From the headmaster's desk

At the beginning of Term 3, we welcomed Mr Diepering, our new groundsman, and Mrs Mabuse, who assumed Mrs Skatane’s duties, to the School and trust that their time at Rietondale will be enjoyable and fruitful.  Both have settled in well and are making valuable contributions to work done at the School.  Mrs Miles returned from maternity leave during the term and we are pleased to report that she has a healthy little girl who sleeps through the night.  Good parenting, no doubt!  Two of our teachers accepted engagement rings from their young beaus and we wish Mesdames Rich and Labuschagne successful engagements.

 Our Spelling Bees for the year realised a profit of over R80 000 and we thank all children and their moms and dads for helping to set new records at the School.  Winning classes have been treated and we know that next year we will set new records.

 Final touches to our beautiful hall are to be made shortly and what a pleasure it is to have a games evening with the water  cooling system on.  What a difference!

The Choir has been more active than ever before and it was a privilege to watch them perform at the State Theatre and in our very own hall.  Keep up the good work girls.

The Multi-Cultural Festival was enjoyed by all who attended and really showcased much of the talent that we have at Rietondale.  The kids were a treat!

The Women’s Day Assembly drew unprecedented crowds of moms and grans and we say thank you to all who contributed to our charitable drive.  Many charities and families in need have benefited from your munificence.  Bless you.

After a year’s break, it was good to see the Work Display return and we congratulate our teachers and learners on their fine work.  Comments by visitors to the Display were very encouraging and we look forward to advertising our accomplishments again next year.  Thank you for making the time to view your children’s work;  it means so much to them.  Combined with the Display was Term 3s Parent Consultation Morning and again I extend sincere thanks to those parents who attend these very important sessions at the School.  It is vitally important that you show an interest in your children’s performances and get to meet with the teachers who teach them.  Of course, we would like to see a lot more parents at such occasions, but also understand that due to other commitments, it isn’t always possible.

A number of District officials have visited the School to check planning, preparation, implementation of CAPS and children’s work and I’m happy to report that they have been delighted and full of praise.  Comments have ranged from “This has made my year” to “Absolutely excellent work”.  They also commented on the good order and cleanliness of the School.  Well done teachers, support staff and learners.  We love praise!

On the subject of work, teachers are at times frustrated by certain children not doing their homework on a regular basis.  This frustrates teaching and learning as homework is designed to consolidate and make sure that what has been taught has been understood.  No more excuses!  It is your duty and responsibility as parents to check homework daily to give your children the best shot at getting ahead academically.

As I write, the teachers are hard at work preparing learners for the Annual National Assessments and we trust that all the hard work will contribute to good results.

Our Junior Athletics Day was fun and enjoyed by all who participated.  Most comical was seeing a teacher taking on teams of “ankle biters” at tug-of-war.  No contest for the “little guys”!  The old adage “little doesn’t mean less” was pretty evident that afternoon.  Reminds me somewhat of a colony of ants.

At times our athletes performed well during the season, but sickness, injury and the withdrawal of key athletes before the meet at Tuks impacted on their final performance.  Those who participated did their very best and we congratulate the team on some fine individual performances.  I ask parents to support us when we expect commitment from children who have committed to a season.  Withdrawing a child at the 11th hour due to his or her poor performance in a test is demoralising for the team, especially when groups have practised relay racing.

Our AGM is on 29 October and to achieve the required quorum, we encourage parents to attend.  Rietondale has an outstanding Governing Body and members will value your attendance, so please to diarise the date.

Much has happened this term in and out of classrooms and we thank staff for their tremendous commitment in providing your children with the very best we can offer at Rietondale.  We also thank Ms Fourie and her moms and dads for the support the School enjoys from the PTA.  The Games Evenings were a hit with the kids.  Mr and Mrs Oliver have done us proud by organising our mini soccer and hosting exceptional tournaments at the School.  Thanks to the moms and dads who spend hours supporting them in their fine efforts.

New parents and learners to the School are most welcome.  We trust that you and your children have settled well and feel the warmth of our community.  It is your school, enjoy it.

I leave you with this thought :

Human beings who leave behind them no great achievements, but only a sequence of small kindnesses, have not had wasted lives.

~ Charlotte Gray ~


R D Hoggan





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