COVID-19 - Presidents Response
I know that these are strange and challenging times so I wanted to take a moment to connect. Because now more than ever before, connectivity is everything, and I want to reassure you that ASPA, and our full resources, remain in support of you.
This year has been rife with unprecedented and unique devastation, and what we do know is that life in Australia, and anywhere in the world, will no doubt be a little different in the weeks and months to come—but this doesn’t mean that we have to diverge from our important purpose as Australia’s leading educators and shaping our future generations.
ASPA continues to provide advice, assistance and representation/advocacy, connecting you to learning and professional development services and advocating for you to ensure fairness, social justice and equity. To unite, educate and support you and your teams….and through all of this uncertainty, ASPA will continue to remain right by your side helping you to do just that now, tomorrow, next week and into the future.
This is the biggest public health challenge we have faced in our lifetimes – that’s why it is so important that we have the right tools at our disposal to minimise the impact of this virus on our people, our students and our sector. I want to reassure you that we are here to help you and, should you need it, have options to support you and your schools to take tactical actions in partnership with our in-house agents and external partners. Our ASPA network of school leaders across the country is second to none – now is a time to utilize the support of colleagues if and when you need it.
Of course, it is important to follow official health advice, to stay home if you’re unwell, be vigilant with hygiene and stay informed through reliable, balanced and trusted news sources. Don’t forget to also give yourself a break from heavy headlines and social media if you start to feel overwhelmed – even the most resilient of us can be overwhelmed by the current saturation of messaging in the news and social media. Importantly, find time to enjoy those things you’ve always enjoyed at work or home whenever and however it is safe to still do so.
I am confident each of our members and schools will get through this difficult time, but on a related note, our small businesses are doing it tough. Many of you are woven into the unique fabric of your local communities, with the schools often at the heart. It’s really important right now to show your strong support for these businesses, local and regional producers, and spend and shop and eat and drink local when you can safely. These months will be hard on them, particularly following the bushfire season and drought, and they need our continued support.
I know this is a confronting time, and I hope that you will focus on taking care of yourself and your families and to follow the necessary steps to help support your health. We know that it’s a time of uncertainty, but we believe that it’s during challenging times like these that our community shows its remarkable strength, compassion and unwavering resiliency by working together, supporting each other and emerging stronger than ever. We are all in this together.
Now more than ever we need to be focused on ensuring we can deliver an experience that exceeds the expectations of our students and their parents – that we remain respectful, professional, committed and innovative as we respond to these unprecedented events. We will continue to monitor the current situation daily and respond to any development in the best interests of our members. I am in direct contact with Minister Tehan.
So, please wash your hands, get lots of sleep, drink lots of water, exercise, soak up the sunshine and read a little, or a lot, and continue to feed your mind in the best ways. And, as the Italians have done, bellow your favourite tunes from your balcony because another thing that’s true is — we’re all in this together! Please know that the entire ASPA team is with you.
Just as the heavy rain came along to put out all the fires—we will indeed get through this challenging time, we just need to stay united and take one day at a time.
Again – utilise our network, lean on colleagues for support and talk to each other. There is no-one, no-one who knows our job like another School Leader.
Andrew Pierpoint - President