This is the final newsletter and my final Principal’s message for 2021.
It’s hard to believe it is December. Despite being another year of challenges due to Covid, our community was united.
Thank you to the staff who continue to go above and beyond, not only delivering engaging and meaningful learning, but to reassure and nurture academic and social progression.
To the parents, carers and guardians, thank you for reaching out and sharing your gratitude. I cannot tell you how thankful I am to receive such heartwarming and genuine support.
To the students - you have truly shown resilience, determination and perseverance all of which will serve you well going forward - especially the Class of 2021.
Thank you to the Senior School Student Manager’s and VCE teachers for a terrific Orientation program that was delivered last week. The students were visibly excited to be commencing their new classes. The buzz around the Senior Centre was fantastic.
Students will enjoy some focused work over the break to prepare adequately for 2022.
YEAR 6 TO 7 TRANSITION
On Tuesday 7 December, the ‘new recruits’ came to visit us on site. It was fabulous to be able to welcome them in person.
I congratulate and applaud Mr Quinn and the Year 7 leadership team for their tremendous efforts. The program was very successful.
I thank the form teachers who really worked very hard to help the students feel supported and not be overwhelmed. A wonderful success.
JUNIOR MUSIC CONCERT
Congratulations to the Year 7 and 8 music students who took part in the end of year concert held during Periods 5 and 6 on Thursday 2 December.
This concert was held during class time with students from Year 7 performing during period 5, and the Year 8 students performing during period 6.
It was fantastic to see how far the students have progressed over the last 12 months, even with the lock downs throughout the year.
Thank you to the teachers who have directed these students throughout the year - Mr West with the Year 7 Bands, Mr Kurowski with both the Year 7 and 8 String ensembles, and Ms Papworth with the Year 8 Band.
Our Year 9s have undertaken Peer Support training this week. It is indeed the first time the program has been offered to Year 9s!
These are leadership development programs that staff invest much time and effort in to help develop compassion, empathy, communication and trust between students.
Year 9s will then be given an opportunity to apply for positions of responsibility to assist with the transition of our 2022 Year 7s. It is a very rewarding program and I really appreciate all the staff getting involved and providing this skill development for our students. In particular, I thank Mr Gromer who coordinates the entire program.
At the start of the year, the Visual Arts Department applied to participate in a program organised by Regional Arts Victoria. The program was titled Creative Workers in Schools. The program connected McKinnon SC with a practising Artist (Vivian Qiu) who has supported us in developing new learning outcomes and teaching resources that directly relate to her skills and experience as a practising Artist.
This has been an invaluable experience for all parties involved, and the Visual Arts Department will be planning to continue to engage with industry professionals in the future.
Congratulations to Peter Eglezos and Raphaella Roden for their efforts in coordinating and supporting Vivian Qiu/our students to enhance the learning and teaching at McKinnon. A special thanks to Jess Rogosic for applying for this program. Below are some promotion videos for the program.
HIGH PERFORMANCE MINDFULNESS
On Monday 29 November we launched the High Performance Mindfulness Program that our senior students will be engaging with throughout their VCE years. Emma Murray, who has worked with Richmond Football Club and many other elite athletes, gave an inspiring speech to kick off the VCE Orientation Week.
We are confident that Emma's program will help students maintain a positive mind set towards their studies. You can find out a little more about the program here:
Finally! Performances of the musical production of Chicago will be held on Thursday 9 – Saturday 11 December and it’s fair to say this was a long time coming. The hours of preparation and anticipation are innumerable.
What pure delight it will be to see this performance live on stage.
Congratulations to the wonderful students who have been involved in this year's Musical Production. You should be very proud!
I would like to acknowledge and thank Director Lucy Angell, Lucy Foskett, Natalie Same, Clare Cocciardi, Jess Rogosic, Musical Director Megan Papworth and Technical Director Nick Xanthoudakis for their support of these students and for giving them a wonderful opportunity to shine.
No matter what hurdles were placed they were jumped and the show definitely will go on!
VIRTUAL SCHOOL VICTORIA
Ben Jason-Easton (Year 11) composed an extraordinarily beautiful, original piece “Annabelle” for voice, piano and violin. This composition was written for an externally assessed task that required a great deal of thought and planning, made all the more difficult when working remotely through lockdown 6.
Ben’s superb composition “Annabelle” was selected to be performed at the Virtual School Victoria: Making Waves Annual concert of compositions and performances held at the Melbourne Recital Centre on Wednesday 1 December. Joining Ben in this performance were Harry Mills (Year 11) on piano and Andrew Seamer (Year 11) on violin.
Congratulations to Ben, Harry and Andrew on their amazing performance.
As the school year draws to an end, I would like to take the opportunity to wish you a wonderful festive season. May your family time be meaningful and filled with much love, laughter and joy.
Thank you for your kindness, support and encouragement throughout the year.
On behalf of all of us, rest, regroup and we look forward to everyone’s safe return in 2022.