By Kate Nicholson | Posted: Sunday October 11, 2020
Kia ora tātou, Greetings to all
We are at the ‘pointy end’ of the year with our start back into term four. This time of year is always an odd time to be a school leader – and I am sure many of you will be similar in your roles – where it really does feel like there needs to be a foot in both years. We are currently planning for next year, timetabling, budgeting, staffing the school, determining strategic direction and reviewing operations, while still keeping the momentum going for term four and planning for all the various events that traditionally occur with the end of the academic year upon us. Many of our senior students are in a similar position. It is exciting to hear of tertiary plans, course acceptances and a significant number of scholarships gained. Meanwhile our Year 12 students are looking ahead to their roles for next year at Kavanagh. We were thrilled with the response of 48 students of our current 104 Year 12s applying for prefect roles for 2021, with the majority of them being for head student roles. I think this says a lot about their sense of belonging and commitment and a desire to serve the college. Needless to say, it is going to be a difficult decision to make!
While senior students prepare for the upcoming NCEA external assessments, most of our Year 12 and 13 students have already gained their qualifications for the year, many of these with endorsements. This wonderful result is particularly significant and pleasing this year because of the disruption to learning that has happened. However, our students worked very hard both during lockdown and upon their return to school and this diligent and committed attitude has certainly paid off for them by this stage of the year. I appreciate the hard work of our teachers during this year to make sure that our students have been on track to gain qualifications and continue their learning over the last few months. For our year 11s, their first experience of NCEA externals is ahead of them and I encourage them to not take their eye off the prize even though the weather is improving (mostly!) and the lure of the end of year holidays may be starting to distract! We would appreciate your support at home for quality study timetables and healthy lifestyles over the next six weeks. The skills gained in having deadlines, accountability, facing the unknown, and managing oneself to stay positive and persevere, are skills for life. Committing to externals and the work that must happen before them, is certainly good practice of these skills.
We were thrilled to hear of the arrival of Ms McGarry’s wee boy Harry, during the holidays and we look forward to seeing him visit school soon. On another note, unfortunately Mrs Sue Robinson broke her wrist during term three and the repair has not been as simple as she would have liked. Therefore, Sue is away from school for a few more weeks and we wish her well for a speedy recovery.
Hearing the news this morning of the thousands of new covid cases in the United Kingdom over the last twelve hours is another reminder of our need to be grateful for our lives in New Zealand. Yet, there are many in our community still suffering the effects of reduced employment and security, so please keep them in your prayers. With this in mind, and, recognising that it is the feast day of St Teresa of Avila today, her words are a good reminder of our call to ‘do as Christ would do’.
Christ has no body but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,
Yours are the eyes with which he looks
Compassion on this world,
Christ has no body now on earth but yours.
- Teresa of Avila (1515–1582)
Theme for 2020: ‘Ahakoa he iti he pounamu’
(Do the little things well)