Zoom is officially uninstalled

October 29, 2021  
Head of Senior School - Mr Nick Hackett

This week we have seen life return to the TIGS campus, with staff and students reunited after several months of remote teaching and learning. Despite the ubiquitous masks and designated points of entry for each year group, the palpable joy students expressed as they spotted friends and classmates on Monday morning was a wonderful experience to share in.

Now that we’ve been back for a few days, staff and students are starting to find their rhythm as they adjust to the notion of cohort-specific classrooms and outdoor spaces. This arrangement, and several other requirements set out in the latest guidelines to schools, present a range of limitations and challenges to our usual day to day school life. Under the beautiful blue spring skies this week, however, nothing could take away from hearing the familiar, friendly hubbub of enthusiastic student discussions emanating from the Library and Begbie Lawns, H-Block and the Oval at recess and lunch.

During the week, I have been asking students to describe what it’s like to be back on site after so long at home. The majority of students express excitement at the ability to reconnect with their community of peers, teachers and fellow learners, but many also acknowledge that it’s a little “weird” (a word that popped up quite frequently) not to be able to enjoy the freedom of the school site. Ting-Ting (Year 8) was kind enough to share some more lengthy reflections on what it has been like for her:

“Coming back to school was a shock for my system; waking up early at 6.00am was a rude shock after more than a term being able to sleep right up until the start of class!

The skills required to meet the social and academic demands (of remote learning) were quite different to those we need in school. Being back at school makes it so much easier to collaborate with others in classes when you are face to face, but it is outside the classroom the greatest benefit of being back at school is to be found. Seeing and connecting with friends is really important to me and being back at school makes this so much easier.

Overall, coming back and being at school with my teachers and friends is irreplaceable. Zoom is officially uninstalled from my computer!”

As a result of her last sentence, Ting-Ting has now given me a new life-goal!

Before concluding I wanted to make a final comment about our students’ personal presentation. After a term of working from home, it is unsurprising that they are experiencing some significant changes of routine now that they have returned to school. I am keen that we re-establish our good habits and high expectations as quickly as possible. To that end, I’d be grateful if families could prioritise student haircuts and reminders about jewellery over the coming days. Students can check expectations in their Student Diary (p8). The relevant text is copied below for ease of reference:

Hair must be clean and tidy. Bold styles are not permitted. This may include:

  • hair that has been noticeably coloured
  • lines that have been cut in with a razor
  • undercuts and shaved sections (hair to be cut no shorter than a number 3 clipper)

Jewellery and makeup must not be worn by any student

If a female student has pierced ears, a small plain ‘stud’ or ‘sleeper’ earring may be worn, one in each lobe only.

Here’s to several happy, harmonious and productive weeks ahead.


Play under the microscope!


Learning about the universe with KFC