Principal's Update

Michelle Roberts
Michelle Roberts


Dear Families, Students and Community Members,


Return to Onsite Learning 

It was wonderful to welcome back all our students last Wednesday to onsite learning and there was a genuine buzz amongst the student body to be back with their friends and teachers.  Most students have settled back well into the expected COVID safe behaviours, including: 

  • Wearing facemasks inside and outside, and when commuting to and from school. I ask for parents' continued support with this mandated requirement
  • Social distancing to the best of their ability, and not congregating around the locker areas
  • Staying home when unwell
  • Washing hands regularly and use of hand sanitiser stations around the school
  • No sharing of drink bottles or food or equipment
  • Practicing good cough and sneeze etiquette. Cough or sneeze into the crook of your arm/elbow or a tissue. Make sure you completely cover your mouth and nose; and move away from other people before coughing or sneezing
  • Extra cleaning is in place for high touch areas and the classrooms and staff offices being used

During these uncertain times it is still very important for students to understand the importance of living our school values in school and out of school in the community and always modelling our core values as representatives of this great school. Students will demonstrate that they are proud of their school by their actions and behaviours. For example, behaving appropriately in and out of school, respecting others, following instructions and working to the best of their ability in all classes; wearing their face mask to and from school, in class and in the yard; and respecting the environment by using the bins for their rubbish. 


Re-scheduling of Events

With each lockdown and return to school, we find ourselves reorganising and juggling events to try and fit in as much as possible, so students don’t miss out. Under the current restrictions in place, we are permitted to run camps, excursions and interschool sport. Our Year 11 Outdoor Education snow camp at Mount Baw Baw and the re-scheduled Year 10 Advance ski camp at Mount Buller are both going ahead this week.


The General Achievement Test (GAT) has been rescheduled again! It is now on Thursday 12 August for all students studying a VCE unit 3/4 sequence. This will be held in the Gym from 10.15-1pm. Further details will be communicated directly to students by our Director of Senior School, Ms Jo Greenhalgh.


As a result of this, we have had to re-schedule our planned Year 12 VCE camp to Lord Somers. Given the importance of this camp going ahead, we have changed the date of our upcoming parent teacher interviews so the Year 12 VCE camp could slot into the one available three day spot the venue had vacant, thus from 1pm Wednesday 1st September to Friday 3rd September, with the first three classes running for Year 12 VCE students on the Wednesday. 


Parent teacher interviews will now be on Thursday 26 August 11am-7.30pm and bookings will open soon for these interviews, to be run remotely via Google Meets to provide greater convenience and efficiency for families. It is expected that students attend these online interviews with their parents/carer, and no scheduled classes will be running on this day. Assistant Principal, Andrew Moffat, will send out the relevant information for bookings next week. 


The Year 11 and 12 Formal dates have been swapped around to accommodate the Year 12 Camp; thus Year 11 will now be on September 2 and Year 12 September 9. Both are being held at Southern Golf Club. Before this year, this was a combined event. Now with our bigger year levels, we need to hold them separately. 


Our Years 9-11 Camp to Central Australia is due to leave on the last Monday of term. This will be subject to interstate travel restrictions at the time. 


Our School Production has been re-scheduled to week 6, from Tuesday 17 to Saturday 21 August. So much hard work has gone into putting the show together since the start of the school year and more recently with extra rehearsals during the school holidays and on Sundays to assist students’ preparations, and these have been continuing this term despite the uncertainty around whether we will be permitted to go ahead with our live shows. 


Unfortunately, we are not going to be able to confirm arrangements until we find out what restrictions are going to be lifted by Tuesday or Wednesday of next week. For example, if visitors are permitted onsite and the ruling on seating capacity. 


I again want to congratulate all students who are involved whether in the cast, crew or band for their dedication throughout the year in preparing for this showcase event. We hope we can recognise and reward their efforts with these re-scheduled performance nights being able to go ahead. My sincere thanks again to my staff producing the show and supporting our students, Adelle Stevenson, Mara Sears, Cameron Young and Claire Bruce and our three former students directing the show Hannah Blavo, Natalie Wood and Imogen Kane.


Facility Development

Our new two storey learning centre development is continuing to progress with the roof installation now complete, with flashing and fascia to commence. Timber framing is well on the way and the mechanical service rough in will start this week. 


Student Attendance and Educational Outcomes

Daily attendance is important for all children and young people to succeed in education and to ensure they don’t fall behind both socially and developmentally. Studies show that absence does affect learning growth and that there is no safe number of days. A child missing one day a fortnight will miss four weeks in a year, and more than a year of school by the time they are in Year 10. It is important that children develop regular attendance habits at an early age. In addition, a student who is half an hour late each day misses the equivalent of 16.6 days of learning each year. This is not acceptable. It is not okay to be away or late without a medical certificate! 


School participation maximises life opportunities for our young people by providing them with education and support networks.  School helps children to develop important skills, knowledge and values that set them up for further learning and participation in their community. If you are having difficulty getting your child to school, please contact the Wellbeing Team at the College, Assistant Principal or Year Level Coordinator to discuss strategies that may assist you. 


Parent Survey 2021

The use of opinion data to monitor school performance is a very important step towards making our school the best it can possibly be. Annual and anonymous opinion surveys for staff, children and parents are conducted and the information gained is used to drive school improvements and shape the future direction of the college. 


Over the next few weeks it is the parents turn to tell us what they think. Randomly selected families (30% of parents) should have already received information about the online parent opinion survey, and we ask that these families please take the time to complete the survey. 


The survey is conducted online by ORIMA Research Pty Ltd and only takes 15-20 minutes to complete. It can be accessed until Friday 3 September. The survey will help our school gain an understanding of how you view our school climate, student engagement and relationships. Results will be sent to the school during Term 4.


Winter Uniform Reminder

I would like remind students of their responsibility in relation to uniform. The College expectation is that all students will be in the correct winter uniform, and that this uniform is worn correctly (shirts tucked in, ties done up properly) just as it would be expected in any workplace. This also means no hoodies worn under or over your jumper.  The only year level permitted to have a hoodie are the Year 12s, who have a special final year top that is approved by School Council each year. 


Our uniform is a very important part of the image we project of our College community and therefore I expect all students to wear their uniform correctly and with pride to, from and at school. I would ask parents to reinforce these expectations at home. 


Know What Makes Boys Tick

An article that may be of interest from parenting expert, Michael Grose.


Michelle Roberts