Term 3, Issue 3 - Principal | Siena College
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From the Principal

The Journey

A century from now, what shall be said of our journey in these times?
And who shall the shapers have been?
The hopeful dreamers who were strong enough to suffer for the dream?
Or the fearful pessimists who were convinced that dreaming
and hope are for sleepers only, not for those awake to the age?
A century from now, shall hope and humour have been strong

enough to enable living with unanswerable questions?
Or shall the pain that a transitional age necessarily brings have
caused a retreat to old answers
that no longer acknowledge new questions?

A century from now, we shall have journeyed…backward or forward.
Direction can no longer be given by circumstance;
real journeyers know that the direction is always chosen by
those who make the journey. Who shall chose the destination?
…So the question is still the same…
A century from now, what shall be said of our human journey in
these times?
And who shall the shapers have been?

Lillian Smith, The Journey, 1954

Lillian Smith, American writer and social critic wrote this poem sixty-five years ago, in pursuit of much needed racial and gender reform in the United States. Despite being in a different time and place, this poem resonated with me as we reflect on our experience of our own ‘transitional age’, not quite a century from that time.

Continuity, Connection, Care and Commitment

My thanks to the many families who completed the recent survey seeking to capture the experience of online learning for students and families. Your feedback matters and is important to us in catering to the needs of your daughter and in shaping our programs and services. The data from this survey is being used in a number of ways; staff reflection, leadership decision making, for reporting purposes and in follow up action for particular students. Thank you. The teaching staff at Siena has once again excelled this term and, affirmed by you, demonstrated that learning and growth for every student is their goal. As the heading of this piece notes, this has been achieved through a commitment to continuity of learning, connection and care. Whilst much has been altered and disrupted for students and staff this year, I am very pleased that post pandemic planning will not require us to address gaps in learning. The diligence of staff, along with students themselves, is ensuring that progression into 2021 courses can occur with a spirit of confidence and capacity.

I alert families to three final opportunities to engage with us before the end of this term:

  • Parent Teacher Student Interviews – details have been communicated regarding extra sessions now available
  • VCE Parent Information Forum – Monday, 14 September, with details for registration to be distributed shortly
  • Ongoing learning and wellbeing communication as noted in Siena Central.

Staying Connected: Thriving in and Beyond the Pandemic

On Wednesday it was wonderful to host a panel of Siena alumnae, along with staff member, Lisa Ellis and current Year 12 student, Bridget Hoy in a discussion on staying connected at this time. My sincere thanks to our alumnae who gave so generously of their time in sharing some of the learnings of COVID-19 through the lens of their own field of expertise.

Elizabeth Hanney

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