What do we value?
December 3, 2021
Our final newsletter of the year provides an opportunity to reflect and evaluate individually and as a community. Our values as students, as staff and as an organisation are expressed in the daily decisions and routines that direct our lives. I am in the unique and privileged position to observe these values in action and after such a difficult year, I want to encourage our families and the community broadly with what I see each day at TIGS.
Strong relationships have enabled our students and staff to persevere and succeed in this challenging and unsettled year. Our students benefit from the expression of our values in relationships where each person is created, valuable and treated as such. Relationships between people are not always smooth sailing and this is certainly the case in a P – 12 School. There is much to learn, practice and refine so that our young people can enter the world beyond School, able to enjoy the benefits of great relationships. In 2021 the quality and value of relationships has been evident for our students and a great blessing.
In the main, success does not come without accompanying hard work. Our staff work incredibly hard to plan for the success and learning of their students and our students are engaged and authentic learners. Sometimes we identify areas where the effort level needs to increase, when this happens we are grateful for the support and partnership of parents in guiding and growing young people to take each opportunity afforded them and work hard to get the most out of it. Effort has been required by all in our community to navigate 2021, we reach the end of the year weary but I hope satisfied with how we have applied ourselves.
Our community is gathered around the shared principles of learning, care and Christian values, this is such a strength; providing common purpose and unity. The resulting connections, friendships and partnerships allow us to care for, challenge, support and achieve together. Community connections face-to-face have been greatly missed in 2021 and we look forward to the time when we can come together again. In the meantime we have persevered with sometimes clunky Zoom meetings, phone calls and emails, but we have stayed connected.
At our School academic excellence is our goal, and it is achievable for every student because our view on excellence is personal and aspirational with the expectation that every student will reach their personal best each year. This is progress, it is not only year long but life long and it is what we desire for our students. I delight when the Dux is announced for each year group and also when a student shares with me that they mastered an area of learning that has been a struggle. Both situations demonstrate personal excellence and there have been literally thousands of such moments in 2021.
Much is said about the positive impact of gratitude, a grateful heart changes our whole perspective on the daily experiences we have. This year has been exceptionally difficult and yet we have so much to be grateful for. I am personally grateful for the smiles of our students and the conversations I get to have with them each day. I am grateful for the unceasing ingenuity of our staff to find solutions to challenges I am grateful for the support and partnership of parents in the privilege of educating young people and I am grateful for the Christmas holidays just a few days away. I do hope that each member of our community looks back on 2021 not just as a year of challenge but also as a year of great achievement and with satisfaction.
A holiday for our students, families and staff is needed and well deserved and I wish you all a wonderful Christmas celebrating the birth of Jesus and a safe and happy time of rest. I look forward to seeing you all in 2022.