Dear Parents and Caregivers,
The time certainly does go quickly on a long weekend. I have to say, I had a lazy one. Not sure where the time went, but the one thing I do know is that finding time to stop was quite easy for me. My girls are grown up and doing their stuff, not needing me as much as your little guys will be needing you. When we have little ones, they do need us, and we need to be there for them. Time for yourself becomes scarce, but is something so very important. I was on my own timeline most of the weekend which made life pretty simple. This is something I rarely had when the girls were still in primary school. This is why the quote below appealed to me, as being still, with no distractions actually allows you to be closer to the bloke upstairs, but more importantly closer to who you are as a person. It is about finding rest to just be you.
While I can find the time, how are you meant to find it for yourself and your family, let alone knowing God? Like, so unrealistic for me to even suggest it. I am not sure how you are meant to do this, but it is something we all need to be able to build on. Well, maybe there is some hope in all of this. Just maybe it comes from unexpected conversations.
So there I was on Sunday evening talking to one of my cousins, a cracking good bloke. We started chatting about stuff, you know, work, life, the kids, the weekend, then more stuff. Then the words of wisdom popped up in the conversation, that had come from someone he had done some work for. I do love blokes who are tradies, always have a heap of stories from their jobs. He was doing a job, and being a perfectionist, and needing everything to be spot on, he was giving it 150% of his energy. Funny, but the lady who he was doing the work for stopped him to talk about how she saw how much energy and commitment he had to what he was doing, which she commended, but she also had some advice for him. It was quality advice, so I pinched it for this week’s Donegal.
She spoke to him about having 100 units to use up for the day. Using all 100 units on the work he was doing for her was not how life should be. Work needs to be giving 80-90 units depending on the task, but never 100 units. You need to keep at least 10 units for your family, friends and yourself. She advised the young fella, always call the younger cousins younger fellas because they are, that he needs to know that giving 85 units to his work for the day, is a fantastic day. He needed to be okay with that, as life requires us to be okay with this. The deal breaker was, that she talked about how important the work we all do is, and yes it requires us to be the best we can be, but that our life and us as individuals need the same attention to detail. We need it, and our families need it, the world needs it.
This Stephen Covey quote spells it out for us:
So the key with all of this, for all of us, for my cousin, is that we need to prioritise what is important and make sure we have it in our schedule. If it means that getting home from work and scheduling in some time with the kids, whether it be taking them to training, or reading a book, or playing Lego, whatever it is, then this is the starting point. Starting with someone else and putting it in our schedule, then this commitment will make it happen. This holds us accountable to others, which makes it happen as we do not wish to let others down. This is where you save those 10-15 units that have not been used up with your work, to be spent with the things that sustain you. The key is to also find time to schedule something for yourself during the week, maybe a couple of things.
I am sitting here writing up this Donegal entry and have three non-negotiables scheduled for the week. One is for myself and my footy training on a Thursday, the others are to allow me time to see a couple of important people in my life that I have not seen for a while. I am already pumped up for the week, and will do the extras to get to what I have scheduled. There are no excuses for not having some of my units left for these each day. More than this, placing them in my schedule will mean it has to happen. To sustain what we do in our day to day living, we need to have some time to replenish and refill our tanks. I do not have the answers, but maybe a schedule where you commit to something for your family and for you personally will assist with the challenges of no time during the week.
Again, I appreciate my kids are grown-ups and their lives are on their own paths, but we need to make sure you, our parents, our staff, are being gentle with self and others as we continue to ride through the busyness of your mornings, your days and your evenings. We have said many times over the last few months just how good we have it at St Col’s. Please make sure you keep true to finding ways to look after yourself and to find gentleness in your day. There is nothing selfish about finding something that is solely for you. Remember, you are human, so the first step is to do something small for yourself, even if it is 5-10 minutes of you time.
Next week will see a few changes at St Columba’s School regarding the new regulations from the 8 June for COVID-19. There are procedures we will look at continuing with moving forward. We will send out a separate note either Thursday or Friday this week with the latest procedures and processes for next week and parents being welcomed back on-site for drop-off and pick-up. While we all acknowledge the challenging time we have experienced as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, there have been some benefits and positives when supporting the children as an educational community.
- Resilience and Independence – Our students have embraced the opportunity to demonstrate both resilience and independence. It is always a pleasure to welcome our students to school each morning, but it has been heart-warming to watch how the students, and their big brothers and sisters, have stepped up to show all us adults just how independent they can be, carrying their own bags, putting all their equipment into class and starting the day efficiently and effectively. With the support of staff, the students are able to farewell their parents with a smile and get ready for the day.
- Student Emotional Wellbeing – We have noted how much more settled the students are in making their way to class independently, even those in Kindy and Pre-Primary! We are very proud of how amazing our students have been and have noted that the students have taken everything on board and settled so quickly into their new routines. Parents and staff have supported each other in encouraging this with our students. Well done everyone for bringing this positivity to the day.
- Maximising Teaching and Learning Time – With all our parents and carers making a concerted effort to assist us by dropping their children to school on time, teaching and learning is starting each morning on time, right on the bell. This is enabling us to make the most out of the day for the students in our care and by all accounts, everyone is thoroughly enjoying this new routine.
- Patience and Courtesy – Whilst there will inevitably be some changes along the way, our parents are to be acknowledged and thanked for their efforts in working with us to ensure the new drop off and pick up routines continue to run smoothly. We are grateful for everyone’s efforts and for the patience and courtesy that parents and carers are showing towards staff and to one another. All that we have put in place so far has been for the safety of our students.
In a time when it is far too easy to focus on the things that may not be going well, we want to celebrate how our entire community has rallied together in whatever ways they can to make the most of the situation in which we currently find ourselves as we move into a ‘new normal’. We hope also that these wonderful efforts and supportive approaches continue in the future.
Morning Drop Off and Start of School Times
Just a quick reminder that school classrooms open at 8.30 am and that school starts at 8.40 am for Years Pre-Primary to Year 6. The Kindergarten starts at 8.45 am, so Kindergarten families, feel free to be dropping off in the 8.30-8.40 am time slot if it suits best.
As school is now compulsory, we will need students arriving after the start times to sign in at the office. We have allowed a few days of settling back in, but now need to bring in the mandated attendance policy for this procedure. Know that we understand mornings are hectic at the moment, so please go gentle on yourself if you are running behind time. It will all be okay. We seriously do get it. Due to our attendance requirements, we will now be marking students late if they are not here by the mandated start times. This is a regulation we need to follow.
Merit Awards and Birthdays
Our student leaders will be presenting the Merit Awards and singing Happy Birthday to each class. We will trial this on Friday and see how it goes. Classroom teachers will post a photo to specific families of students who receive a Merit Award from Pre-Primary to Year 6. This will be posted Friday afternoons during the coming weeks. A full list of Merit Award winners will be in the Donegal in the week following the presentation.
Wishing everyone a wonderful rest of week. Many good things your way. Hopefully, you will be able to find some moments in time for yourself to just be. Remember, schedule it, and make it happen! Let’s do this for your wellbeing and the wellbeing of your family and friends. Take care of yourself and I look forward to seeing you around at the Kiss and Drive these next few days.
Blessing your way.
Don’t forget to mention that you are from St Columba’s if you make a purchase at the 777 Pharmacies at Bayswater or Maylands. For every retail purchase made 777 Pharmacy will donate 10% back to our school!
Happy Birthday to:
To all students and staff who will be celebrating their birthday over the coming week:
Lily Vernon KG
Madeleine Papineau PPW
Jaydyn Duong 2G
William Armstrong 2G
Archer Laffrey 2W
Irissa Duong 2W
Harry Mawer 2W
Kai Fermanis 3G
Sohil Verman 3W
Georgia De Luca 4G
Yana Baldwin 4W
Matilda Panizza 5G
Alexander Kaless 5W
Sadly the Pastoral Care raffle has been cancelled until further notice.
Pastoral Care Team.
|Year 1 Green|
|Year 1 White|
|Year 2 Green|
|Year 2 White|
|Year 3 Green|
|Year 3 White|
|Year 4 Green|
|Year 4 White|
|Year 5 Green|
|Year 5 White|
|Year 6 Green|
|Year 6 White|
Early in 2020, Mercedes College commenced interviews for Year 4 & Year 5 students who are due to start Year 7 in 2022 & 2023 respectively. If you are considering enrolling your daughter and have not yet requested a Prospectus, please contact Mrs Julie Lamb on 9323 1340 as soon as possible.
Enquiries are also welcome for places in Year 7 for 2020 and 2021. For more information please refer to the College website, www.mercedes.wa.edu.au.