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The Principal's Pen

 
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Welcome to Week 8 of Term 4, the final newsletter for a truly unique year. Over the past two weeks staff and students have continued to work hard as we aimed to "finish strong". There have been a number of noteworthy events including NAIDOC week, Remembrance Day, our 9 month check in for the school review process and the special time that is farewelling our Year 12's as they formally finished their schooling years.

Over the next week and a half we continue to focus on learning and for the Junior Secondary students this means a number of assessment items are due. School staff have been monitoring student performance closely and supporting students to give them the best chance for success in a range of subjects and I wish them all the best during this period. Once submitted teachers will mark assessment and determine final results for the Semester 2 report card which will be emailed home on Wednesday the 2nd of December.

Year 12 Graduation

It was with a great sense of pride that we farewelled our Year 12's last Friday (20/11/20). The ceremony was very touching and my gratitude goes to the staff who worked hard to ensure its success. Special mention to Sue McDermott who again led this effort, another fantastic success to go with the Awards night from earlier this Term.

The students conducted themselves beautifully, enjoyed the moments and then had a special experience as they drove through the school for the final time as a Charleville SHS student. This followed on from some very touching scenes as they celebrated the end of this journey with family and loved ones. As I said in my speech, now it is over to them to map the next part of their lives and on behalf of the school community and myself I wish them all the very best.

NAIDOC Week

NAIDOC week was celebrated this Term, starting with an assembly on Monday November 9 and then through a series of activities each day. I was tremendously pleased to see the number of students who spoke at the assembly to reflect on what their culture meant to them, their heartfelt words were very powerful. Special thanks to our awesome Community Education Counsellor, Jolene Russell, for her leadership and organisation for this and throughout the year, it is both highly effective and highly valued!

Junior Certificate of Education

The ceremony to celebrate the Year 9's for their efforts in achieving their Junior Certificate of Education (JCE) will be held on the 30th of November, scheduled to commence at approximately 1.45p.m. This will celebrate the students' efforts in accumulating the required points (20) to have successfully completed the Junior Secondary phase of their education.

Narelle Webb and Anna Batstone have been tracking the student performance and also preparing for the ceremony, my thanks for their efforts! Looking at the current points tally it is clear that most students will achieve the milestone and again this is a credit to staff, parents/caregivers and the students themselves, well done.

9 Month Check in for School Review

The external review team, consisting of Mr Stephen Bobby (External Improvement Branch) and Mr Reid Thompson (Assistant Regional Director), conducted their visit on Tuesday 17 November.  They met with a number of staff and students and then provided feedback for us on our performance since the review in Term 1.

I am very pleased to be above to report that the feedback was very positive. Clarity of processes and school direction was reported consistently by staff and students along with clear feedback that expectations were high in terms of effort, behaviour and alignment with our school values and beliefs. This is reflected in our much improved data for behaviour and effort across the year and some pleasing results in the information that was collected through the shortened School Opinion Survey held late in Term 2.

There were also a number of recommendations and very valuable feedback on how we are progressing and to support continued improvement. To summarise they primarily referred to maintaining our efforts and continuing to focus on the action plan strategies of building staff capacity and further developing a supportive learning environment. There is no doubt in my mind that we will maintain this focus and continue on our journey of consistent improvement.

Uniform for 2021

School uniforms provide a sense of belonging and greatly improve our ability to monitor who is on our school site at any given time and I am pleased to say that the uniform standard has continued to improve across 2020. We are now reflecting on our uniform policy (P&C) and the processes around encouraging appropriate choices when attending our school. For 2021 we will re-focus on following through with uniform expectations with students and applying appropriate consequences for students who repeatedly fail to wear the uniform.

We have a range of supports in place to help students with obtaining uniform items and ensuring that every child has access to the things they need to successfully attend school. For students that repeatedly choose not to wear the uniform we will attempt to clarify the reasons with the student and their family and provide support in making good decisions. If this continues then consequences may be required to re-inforce our school uniform policy, which is determined through consultation with the P&C.

Some particular focus areas for improvement will be wearing blue jeans to school, non-school jumpers and wearing hats in class. Another aspect for discussion at the next P&C will be wearing black tights or leggings and their suitability for a school environment. Please consider attending the P&C meeting, on Wednesday November 11 at 5.00p.m., to share your point of view or contact one of the executive to discuss.

New Student Free Days added to Term 4, 2020

As you are probably aware there has been a change to the end of school year date. The addition of 2 Student Free Days at the end of the school year now mean the final date for school attendance for Year 7, 8 and 9 students is Wednesday, December 2. The final day for attendance for Year 10 and 11 students remains as Friday, November 27.

School office closure & re-opening dates

The final day for the school office to be open is Wednesday the 2nd of December. School will remain closed for the Christmas vacation until Wednesday the 20th of January. For any urgent enquiries during the vacation period please contact the school via my email address, bwall44@eq.edu.au

In closing

Now that we have entered the final week or so of the school year I would like to take the opportunity to express my sincere thanks and gratitude for the efforts of my staff, the students, broader school community and of course our parents and caregivers. When I reflect back to the beginning of 2020 I would never have anticipated the many challenges that the year has provided. To watch the resilience and persistence of so many people, young and not so young, in overcoming these challenges has been uplifting. To achieve what we have this year has been a true highlight of my career thus far and I have an enormous sense of optimism and confidence in the outcomes awaiting us in 2021.

To all of you I wish a very safe, joyous and prosperous Christmas and New Year and look forward to welcoming everyone back to school for 2021. 


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Last reviewed 25 November 2020
Last updated 25 November 2020