19 Oct 2016
Yesterday was the final School day for our current Year 12 students before they move into study leave and examinations. Early in the morning our 70 Ruyton Explorers and their trusty leader, Walt Attenborough (Mr Zavattiero), gathered in the Courtyard Café for breakfast with their parents. To commence the final day with parents and daughters together is a wonderful tribute to the family experience that is our schooling.
As always, our young Junior School girls watched with fascination as their heroes, ‘the big girls’, re-entered their childhood for the day and provided much entertainment and laughter across the School. The student Assembly highlighted their joyful experiences at School, their ability to laugh at themselves and their strong sense of connection. A few mysteries from Junior School days were unravelled and a strong sense of entrepreneurship uncovered. The sisterhood of the travelling map is strong and will continue to be a force to be reckoned with, as well as a haven for those who have made the journey together.
Amid the laughter and excitement there is a sense of disbelief that this is actually the end of an era. After 13 years of schooling, of adventurous learning, curiosity and discovery, these girls are about to embark on a new phase of life. They will take different pathways of their own choosing, quite possibly reaching all corners of the globe. For some it has been an education that started in Rutyon Early Learning, while others have joined the journey in Junior School or Senior School. Whenever they started, they feel united.
Each and every one of our Year 12 girls has enriched the life of the School in her own unique way due to her participation in different activities and events. At Senior School Assembly later in the day the girls emphasised the importance of connection and the strength of the Ruyton spirit. It was the obvious support of each other as the emotions overcame them that was most touching.
At the Valedictory Dinner last night at the stunning Ormond College, Melbourne University, students, parents and staff came together to conclude the celebration of this group of young women and recognise their significant contribution to the life of Ruyton. Congratulations to Liliana T who was chosen by her peers as the 2016 Valedictory Speaker.
I sincerely thank the girls for their efforts throughout this year to provide enthusiastic and positive student leadership of our community. The 2016 Year 12 students have truly led with compassion and inclusivity, providing our student community with strong and engaged role models. As a community we thank them for their contribution to the School, not just this year but every year they have been a Ruyton girl.
On behalf of the Ruyton community I wish each and every one of our Year 12 girls every success as they move into the final and important last days of their schooling. We know that they will strive to achieve their personal best and that we as staff, parents, and students, will be proud of their individual endeavour and achievements. As one girl remarked yesterday, it is comforting to know that when they sit down to do their first exam next week they feel supported by the whole Ruyton community.
Thank you to our Year 12 parents for their valuable contribution to our community. Our current Year 12 parents have been heavily involved in many of our parent support groups for many years. I know Ruyton has become a way of life for many of you through this involvement, as well as through your active support of your daughter’s education. It was particularly touching yesterday when we all read the girls’ messages of personal thanks to you. There was a lot about packed lunches and transport but, more importantly, there was the honest expression of love and appreciation, of pride and sincerity. Thank you for the opportunity to be involved in your daughter’s life, thank you for your ongoing support and for your contribution to the life of Ruyton.
Class of 2016, we wish you well. Be true to yourselves, stay connected and be awesome. You can change the world. Good luck.
Ms Linda Douglas
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