A Message from the Junior School Principal

Dear Parents and Guardians,

 

I do hope this correspondence finds you well. I thought I might begin with an expression of appreciation for a few of our educators who have been doing some wonderful work this week. Before I do so, I have to say that this is by no means an exhaustive list, and that there are certainly many more of our teachers I could be (and should be) thanking. With that said, please allow me to highlight a few snapshots of success and express my gratitude. 

 

I would like to start by thanking A. Gillian for her extraordinary efforts leading our Grade 5 students through the PYP Exhibition process. Alongside her, many of our teachers have been supporting this process by volunteering to be student mentors. With the support of these wonderful educators, I can see our students tackling some big concepts, developing their critical thinking and problem solving capacities, and working collaboratively to make a meaningful difference through their student-initiated action. Thanks also goes to A. Colette and A. Mary ann who have been busy preparing for the annual Literacy week and Mother Tongue day. A. Laurent’s work to facilitate the Clare Lyons Choir performance has certainly been a highlight of the week. Thank you A. Laurent!

 

I am grateful to A. Helen who organized a vibrant 100th Day of School Celebration this week. The excitement among the EY3 students on Thursday was palpable. I had a chance to spend a bit of time in A. Katie’s class this week. A. Katie is to be thanked for doing so much to empower and instill in her Grade 2 learners a commitment to taking Action. There is a powerful and caring mindset among our Grade 2 learners, who are currently thinking about what they will do to support China during the present difficult period. I would like to thank A. Mel for her dynamic Forest School program. She is facilitating in her young learners a deep appreciation and respect for nature. Our creativity director, A. Alex, has organized both ISTA and Artswork to come to Prem over the past couple weeks. The importance of embedding creativity into education is substantial, and having this unique chance to work with international leaders in the field of connecting creativity to learning, has put Prem at the forefront of something fairly special. 

 

It is through the efforts of these educators that I see the Junior School maintaining itself as a thriving hub of learning and creativity. So to conclude this thread of gratitude, I would like to reiterate my thanks to our Junior School community as a whole, as we continue to work together to take on the challenges that we are currently facing. In this regard, I would also like to express my thanks to Rachel Keys. From my perspective, her dedicated and tireless approach to leadership at this time has been both sound and inspiring. 

 

On another note, please allow me to share a few points of interest:

 

  • Monday is a day off of school for the Makha Bucha public holiday. While our students remain home on Tuesday, our teachers return to work to undertake some professional learning. Slated for the day are curriculum review, some training with Artswork and a professional collaboration designed to solidify and enhance our remote learning program.

 

  • Our Lost and Found, featuring a number of Prem jackets and water bottles, will remain open in front of the Junior School office until Wednesday afternoon. Please have a look to see if any of the lost items might belong to your child. From next Thursday, these items will be donated or repurposed.

 

  • A kind reminder that if your child will be away from school to please phone the Junior School office in the morning to report the reason for your child’s absence. Tracking this data is extremely important to us as we take every precaution to ensure the health and safety of our students.

 

  • Our teachers in the Junior School are embarking on a process to collaboratively analyse ISA data. With careful analysis and interpretation, the data provided from this standardized testing will help us to make informed and intentional decisions with respect to our instruction and curriculum design. Starting next week, I will lead out in running a data-analysis protocol with our Grade 2-5 homeroom and student support teachers, where we will strive to identify gaps in our students’ learning, as well as identify areas where they are achieving success. We will turn our findings into an action plan that will drive us to better differentiate for our students who require additional support or require extended learning opportunities. 

 

To conclude, we are always happy to meet with parents here at Prem, so should you wish to arrange a discussion with a teacher or an administrator, please do not hesitate to set up an appointment. Your questions, compliments or areas of concern are fundamentally important to us. Our mission is to achieve the best student learning and well-being possible, and to realize this, the home-school partnership is critical to our success.

 

Respectfully yours,

 

Justin Jarman

Junior School Principal

 

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