Optimism in uncertainty

As we draw a very challenging Term 3 to a close, I want to acknowledge the extraordinary work of our community to keep the learning going and support the wellbeing of our students. We know what an enormous demand this has placed on everyone in our community. We celebrate the persistence and determination of our students who have tried hard to stay connected and maintain levels of engagement with each other and the program. We recognise too, the relentless energy and creativity of our staff and of course the great patience and tolerance of our parents, for whom this has been a worrying time on many fronts.

I regret that at this point I am not able to be any clearer about the settings that will be in place for Term 4 as we are yet to have anything definitive from the Government or the Health Department about the return of students to school. I will write to you again in the holidays once a plan has been confirmed.

I would suggest that we need to be prepared to commence Term 4 online. To give you advanced notice, we are planning a Community Day to take place on Friday 22 October for any year levels who are still engaged in remote learning at that point.

We look forward to having Unit 3/4 VCE or IB students back with us on Tuesday 5 October for the GAT. At this point we are optimistic that these students will then be able to continue with face-to-face learning onsite up until their examination period commences.

We are very conscious of the need to reconnect our student body as soon as we possibly can and are developing Term 4 plans with that need very much in mind.

In the meantime, I recommend you reinforcing the importance of connection within your own family. Have some fun in your households, keep in touch with your extended family and friends through Zoom or Facetime, and ensure you’re spending quality time outdoors as well.

R U OK Day today is a great catalyst to start some more difficult conversations as well. Encourage your children, your spouse, your family and your friends to reflect on how they really are feeling, listen to them, thank them for sharing, and express your own emotions as well. We are all experiencing some degree of unhappiness at the moment, but by discussing our individual experience with a loved one, we can build connections, create safe spaces and learn to come to terms with our situation.

I am aware of just how challenging these circumstances are for us all, and we remain committed to supporting the needs of our community as we deal with the ever-changing situation ahead of us. We are fortunate to have such an inclusive, united and caring community, and there is always help and understanding to be found at Carey.