Today is Remembrance Day, and across the School there will be various ceremonies and assemblies, as well as a minute in silence at 11:00am to reflect on the cost of war and the sacrifices made by those who have fought in various conflicts around the world. For me, this moment that marks the end of a war that was supposed to “end all wars” is all the more poignant when observed in community at school, where the tragedy of lives lost and cut short is juxtaposed with the hope and possibility that is present in each vibrant Lowther girl. As I watch Senior School students place a poppy in the remembrance wall as part of this day, I am always grateful that we can engage in the rituals and gatherings that connect us to each other, to our community, our nation and to history, tradition and meaning. These key ceremonies and traditions help our young people to make sense of the world, develop their values and feel a sense of belonging.

For this reason, I am very much looking forward to participating in the various ceremonies, community events and celebrations that populate the calendar between now and the end of the year. At the moment, there are many special events focussed on preparation for the next step in each girl’s journey. Senior School girls are undertaking their examinations, which bring to an end a year of learning across their various subjects. One of my highlights this week has been interviewing every Year 5 student with Mr Williams, as the girls get ready for their leadership positions in Year 6. I have been impressed with the thoughtful and articulate young women who have handled their questions with confidence and aplomb! I have also loved teaching some of the Year 6 students in classes designed to introduce them to Senior School routines and expectations. Meetings with Year 1 girls to talk with each of them about their transition to Year 2 in Raymond House commence very soon and we have been delighted to welcome new Kindergarten, Prep and Year 7 students this week as they have commenced their journey to become part of the Lowther Hall community. Breaking from our usual routine to mark a point in time helps us to stand back and remind ourselves about what we value and to reassess our priorities for the future. Whether it is through a pause to remember the price of war or time taken to reflect on what we hope to achieve in the next stage of our life, we can go forward from a moment of pausing with increased purpose, intentionality and perhaps even more resolve to make the world a better place.

Ms Elisabeth Rhodes