For a number of years now at Westminster, we have worked closely with The Resilience Project across our whole school in order to provide opportunities for our students to develop high levels of wellbeing and understand ways of keeping mentally healthy. As part of this, we recognise the importance of supporting parents and caregivers to equip your children in these areas of their lives.
Programs offered by The Resilience Project are based on the following strategies:
Gratitude - Appreciating what you have, not begrudging what you don’t have.
Empathy - Thinking of the needs of others/kindness.
Mindfulness - Being present in the moment, not becoming distracted by unhelpful or negative thoughts. In 2021, we are pleased to be continuing our partnership with The Resilience Project. The Resilience Project delivers emotionally engaging programs and provides evidence-based, practical strategies to build resilience through their online wellbeing curriculum.
The Digital Program consists of online presentations and lessons for students, professional development for staff, and a video series for our parent and carer community.
Over the coming term, we will be sharing the Parent and Carer Program with you. The videos are 5-10 minutes long and will walk through the key pillars of Resilience: Gratitude, Empathy and Mindfulness. You will hear stories and be introduced to activities to show how these strategies can support our kids' learning and development, and also support you as parents and carers. We highly recommend you set aside just a few minutes of your day to engage with this resource.
This program is an important part of Westminster’s effort to look after the mental health of our community. View the first presentation of the series here: Part 1: Meet Martin and learn about The Resilience Project.
We will share the remainder of the program, including research and wellbeing activities to integrate into day-to-day life, over the course of the semester.
But that is not all…
In addition to the online program above, on Monday 22 March you will have the opportunity to participate in a webinar hosted by Hugh van Cuylenburg. Hugh spoke to our School community about six years ago and was widely regarded as one of the best speakers we have had. I therefore strongly encourage you to set aside the time to join this zoom meeting at 6.30 pm on Monday 22 March.
During this presentation, Hugh will share his experiences and combine them with practical strategies that can be implemented every day to improve our overall wellbeing.
The link you will need to be part of the presentation is The Resilience Project Parent Webinar.
We are increasingly seeing a number of parents who are using the carpark inside Gate 4 as a drop-off/pick-up zone. This is the staff carpark and not intended for those purposes but for various reasons during the Campus Masterplan development, it is being used as such. While we see this as a temporary situation, it is essential that cars are pulled to the left, not double-parked or left unattended and the drop-off/pick-up needs to be done promptly to keep traffic flowing. As this carpark fills relatively early every school day, cars should not stop to block any empty spaces and drivers need to be mindful of blocking in cars at the end of the school day. We ask all drivers to be on high alert in and around this carpark as there is a constant stream of Music students moving between Music’s temporary arrangements, storage and the main School buildings.
We are also seeing some parents driving into the Inquiry and Innovations Hub’s Undercroft to drop-off/pick-up students. While Gate 3A is opened early each school day and stays open until about 4.30 pm to service this area, it is a designated loading/permit zone only that is locked on weekends. We respectfully ask that parents do not use this undercover space for drop-off/pick-up even if the gate is open.
To assist with making traffic flow as smooth as possible across the intense bursts of drop-off and pick-up times, the School is exploring alternative options within the campus to improve drop-off and pick-up zones.
During the first five weeks of term, Marion Council has had a strong presence from their traffic team out on Alison Avenue and surrounding streets issuing fines to those parking or stopping in the wrong zones. The Council have advised us that this presence will continue throughout the year and we ask that all parents and caregivers pay attention to the signage in these streets out of courtesy to our neighbours and to avoid an infringement.
Tickets for 'School of Rock’ are now on sale - 7.00 pm on Monday 29, Tuesday 30, Wednesday 31 March. Before you book, here’s a reminder of the key points for your consideration:
Monday 29 and Tuesday 30 March, 7.00 pm (set seating) – parents, families, friends – please book through this link: https://www.trybooking.com/BOXHX
Wednesday 31 March, 7.00 pm (general seating) – school students and staff only – please book through this link: https://www.trybooking.com/BPDBH
Prepare yourself for a night of great entertainment!
I am delighted to advise that Max Junge (Year 6 Crown) has been selected to receive the Singing Grade 4 Prize. This prize has been awarded based on Max’s outstanding achievement in 2020 and will be formally announced at the upcoming Australian Music Examination Board (SA & NT) awards ceremony.
Congratulations to William Russo (Year 5 Wyvern) who has won the 2020 AMEB Grade 2 String Performance AUSTA (Australian Strings Association) prize. William has been recognised for his hard work after starting his strings journey in our Year 3 string program. According to his proud parents, it also reflects the opportunities and the quality of the teaching program available to him. William and Max will be recognised formally at the ceremony at Elder Hall in March.
As much as we would like to return to normality (and South Australia is the envy of the world in terms of the COVID-19 implications), we are still living in uncertain times.
Consequently, the decision has been made to err on the side of caution and not travel with our Year 6 cohort to Canberra in March. Instead, we are attempting to reschedule the Year 6 Camp to a date in the second half of the year.
Travelling to Canberra as an individual may appear to be straightforward at the moment. However, travelling with a group of 70 is considerably more complex, particularly if any snap decisions about borders and health requirements are enacted.
I can only apologise to students and families for the inconvenience and disappointment that this will undoubtedly cause. Please know that this difficult decision has been made now so that if and when we are clear to take the Year 6 students on camp, we can be far more confident that it will be the experience we want our students to have.
Since our last eNews, we are delighted to have welcomed Tiffany Gardner to Year 4 and Abbey House.
Recently our strongest swimmers represented Westminster at the SAPSASA South West District Swimming championships. This carnival serves the dual purpose of finding the best swimmers in the District to represent South West at the State Championships and determining which school in this district is the strongest school in the pool. Congratulations to the students below who based on their performances have been selected to represent our District at the State Championships to be held later this month at Marion Swimming Pool Leisure Complex.
Get creative with technology at Westminster these Autumn school holidays.
On top of five coding classes to suit all skill levels, Code Camp have launched a range of new camps, where students can learn to DJ, produce YouTube style videos and create stop-motion animation short films. Westminster will be hosting Code Camp on Monday 12 to Wednesday 14 April. For more information and to find out what is on offer head to the Code Camp website.
Head of Preparatory School