This past term has been a long and rewarding one with many wonderful results, both in the classroom and on the sports fields. The end of the first semester is always a time to reflect and plan for the future.
Many of our boys are not reaching their full potential as a result of external influences. I would like to ask all parents to become more involved in their child's education. Too many of our children hold influence over their parents because Mom or Dad don't want their child to be upset by the decisions the parent has made. Whilst the responsibility of parenting your child lies with you, the parent, I am
Unfortunately, life does not work this way. Life is not fair! Sometimes, parents have to take harsh decisions and sometimes, these decisions will not please their children. At the end of the day, we all want what is best for our children, parents and staff!
I have been disappointed with the attitude which many of our older boys display when it comes to academic work. An example of this is that many boys do not bother to study for a test or an exam. They do not prepare for an oral presentation or an assignment or task, and they seem to show little or no interest in what their results portray.
This is where you, the parents, can play an important role in the education of your child. Be aware of what your child is doing as far as his academic work is concerned. Be aware of when he is writing a test and insist on revision and preparation before a test or oral presentation. The senior grades get little to no homework, but reading should be done daily. Insist that this is done at home. The teacher has no control over this, but you do. No homework allows for study and revision time at home and an opportunity to prepare well.
Another area of concern is the lack of respect for authority. Some children show a lack of respect towards their teachers, especially the female teachers. In a country where much emphasis is placed on recognising the role of women in our society, we call on all parents to assist the school in educating our boys to respect ladies. This starts at home and will be reinforced at school. Please do not allow your child to show disrespect to you at home. Speak to him about what is expected and about behaving in a responsible, respectful manner. We will all benefit from a change in this regard and will produce more Queenians we can be proud of. I must add that many of our boys are complimented on their good manners and behaviour but it takes a few rotten apples to ruin the whole bag.
All boys are expected to set academic goals in place for the end of the year. These goals should be set so as to stretch their ability, but should not be out of reach. They should then be encouraged to work hard to achieve their goals and this should be done regularly throughout the second semester.
I have many people to thank for the immense effort that they put into our school. We are very fortunate, as a Queen's College Boys' Primary School Family, to have people involved in our school who do not stand back and expect things to happen. They get involved in the day to day running of the school and ease the burden on an already over-worked staff. To the parents on the Governing Body, the PTA, the Hostel Committee and all those who help out at rugby matches, hockey matches and at various functions around the school, I salute you! The help you give certainly does not go un-noticed. In this regard I would like to encourage more parents to become involved in your child's school. Offer to help where you can. Your child will appreciate it!
Many boys have grown out of their clothes with long trousers being too short. Long sleeve shirts are too small and ties which hang too low around their necks. Please have a look at your child's uniform and ensure that it is neat, it fits and is not torn. This applies to school and sports uniform.
Our lost property box is full of clothing which has not been claimed. If your son has lost an item of clothing, or if he thinks it has been stolen, please come and have a look in our lost property box. You may find it there. If it has a name on it, we will try to find the owner, but all too often, there are no names on the items of clothing.
There is a “Zero Tolerance” policy for bullying at Queen's College Boys' Primary School. Please speak with your son about the consequences of him engaging in bullying practises and encourage positive behaviour amongst our boys. As a staff, we wish to encourage a caring environment for all our boys. Sometimes boys will engage in swearing, ridiculing or teasing of other boys and this is unacceptable.
The late collection of boys after school or after sport is still a matter of concern. Some of our pupils are sitting in the dark, waiting for a parent or a contracted transport operator to come and collect them. The school staff cannot be expected to look after children long after their school program has ended. This is the parent's responsibility and it is heart-breaking for staff members to find young boys sitting, waiting for someone to come and collect them when the school is in darkness and no one is around to look after them. Parents, please make arrangements to have your children collected on time as soon as their school activities have ended. If a child has no sport, unless he is aftercare, he should be collected at 13:30. Aftercare pupils should be collected by 17:30 at the latest!
Please ensure that your sons have the correct stationery requirements for the term. It is very difficult for the teachers to allow the boys to borrow from others during the lesson. This is disruptive and unfair on the teacher and the rest of the class.
Yet another reminder to parents that the pupils at our school are not allowed to be in possession of a cell phone whilst they are school property or away on school sports fixtures. Parents are welcome to speak to the coach or teacher in charge of the pupils in order to get updates about their son's whereabouts and times of arrival.
Union High Festival
The under 12 and under 13 rugby teams will be travelling to Graaff Reinet to take part in the Union High School Sports Festival which runs from the 14th to the 17th June. We wish them well in their matches and trust that they will be good ambassadors both on and off the field.
With the pupils having completed writing their mid-year exams, it is important for parents to take stock and identify if there are any areas of concern. If necessary, speak to your child's class teacher to find out if any intervention is needed. Please also ascertain whether your child is not applying himself and whether he needs to spend more time consolidating what was done at school. Often, the lack of a positive work ethic, as mentioned earlier, is part of the problem. Please sign and return the report and its envelope.
Grade 7 Educational Tour:
The Grade 7 boys will be embarking on their annual tour to the Western Cape from the 8th – 14th September. This is an immensely popular tour and the boys look forward to their last “tour” of their primary school career. Unfortunately, it comes at great cost and parents need to budget accordingly. Please ensure that school fees are up to date and that the boys are not disappointed at the last moment. Should you have any queries, please contact Mrs Nel to find out more.
Finally, on behalf of the staff and myself, I would like to wish you and your family an enjoyable, peaceful and fruitful time with your family. We look forward to welcoming you back in the second semester.