Message from the deputy head of school - 2 February 2018

One only has to spend a day at St Mary’s to realise how exciting and invigorating it is to teach our girls. No day is ever the same. Every day buzzes with fresh energy and sees the girls exploring and expanding their worlds in remarkable new ways.

I think it’s fair to say that this is the most optimistic start to the year that we as South Africans, have experienced in a long time. Certainly, there’s a good mood here at St Mary’s. Everyone seems cheerful, confident and focused: the matrics are embracing their leadership roles and our Form I girls are finding their feet in their new environment. Everyone is attempting to balance cultural and sporting schedules with the excitement and challenges of learning or, in the case of the matrics, starting to polish and perfect what they have learnt over the past years.

Our girls, whole-heartedly and with great enthusiasm, immerse themselves in all that school has to offer. This attitude and enthusiasm is infectious.

In his book Attitudes of Amazing Achievers, Phillip Barker, lists enthusiasm as one of the qualities that makes a significant difference. He states that, “Enthusiasm sees things from a different perspective. It takes the humdrum of everyday existence and injects it with vitality and vibe. Enthusiasm has the ability to make the ordinary wonderful. Genuine enthusiasm has the ability to grip and to infect.”

“Vitality and vibe” encompass St Mary’s and, although every day brings challenges for staff and girls, there is so much that is uplifting and nurturing about our school. This was evident during the quiet, reflective periods, which we have enjoyed in the chapel recently. The new girls’ welcome service and the matric prayer service were two special evenings during which our girls, their parents and the staff were able to reflect on their journeys at our school. We were reminded that whether we are brand new, or “know everything” about St Mary’s, our school constantly renews itself, and always has much to offer.

I think we are all very fortunate to be part of this great school and this wonderful community.

Ros Howell

Deputy Headmistress