Academy Access Award
Congratulations to Isabella Greenhalgh on her academic achievements in Year 11 2019. Isabella was the proud recipient of the University of Western Sydney’s “Academy Access Award” which is presented to our highest achieving student in Year 11 each year. The award includes:
- A $20,000 conditional Academic Excellence Scholarship;
- A guaranteed place in The Academy of Western Sydney University;
- A guaranteed course offer to study at Western Sydney University;
- Exclusive VIP on campus experiences;
- Western Sydney University Library access throughout 2020; and
- A $500 study grant to assist with the costs of study in 2020.
Well done Isabella! We know you are a most deserving recipient.
Year 12 Academic Plenaries – 21 February 2020
Academic Plenaries are opportunities for students, supported by teachers, to share their learning progress with their parents. Teachers will be available for five minute meetings from 3:30pm to 6.30pm on Level 3 GBC and DRC (subject location map attached). If you have a matter to discuss that will take longer than the allocated time, we request that you arrange a time for a phone conversation with your particular class teacher.
Bookings for the Academic Plenary meetings are made online (see instructions below). Bookings are now open via the PTO booking system and will remain open until 10pm on Thursday 20 February. On the day of the Plenaries changes or cancellations will need to be advised by email to the Learning Office. PTO can be accessed via the internet online, or via the free PTO APP.
To make your bookings online:
- Go to the PTO Login page here.
- The PTO booking site will be launched. Tick OBTAIN PIN/PASSWORD and enter the email address that you have provided to the school as your contact email which should be the address at which you received this information. Your individual PIN will be emailed to you.
- Full instructions for making your bookings will appear on your screen.
- Check the times booked and either print the booking schedule or download the PTO app to refer to on the evening.
On PTO App:
- Download App
- Select Region Australia
- Add School Code – 15087
- Follow prompts
When making your bookings, please leave adequate time to move between appointments – 5 to 10 minutes is suggested. Teachers will endeavour to meet the appointment time, but there may be delays. We ask for your patience during the evening. Some teachers may have requested an interview with you in which case an exclamation symbol will be displayed alongside the class name.
Parking will be available on the oval (weather permitted), or another carpark on campus. Prior to attending your meetings, please sign in with Mrs Rachael Jarick at the Reception Desk in the GBC. Tea, coffee and water will be available in the afternoon/evening in Room 39.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or require assistance.
Ms Rachael Jarick
Assistant to the Deans of Learning
Reminder Subject Changes – Year 11
A reminder for all Year 11 students that any changes to subjects need to be finalised by the end of Week 4 this term. If any students are still considering a change to their pattern of study, they will need email/meet Mr Pluss to discuss the change. Students are encouraged to make any changes as soon as possible to minimise the amount of course content missed.
Year 10 Minimum Standard Testing – 25 & 26 February 2020
The NSW Government announced that from 2020, all Year 12 students must reach a minimum standard of functional literacy and numeracy in order to receive the HSC Certificate. The reason for this is to help ensure that all students leave school with the necessary skills to achieve success in life. In order to meet this benchmark, students are given the opportunity to undertake the three online tests when they enter Year 10. The official testing for Minimum Standards will take place on the mornings in Week 5 on Tuesday 25 and Wednesday 26 February.
In preparation for the Minimum Standard Testing, a special Lock Down browser is being installed on students’ laptops by the school. Next week, your daughter will be given the opportunity to complete Reading, Numeracy and Writing Practice Tests in class. We wish to reassure you that if your daughter is not successful at meeting the Minimum Standard benchmark after the first tests, she will be fully supported and will continue to be offered to sit in the test rounds until she qualifies, prior to the end of Year 12.
Below please find links providing additional key information from NESA which may be of interest to you. If you have any further information, please email the Learning Office.
Mr Martin Pluss
Dean of Learning
Year 11 Parent Engagement and Education Evening Podcast now available
Presenters: Ms Kieryn Bateman, Director of Learning and Sally Munro, Director of Pastoral Care
How to become more involved in your child’s learning
Much like in the adult world with our new year’s resolutions, many students start the school year with high academic goals for themselves. In Conversations, targets are set with the best of intentions. But all too often, students don’t know exactly how to go about using their recommended study time.
Parents diligently ask their daughters, “Have you finished your homework?” and the evening refrain follows: “I don’t have any.” Parents are left feeling helpless.
There are many fallacies around homework – firstly the misconception that if the teacher hasn’t set any, there is nothing to do. Others include the advice to revise notes from the day’s lessons, or to highlight key ideas. Parents often want to be more involved but don’t know how they can do this meaningfully.
Currently, a group of Year 12 students are modifying their study habits in English in order to improve the quality of their written comprehension responses. Students are explicitly taught to recognise and use metalanguage when responding to unseen texts like the ones they will encounter in their HSC English examination. Following these sessions, they will engage in spaced practice and retrieval, an evidence-informed study technique which has been proven to have significant benefits to knowledge retention.
In their influential book, Make It Stick, Peter Brown, along with leading cognitive scientists Henry Roediger and Mark McDaniel, explain that for learning to “stick” it needs to be effortful; students need to practise the process of retrieval. One way for making this process more reliable and effective is to plan for a gap of several days between revision sessions.
While English is not typically thought of as a rote-learning subject, the language of the subject, for example metalanguage and literary devices, along with topic vocabulary, needs to be purposefully studied by students for them to respond critically to texts. A revision program, implemented with an evidence-based approach at its core, will have positive effects not only in English, but has the potential to yield improved results in many subjects.
Remember that students often avoid study because of the effort involved – but it is precisely that effort that will “make it stick”.
Some practical ways you can help your daughter to study could include:
- Helping her to create a spaced practice timetable with in-built gaps between study sessions.
- Buying her index cards so she can create flashcards.
- Testing her understanding of key terminology, in other words metalanguage, by quizzing during your daughter.
Ms Rebecca Birch
Teacher of English
Disability Provisions Volunteers for Year 11 & 12
Assessments are a major part of schooling, especially for our Year 11 and 12 students. In order for all students to be able to give their best efforts, we need to ask for assistance from the community to provide practical support as a reader and/or scribe for those students for whom this provision is necessary in order to better demonstrate their ability.
This provision is granted by NESA for those students who may have a medical condition or diagnosed reading/writing difficulties. To be a reader and/or scribe requires no knowledge of the subject content and training is provided. If you would like to assist please contact us to register your contact details and availability.
Needless to say the more volunteers we have the less onerous the time commitment. Without your help we are unable to provide this very significant form of support for our students in need. The only requirement is that you do not have a daughter in that particular year at the school. Please submit your expression of interest together with a volunteer Working with Children’s Check to email@example.com.
Thank you for giving this your consideration.
Mrs Simonetta Cesamolo and Ms Megan Pickwell
Art Program: Aboriginal Women of Influence
Calling all budding artists! Applications are open to all students who would like to participate in an after school art program commencing this Monday 17 February 2020. The Program will run every Monday from 3.30pm – 5pm.
Theme: Aboriginal Women of Influence
Students will select an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander woman who is either a public figure or member of their local community to depict in a medium of their choosing. The works produced in this program will be exhibited later this year. Students of all backgrounds and abilities are welcome.
Please see more information here: Aboriginal Women of Influence – ART Program.
If you would like to get involved with this wonderful opportunity, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
The program commences on Monday so please indicate your attendance as soon as possible.
Dates to remember:
|Year 7 Parent Engagement & Education Evening||
Monday 17 Feb | 7pm – 8pm – GBC Level 3
YEARS 7 – 12
|Assembly Year 11 RoSA 2020||
Wednesday 19 February | 11:55am – 12:55pm – Gym
Year 12 Parent & Student Academic Plenary Meetings
Year 12 In Class Assessment Block
Friday 21 February | 3:30pm – 6:30pm GBC – DRC
Monday 9 March– Friday 20 March
Year 11 Study Skills – Dr Prue Salter
Monday 6 April
|Minimum Standard Testing||Tuesday 25 February – Wednesday 26 February|
YEAR 7 & 9
|NAPLAN Online Practice||Tuesday 24 March|
|Year 7 Parents & Student Study Skills Evening with Prue Salter||
Monday 6 April | 7:00pm – 8:30pm – DRC