August 21, 2020

Letter from the Chairperson of the Loyola College Board

Dear Teachers and Staff of Loyola College,

This our 40th year of celebration has been a year of challenge, uncertainty and a different way of life that has been unprecedented in our lifetime.

This year the Loyola College staff as a team has in a matter of days gone from face to face teaching to virtual learning. We can only imagine the number of hours the team has put in to ensure the transition occurred with little disruption for our students.

A College that prides itself on face to face contact, family involvement and community spirit had to look for innovative ways to keep that spirit alive. You managed to do this with professionalism and at an extremely high standard.

Virtual College Tours, Mentor meetings, online classes, parent/teacher/student interviews, subject selection meetings and interviews. Committee meetings via Teams and Zoom. College music concerts and interviews on YouTube. Overnight the Loyola team managed to recreate that College community and spirit with the tools available to them. This would have only happened in a school that was dedicated and committed to their students. We can only imagine the enormous amount of work that went on behind the scenes.

For many of us the Loyola team has become our beacon, shining a light to normality through this very confusing and confronting time.

Please know that we appreciate and acknowledge the enormous amount of time and effort you have all put into ensuring our students wellbeing and education continued. The plans you put in place to ensure students could safely come to school. The proactive plans you put into place to ensure the financial uncertainty families face would not affect their child’s attendance. The endless phone calls the administration staff faced each day. To the Gardeners who ensure that Loyola would stand tall and proud, a visual comfort for all. Our new Loyola mail officers, and those who took on other roles to ensure Loyola ran smoothly. You have all done an amazing job under extremely stressful conditions. We thank you.

Please know that the parents of Loyola thank you for ensuring their children’s education, not only continued, but did so in an extremely well organised and professional manner.

Parents thank you for offering their children a safe and familiar place to be. For looking out for their child’s wellbeing. The students thank you for being there, for offering them a sense of normality, for checking in on them, even when they would not turn on their camera, or they turned up to class in their PJ’s, or suddenly, the camera and microphone did not work because they lost internet. They did that because they knew they could rely on you being there, and in a way, it was the student’s way of taking back some control of their life.

We thank you for learning new skills, for adapting to online learning, and for doing so even though you may have been feeling uncertain and uncomfortable with the changes occurring. You have done an amazing job.

Never underestimate the important role you play in our students’ family and community lives. You, every one of the Loyola College staff, have made an enormous difference. One that you should all be proud of.

Finally, we thank you for being brave. It is not easy working with students and families who may not understand the risk of not physical distancing.

On behalf of the Loyola College Board I would like to thank you for your continued dedication and support for Loyola and its community. As Board members we are proud to be associated with a dedicated professional team. Please be as proud of yourself as we are of you.

Take care and stay safe.
Donna McMahon
Chairperson of the Loyola College Board