Over the last two weeks, we have encountered sad and distressing news and seen no improvement in the deeply worrying COVID-19 situation in the eastern states. Some of us are old enough to remember the scenes of terror and chaos at the US Embassy when Saigon, South Vietnam fell to the North Vietnamese on 30 April 1975. Others will remember the horrific scenes from New York on 11 September 2001, now well-known as 9/11...
Last week I saw a YouTube video of Pope Francis talking with an audience about his name. He shared his recollection of being in the Sistine Chapel and as the votes were coming in, his close friends spoke softly in his ear and said: “Don’t forget the poor, don’t forget the poor.” It dawned on the Pope that he was going to be elected and that he needed to choose a name for his papacy. In his head, he was thinking of Francis Xavier, Frances de Sales and Francis of Assisi. Our Pope was born with the name Jorge Mario Bergoglio and selected Francis after St Francis of Assisi. Our Pope continues to champion the plight of the poor in our world. Our Catholic church mission is always the preferential option for the poor and to support the sharing of our greater wealth for the greater good.
Over the last week or so, the events of our times have finally gotten the better of me. I think I have always been a person with reasonable emotional intelligence and awareness. However, I have grown up in a lifetime where showing your emotions is seen as a form of weakness. In my 40+ years of service in the Army, I have always been aware that as an officer and leader you must always show strength, be calm and decisive, your soldiers depend on you and you need to demonstrate hope and strength. Do not ever let your guard down. It is true that as a male this is still very much part of our psyche, you must not show your emotion or cry as some believe this shows vulnerability and is not setting a good example...
Earlier this year the SACE board answered a range of questions from SACE students about the impact of COVID-19 in their You Can Ask That! video.
As we begin Term 3, we are keen to come back together (at a safe social distance!) to share some new information with students.
In their second You Can Ask That! video, SACE Board Chief Executive Professor Martin Westwell and SATAC Chief Executive Officer Stuart Mossman revisit the same questions and provide updates on the ATAR, end-of-year exams, special provisions and VET.
We know the COVID-19 coronavirus is causing a great deal of uncertainty for SACE students.
Will students complete their SACE in 2020? Will the ATAR still go ahead? What about exams? Do Special Provisions apply with COVID-19? What about university entry?
We put these questions and others collected from students in South Australia and the Northern Territory to SACE Board Chief Executive Professor Martin Westwell, and SATAC Chief Executive Officer Stuart Mossman.
Using the same format as the ABC's You Can't Ask That, watch the You Can Ask That video below to hear Martin and Stuart answer students' concerns about the impact of COVID-19 on SACE and SATAC processes. Please circulate this video with your school communities.
Visit the SACE website to stay up-to-date on how the SACE Board is supporting students, schools and teachers during the COVID-19 pandemic.