From the Head of the Preparatory Schooldeveloper
It has been a very settled and positive first week back at School. It is always so energising having the boys arrive back at school. They have certainly hit the ground running!
Anzac Commemorative Service
On Wednesday morning, we held our Anzac Commemorative Service. It was important to gather together as a whole school to reflect on the great freedom that we enjoy in our country. Anzac Day is a most significant national occasion and it is imperative that this significance is conveyed to the current generation of Australians. One of our School Vice Captains read the Honour Roll of the Old Boys who lost their lives in service during World War II and the Vietnam War, and the boys reflected on what ANZAC means and commemorates.
Mother’s Day events
Mother’s Day is fast approaching. The Auxiliary is busily preparing for the annual Mothers’ Day stall which will take place on Friday, 6th May where boys have the opportunity to buy a gift for mum.
In addition to the stall, we are excited to welcome the Pre-K and Kindergarten mums next Friday to share a special time with their son.
The specific details of these events will be as follows:
- Pre-K – arrive 1:00pm for a picnic lunch (healthy please!) followed by special activities together. Boys and parents will leave together at the end of this time.
- Kindergarten – arrive at 10:00am to spend an hour in the Kindy learning environment with the boys before sharing morning tea with the boys (healthy please!). Parents will be encouraged to take their boys home at the regular finishing time.
The Auxiliary has decided to explore a Mother and Son event later in the year, akin to the Father and Son breakfasts that occur throughout the year for different year levels.
The next Auxiliary meeting will take place on Wednesday 13th May at 8:45am at School. I look forward to connecting with members of the parent community at this meeting.
Parent Helper Training Session
We are excited to welcome parent helpers back into our classrooms. This practice typically involves parents helping with literacy-based groups in the morning in the younger years; however, we are also open to the possibility of enlisting parent support at other times as the need arises across the School. This morning we ran our annual Parent Helper Training session. We anticipate parent helpers beginning to be used in classrooms as the term progresses. If you missed the session, please contact Mrs Carmichael in the School Office so we can organise another time to go through the brief training session.
iPad Programme from K-6
Since I arrived at Trinity in 2015, the School has used a 1:1 device strategy that provided students in K-2 with iPads, students in Year 3 and 4 with school-owned Chromebooks and students in Years 5 and 6 were asked to provide a personally owned Chromebook. This device strategy has served us well, however, in recent years there have been a number of wrinkles in this strategy that required review and evaluation.
Over the course of Term 4 2021, we engaged in a comprehensive cross-campus review of the strengths and limitations of our existing strategy. Based on this review it was determined that the existing strategy in Years 3-6 required refinement to support continuous improvement with teaching and learning practice into the future. A range of possible alternatives were considered and it was determined that it would be appropriate to trial the iPad with a view to broadening the strategy across K-6. This decision was based on the existing use of iPads in K-2, the strong reputation that iPads have in the education sector, and the comparative competitiveness of the iPad with other similar devices across a range of factors.
In Term 1, 2022, we engaged in an iPad trial with Year 6 at the Prep School and Year 4 at the Junior School. Throughout the trial, Apple Educators and the Apple technical team were engaged to provide additional support beyond our school-based expertise. Throughout the trial, the project team met regularly to review the performance and possibilities against a set of criteria. The review of the iPad considered the balance between being able to support teachers and students in replicating existing practice as well as providing opportunities for growth and innovation. The overwhelming feedback from the trial was positive. Students and teachers reflected positively about the intuitive nature of the device, the integrated ecosystem, and the security and classroom management tools. They were also impressed by obvious potential for innovation and the high level of support through the Apple Educators and network.
On the basis of the trial, the School has confidently endorsed the expansion of our existing iPad strategy in K-2 to include Years 3-6. Initially, this has resulted in students in Years 3 and 4 being provided with new iPads to be used at school from the beginning of this term. Beyond this, we have also made provision for all iPads in the School (K-4) to have access to a Logitech Crayon to provide additional functionality for students.
Over the next few years, this updated device strategy will be rolled forward. This will include upgrading the iPads in K-2 as well as provisioning Year 5 (2023) with personalised iPads. Further information about Year 5 and 6 will be provided later in the year, however, please note parents in Year 4 (2022) should not consider purchasing a Chromebook for next year.
Kiss and Ride and Drop Off
After a break from the challenge of managing the afternoon traffic, it seems appropriate to share a reminder about the importance of following the road rules and the School practices for the afternoon Kiss and Ride. Our K-2 boys finish earlier than our Year 3-6 boys, thus allowing the K-2 parents to begin the pick up at Kiss and Ride from 3:00pm. This assists greatly with congestion and allows the line to move more freely. We request that parents with boys in Years 3-6 do not join the line until 3:15pm. If you happen to arrive earlier than this, please do a lap and join the end of the line to allow K-2 parents to move to the front and pick up their boys. If you join the line and are unable to queue without blocking driveways or stopping in the ‘No Stopping’ zones, it is requested that you do a lap of the block to keep the line flowing.
After a trial period throughout Term 1, we have made the decision not to continue with the number plate recognition system. Testing indicated there were no significant time efficiencies gained through its use, however, the trial provided an opportunity to reflect on, and improve our regular practices.
Parents are strongly encouraged to drop their son/s off on the School side of the road in the morning so as to avoid unnecessary risk with boys crossing the road. If parents do wish to park on the opposite side of the road it is essential that boys be escorted by a parent across the road.
Key contacts at the Prep School
At the beginning of the new term I felt that it was appropriate to once again make parents aware of key contacts throughout the School. It is my expectation that the Classroom Teacher is the first point of contact on all matters, whether it is related to learning or behaviour. Classroom Teachers are best equipped to comment on these areas as they best understand the boys and their needs. If you require additional clarification, the following people should be the next point of contact.
Early Years Coordinator – Ms Sarah Clay
Stage 1 (Year 1 and 2) Pastoral Leader – Ms Michelle Sommerfield
Stage 2 (Year 3 and 4) Pastoral Leader – Mr James Bremner
Stage 3 (Years 5 and 6) Pastoral Leader – Mr Mark Gannon
Head of Academic Care – Mrs Jessica Ford
Head of Curriculum (PYP Coordinator) – Mrs Fiona Evans
Deputy Head – Mr Richard Lever
If your concern relates to student learning needs the contact person after the class teacher should be Mrs Ford, whereas Mrs Evans is an excellent contact to speak about how and what we teach in the curriculum. If the matter is related to wellbeing or behaviour, the relevant Pastoral Leader is the next point of contact beyond the class teacher, and Mr Lever is also available as required. It is wonderful to have such a strong group of leaders within the school to support the boys and teachers.
Term 2 promises to be a busy, exciting and rewarding term for all members of the School community. I look forward to interacting with you at various upcoming events.
From time to time we have the opportunity to welcome practicum students to the School. Offering university students a practicum placement is a responsibility we have as educators to develop teachers of the future. It provides the opportunity for developing teachers to enhance their skills in a supportive environment alongside experienced teachers. In addition, it is mutually beneficial for the School as it allows current teaching staff to reflect on their own teaching and learning practices based on the latest research from universities. Finally, it is an advantage for our students as they benefit from an additional adult in the classroom to assist with learning experiences. This term we welcome Ms Lillie Morris and Ms Ellie Morris (unrelated) who will be working in 4P and 3A respectively.
IPSHA Cross Country
Next Wednesday a large number of students from Years 3-6 will participate in the IPSHA Cross Country Carnival held at The King’s School. As always, this event promises to be challenging for the participants, particularly in light of the recent wet weather we have experienced.
This Saturday is the first week of the Winter Sport season. Sport is an integral part of Trinity’s commitment to developing boys in Mind, Body and Spirit. Whilst developing physical skills and teamwork are critical to this programme, one of the significant and often overlooked aspects of the sporting programme is the opportunity for teachers to develop relationships with boys outside the classroom. I hope that this season presents many opportunities for the boys to learn with and from one another, to develop their physical skills, to experience the joys and challenges of winning and losing, and to deepen their relationships with their peers and the teachers.
Please ensure that you are aware of your son’s commitment. It is imperative that he is on time to the game, arriving at least 30 minutes before the scheduled starting time so that an adequate warm up can be undertaken and instructions can be given by the coach. Please keep in mind that requests for leave for family events need to be directed to me with sufficient notice so that replacements can be made if required.
I refer all parents and players to the Trinity Grammar School Sport Code of Conduct, which can be viewed by clicking HERE. I ask that you reinforce these principles with your son and uphold them yourselves of a Saturday. At Trinity, we encourage boys to be gracious in winning as well as in defeat. The shaking of an opponent’s hand at the completion of any game is expected and good play from an opposition team should be acknowledged in an appropriate manner. No player should criticise any teammate and there is to be no swearing or fighting on the playing field for any reason. All Trinity teams are to be immaculately turned out in the correct playing strip and non-Trinity items of clothing are not to be worn.
Team lists are published each week via the School app. Please be aware that the coaches have the final say in terms of team selections. This is quite often a difficult process and sometimes selectors do get it wrong. Some boys may feel they have been misplaced. I encourage any boy who feels this way to do his best on Saturday to play an outstanding game. Consistently strong performance is the way to show your talent and give the coach the message that you may have been placed incorrectly. Equally, if not more importantly, demonstrating a positive attitude and working hard at training is a great way to get a coach’s attention. Given the wet weather and the limited number of trials, we anticipate there will be changes in the teams as the season gets underway.
Chris Wyatt | Head of the Preparatory School
“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.” 1 John 5:14-15