Co-labouring with the Spirit

Dear HDCH Community,
We are now a month into campus closure and there are no signs of this letting up any time soon. Our core goal continues to be to deliver the best learning and care that we can for our students in this current context.

Parent and Student Surveys
Thank you to both parents and students who have responded to our surveys and given us some insight into how you are experiencing this on the home front. We read of joys and frustrations, successes and sorrows, but through it all, a general desire to make the best of this. Thank you, students and parents, for the way in which you are working with us, showing grit and grace through some of the struggles.

Issues with technology and bandwidth are common themes, as is the difficulty receiving support online rather than in person. Some students are still overwhelmed by the work, others underwhelmed, and still others seem to have found a good balance. Many are missing acutely the in-person interpersonal connections with friends and teachers. This should not surprise us, since positive relationships and care are a core value and experience at HDCH. Students, be assured that your teachers and staff miss you sorely.

We are currently reflecting on the responses to see how we can best adapt our practices to the diverse individual needs. We also hope to share something of what we have learned from these surveys in “The Voice” Q&A session after the May Membership Meeting.

End of Semester
At our evening Zoom meeting with Grade 12 students and parents last week, some asked if we were likely to be back at school at all this semester, and also, if we were not, whether the semester might end early. We are still unable to answer the first question definitively, but there is a fair chance that campus closures will continue for the remainder of the semester. We would of course love to have the opportunity to meet together again on our beautiful campus before the close of the school year, but we are preparing for both possibilities. We will let you know as soon as we know. For the second question, whether or not we return to campus or finish out the semester remotely, we still plan to continue teaching and learning until the originally designated end of semester: Wednesday 17th June.

Honouring and Celebrating Learning
Whether or not we return to campus this semester, summatives and exam period will inevitably look very different: departments are currently working out how best to draw the learning of the semester together in a way that honours and celebrates the learning that has happened, and recognises the unique challenges of this period.

In the meantime, please keep communicating with teachers and learning support workers, with student services, and with administration. We are here to serve our students and their families, and to continue co-labouring with the Spirit in cultivating character through learning for lives of service to God.

We pray for you all, and are again enormously appreciative of your prayers and your support. Thank you!

Duncan Todd, Principal
Hamilton District Christian High