I had a great tea session with my Grade 4 to 6 parents this week. All of these parents are not new to me, for I have interacted with them informally all these months I have been here at HWA.
From the principal's desk
It seems like the rain never stops in Singapore. I must have become so used to life overseas that I have forgotten how it is like to be living in the land of my birth and youth. They say that Singapore, despite being a tropical country, has four seasons too – hot, hotter, rain, rainier.
I was again busy sheltering students from the rain with my small foldable umbrella when I observed Isabel, a Grade 5 students, also opening up her umbrella to shelter three younger students. She was quite shy when she noticed that I have observed this, and came up to me to offer her umbrella.
It has been a great week after the holidays! We had the 10th Anniversary celebration held in conjunction with the International Day event on Friday, followed by the Halloween event on Sunday. The Halloween event, jointly organized by the Parents Support Group and the Hillside Neighbourhood Committee, was the first collaboration between the school community and the local community and totally blew me away with the scale and success of the event.
It has been a busy week for me during the one-week mid-semester holiday. It was also a most fruitful week, as I met up to discuss collaboration possibilities with Huijia Private School, and also found out that our bunch of Junior School students who were there on an exchange programme shall get to perform at a major event before government officials!
It is the week before the mid-semester holidays, and everything in the school appears to be winding down in anticipation. One can feel it in the air, as students discuss about going home, as teachers talk about taking a break.
Some things never stop though.
The preparations for our junior school’s trip to Beijing for their Chinese immersion programme continue. Good suggestions from the parents continue to come in, and are implemented immediately, even at this late hour.
The change of weather in Singapore these few weeks, from extreme hot to thunderous downpours, have taken its toll upon my staff. It came to a point where we have four teachers taken sick in one day, and my Vice-Principal had to approach me to cover as well.
I cannot help but think of two things that happened, one last week and one this week.I popped by a middle-school class during my routine walkabouts, and they were having a break. One of the students took the opportunity to tell me of his displeasure, that he (or rather his parents) has paid the school fees for him to study, so why should we stop him from buying drinks at any time of the day from the school canteen?
16 Sep is the day of the Mid-Autumn Festival celebrations in our school. It is also the final school day of our first batch of immersion students from Beijing Huijia Private School, our sister school in Beijing, for the year. I was glad to see plenty of talents performing that day. I was also glad to see how our immersion students have enjoyed themselves during the celebrations.
It all started with a boy who found a two-dollar note and popped by my office with his buddies. One of them noticed with great glee the bottle of candies on my table and reached out for it.
It was a learning moment, as I found myself having to teach them how to ask for the candies in a polite manner, and to accept that the person with the candies has the right to reject the request. One or two rounds of practice later, all the boys got their candies.
I met up with a group of parents who have been supporting the school, some for as long as six years, on Wednesday evening. They are busy parents with full-time jobs yet they took the time to come to talk with this new principal of a school they have grown to love. I really appreciate that gesture.