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Reflecting on the year that has been, I feel grateful for a settled and successful school year. My appreciation is directed to our whole Community, where students, staff and families have contributed to the many achievements we have experienced and celebrated this year.

I am extremely proud of our Year 6 leaders who have set a high standard in their enthusiasm, participation, and attitude. They have influenced our campus community and understood being on the ‘Same Team’ has a wonderful impact on all.

The Positive Behaviour approach has also set a standard of expectations, which has allowed our students to flourish in a safe and ideal learning environment. We will continue to build on and develop this model, including student voice and parent engagement.

Last week we acknowledged and celebrated Mrs Joy Hay-Smith’s teaching career and her contributions to the Bairnsdale campus of Gippsland Grammar. Joy has positively influenced many students during her 14 years of service to Gippsland Grammar and in our students’ words, ‘she has been a GREAT teacher’. We thank Joy for her commitment to making the Bairnsdale campus a place of excellence and wish for her fulfilling retirement.

We also farewell Peggy McDonald, who has been a vibrant presence at our campus this year as our Gap Assistant. Peggy has confirmed her decision to pursue teaching as a career, and we know that she has all the qualities it takes to teach. We wish her well.

This year we have been particularly focused on reconnecting with our external community, and we have done that through the process of ‘service learning’. We have been fortunate to have the support of St. John’s parishioners working with our students with the ‘Giving Garden’, we have remained connected to the Abbey, we have strengthened our association of Bairnsdale Neighbourhood House and we have once again participated in the Christmas Appeal, whereby our students earn money by helping others to then buy a gift to put under the tree for those in need. Our students have responded with true spirit of Christmas – giving of oneself. I sincerely thank our families for supporting this appeal.

With gratitude for the year that has been, I wish you all a joyful Christmas.

Virginia Evans

Head of Bairnsdale Campus