At Lowther Hall we value respectful relationships which give rise to everyone having a voice. I spoke to the Senior School girls about this aspect of the School’s Values Statement in their assemblies this week and reminded them of the ways in which we try to foster the development of student voice through committees, voting processes and cross age programs. Our annual satisfaction surveys, facilitated through Independent Schools Victoria are one of the key ways in which we ensure that we hear the voices of our staff, students and parents. I encourage Prep to Year 12 parents to complete your survey if you have not already done so.  A survey specific to Kindergarten parents will be emailed in the coming weeks.

One of the upsides of the COVID-19 lockdown is that we have become adept at learning, meeting and socialising via online forums. This week, I was privileged to attend a special online gathering hosted by the Board of Cooperation In Development, who oversee the construction and running of schools on Bhola Island in Bangladesh. Lowther Hall has had a longstanding association with this charitable organisation and it was wonderful to join in this special event with three members of the Senior School Social Justice Committee also in attendance. We saw quite a lot of footage of the schools in Bangladesh and gained a greater appreciation of the conditions in which the schools operate. I am pleased that we are able to support this valuable work, alongside the work of the Australian Himalayan Foundation and Anglican Overseas Aid through our non nobis solum casual clothes day and online fundraising next week. If you would like to make a financial contribution to the work of these organisations please do so by making a donation via Trybooking.

I was excited to join the Senior School students for some sessions at the virtual music camp today. This remarkable event saw 300 girls involved in workshops and masterclasses via the zoom platforms, many with experts and professionals from the music industry. I would like to particularly thank our music staff for putting together such a wonderful opportunity for the girls. Another highlight of my week has been receiving letters from girls in Year 1. I am impressed by the progress they have made with their writing and I look forward to some ongoing communication with them this week. Finally, I would like to commend the work of our Raymond House Captains, who have been organising proposals, leading initiatives and generally spreading good cheer amongst the girls from Years 2 to 6. It is wonderful to see these young leaders managing to navigate their roles in these changed circumstances.

Ms Elisabeth Rhodes