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Headmaster's Update

College Blog Headmaster's Update
19 February 2021

In this week's article, Headmaster Fenner provides a reflection on the start of term, as well as an update on the development of the College's new strategic plan and other updates from around the College.

First term progress
Overall I believe that first term is progressing well. For the most part, new students and staff have settled in very well and there is a good sense of purpose evident around the school.

I think we have all enjoyed resuming this term our regular events with parents in attendance as we had done previously. We have had good numbers at the information evenings and garden parties that followed. Moreover, we have been pleased to welcome parents back to assemblies for different presentations. These events are all very important in building community and promoting the personal contact that also assists with communication.

Strategic Planning
Last Saturday, the Prince Alfred College Council held its annual retreat day, which this year had a specific focus on strategic planning. Executive presented to Council a draft strategic plan, based on feedback drawn together from our community over the last 12 months and other work done previously.

After further revision, we hope to have the plan finalised a little later this term. We will then hold a launch event for the community to outline our plans for the next planning period.

Dequetteville Terrace crossing
Last week we had an unfortunate accident, where one of our Year 10 students was hit by a car whilst crossing Dequetteville Terrace after school, at the “island crossing” near Capper Street. The student concerned suffered concussion and was taken to hospital; we are pleased that he is now recovering well.

As result of this accident, we have instructed students to use the pedestrian crossings at the traffic lights, either at Flinders Street, adjacent to the Royal Coach Hotel, or at Rundle Street. We now have a staff member on duty in the vicinity of the crossing to direct students to the lights and seek parents’ support in encouraging students to use these crossings.

Jake Bilsborow
I think many within our community would be aware of the unfortunate accident this week involving Jake Bilsborow, who finished Year 12 at PAC at the end of last year. On Wednesday afternoon, Jake was in the company of PAC Old Scholar friends at Bridgewater waterhole. Jake slipped and fell some distance onto rocks, sustaining a number of injuries including significant spinal cord damage. He has undergone surgery at Royal Adelaide Hospital and will in due course be transferred to Hampstead for rehabilitation.

We have been in touch with Jake’s father and have offered support for the family and particularly Jake's younger brothers, who are both PAC students. We will remain in close contact with the family going forward. I thank the various staff who have already provided support to the family following this accident.

We will also continue to offer what support we can for Jake, who is a fine young man and a popular, talented and committed PAC student. We understand that a crowd funding appeal for Jake has been set up and has already attracted generous support. We will provide further details about this in due course.

We also recognise that a number of Jake’s friends have understandably been affected by this accident. We have encouraged the boys to talk with family, friends and staff about these matters and to seek assistance when needed.

We have appointed Jackson Bruce as an Instructor at Wambana for this year in the first instance. A former boarder at Immanuel College, Jackson was House Captain and played in the first teams in football, cricket and basketball. He has degrees in Secondary Education and Health Science and has worked in outdoor education and as a disability support worker.

Alex Wood has joined us as a full-time Curator with the Grounds team. Alex holds a Certificate in Horticulture from TafeSA and has extensive experience as a groundsman/curator, including several years at Scotch College Adelaide, the University of South Australia and the Gerard Corporation.

Bradley Fenner