I know that thinking about COVID does not often spark images of fluffy silver lined clouds and innovation. However, I am thrilled that we can at HNMCS discuss the innovation that came throughout the last year and the things that we are happy to keep or adapt for a post-COVID educational world. Has the year been perfect? Nope - however, as someone who struggles with the image of perfection, not believing that it is fair to ask anyone or anything to be perfect, I think we have been really good. I would say even better than good. Why would I put us out there as a success story during COVID? Because we have kept the girls connected, they are learning at our usual high level, we have managed to create a timetable with more accessibility for all of our students - even outside of Ontario and Canada. And there is a real sense of community - for all of our HNMCS community. What are the hopes for our girls? Reliance, independence, curiosity, self-discovery, self-advocating, world views and a global perspective, understanding of systems and structures, and it all starts with a journey from the girl, from within her.
What are the hopes for our girls? Reliance, independence, curiosity, self-discovery, self-advocating, ... it all starts with a journey from the girl, from within her.
Head of School
What have some of our key learnings been? Teachers were able to develop more student-centered learning and respond to student needs better when they felt less pressure to cover copious amounts of content, which has resulted in deeper learning and better relationships between teachers and students. Parents and students indicated that they felt better informed -- multiple channels for communication are important. Teachers have vastly improved tech skills -- there is still a need to understand the connection between technology, pedagogy and content but we are continuing to work on it. Modeling an agile leadership approach to trying new things without the fear of failure helped teachers and students to adopt a growth mindset.
What has all of this resulted in? A cooler, new timetable that allows for the best learning opportunities for girls, creative opportunities to connect our community online or face-to-face, a flexible and more balanced schedule, the creation of a new one-stop Family Handbook for outlining more clearly the school’s expectations and perspective, the ability to address more contemporary and valuable parent expectations, and having a digital platform even when in person that will allow for transparency and access that is much more efficient. It has also shown us the value of social media and a reworking of our marketing plan through varied platforms.
What does all of this mean? That with the launch of our strategic plan Route 2026 we have some really exciting and innovative opportunities coming for our girls and our school. We would love to share them with you and your daughters.