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An Incredible End to the Year

​Dear Woodleigh Community,

It is with great pride and a sense of achievement that I write the final Messenger article of the year, and attempt to wrap up in a few paragraphs, what has been a year beyond anything we have ever experienced before.

The Woodleigh Community has been truly amazing this year. We have not only survived this year of the great pandemic – we have thrived. As we fumbled our way through the beginnings of lockdown and tried to predict where we would be by Christmas, I could not have imagined that we would have been able to finish the year in such a positive and optimistic manner.

A testament to the combined efforts of staff, students and families during lockdown, on return, the great majority of students re-entered classrooms on top of their learning and excited about being able to work, in person, with their friends and teachers. Throughout our school, I noted a widespread appreciation of the holistic nature of this School. 

Throughout the year, our students didn’t complain; they accepted the circumstances we were experiencing, and adapted, pivoted and moved in an agile manner. Yes, all those words we hope we never have to use again. Our staff worked tirelessly to support our students, and also each other with collaborative planning and the development of new ways of teaching. As a school and a community, we accepted our situation and simply got on with it.

The Welcome of Parents and Friends

Last week, was the first time that I was able to experience Woodleigh’s culture in person, at significant events. With a great effort from staff at all three campuses, we were able to conduct both Year 6 graduations and our Year 12 Valedictory. Working quickly, we were able to alter the arrangements so that each event could be held outside with parents present. All three events were tremendously successful, and Woodleigh’s culture shone through by in the way our students rose to the occasion and also how we came together as a united and supportive community.

Celebrating our Year 12 Prize Winners

Special congratulations must go to Year 12 students Jazzy Evenden and Gretel Friedlander who were the shared recipients of this year’s Woodleigh Prize. This prize recognises the best all-round student at Woodleigh School. Both girls have displayed stellar commitment and aptitude, right across the range of studies at Woodleigh. Academics, music and culture, our sporting teams, and, importantly, to the Community Partnerships Programs unique to Woodleigh School. I applaud both Jazzy and Gretel, as well as the following students who received the Year 12 Faculty and Principal's Awards, for their service to Woodleigh School throughout their time with us here on Golf Links Road.

Faculty Prize Winners:

Jazzy Evenden – Arts and Humanities Faculty Prize, Courtney Lee – Personal Development Faculty Prize, Gretel Friedlander – LOTE Faculty Prize, Prize, Francesca Puleio – English Faculty Prize and Jussy Poyser – Maths and Science Faculty Prizes.

Principals Award Winners:

Francesca Puleio, Ben Myatt, Achol Mathiang, Otto Mudigdo, Jussy Poyser and Lachie Long.

I felt so proud, as the Principal of our School, during and after each of these graduation events. I cannot wait to see what 2021 has in store for us as we return to a more normal calendar and are able, as a community, to enjoy the many and varied experiences that make up the life and culture of Woodleigh.

I wish all Woodleigh School families a wonderful Christmas and a safe and happy New Year period. I hope this time brings great joy to you all as you catch up with family and friends and celebrate the great achievements of this year. I look forward to a safe and prosperous 2021 and thank every member of our community supporting our School. 

DAVID BAKER
Principal