Dear Families, Students and Community Members,
Student Numbers 2020
Endorsing our reputation as a leading education provider in the area is the continued growth in our student enrolments. We have 85 Year 12 students leaving at the end of the year and 250 Year 7 students coming in at the start of next year! This is the biggest intake in the school’s history and for the first time we have had to knock back some out of zone applications as we have reached our capacity in Year 7. Our total student population next year will be approximately 1118 students (including our International Students).
Reporting to Parents and Parent Teacher interviews
Over the next few weeks, in the lead up to Parent Teacher interviews on the 28 August, results and comments for benchmark tasks completed to date this semester across Years 7-12 will be released on Compass for student and parent access. Please make sure you check to stay informed about your child’s progress.
A reminder our Parent Teacher Student interviews for Years 7-12 will be held on Wednesday 28 August from 2pm – 7.30pm. Classes will still run on this day 8.55-1pm. Four periods will be shortened to accommodate these hours. Bookings have opened this week through Compass. Please contact the general office if you have any issues.
Additional Assistant Principal
Given the growth in the school and the fact we will be just over 1100 students next year, I am currently working through the selection process for a third AP to start in 2020 Headstart. I have revised the principal class roles to narrow each AP’s focus. Ms Walsh will be focused on Teaching and Learning/Professional Learning, Mr Moffat will be overseeing Senior School/School Operations and the new role will be overseeing Middle School and Student Wellbeing.
Future Facility Development
Three firms of architects were offered the opportunity to tender for our $8.5 million - MINX Architects, MSM and Associates and Cottee Parker Architects. I have taken each on a separate tour of the College and discussed our vision for teaching and learning and our most urgent needs. Submissions for tender have been received and we are interviewing this week on the 15 August. Ian Fox, School Council President, will be joining me on the panel along with Ross Gardiner from South East Region provisional planning and Wayne Olney from the Victorian Building Authority. We last completed our masterplan back in 2014 when we had a student enrolment of 600 students and projected future enrolment of 900 students. As we will be over 1100 students in 2020, the first thing we will need to do once the architect is appointed is to redo our masterplan, planning for a projected enrolment of 1200 students into the future.
A few times this year I have written about the importance of students regularly attending school to make the most of educational opportunities and to achieve to their full potential. The Department is not in support of families taking holidays in school time, and as such parents are required to give three weeks’ notice to the school and they then need to work with the school to complete a student absence learning plan. Remember, every day counts. If your child must miss school due to taking part in a family holiday, speak with the year level coordinator as early as possible, and ensure the agreed work requirements listed in the student absence learning plan is completed during the holiday.
Mental Health Practitioner
Every Victorian government secondary school is receiving funding to recruit a mental health practitioner. Bayside Peninsula have been selected to go through the process of recruitment first. We have been allocated funding for 0.8 and I am going to increase this to full time using school funds. We can select from advertising for a psychologist, social worker, mental health nurse or occupational therapist. We have decided to advertise for a social worker and this position is currently on Recruitment Online. The successful applicant will start as soon as possible after the appointment has been made. It is fantastic that the State Government is recognising the need to increase resourcing in schools for Student Wellbeing.
The excitement is building in anticipation of this year’s school production, “Footloose: The Musical” to be held in the Performing Arts Centre over four nights next week – Wednesday 21 to Saturday 24 August. There is also a matinee performance for some of our feeder primary schools on Wednesday and the final tech run in front of staff and families on Tuesday afternoon 4-6.30pm. Thanks to all members of our community who are supporting our students with their attendance at one of the performances. The shows were sold out in the first week tickets went on sale. We are reviewing whether we need to add an additional show in 2020.
I would, again, like to congratulate and thank former students Imogen Kane, Natalie Wood and Hannah Blavo who are producing the show (after working under Josh Mulcahy last year to learn the requirements) in partnership with our wonderful teachers: Mara Sears – Production Coordinator and Performing Arts Coordinator, Adelle Stevenson – Assistant Coordinator, Demis Danoudis – Music Coordinator and teachers assisting, Kelly Ferguson, Cameron Young, and Stuart McIntyre. I 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.
Whole School PD Day August 16
The focus for our PD day for the first half of the day will be on completing Cultural Understanding and Safety Training which is mandated by the Department for all schools to have completed in 2018 or 2019 as part of the Marrung: Aboriginal Education Plan, Victoria’s ten year plan to support improved outcomes for Koorie learners across all sectors of education. The purpose of the training is to increase understanding of Koorie culture, history and experience to ensure a strong foundation for culturally inclusive practices. It will also provide us with the opportunity to review our current curriculum documentation to ensure Aboriginal perspectives have been included where relevant. Our facilitators for this professional learning session are Stephanie Briggs and Peter Dye from SEVR. This will run from 8.30-12.30 including 30 minutes for morning tea. After a 45 minute lunch break staff will be working in their Learning Area teams on curriculum development/development of assessment tasks for the rest of the day.
Subject Celebration Weeks
Thanks to Maths, English and Science Learning Areas for running their respective subject celebrations weeks across Weeks 3-5 this term, with Humanities to come in Week 7. All students participating in the various lunchtime activities not only get to have some fun, they also earn house points.
High Energy Drinks
A reminder that the College does not recommend the consumption of high energy drinks due to the high caffeine and sugar content of a number of popular brands in the market. Some contain the same amount of caffeine as two to three cups of coffee and, as they are drunk cold, deliver caffeine faster than a cup of coffee would. This can lead to sudden peak in energy followed by a crash that can leave people feeling worse than before. The short-term effects of energy drinks include alertness, stimulation of the nervous system and an increased heart rate, while excessive consumption can aggravate symptoms like anxiety, cause insomnia, nausea, vomiting and heart palpitations. As such we seek parent support in not allowing their child to bring high energy drinks to school, and this includes when students are on an excursion.
Ms. Michelle Roberts