The Era of CHANGE

SJACS has entered its 58th Anniversary in 2016.  Being the Principal of the school for the 2nd year, I intended to lead the school moving forward by introducing a series of new policies that thoroughly complied with the main theme of the Year — CHANGE.

I have undergone a year of adaptive transition since I took up my new role in the school last year.  With all the support from teachers, students, parents and the alumni, a series of CHANGE have been made primarily in the school policies, which include the New Time Table, New arrangement for the Morning Assembly, the introduction of ECA periods, the After-schoolSelf-study Room Arrangement, the introduction of New School Jacket as well as some administrative procedures for various stakeholdersetc.  All these new policies undoubtedly have imposed certain degree of positive impact to both Teachers and Students at SJACS.

This year, the word “CHANGE” has been adopted as the main theme of the year.  We have truly faced many “CHANGEs” throughout the academic year.  At the beginning of this year, I introduced the concept of “CHANGE” to all Josephians with its contributing components in the word itself – with the building up of students’ Confidence, Humbleness, Assertiveness, Nice Character, Gratefulness and Energy, St. Jo’s Boys may hopefully have a clearer goal in which it may help them accomplish a strong sense of willingness and up-going attitude to pursue their dreams.  Eventually, all Josephians are expected to possess the characteristics of constant changing and pushing themselves to excellence in the near future.

Regarding one of the CHANGEs — the New Time Table (10 periods a day), that aimed to provide more meeting time between Teachers and Students, enabled the nurturing of a closer relationship between these two parties.  Also, since students were required to spend more time in the school, this arrangement has given extra working time for those parents who struggle for living.  More importantly, students could stay longer in the school and this enabled them to make use of the school premises effectively.

The new arrangement of the Morning Assembly, undoubtedly provided more opportunities for the F.6 Students to speak in front of their schoolmates, encouraging more sharing with others on personal opinions on one hand, and it also helped enhance the reading habit among the Josephians.

It is hoped that the introduction of ECA Periods may ensure a higher participation of Students in certain Clubs, Interest Groups, Uniform Groups, School Teams as well as some newly introduced Societies.  Every Josephian may have the opportunity to join at least two different ECA programmes on the last two lessons on alternate Fridays.  Additionally this is also a good approach to help Teachers-in-Charge to organize activities on a regular basis during ECA periods rather than spending extra time after school accordingly.

The After-School Self-Study Room Arrangement provides the venue for those Josephians in need of more self-study areas facilitating group discussions.  This will also enhance the sense of belonging tremendously.

The Introduction of New School Jacket not only helped keep students warm in winter time but also it was believed that instead of wearing non-uniform jackets, a sense of unity may finally be established.

On the other side of the coin, it is known to us that any CHANGE in an organization may also bring certain level of uncertainty and anxiety to stakeholders in early stage; while continuously there were rooms for improvement or fine-tuning of the newly-carried out policies along the process.  In order to minimize the level of negative perception of those CHANGEs, the school had informed all stakeholders of the new policies prior to implementation in the last academic year.  With that soft landing strategy, different stakeholders may have more buffer to understand all the CHANGEs and hopefully accept them in a more positive and supportive manner. The good news is after we implemented the CHANGEs to all Josephians at the beginning of the current school year, we begin to see the acceptance of the CHANGE by the stakeholders gradually.

It is obvious that we all have to undergo a period of transition before all the new policies were internalized.  We should also admit the fact that the school would receive different opinions, whether positive or negative, from different stakeholders about the CHANGE.  We all should remain open-minded before the CHANGE becomes mature.  I have the strong belief that Rome was not built in a few days and hope that the success of the policies will be witnessed in the long run.

No matter how many policies have been introduced, the ultimate goal is to build up a better SJACS with a positive progress of the school in the near future.  I expressed my visions in the morning assembly a few months ago, about how we could aim at moving towards a well-established SJACS in both academic and non-academic perspectives – I told our students to start by the improvement of their personal conduct first, followed by the emphasis on the CHANGE of their learning attitude.  It was only under the combination of both attributes that our school, SJACS would enter a new phase of development in future.

Dear parents, fellow teachers and Josephians, I would like to take this opportunity to invite all of you to strive for the best of SJACS, and without your passion and support, nothing would be accomplished.  You are all crucial to the success of SJACS.  Hang in there, Josephians, let’s hold our hands and walk the talk together!