Welcome to Term 3

Term 3 commences next week, and still the shadow of COVID-19 hangs over our planning. I hope you and your sons have enjoyed the last two weeks and they are ready to come back to us refreshed, safe and focussed. Certainly, receiving their reports at the end of term may have had a bearing on how things went during the break, but reports are just updates and there are always opportunities to improve. The COVID-19 situation, and the fact you have yet to meet your son’s teachers this year, are the reasons we have planned two Parent/Teacher/Student Evenings for next week. I hope you are able to attend where you have been requested, and make appointments even if a request hasn’t been made. We will do our best to ensure the social distancing and other sanitary measures are in place and just ask you be aware of others in terms of personal space and keeping to time. The fact that we don’t want you to be milling around waiting will be enhanced if everyone keeps to time and can plan their arrival and departure efficiently.

I looked at the reports before they went out. Many boys are achieving wonderful results, many are doing their best and a few are struggling to find their best. P/T/S Evenings are the opportunity to make your son accountable and get feedback about his progress, grades and attributes. I hope you have a positive experience, but more importantly, I hope your son can use the information to focus on what he can change. Small, explicit and achievable goals should be the outcome of the evening and help him continue his journey of life-long improvement and learning.

With the help of a highly credentialed team, our Vice Principal and resident COVID-19 expert, Mr Alweyn, has designed a COVID-19 evacuation plan. It is NOT an emergency plan, so calmness is king/queen if we ever need to resort to it. As you may have seen from news reports from the east, traffic chaos has been one of the major issues faced where schools have had to close because of a positive COVID-19 case. CBC Fremantle’s site and road access wouldn’t be high on the traffic efficiency scale, so our evacuation could become more problematic if parents are not aware of the procedures. Please read the plan here, and be across all the details. Public transport will NOT be available to our students should such a plan need to be effected, and parents will be required to pick their sons up. Parent consent will be necessary for boys to walk home, regardless of how they got to the College. Boys who ride to school will be allowed to ride home without parent contact. If you need any elaboration or further explanation, please feel free to contact Mr Alweyn. If you notice any potential improvements to the plan, we would also actively seek that information.

In clearing my email deleted item box during the break, I came across hundreds of emails commenting positively about the College’s communication during late Term 1 and throughout Term 2, especially with regard COVID-19. Communication is, in my opinion, as important a consideration as any other in a community. The College is required, for registration purposes and more importantly because it is good practice, to provide opportunities for members of our College and the wider community to provide feedback and be able to make a complaint. Recently, some schools have suffered adverse publicity because the complaint process was not clear, had elements of secrecy, or worse, complaints were not followed up. Now all of you should have my mobile number, and I know many of you have used it. Although it drives my wife mad, it is something I have done for years. My experience is that complaints are more forthcoming when people do not feel heard, and I offer to you all the promise that I am here to hear you. That being said, ringing me is not a formal process, and documenting the call may be reliant on memory or interpretation. For this reason, we need a Complaints Handling and Complaints Management Policy.

In Western Australia, the Director General of the Department of Education is responsible for ensuring that the College observes the registration standards, including the standard about its complaints handling system. Any student, parent or community member is entitled to contact the Director General with concerns about how the school has dealt with a complaint. Information is available on the Department of Education website. While the Director General may consider whether the school has breached the registration standards, she does not have power to intervene in a complaint or override the school's decision.

Please click here to view our Complaints Handling Policy documents.

Finally, can I use this opportunity to wish all our boys the very best for the coming term. Our Year 12 leaders are in the home straight and should redouble their efforts regardless of their situation. This year has been very disruptive and highly unusual. Some boys have adapted easily and others have really struggled, but which ever the case may be for your son, it has been a year where, with the right support, his capacity to overcome adversity has been strengthened, and his appreciation for what he has been heightened. Can I thank you on behalf of all the staff for your unwavering support. I assure you it makes all the difference.

God bless,

Mr Domenic Burgio
Principal