Do not let the circumstances of life, e.g. Covid determine how you react and act. At the College this Term, we have focused on our students and staff, their wellbeing and learning. The College operations may have been impacted by Covid, however, we have not withdrawn into our shells. Rudyard Kipling summed it up very well, ‘if you can keep your head when all around you are losing theirs and blaming it on you, if you can trust yourself when all men doubt you but make allowance for their doubting too…’ The poem If was written in 1895. Today, the poem’s philosophical outlook is considered to be a good example of Victorian stoicism, providing traditional advice on how to live a good life with the understanding that one has to make the most of every minute they have.
I am extremely proud of the commitment demonstrated by our staff and students to ensure teaching and learning has continued throughout what has been yet another challenging few months. The February/March Omicron breakout has stretched our emotional and physical resources, as I am sure it has done for many across our community, and we have ‘kept our heads’ through it all.
At the College Term 1, while it has been different in many ways, we have held true to our principles and practices. For instance, the annual Year 7 and 9 EOTC camps may have looked different, but they achieved their objectives, to provide opportunities for students to grow and develop deeper connections for one another and their teachers and tutors. Our Interhouse College sport events may not have had any spectators. The races took place, in the pool and on the athletic fields, and as well as being great fun and with a high level of participation, we have been able as normal to determine our Age Group Champions for 2022!
Possibly the most impact has been felt in our Performing Arts. Musical and Dance activities have been significantly impacted by the restrictions. Given the significance that the health & safety of all is paramount, it has meant real disappointment and a sense of frustration for many of our student performers and staff.
However, life at the College does go on and with it the opportunity to learn and grow. My thanks to all our students, staff and parents for their ongoing understanding and support. Covid has not defined our College in 2022.
On more than one occasion during our online full College assemblies and elsewhere, I have highlighted my belief that ‘our attitudes determine our actions’. Be these for positive or negative behaviours. We encourage our students to realise that what is in their hearts and minds, will ultimately be reflected in their actions and behaviours. Indeed, there is a simple biblical proverb (Matthew 7:17) which illustrates this well; ‘A good tree bears good fruit, while a poor tree bears..’ need I say more?
At Saint Kentigern College, education is about more than just learning facts, skills, and understandings. A person’s character is equally as important as their grades and the badges they may have on their blazer. I would challenge every student to take this message to heart and act accordingly, in their relationships at the College and in the wider community and indeed also at home! Our actions will determine how others view us, and our reputation. Our actions are generally, though not always it is fair to say, an outworking of our attitudes and beliefs, and for the daughters and sons of Kentigern, these will define us more than what we may say, or the certificates and marks we may gain.
We hope you had a restful holiday and look forward to an exciting Term 2.
Fides servanda est. Keep the Faith.
Mr Duncan McQueen
College Principal (Acting)