Good Shepherd Catholic College's principal says this term has provided many challenges with students learning online from home but has also provided an opportunity for growth and development for both staff and students.
After several weeks of closure, Queensland schools re-opened to years 11 and 12 this week and Good Shepherd principal Kathleen McCarthy said they worked together to develop an online learning platform to provide students continuity of learning to keep up to date with their studies, and the opportunity to maintain contact with people.
"This contact although online is important for their well-being as many students are missing the socialisation that would normally occur at school each day," Ms McCarthy said.
"Students in Year 11 and 12 have already returned to school, and we are so glad that they are back. All classes have resumed for these students and they are working hard. For students in Year 12, this provides them with some normality which is important as they work towards their external exams and graduation, and consider their aspirations for life post school."
Ms McCarthy said despite the pandemic they wanted all Year 12 students to graduate at the end of the year with excellent results with great memories of their final year of school.
"We are hopeful that the whole school community will be able to transition back to 'on campus' learning over the coming weeks; however, no matter what the future holds for us, we are here to support all students along this journey," she said.
School captain Laura Szabadics said coming back to school was a blessing.
"Getting back into the routine and being able to see friends is great," Laura said.
"Being in the classroom also provides us with more focus and opportunity to bounce ideas off fellow students and teachers."
Fellow captain Mitch Nicol said online schooling was a reality check for moving out into the workforce.
"It allowed us to learn to manage our time a lot better to ensure we were able to keep up-to-date with schooling," Mitch said.
"In saying that, the progressive steps that are being implemented to get students back into school are encouraging, as some students are able to focus more at school. The beginning of this year has certainly been challenging, but there is always a light at the end of the tunnel. "
Year 11 student Amie Pemble said she was so excited to be back at school because she missed one on one interactions with teachers and students.
"It's so great to be back in the classroom!" she said.
Fellow year 11 student Mitchell Thinee said returning to school was a big relief and has made school days a lot more enjoyable.
"I have found myself being more thankful for the ability to communicate and confer, face-to-face, with fellow classmates and teachers," Mitchell said.
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