From the Head MasterTrinity Grammar School
One of the more contentious issues in 2020 as we emerged from the first wave of COVID-19 was the inconsistent approach taken with reference to community sport and inter-school sport. The government has indicated that the approach will be consistent this time, for which we are thankful.
However, the guidelines for community sport have some very clear specifications with reference to vaccination. People who are sixteen years or older are only permitted to take part in community sport if they have been fully vaccinated. There is no equivalent restriction for those who are younger than sixteen.
Vaccination status is not an issue for sport training or activities that only involve Trinity students as the Public Health Order allows us to carry out this sort of activity as part of the normal operations of the School. However, as and when inter-school sport resumes, vaccination status will be an issue for our older boys.
At this point, the formal CAS Summer Competition will not commence until Term 1 2022. However, it is possible that there will be some inter-school trial matches scheduled before the end of the year or during the summer break. On the current requirements, boys who are sixteen or older who are not fully vaccinated will not be able to take part in inter-school sport.
The requirement that boys will have a school-based sporting commitment will not change. However, there may be limitations on the sports that boys can do. For example, School swimming and RAW challenge do not involve students from other schools, and therefore evidence of vaccination will not be required.
I am conscious that this is a potentially sensitive matter in the community. At this point there is no other aspect of life at Trinity where vaccination status brings about differentiation for the boys. However, the School is subject to the government’s direction on this matter. Just as club cricket, squad swimming, representative basketball, water polo and all other community sports are subject to this requirement, so also are Trinity’s sporting teams.
The School will attempt to manage this situation sensitively. Staff have been instructed to avoid asking boys directly about their vaccination status. The School will depend on the evidence that has been provided to the Health Centre over recent weeks to determine those boys who are ineligible for inter-school sport and every attempt will be made by senior staff to liaise with parents to discuss how these boys’ co-curricular commitments will take place.
However, there is an obvious corollary. If the boys of this age are keen to participate in inter-school sport, vaccination will enable them to do so. Once again, I ask parents to ensure that the School is provided with evidence of vaccination status for their sons through this link. The Health Centre records will be the School’s ‘source of truth’ with reference to the boys’ vaccination, rather than asking them to provide evidence directly to staff.
Lest you might think that the minutiae of COVID-related matters is the only thing on the horizon of the School, there is much more taking place. The IB Diploma examinations are just about to conclude, and the HSC examinations commence next week. On Monday morning the final Year 9 cohort of 2021 will depart for their four-week experience of the Field Studies Centre. End of year reporting for our primary students and Years 7 to 10 is underway. The calendar for the 2022 School year has been finalised and sent to the printers. The School’s new website was launched this week. More than half of our Year 10 students are taking on our new programme of independent learning projects. The list could go on.
It is good to be back!
Detur gloria soli Deo.
Tim Bowden | Head Master
Head Master’s Weekly Address
The Head Master, the Head of the Middle School, the Head of the Senior School and one of the Chaplains presents a piece to camera each week during Remote Learning. They are in lieu of the Head Master’s weekly address to the Quad Assembly, the Middle School and Senior School Assemblies and Chapel. View this week’s address from the Head Master below.