Congratulations to our Year 12 students and senior leaders for what has been a wonderful week of events. The organisation of Valentine’s Day, Library Lover’s Day and swimming carnival all within three days of one another whilst only in the fourth week of the school year is no mean feat. Occasions such as these showcase our unique culture of care and connection across the year levels and was loudly evident by the sounds of cheering students blaring from the southside pool yesterday.
Valentine’s Day saw our ever-enthusiastic Year 12 cohort don their togas to deliver our largest order of roses, chocolates and singing telegrams to peers from Prep through to 12 and some lucky members of staff. The inclusion of orders via parent lounge this year proved hugely successful, with fresh roses and chocolates selling out and more supplies required! Thank you to Miss Bailey, our Community, Marketing and Events Coordinator for the flower and chocolate purchases and supporting the seniors with their lunch time sales and parent lounge orders. The messages of kindness, appreciation and care shared amongst the girls and from parents were truly felt across the school, and with deliveries handed out by singing seniors, the morning was made to feel extra special. Personally, the arrival of Prefects to my room and joining in to belt out the words of Justin Bieber’s ‘Baby, Baby’ made my morning!
If Valentine’s Day wasn’t enough for the morning, lunch time brought our primary students together with Year 12 students to share in their favourite books for Library Lover’s Day. This joy and appreciation of reading led by our seniors exemplified that although our school is a place for academic learning, it is also a place where students can develop social skills and create meaningful connections with their peers. While academic excellence is strongly valued, a strong network of connections among students is equally important.
At Girls Grammar we know that building connections with peers promotes a sense of belonging. As stated in educational research, feeling a sense of belonging is crucial to students' mental health and well-being, which is an essential factor in their academic success. When students feel like they are part of a community, they are more likely to attend school regularly, participate in extracurricular activities, and seek help from teachers or staff when needed.
Through our pastoral care program, sisters and house meetings, along with whole school events such as those held this week, students are forming connections and fostering positive relationships from Prep through to Year 12. Through these relationships and connections with their peers, students learn to appreciate diversity, respect differences, and work collaboratively which, in turn, leads to a more positive and inclusive school culture, where students feel safe, supported, and valued.
This culture of support and encouragement was clearly seen (and HEARD) at yesterday’s 10 years - open swimming carnival. The Southside Pool and its surrounds were alive with the sounds of cheers and war cries for the swimmers from Downs, Paterson, Smith and Williams Houses. No matter the age or ability, the level of support and school spirit was astounding and reinforced just how unique and special the Girls Grammar culture is. A sincere thank you to our Director of Sport, Greta Doherty and Sports Administration Assistant,Emily McKelvie for their organisation in the lead up to the carnival and to all staff for their involvement on the day. Events like these reinforce just how much I love our school and being a part of the Girls Grammar community.