Happy 2022 to all Marists and welcome back to school! To our new Primary 1 and Secondary 1 Marists, welcome to Maris Stella High School!
“Do not fear, for I am with you, do not be afraid, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.” Isaiah 41:10
2021 started with the glimmer of hope that the COVID-19 pandemic would move into an endemic and life would return to pre-2020 days. Marists trained in anticipation of the return of the National School Games and the Singapore Youth Festival for the secondary section. What was most anticipated I believe would be the loosening of Safe Management Measures (SMM) so that greater student interaction could take place in class, school and beyond. Alas, with the comeback of the COVID-19 virus in the form of the Delta strain, our hope of returning to normalcy in school was largely dashed. In face of the more potent virus and the threat to public health that it would bring, SMM were tightened and the National School Games were cancelled for some categories. Our programmes moved to online platforms and we strived to offer Marist meaningful and engaging learning experiences.
While Marists and Marist Educators were tested, in terms of the strength of our character in face of restrictions and cancellation of school programmes, especially the social interactions that schooling offers, we were united in our common experience of going through the tough conditions together. Most significantly, Marists and Marist Educators experienced the abiding love of God and His ceaseless mercy and blessings. Marists demonstrated the school motto of “courage”, which was the theme for 2021, seeking to face challenges courageously as well as giving of your best and achieving excellent outcomes. The affordances of technology allowed us to hold rosary sessions after school hours during the Marian months of May and October. The daily rosary sessions organised by Marist Educators and helmed by primary Marists, provided a space for prayer and faith renewal.
“A Marist school is a centre of learning, of life, and of evangelising. As a school, it leads students “to learn to know, to be competent, to live together, and most especially, to grow as persons.””
In the Footsteps of St Marcellin Champagnat
statement is quoted from “In the Footsteps of St Marcellin Champagnat”, which
articulates the Marist Educational Mission. As a Marist school, we are
committed to lead students to learn, to interact and to be leaders and as
individuals, to make use of existing circumstances as platforms for learning.
In 2022, we will put emphasis on developing Marists through 2 key areas:
1. Inculcating values and nurturing Marists to be Gentlemen of Faith, Vision and Service, guided by the 10-Year Marist Education Framework. We will continue to seek various platforms to engage Marists in learning and serving. The external COVID-19 situation and the disruption caused to the lives of others in our community provide excellent opportunities for Marists to learn to be other-centred and to use their talents and resources to serve others.
2. Developing the talents of Marists. We believe that all Marists can learn and can excel. We will continue to strengthen our talent development programmes at the primary and secondary levels. At the same time, we will be introducing new Talent Development Programmes for our lower secondary students. Student leadership development is another area that we will continue to strengthen with greater emphasis on collaboration between the primary and secondary student leaders. We would like Marists to step forward to play a bigger part in co-creating the school culture and build the Marist school ethos in our school.
To this end, in generating the school theme for 2022, we conducted a brain-storming session with representatives from the Student Council Exco. At the end of the discussion, 4 themes were short-listed for the student body to vote and this emerged as the choice of Marists:
Uplift Another, Together.
This theme exhorts Marists to encourage their peers and to appreciate their peers for their strengths, and also to carry their peers in their areas of weakness as members of the Marist Family. Marists uplift another, by “carrying” the other as they would during a game or during team projects. Marists are exhorted to help one another as brothers and live the Marist spirit.
We expect 2022 to be challenging and strongly believe that as a Marist family, uplifting another, we would be able to not just weather the ups and downs together, but thrive. We have complete faith that Marists will respond positively to learning opportunities and grow to be gentlemen of faith, vision and service.
4 Jan 2022