Dear Members of the Gippsland Grammar Community,
It is incredibly pleasing for me to reflect on a very successful and positive term for our School. As usual, there have been many events that vary greatly in their purpose and input from students: we have seen sporting events and experienced the many successes of our swimming, athletics, shooting and equestrian teams while individuals have also represented the School in events at a division or State level. We have had students attending camps, performing in concerts, debating, playing chess and who could forget the wonderful Year 11 Ball in May. A very busy term, with many events overlaying our strong academic program and, for our senior students, examinations.
All of these events are important to the School as they provide the opportunities that our students need to find their passion. As a School we describe ourselves as an ‘Anglican Community School of Opportunity and Excellence’. It is through opportunity that all of our students will find something that they are good at: something that they can pursue for their entire life and something that will be a passion for life. Students who have a passion at School will also experience positive self-esteem, connectedness and a sense of belonging. These are all important factors for our students to develop a strong sense of wellbeing. As we read and watch the media, we see an epidemic of mental illness in society and it is predicted that by 2030 mental illness will be the most prevalent illness for Australians. It is still not clear as to why this is occurring but I’m sure we all have our own theories related to societal and community disconnectedness and also the increase usage of personal technology. What we do know is that increased connectedness and a sense of belonging are important protective factors for preventing mental illness and promoting positive wellbeing.
At Gippsland Grammar we are committed to providing our students and also our families with opportunities to connect to our community, to feel a sense of belonging and experience positivity. As we continue working on our next strategic plan, the explicit identification and teaching of wellbeing, resilience and positivity will be prominent in our thoughts. We will look for opportunities to pursue such opportunities and to authentically connect our families to our School. I strongly believe that this is currently a strength of our School and when tragedies occur, our sense of community is amazing. Our strategic plan will enable us to explicitly identify these qualities and work to enhance and protect what we already have.
This week, we launched our Whistleblower and Grievance policies and procedures to our staff. These policies are in response to recent legislation requiring all organisations to have clear, inclusive and accessible processes for members of the community to follow in response to any serious workplace misconduct or unethical behaviour, and who find our internal complaints procedures inappropriate or ineffective. Details of our Whistleblower and Grievance policies and procedures can be found on our School website; however, we encourage all members of the community to make contact with the School should you have any concerns or issues.
I would like to wish our families a happy and enjoyable winter break. I hope that you are able to find some time together as a family and to be grateful for the amazing area we live in and the great lives that we lead.