instead it is about reflection and changing some aspect of ourelves that helps us to become the best version of ourselves according to how God wants us to be. I popped this in the newsletter last year, but it is still very relevant.
Advice on Lenten fasting from Pope Francis......
• Fast from hurtful words and speak kind words.
• Fast from sadness and be filled with gratitude.
• Fast from anger and be filled with patience.
• Fast from pessimism and be filled with hope.
• Fast from worries and have trust in God.
• Fast from complaints and contemplate simplicity.
• Fast from pressures and be prayerful.
• Fast from bitterness and fill your heart with joy.
• Fast from selfishness and be compassionate.
• Fast from grudges and be reconciled.
• Fast from words and be silent so you can listen
Take care and God bless