Last Thursday night we held our OQD Sundowner with Year 8 parents to provide an overview of the program their boys will experience next year when they commence Year 9. It was great to reflect on the program and how far we have come since its introduction in 2018. This year-long program for all Year 9 boys discusses themes such as identity, relationships and purpose. Since the program’s commencement we have been collecting feedback and analysis of responses from all involved parties (fathers, mothers, boys) confirms that the experience has been a very rewarding one. According to one parent “ …being an old boy that had a very difficult time at school, to see the change in the School’s pastoral care is comforting. All the people involved cannot be thanked enough for their exceptional work on OQD. This program is likely to be the number one reason why you would send your boy to Christ Church in the future.”
We have had a number of touchpoints with the OBA over the past month, the AGM, Assembly, Scholarship Trust meeting, committee breakfast and the annual sundowner next Thursday. Having an engaged and supportive alumni is part of the attraction of Christ Church. The relationship is about growing and maintaining supporters of the School, talented alumni sharing their wealth of experience with current students, international ambassadors for the School with old boys situated around the globe, creating opportunities to enhance the student experience and give them a competitive advantage in the job market, and financial benefits with alumni being generous and creating scholarships for students who may otherwise not attend this outstanding school. We are grateful for our relationship and the degrees of exposure we have to all of the above. As the Year 12 examinations draw to a close we can be proud of the 194 ‘new’ old boys who recently joined this collegial group.
Tomorrow night the annual Design and Technology Exhibition opens, showcasing major practical projects and portfolios of our Year 12 Materials Design and Technology students, plus a variety of products by Design and Technology students from Years 7 to 11. The work is amazing and testament to the wonderful skills of our staff and the dedication of the students. Please come along, the event commences at 5.30pm.
Next week Venture commences for our Year 10 students (see the video here). This signature component of our Outdoor Education program is very much a ‘rite of passage.’ Beginning in Year 4 and concluding as it does with Venture, the Outdoor Education program helps to develop boys’ resilience, strength of character and ability to ‘live with others.’ I am looking forward to joining the staff and students for part of their amazing journey and to hear the stories that are inevitably told when the boys return from an experience such as this.
I was proud to be a part of the Remembrance Day acknowledgements held on Monday. It was a moment for the School and staff to come together to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice to protect the nation.
Next week the Senior School campus may seem relatively quiet with Year 12 exams almost at an end, Year 11 boys commencing exams and Year 10 boys leaving for Venture on Tuesday. However, there is still a significant amount of work to complete for boys in Years 7 to 9. We will also welcome all of our new boys entering Year 7 in 2020 next Friday for a full day of orientation activities with their Head of House.
Undoubtedly, one of the School’s most challenging and rewarding opportunities is the Year 10 Venture. The preparation for the 29th Year 10 Venture program is progressing well towards its departure. This year the boys will have had an exciting program of ‘Ad-Venture’ activities. These include encounters with the ‘Snake Man’ next Monday. On Friday they will be issued with rations for the first five days and pack their backpacks which should give them some appreciation of the challenge they are about to undertake. I wish the boys and staff well for a successful 11 days of Venture and I am looking forward to joining the boys and spending time with them on the weekend.
As we begin the final three weeks of the School year, it is very important that all boys maintain the standards of presentation expected of them through to the final day. All staff and student leaders will be vigilant in our quest to maintain the highest presentation standards.
Head of Senior School
This week the Preparatory School took part in a whole School Remembrance Day service. All boys participated in this important event, recognising the many sacrifices our forebears made for our nation. I would like to congratulate all classes on their participation and reverence throughout the service.
Over the course of the academic year, boys participated in a number of academic competitions. These include: The ICAS assessments, an international competition run through the University of New South Wales, the Australian Mathematics Competition and the Maths Olympiad. This Friday 15 November we will recognise all boys who have achieved distinctions, high distinctions and medals at our Awards Assembly. Boys to be recognised have been informed by their class teacher. Well done to all boys who participated in these competitions.
A reminder that Preparatory School transition day takes place next Friday 22 November. All the current teaching staff have been involved in developing the classes for 2020. The overall aim of Orientation Day is to provide the boys with clarity for the new year and establish links with their new teachers and classmates. Change can be a difficult time, however it is a constant in life, and the more we guide our boys through the unknown and unexpected, the better prepared they will be for the journey ahead. All families will be provided with further details about classes and Orientation Day next week.
I would like to invite parents to join me for the Term 4 Parent Forum. Each term the parent forum provides families with an update about specific focus areas with the opportunity to ask questions about the Preparatory School. The parent forum will provide parents with an update about the Preparatory School Program and upcoming initiatives. It will take place on Tuesday 19 November commencing at 8.30am in the Preparatory School Staff Room. If you are interested in attending, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to RSVP your attendance.