On behalf of the School, I thank Mrs Karen Gregg, President of the Parents and Friends Association, for her work in coordinating the involvement of the Lowther Hall team.

As we move into the non-instruction period I thought I might take the opportunity to recommend two holiday reads which relate to work that has been taking place across the School this term. In Senior School, we have addressed the issue of academic anxiety with the girls, specifically offering them ways to identify anxiety in themselves and in others and equipping them with some tools – especially positive self-talk – to reduce it. In Year 12 the girls undertook workshops to explore these ideas in more depth and have developed specific strategies to assist themselves or others they know to reduce anxiety levels in the coming break. The material presented to the girls has been informed by the work of Dr Martin Seligman on optimism and happiness, and if you have not read his texts Learned Optimism or The Optimistic Child I strongly recommend them to you.

In Junior School, staff and girls have been exploring the importance of having a growth mindset in order to get more out of life, and of learning. A disposition of “having a go” has been the focus with our youngest students, and older girls have worked in different ways to identify what a growth mindset might look like for them. This approach is articulated in the work of Dr Carol Dweck and I heartily recommend her book Mindset as being worth a read.

Senior School girls will receive their reports at the end of this term and Junior School girls will get their reports in the first week of next term. Please take the time to talk to your daughter about the feedback provided in the report and assist her to be focused on future goals. You will receive a circular about our reporting process in the next few days and early in Term 2 we will be asking for your feedback about our reporting and assessment processes.

We finish this term with our Junior School and Senior School Easter Services. This is a time of reflection for us as a School Community and important to us as an Anglican School. In Senior School, at the Eucharist Service, all girls are invited to come forward to receive communion or a blessing and are encouraged to be active participants in our service, even if they are from a different faith tradition. We remain proud of our Anglican tradition but also acknowledge that we are a diverse community with many beliefs represented. I know that many families will be celebrating Easter with their own particular rituals and traditions during the break, and I hope that this is a truly blessed time for you.

I look forward to seeing everyone back at school on Wednesday 23 April.

Thank you for a wonderful term at Lowther Hall.