From the Principal’s Desk
This year Collegiate celebrates its 147th birthday. Our 150 years in 2024 is drawing ever closer. Plans for the extended celebrations during that year will be a focus of the next three years as it is important that we mark such a milestone in Collegiate’s life in a fitting way.
However, with a school as old as Collegiate we must make sure that we keep moving forward and that we remain relevant in all that we do. Our digital technology strategy of recent years certainly proved itself visionary in 2020 when we were able to implement online teaching and learning from the start of the lockdown. This year we are able to enter the year with confidence that we can not only continue teaching all grades whether they are at home or at school, but that we can implement the flipped classroom and blended learning strategies so necessary for developing life-long learners.
As part of upgrading the campus, our hostel, Waterfield House, now boasts a renovated dining hall. Boarders will no longer have to queue in the kitchen for their meals but will enjoy being served from the modern servery in the dining hall. We also welcome the Junior School boarders to Waterfield House. Their presence will bring an added dimension to the family life of the Hostel.
On campus, the renovation of the Cottage in between the two pools is on track for completion in March. We look forward to this venue which will be used for meetings of the Old Girls, relaxing with parents and visiting teams on days of sporting events, seminars and so much more.
We are excited that we are able to resume extra-curricular activities, both sport and cultural clubs and societies, after the suspension of all such activities last year. There are strict protocols involved and all sports have to observe social distancing protocols when training, but we are grateful that once again our campus will come alive in the afternoons with girls exercising, in the pool, on the fields and the courts, and that the building will be abuzz with debating, art, music and so much more.
What is important to us as educators is education for life, that our learners will leave Collegiate one day equipped with the thinking skills, the physical skills, the heart skills and the spiritual skills, to lead a meaningful life in a humane society in which all are treated with dignity. This year apart from our academic, sporting and cultural programmes, we will focus on wellness and developing the ability to face the challenges of life with an attitude of gratitude and of community.
We are thus introducing a wellness programme that which will run through the register classes, LO classes, the RCL and Prefects, the Guardian App and the Wellness Department. We must all attend to our mental, emotional and spiritual strength and we must all support one another in our Collegiate community.
Central to all that we do are our five values: good work ethic; responsibility; respect; compassion and integrity. These values are key to the objective of our “Comfortable in our Skins Policy”, which is:
to create and maintain an integrated and harmonious learning environment in which difference is embraced and all members of the school community (learners, educators, management, parents and visitors) feel physically and emotionally safe; are protected from demeaning and disrespectful behaviour and expressions; are treated with due care and sensitivity, and are adequately counselled and equipped to communicate and thrive in a diverse and multi-cultural society.
There will be much dialogue, reflection and courageous action this year as we commit afresh to this objective and to making Collegiate a diverse, inclusive and transformed, truly South African School for girls.
Facta non Verba.
MRS LOUISE ERASMUS