Dear Parents and Caregivers
As you know by now, I always like to have a theme for each year that will keep us positive as a school community and which will help to drive us to great things during the year. When reflecting on the year that was 2020, it seemed most fitting that our theme for 2021 should be Hope: not just sitting around hoping, but rather Active Hope; the type of Hope that spurs us on and challenges us not just to be positive about the future but rather to do things to create a positive future.
At the start of the year I shared these three quotes with you:
Hope lies in dreams, in imagination, and in the courage of those who dare to make dreams into reality. Jonas Salk
Hope can be a powerful force. Maybe there’s no actual magic in it, but when you know what you hope for and hold it like a light within you, you can make things happen, almost like magic. Laini Taylor
And most important in an Anglican school with a Christian faith:
But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31
Hope has proven itself to be a very suitable theme and what a wonderful year 2021 has been for Frederick Irwin Anglican School; despite the odd lockdown and the uncertainty that still remains in our community because of the threat of COVID 19, we have held Hope in our hearts and persevered.
It’s au revoir to staff members who will be on leave for various periods starting next term.
- Ms Alex Skehan (Year 4 – Halls Head) and Mrs Alisha Stephens (Science), will be on Maternity Leave all of 2022; and we wish them and their families much joy.
- Mrs Matty Macnab (Head of Barrett House) and Mrs Carol Martin (Visual Arts) are on Long Service Leave in Term 1; and
- Mrs Jenny Crutchett (Head of Performing Arts), Mr Darren McGuigan (Grounds) and Mrs Jacky Ukich (English) are on Long Service Leave for all of Semester 1, 2022.
Sadly we also have to bid farewell to some members of staff as the year draws to a close:
From our Meadow Springs Primary campus:
- Miss Sarah Roberts (Year 4); and Mrs April Carmody (Year 2) have come to the end of short-term contracts;
- Ms Anita Bailey (Kindergarten) is moving on to new ventures; and
- Mrs Donna Stark-Senteneller (Year 6) is moving to the Secondary School; while
- Mrs Diane Pennycott (Christian Education), Mrs Cheryle Rudland (who teaches Learning Enrichment across both campuses) and
- Mrs Janet Stirling (Year 2 and Early Childhood Coordinator) are retiring and we wish them a well-deserved time to relax and rejuvenate.
From our Halls Head Primary campus:
- Mrs Shelley Rasmussen (Year 1) has come to the end of a short-term contract.
In the Secondary School:
- Mrs Jo Bennett (Music), Mrs Robyn Rafferty (Science), Mrs Toni Rhodes (Learning Enrichment) and Mr Chris Ryland (Music) have come to the end of short-term contracts; and
- Mr Noah Carmody has concluded his one-year traineeship in the Health and Physical Education Department.
- Also from Secondary:
- Mr Michael Brown (English) has a position at Trinity College;
- Miss Jesse McDonald (English) is moving to Nagel College in Geraldton; and
- Mrs Janet Taylor (English) has accepted a position at Hale School.
- Although she is not leaving, I would also like to acknowledge Mrs Linda Preston as she steps down from her role as Head of English.
- Mrs Lesley Hedley (Assistant Business Manager) will be spending more time with her family.
We thank all of these staff members for their service to the School and, particularly, all they have brought to the education of our students.
I have deliberately left two members of the Executive Staff in Secondary to last, our Deputy Principals, Mr Andrew Pennycott and Mrs Georgie Solomon, both of whom are retiring at the end of the year. I have struggled to find the words to convey just how significant they have been in the life of this school over 18 years for Mr Pennycott and 27 years for Mrs Solomon. Working closely with them each day allows me to know that have lived and breathed the well-being of both students and staff all of this time; their passion for education is always apparent and the health of our school community has been of primary importance to them. I know that many students and staff seek them out regularly for guidance and advice, and I know they will be truly missed. However, we wish them well for the future; they leave the school not only well-respected but also well-loved. I know that will you join me in congratulating them on their retirement and, respectively, ‘a job well-done’!
2021 has been another difficult year in which we have learned much about how to cope with unexpected adversity. I am sad that I won’t be with you in 2022, but know that I have made the right decision to retire to spend more time with my family and in my ‘other’ home. However, as we look forward to 2022, let’s think on these words from the actor, Christopher Reeve (of Superman fame): Once you choose hope, anything is possible!
I wish all Frederick Irwin families a very blessed Christmas as we celebrate the birth of the Christ-child, a Happy New Year, and a safe and enjoyable holiday as you spend time with your family and friends.