From the Deputy Principal
Partnering with Parents
A warm welcome back to all families as we look forward to another year of sharing in the partnership of the care of your daughters. I would like to extend a particularly warm welcome to all families of students who have joined Loreto Normanhurst this year and I hope that you will quickly come to experience and value the essence of this vibrant community. There is no easing into a school year and there has been much hustle and bustle around our grounds as we have busily prepared for the return of our students. It was wonderful to welcome them back yesterday, where the ‘buzz’ was truly palpable.
An important part of the commencement of a new school year is the establishment of new relationships. Students will have arrived back to find themselves in new classes, among different peers and with new teachers. Central to our approach to learning and the Loreto Normanhurst Student Growth Model is the notion that relationships and learning are of equal importance. We understand the significance of such relationships and that students like to feel known and recognised by their teachers. This is supported by several bodies of research, which propose that positive teacher-student relationships are strongly linked to student engagement and achievement. Students work in partnership with teachers, together providing a student-centred learning model. We place much emphasis on developing such relationships through the FACE curriculum in which the students are provided opportunities to develop connections with their peers and to feel well known by their Tutor, Advisor and class teachers.
As a learning community we also value the strong partnership between family and school, another unique and privileged aspect of our roles as educators. In a society of rapid change, with the complexities that come with parenting, such partnerships have become increasingly important. Professor Anne Graham (Southern Cross University) in her recent project on devising a framework aimed at strengthening Parent – School Partnerships (2018), recognises the importance of a culture of partnership and parental engagement with their child’s education as a key influence on educational outcomes and wellbeing.
I am pleased to share with you the 2021 Loreto Normanhurst Parent Education and Engagement Program “It takes a Village” and urge you to peruse the offerings and ensure you take advantage of the resources, expertise and conversation available to you. Engagement with the program will heighten your sense of connectedness to our community and allow you to be engaged with your daughters holistic learning experience.
“We know that the best student academic and pastoral outcomes are met when there is collaboration and authentic partnership between school and family.”
There are many opportunities for parents and staff to meet throughout the year, including Information Evenings, Academic and Holistic Plenaries and guest speaker events which cover current and topical areas. Additional dates including PAL events can be viewed through the Loreto Normanhurst Parent Calendar which can be accessed through Sentral > Links Tab > School Calendar. There will of course be follow-up communication about various events over the course of the year. We look forward to sharing many occasions with you throughout 2021, whether these be virtually or face-to-face.
As we move into this year of Felicity may our partnerships be nourished by a sense of joy and positivity as we continue to work together to inspire optimism and hope in the young people in our care.
Best wishes for the year ahead and may we be blessed with many opportunities to be together.
Mrs Lynn Long