Thursday 13th September 2018

The days have gotten a little longer and this indicates that spring is here and soon summer will follow.

 Tom Shallard, Matthew Fokkens, and Andrew Hughes
 Tom Shallard, Matthew Fokkens, and Andrew Hughes

 As it is with seasons, the school year reflects a varying degree of challenge. Winter is always tough due to an intense push for internal standards. Spring can be an awkward transition. For many students, there is an intermediary gap, a quiet period between the conclusion of the internals and the study for externals. This is not the time to slow down.

 In the last couple of weeks, there has been the inter-house singing contest. With a little creative freedom this year, we broke from tradition and the house leaders were able to choose any song. This created an immediate advantage for houses that were decisive. A lesson for future years; make a quick decision and get straight into learning the lyrics. One house that took a little while to decide on a song was Balmacewen. However, being blessed with talented vocals, they managed to pull off a respectable second place. Well done boys. After the points were tallied up in the overall house championship, Ross is currently out on top,with the other three houses tied for second place.  

This brings another point to the table and this would be participation. We are at a stage in the year when some boys can lose direction, lack motivation, and start to slack off their duties. It would be pleasing to see a large turnout for swimming sports next week. This is traditionally one of the least attended events. Houses who have done well historically have been able to muster the collective power of attendance and participation. This could be the difference between winning and losing. It is important when you are faced with an unpleasant task, whatever it may be, that you front up, have some resilience, and get the job done.  

On the last weekend of term three, the annual John McGlashan Fete will be underway. This is an exciting but also very important event in the school calendar. Once again, participation is key, as it helps the fete run smoothly and as in other years, very successfully. Family and friends of the college are warmly invited to come along and support the event.  

Spring is a time for hard work, this could be at school, on the farm, or in representative sports teams. Work ethic is important. At this time of year, it is easy to get side-tracked from what matters, and that is finishing the year strong. Some excellent skills to start employing into exam strategy or sports training are time management and work ethic. It is important to decide on challenging goals. If you do not set targets there is a risk of becoming directionless and failing to achieve. Set your standards high.   

Finally, I would like to acknowledge the importance of balance in life. A man once said, ‘Work hard, play hard, but always be ready for your duty’. That man was Colin Gilray. A soldier, All Black, Rhodes Scholar,and former headmaster of John McGlashan College. Go away in the holidays and take a break. Have a good time with your family and mates. Get some study done, come back wiser, refreshed, and ready to ace the mock examinations.  

Tom Shallard, Matthew Fokkens, and Andrew Hughes.