Principal's Weekly Newsletter Update
Dear parents, carers (and students),
Like many of you, I long for a return to normal routines. After four school-weeks away from Grace College teachers are missing the pleasure they have in enabling face-to-face learning as they support the development of our students. We are trying to achieve the same aim via Microsoft Teams and while it is useful to be able to connect in a virtual via the Internet we recognise that it is less effective and limiting.
However, I must ask for a higher level of engagement from all students. All students can take greater responsibility for their learning. Teachers are monitoring the extent to which students are taking responsibility. Weekly, we analyse the engagement of students in set tasks and activities using the metrics available to us through the online learning tools. The highest levels of engagement, currently, for online lessons is around 50% and I’m sure we can all agree that this is way short of being acceptable. While we do understand that there are significant barriers to study online, such as internet connection and access to a computer, I must encourage students to be more tenacious and determined. Learning is an active process; to be effective at it we have to be prepared to be self-motivated.
A number of tasks and activities have been uploaded to MS Teams or shared via YouTube. I trust that this material is proving exciting, stimulating and educationally enriching for our students. My thanks to the teachers of Grace College for all their input in this season. Student should be actively structuring their day around learning, reading, exercising, singing and giving so that they are spending at least 3 hours on a daily basis completing the tasks set by their teachers.
To improve student accountability we will be emailing home a summary of the level of engagement for each student on a Monday afternoon. This will be based on the interactions observed in the preceding weeks by tutors and teachers. Parents and carers will be able to see the overall engagement level and a breakdown of a student’s involvement in tasks related to each subject and their tutor group. You will appreciate that we do not know what the particular limiting barriers might be for a student and we do recognise that it may not be possible to achieve success across all areas. We have one purpose in this and that is to provide feedback to parents and carers so they can motivate and encourage greater commitment. If there are significant barriers to achieving this then please send an email detailing the barriers to the relevant email address below:
The rest of our newsletter has exciting reports from last week’s Wellbeing Day, information for parents about on-line safety, information on how to connect to “Sing with Sharon”, resources to support children with mental health, P.E. challenges from Mr Gray and an update from our Year teams.
We remain committed to supporting the achievement, engagement and wellbeing of all students.
May God’s grace shine upon us all!