Message from the Principal — Bob Morgan

An online whole school meeting.

Dear Alia Community,

Bob here.

Sixth time around and lockdowns do not get any easier. Those who are counting reported yesterday that Melbourne had been in lockdown for a total of 200 days.  Any gold medals for that?

We know that this is hard for students, parents and our staff. We have heard from some students that the lack of routine of coming to school each day has meant that some of them now have irregular sleeping patterns. This affects their ability to come to class.

This is completely normal. When stressed we have disrupted sleep and other symptoms while trying to survive or unwind.

Be aware that for some students trying assiduously to maintain the normal routines may add unnecessary stress to an already fraught situation. Others will be comforted by a routine. Choose your approach according to your family circumstances.

Teens feel more deeply and react more obviously and dare I say honestly. They haven’t yet learned that disasters and end-of-the-world scenarios just keep coming and somehow we just get on with our lives.  Would you believe that there is such a thing as a “weekly disaster update” for such catastrophic things as the recent devastating bushfires followed by floods that are now a fading memory for most of us?!

Teens have not yet turned the constant click-bait screaming of disaster into background chatter.  They figured that the world was smarter now and that everything was sorted and safe and they based their lives on that and now with this pandemic the rug has been harshly pulled from under them.

Climate change is about as distressing as the nuclear armageddon that was going to destroy us all for decades up to about the 1990s.

The Y2K bug would stop all computers and everything else. In 2008 we worried that switching on the Large Hadron Collider would create a black hole that would swallow us all.

AIDS (HIV) was said to be incurable. Ebola and other recent horror diseases were going to destroy us. About 20 or so diseases ago everybody had constant fear of polio and smallpox.

Throw in for good measure the possibility of a meteor impact, or the sun might create another mini (or maxi) ice-age as in the relatively recent Little Ice Age.

[I should create a unit on disasters that did and didn’t happen just to address the constant onslaught of alarm bells. There are enough real problems of people living with nasty personal health problems etc.]

My bottom line is that we will certainly get past this as soon as enough vaccinations arrive. So let’s all care for each other in the meantime.

The lost education is a problem for everyone. It will be recovered before long. This nasty pandemic experience will be, in itself, an education.

Future job prospects have never been better because there are so few international students and workers in the country.

School will return to a group experience soon and we will value it so much more than before.

We will get through this, it will end at some point and we will be back on campus, seeing each other in person again. We are all doing the best we can, if things aren’t working so well, just try and tweak a few things here and there and see if that improves the situation.

Do what seems to work even if that involves playing games and odd sleeping hours. If you have what it takes, attend the online lessons. That is highly recommended. Join the rest of us stressed individuals. Teachers are working harder than ever to be engaging and considerate despite their own family situations.

Alia College will continue online classes for as long as the current lockdown 6.0 has been extended.

Parents please take care of yourselves first. You are no value to your kids if you go under.

Please remember that you can always call if you have any concerns or matters to discuss.

Thoughtful regards,