Our “roots are showing” this year as we take time to celebrate the annual Victoria Day weekend. Not only was Queen Victoria the sovereign when the Dominion of Canada was proclaimed in 1867, but she was the reigning monarch during the early life of our school’s founder. It seems fitting that we remember both the Queen of beloved memory and our own Miss Kate Matthews as we anticipate our Centennial Homecoming Reunion next weekend.
On Saturday, May 26th, the doors of our school will be open wide to visitors throughout the day to welcome alumni, friends, former staff, governors and families – all of whom have called Matthews Hall home over the years. This is planned to be a great event for all current families, too, as there will be activities for the kids, including a bouncy castle, a variety of food trucks and free ice cream from London Ice Cream! We hope you will drop by and wave your Matthews Hall colours during your weekend errands and outings. Bring a friend or neighbour, too! All are most welcome.
Our centenary has been an important year for our school and a reason to celebrate and express our gratitude. At their source, such anniversaries are meaningful milestones that organizations deserve to honour and celebrate. In fact, research shows that marking important anniversaries can actually help strengthen relationships. Married couples understand this implicitly and schools should, too!
For couples, an anniversary is a positive day of celebration that allows people to step back from the daily grind and remember a moment that changed their lives together. Reminiscing and showing admiration for each other can help remind a couple why they fell in love in the first place. This helps them focus on each other’s positive qualities, helping them reframe their relationship and see the blessing of their life together.
It is a similar thing with schools when they celebrate a special anniversary. They get out their old pictures, find memorabilia from over the years, and they honour their traditions, heritage, and people. We hope you will help us do just that!
Since our founding in 1918, Matthews Hall has grown in size, complexity, and diversity. This growth has been rooted firmly in the traditional values espoused by our founder and upheld by those who followed: immersive learning, responsive teaching, and purposeful engagement in the world of elementary school.
Today, our school has reached its centennial milestone and hums with the opportunities and challenges of our modern world. Our students are dreamers, builders, designers and questioners. They aren’t waiting for life to begin. They want to co-create their education and their communities right here, right now with the help of caring adults to accompany them and guide their work with purpose and passion.
Kate Matthews used to say that she wanted her students to “face life bravely and with joy, no matter what it brings!” These are the words of a thoughtful and sensible lady whose life and legacy we continue to interpret anew as we prepare to embark on our next century together.
Ric Anderson, Head of School