School News: December 18, 2008 (Week 10, Term 4)

December 23, 2008

End of Year Thoughts
By the end of this week reports will be home and family thoughts will be centred on enjoying the Christmas vacation.

Reflecting on the ongoing job that teachers and parents have to do, it’s without a doubt a full time job trying to prepare students of all ages for the adventure that is life.

For 6 hours a day, 5 days a week, teachers are in control of children’s lives. That’s a big responsibility especially when you consider all that is going on in the average child’s life (of any age) and how they are exposed to so many influences in this busy technology driven world.

For parents and teachers, teenagers often speak another language as each generation asserts its’ individuality. So the slang, colloquialisms and communication of the younger generation becomes a foreign language, of sorts, for the older generation.

To complicate this matter further, teachers and parents are trying to hurl the younger generations into adulthood by teaching them a whole range of appropriate life skills and important social lessons.

These include such appropriate skills as respect, manners, personal hygiene, punctuality, the benefits of exercise, personal safety and acceptable mobile phone use. Basically these skills are gradually acquired when teachers and parents keep trying to instil them into their charges. “Please” and “thank you” basically become second nature to kids after 1000s of reminders (this is a conservative estimate) – just as it takes time to learn the proper ways of crossing the road or washing hands after going to the toilet. 

Schools and homes are obvious places where children should be taught the right and safe way to behave.  I’m sure parents and teachers do their best to teach children to be good, responsible and safe members of society.

For the Christmas holidays the task falls to the parents (and those teachers who are parents) and it’s important we remember that these responsible skills are very important at this time of the year – especially considering some people go away to busy places where appropriate behaviour, road safety and general safety are important issues.

To surmise, on behalf of the school community I wish everyone an enjoyable and safe Christmas holiday. Thank you for your support and contribution to the life of the school.

For those of you with teenagers I’ll finish with a quote from Mark Twain:
“When I was 14 my father knew nothing, but by the time I was 21 I was so surprised at  how much he had learnt in 7 years”.

This article represents my last venture into journalism as next year the new Principal, Mark Vale, arrives. I’d like to personally thank those who’ve supported me over the last seven and a half months.

As you all probably know the school uniform is under review  At the beginning of 2009 a committee will be selected to make a final decision on what the uniform is going to be. There will be plenty of notice about these meetings, so that all who are interested will be able to attend.

In the interim send your child in whatever uniform you have.

Robert Johnston
Relieving Principal