Waratah Weekly - Term 3, Edition 1 - Friday, 23 July 2021
Message from the Headmaster
Welcome back to Term 3, kind of. When we finished Term 2 and looked forward to a refreshing break, I don't think any of us were predicting that we would not be returning to 'normal' schooling in Term 3. Despite this unexpected change to our plans for Term 3, our teachers and students have quickly adjusted to this 'new normal' of online learning. I am so pleased with the effort of our whole staff who have banded together to support your children and each other through another chapter of online learning. Lessons are happening, students are learning, and everyone is feeling supported despite the distance between us. We appreciate all of our parents who have embraced another season of supervising online learning from home; we are not sure how long this season will be, but we will continue to work with you so that your children's learning continues to progress.
Even though we could not have predicted this next COVID phase, I rest comfortably knowing that this was no surprise to our amazing, all-knowing and all-loving God. I continue to pray for our students, staff and families, that God will bless you with a reassurance of a positive future, and that you will experience his peace in the present.
Mr Trevor Norman
Farewell Mr Cassidy
Due to a long battle with some medical issues, Mr Michael Cassidy made the decision to resign from the College at the end of last Term.
Mr Cassidy has provided almost 16 years of dedicated service as an experienced Technology Teacher where he has successfully worked with students to achieve some outstanding HSC results over the years in Industrial Technology Timber and Design and Technology.
During his time at WAC, Mr Cassidy also served as the College Careers Adviser until stepping down from the role at the end of 2019. He acted as Year Patron for six years and guided his group of students until they graduated as the HSC Class of 2018. He was also the Equestrian Coordinator for a number of years.
Mr Cassidy has always had a great heart for the College. He asked me to pass on his ‘goodbyes’ to the WAC community.
The staff and students are saddened by his need to leave us. We will miss Mr Cassidy’s expertise and we appreciate his decision to leave in an effort to support the College and enable us to advertise for a replacement Technology Teacher for 2022.
We wish Mr Cassidy all the best and pray for his health to improve as he moves to another stage of his life.
Thank you to those parents who have continued to support the College and the staff as we moved again to Off-Campus Learning.
In moving around the College and receiving reports from staff, the majority of students are engaged and learning even though the processes and structures are different.
We will continue to communicate with parents and carers as the COVID restrictions change. Hopefully, the latest restrictions will enable schools in Greater Sydney to move to On-Campus Learning and the opening of businesses.
Mr Ian Croger
Pastoral Care T-12
The Need to Develop a Fighting Spirit
A resilient person is internally strong, fearless, can withstand challenges and recover quickly from setbacks. A resilient person looks for the positive and learning points from circumstances, with the ability to adapt their perspective on a situation, control their emotions and make conscious decisions to manage and/or move forward from the situation they are facing. This is especially needed today, as we all battle the COVID-19 pandemic!
A resilient person believes in their own abilities to deal with stress and the difficulties that life presents, with a mindset focused on recovery, progress and prosperity.
- Internally strong/withstand challenges
- Learns from set-backs
- Believes in own abilities to deal with stress and circumstances
- Faces Fears
- A product of choice, not circumstance
Being resilient does not mean one is bulletproof… quite the opposite. A resilient person can be hurt in every way people experience pain: emotionally, psychologically, physically, financially, circumstantially, and otherwise. A resilient person takes the hits life throws and gets back up again, working through the negative situation and consciously making different choices as to how to handle the circumstance, and what their next move will be. The mental strength of someone who embodies BE RESILIENT is described well through the words of - Sylvester Stallone in Rocky Balboa –
“The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is going to hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard you hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!"
Let us all develop this 'Fighting Spirit' and work towards a stronger mindset, helping us push through current life challenges and work towards a better life. Developing the elements of BE RESILIENT within yourself is crucial for managing mental health. Do you need to develop a fighting spirit?
Mr Liam Toland
Director of Pastoral Care T-12
Addressing COVID Fatigue
I was talking to my family over Zoom recently when a topic came up that we all seem to be experiencing. Even though we haven’t been able to leave our homes during the most recent lockdown, and some of us were able to have some time off work due to the school holidays, we all seemed to be feeling tired all the time. Psychologists have given this phenomenon a name “COVID fatigue”. It comes from a deep weariness of living through a global pandemic for more than a year.
COVID fatigue can best be understood not in terms of physical exhaustion, but instead emotional exhaustion. The Mayo Clinic defines emotional exhaustion as an accumulation of ongoing negative and challenging life events that can result in us feeling emotionally drained and may include emotional and physical symptoms. The physical symptoms are easy to spot, such as fatigue, headaches, or muscle tension, particularly around the neck and shoulders. Emotional symptoms may include things like anxiety, feeling hopeless, lack of motivation, or increased irritability. I’m sure the majority of people have felt some of these symptoms, and depending on how affected you have been by the most recent lockdown, these symptoms may have re-emerged. So how do we combat COVID fatigue?
Trying to keep a positive mindset is the best way to fight COVID fatigue. I don’t know about you, but I have found myself ruminating on the things and experiences I have lost during this most recent lockdown. I have also found myself falling into the habit of watching the daily COVID update given by our Premier, then spending an hour online talking to people and bemoaning how the most recent restrictions will affect me (this phenomenon has been given the appropriately scary term of “doom scrolling”). When I realised what I was doing, I immediately knew that I had to try and focus more on positivity in my life. It’s good to be aware of what is happening, but it becomes negative when that is all that is on your mind.
One practical way I have done this is to make a conscious decision to tell people about positive things that I have done or have happened to me. I try to do this in each of the groups I facilitate at the College. It is easy to get caught up on the negatives, so I always ask students about something positive that has happened in their lives since we last spoke. This helps to put things into perspective, and getting children and teenagers to evaluate their lives from a positive mindset can help their mental health. I have written before about the power of gratitude, and this is a simple, easy, and practical way to practice gratitude. It could be as simple as asking everyone in your family to share one positive thing while eating dinner, or during another family activity.
There are other things you can do to try and fight off COVID fatigue. Keeping a consistent routine, including eating and sleeping at times that you normally would out of lockdown, will help to regulate your body’s various systems. Try to get regular exercise, especially if you live in the Greater Sydney region. Also, try to take things one day at a time, and don’t put too much pressure on yourself.
If you are feeling particularly impacted by the current situation, there is always extra support you can access, even during the lockdown. Adults can access services, including Beyond Blue and Lifeline. Children and adolescents can access eHeadspace and the Kids Helpline.
Mr Mitchell Barnes
From the College Nurse
New Cleaning Instructions For Relivers Puffers (ASMOL/VENTOLIN/ZEMPREON)
Please read through the attached article for the new cleaning instructions released by Asthma Australia for reliever puffers (Asmol/Ventolin/Zempreon)
If you’ve purchased an asthma reliever puffer lately, you’ll see it comes with a dose counter. With a new dose counter, you need to clean asthma reliever puffers weekly to keep them working effectively. That includes Ventolin/Asmol/Zempreon – which are all brands available over the counter.
Whilst the dose counter is useful to see how much you’re using, we hope to support your use of the device with this change in place. We understand you have probably never cleaned your reliever devices before now. And that you probably have multiple relievers around the house, so if in doubt – clean them all together, each week. Spacer devices should also be cleaned at least monthly.
We’ve had a variety of feedback about this change (which has brought this to our attention so thank you). We are talking to manufacturers who also want to hear from you, especially if you keep having trouble with your device – see their contact details below.
For medicine that is essential to many people with asthma, it is critical that you follow the manufacturer’s instructions for regular cleaning.
Asthma Australia understands that many people wouldn’t have looked at the new dose counter information leaflet in the medication box, however, we encourage you to become familiar with it particularly with this new change.
Book Club Term 3
There will only be one issue of Book Club this Term. It will be processed when students can return to the College - date to be announced in the Waratah Weekly. The books will be a nice surprise for students when they return. The issue is currently online and will be available to parents for the whole term. Here is a PDF version for you to view.
It is easy to order. The Book Club LOOP platform for parents allows you to pay by credit card. Your child’s order is submitted directly to the College safe and sound and the books will be delivered to class. You can place your child’s order at scholastic.com.au/LOOP or using the LOOP app, which can be downloaded from the App Store or Google Play.
Mrs Justine Colombo
Wollondilly Anglican College welcomes applications for the following permanent positions.
- Secondary Technology (TAS) Coordinator
- TAS Teacher
- PDHPE Teacher
- Primary Teacher (Pre K - Year 6)
- Workshop Assistant (Part-time)
Application for Enrolment
Applications continue to pour in for 2021 and beyond, across all Year Groups, but especially our entry years of Transition, Kindergarten, Year 5, Year 7 and Year 11.
All current College families looking to enrol siblings for the coming years are encouraged to do so without delay to avoid disappointment.
Enrolment packs are available from the College Office or from the College website www.wac.nsw.edu.au
Mrs Kristy Biddle
Ph: 4684 2722
Wednesday, 4 August - 7.00 pm via Zoom.
WAC Kids Care
From time to time, families undergo trauma such as severe or terminal illness. There are short term support structures in place at the College to assist families during these times.
The WAC Kids Care Program offers support to families in the way of meals. Please contact Mrs Hay or Mrs Rockwell at the College. Confidentiality will be respected. If you know of anyone who may need meals at this time, please contact the College office.
- The Wollondilly Redbacks Junior AFL U/14s team is looking for more players
- Ages : 12, 13 or 14 years - Please contact Clinton on 0467 001 002
- Getting Korina Back on the road Trivia Night (Postponed to 2022)
- When: Friday, 11 March 2022
- Time: 6.30 pm doors open
- Cost: $60.00 per ticket
Two-course buffet dinner served at 7.00 pm. Please contact Mittagong RSL on 4872 6700.
Please note that the above is a service to the Community and items advertised do not necessarily carry the endorsement of the College. The College tries to be selective with what is advertised but cannot take responsibility. Please look into events advertised carefully.
Pretend Headmaster - Reeve Evans (KF) is embracing Off-Campus Learning