Our School Newsletter

27 July 2016
Issue Six
Important Dates
Principal's Report
Learning @MFG
What's On @ MFG
Matthew Flinders GSC
03 4243 0500
Lt Ryrie St
Geelong, Vic, 3220

Important Dates

Coming Up

Monday July 25, 2016


Selected students to ‘Good Hair Day’ workshop

2017 VCAL interviews

Year 8 Trisport playing indoor hockey


Tuesday July 26, 2016


VCE study day

9L pathways interviews

Unit 4 English students to GPAC


Wednesday July 27, 2016


All Year 11 students participating in Fit 2 Drive program

Year 10 Active Body to Fernwood

9I HAPE to racquetball


Thursday July 28, 2016


9L pathways interviews

Year 9 OA to Geelong Colllege pool

Year 10 ECO to Barwon Valley fun park

Year 9 Gym Junkies to Fernwood

9F HAPE to racquetball

Selected students participating in Maths Competition

Sweethearts Academy performing at Odyssey House



Friday July 29, 2016


Year 12 students to Tertiary Information Session at Deakin Waterfront


Monday August 1, 2016


Year 8 sport:  hockey

Year 8 Trisport playing indoor hockey

Unit 2 PE to Goodlife Health Club


Tuesday August 2, 2016


Unit 4 OED ski camp

Year 9 Indonesian to Melbourne Zoo

House assemblies

2017 SBA Information Evening



Wednesday August 3, 2016


Unit 4 OED ski camp

9N HAPE to racquetball


Thursday August 4, 2016


Unit 4 OED ski camp

Year 10 ECO to Lake Connewarre

Year 9 OA on Western Beach walk

Year 9 Gym Junkies to Fernwood

Sweethearts at Cherry Bar


Friday August 5, 2016


Unit 4 OED ski camp

Year 7 sport:  hockey

3 Year 11 students to GTAC in Parkville

All subject selections due today

9L HAPE to racquetball

Principal's Report

Principal’s Report


At the end of last term the students in Years 8 and 9 had an opportunity to see an Australian Documentary called 'The Will To Fly' featuring Lydia Lassila, an Australian Gold Medal Olympian. Lydia started off as a gymnast and ended up in snow jumping. In 2010 she became the Olympic Gold medallist at the Winter Olympics.


Lydia then had a baby but decided to return to the sport as a young mother, aiming to become the first woman to perform the most complex acrobatic manoeuvre that only men had ever achieved before - a “quadruple twisting, triple somersault” on skis. This is a jump involving four twists and three somersaults. It was a move that had only been performed by a few men at the highest level of the sport.


This was her quest, her goal for the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, which is in Russia. It was an even more extraordinary goal because her body had changed after giving birth to her son and she had to re-learn how to do all of her twists and turns. She almost had to start from scratch all over again!


The reason that I like this story was not just because Lydia did manage to complete the “quadruple twisting, triple somersault”.  I admire her achievement of this feat on a few levels. I admire women who like to show that we are capable and strong. I admire people who aspire to things and who are determined to achieve their goals. More importantly, though – I admire people who display grit and courage.


To achieve this success, Lydia had many falls, many injuries, many mornings of early training in freezing cold conditions. There were many times when she did not feel like getting up and going to training, many times when she was sore and many times when she was scared. But she pushed on.


It is when we push on and resist that little voice in our head telling us we can't do something or that we are too tired or too sore - or asking us why we are bothering anyway... when we defy that negative voice in our head, that we move forward to achieving our goals.


But it doesn't actually matter that much if we achieve the goals or not – what is important is how we tried; whether we showed determination and courage to give them a go. That is when we show our true character. That is when you become the best person that you can be.


Building Funds from the State Government

Thank you to the parents who took the time to complete the feedback regarding the building funds. There was an overwhelming message for heating, cooling and brightening up our school.

We have now provided your feedback, along with the student and staff feedback, to the Education Department and we are awaiting a tender process with the architects who will complete a more thorough Master Planning Process.

I would like to welcome everyone to the new school term. I trust the holidays were a fruitful break for our students to re-charge their learning batteries for this term. There will be some key events coming up for them to look forward to:

  • Subject Expo – 12 July
  • Parent VCE/VCAL Information Evening 19 July 6-8 pm
  • Staff Profession Learning Day (no school) 9 August
  • 60’s Gala Event on 11 August – you can book tickets here: https://www.trybooking.com/Booking/BookingEventSummary.aspx?eid=207788
  • Interim reports – 16 August
  • Student Conferences – 23 August
  • MAD Day – 30 August
  • Work experience 12-16 September

Welcome to Term 3


I would like to welcome everyone to the new school term. I trust the holidays were a fruitful break for our students to re-charge their learning batteries for this term. There will be some key events coming up for them to look forward to:

  • Subject Expo – 12 July
  • Parent VCE/VCAL Information Evening 19 July 6-8 pm
  • Staff Profession Learning Day (no school) 9 August
  • 60’s Gala Event on 11 August – you can book tickets here: https://www.trybooking.com/Booking/BookingEventSummary.aspx?eid=207788
  • Interim reports – 16 August
  • Student Conferences – 23 August
  • MAD Day – 30 August
  • Work experience 12-16 September

School Reports


Thank you for the feedback about the new reporting format – we appreciate this very much. As teachers we provide feedback to students in an on-going way and we thought it would be useful for you, the parents and carers, to be able to see this along the way as well. Please check your child’s Compass Learning Tasks throughout the semester as you will see this feedback in a more timely way. While the student conferences (23 August) are a set time to meet you can contact teachers to clarify assessments or to discuss your child’s progress at any time. We are still learning how to best use Compass to provide you with timely and useful feedback, so thank you for your understanding that it is a learning process for us too. We welcome any further feedback you care to offer.

Staff News

  • Fiona Taylor is on Long Service Leave for 6 weeks in Term 3 and then on a Principal Internship for 4 weeks at Oberon Secondary College
  • Wendy Kerry is on Long Service Leave in Term 3
  • Stuart Myers is on Long Service Leave in Term 3

Student News


The Maths Challenge is an extremely challenging Maths Program offered to extend students across the State each year. This year the following students took part in the program, supported by Melissa Walker.

  • Harshita Harshita (Year 10)
  • Amelia Ballard (Year 7)
  • Olivia Butel (Year 7)
  • Leila Santi-Ducret (Year 10) – picture unavailable

The following students will be participating in the Victorian State School Spectacular on 10 September 2016.

Delia McBurney – Principal (picture unavailable)

Emily Kitchenman - Vocals

Charlotte Kitchenman – Sax

Ariana Conroy – Back Stage



Parenting Information


The Greater City of Geelong has a terrific parenting site with a number of articles to support parents.  http://www.geelongaustralia.com.au/parenting/article/item/8cbc84b53070368.aspx

There are a range of topics including: positive communication, promoting independence, listening, parties, dealing with tragedy, etc. This month I have attached an article about running “optimistic kids”. You can also read it at this link:



Michelle Crofts

Learning @MFG

Curriculum for community and parents/carers

The Department of Education’s curriculum planning and reporting guidelines ask schools to engage with parents and their local communities in developing the teaching and learning program and should document and publish their teaching and learning program. This enables opportunities for learning outside the immediate school environment to be identified and incorporated in the teaching and learning program.

Currently, we represent our teaching and learning program on our College’s website under the eCurriculum tab: http://mfgsc.vic.edu.au/ecurriculum/year-7/


We are currently working on developing a curriculum ‘roadmap’ and some scope and sequence charts that show what we are teaching, the connections with the Victorian curriculum and how the learning fits together over the years in terms of concepts, principles, skills and big ideas. Geoff Masters captures this idea best:

…when the school curriculum is viewed as a roadmap it also becomes important that this roadmap reflects learning as it is experienced by learners. In other words, the curriculum is developed not simply as a top-down specification of what somebody believes students in a particular year of school should be learning, but as a description and picture of how long-term progress in an area of learning typically occurs in practice.

We are about to launch a new look College website and part of this will be to represent our learning and teaching programs and their foci.

We are interested in your ideas - what we should include that is useful for our students and members of our community?

You can contribute your ideas here at here:





The Power of Engineering


I had the pleasure of taking a group of Year 10 students to Deakin University for a day of engineering and inspiration.  The origins of ‘Power of Engineering’ lie in a one-off collaboration in 2012 between the founding members (Felicity Briody and Jillian Kenny), Engineers Australia, Queensland University of Technology and AECOM who delivered a highly successful event for school students that aimed to create awareness about the array of opportunities available through engineering careers. Power of Engineering has now run over 40 events across four states and reached over 3,000 students.

The focus of the day was underpinned by the belief that engineers can change the world and this starts with young people. Our students participated in a range of hands-on, practical experiments and workshops exploring ideas and problems from the different fields of engineering – electronic, mechatronics through to civil engineering.



Curriculum Review 2016-2017

One of our Key Improvement Strategies for 2016 is to review the curriculum offerings at our school.


We have made a number of important changes for 2017:


  1. Refined and reduced the number of Year 10 elective offerings. There are less Year 10 students in 2017 compared to previous years.
  2. Increased Maths at Year 8 from 4 periods to 5 periods per week. Our Maths testing and learning data shows that our students in Year 8 will benefit from more Maths teaching and learning time. Our College’s Strategic Plan has a clear focus on improving our students’ numeracy learning outcomes and this creates a balance with how much Maths learning time our students get at other year levels.
  3. Increasing Maths at Year 8 also had an effect on other subjects and created 2 periods which needed to be distributed to other Learning Areas. We decided to give 1 period to HAPE (Health and PE) so they could develop and teach a Well-being curriculum and also teach the new Sexual Assault Prevention Program. The other period will go to Science at Year 8 which supports our College’s strategic direction and our focus on STEAM (Science Technology Engineering Arts and Maths).


Damien Toussaint, Assistant Principal, Learning and Teaching

Engagement and Wellbeing @ MFG

In any educational setting, a focus on Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) involves students having opportunities to learn and practise social skills such as cooperation, managing conflict, making friends, coping, being resilient and recognising and managing their own feelings. Developing these skills assists young people to become balanced, well-adjusted adults.


At MFG, all members of our school community acknowledge the importance of educational experiences that encourage help seeking, decision making, self awareness, social awareness, problem solving and positive coping.  Our 2016 – 2019 Strategic Plan, which was developed after consultation with parents, students, teachers and community members, includes the following key improvement strategy:


KIS:  Wellbeing 2 (W2)


Build the capacity of students and staff to be resilient, to have a positive disposition and to have a growth mindset


So, how do we as a community promote, encourage and model these positive behaviours?  Parents and teachers have an important role to play in the social and emotional development of young people, as they tend to imitate the strategies to which they are regularly exposed.  We need to work in partnership to offer consistent messages about problem solving and positive coping.


Young people can learn to extend their repertoire of coping strategies and benefit from critically reflecting on their choices.  When they develop language around coping, they are more likely to be able to understand and deliberately utilise a range of different strategies for use in addressing different types of challenges.


Use of positive self-talk is associated with greater persistence in the face of challenge, whereas negative self-talk is associated with higher levels of distress, depression and anxiety (Seligman, Authentic Happiness, 1995).


Positive self-talk can be practised everyday in everything we do.  To start the conversation, ask yourself and those around you:


  • What coping strategies do you use to build a good work-school-life balance?
  • What anger management strategies do you use in your personal, work and school life?


For more information, check out this website:  http://www.education.vic.gov.au/school/teachers/health/Pages/sel.aspx



Robyn Myers

Acting Assistant Principal – Engagement and Wellbeing

What's On @ MFG

Amazing success in the Nicolas Baudin French-speaking Competition!

Congratulations to all the MFG French students who participated in the Nicolas Baudin competition last term.


In particular, we would like to congratulate Sugar MacGillivray and Brynnie Rafe who both won their year level categories in this local French-speaking competition, run by the Alliance Française de Geelong.  Sugar was the best candidate among all the Year 9 students who competed and Brynnie won the Year 10 section.


Both girls will receive prizes for their impressive efforts and all candidates will be awarded a certificate for participating.


Bravo, les filles!


The French Teachers

Monsieur Keast

Madam Smith

Madam Pacifique


Let’s Talk Recognition Program

Here is a photo of our students’ artwork (together with artwork by other secondary schools in Geelong) hanging the Geelong Art Gallery for the Let’s Talk Recognition Program.  Our students’ artwork is hanging second from the left.


Well done to our very talented Art students.


Year 9 Sustainable Water Expo


On Tuesday June 14, there was a great buzz in the air of the Open Space when all of the Year 9 students showcased their recent learning in Science. 


The students were challenged to create, promote, or educate others about the sustainable use of water leading up to the Expo.  Fernando Garcia, from Barwon Water visited the school and presented to the Year 9s about how Geelong gets its drinking water, how much water is used, the challenges with supply and then how this water is treated and returned to the environment.


The students took on board this new knowledge and then conducted further research to come up with an idea in regards to creating, promoting or educating others about water use.   Invited guests from local industry, family members, students and staff enjoyed seeing the wonderful things the Year 9s had been up to and asked many thought-provoking questions of them. 


Students had designed and created wall gardens, designed and spray-painted stencils to promote awareness of polluted water, written and performed plays and songs about global water issues, created QR codes to educate others on MFG water use, promoted the use of reusable water bottles, and conducted classroom activities to educate about various water issues.  


The morning was seen as a very successful way to share great learning with the MFG community, and we would like to thank those who were able to attend and support the students learning.


Mrs Toone, Mr Bonner & Ms Stocks








The Big Science Competition @ MFG

The Big Science Competition was held at MFG on 18th May 2016.   Nine students from MFG chose to participate in the competition along with 48,000 other students from around Australia!


The Big Science Competition is organised by Australian Science Innovations, a non-profit organisation committed to providing high quality science extension programs that inspire, challenge and raise the aspirations of students in science. 


MFG would like to congratulate the following students for their involvement and their great results:


Inez Vincent (Yr 7  - Credit)

Sovichaya Phiwphong (Yr 7)

Faye Darkes (Yr 8)

Karla Beaumont (Yr 8)

Suraya Bandari (Yr 10)

Sona Mohammadi (Yr 10)

Harshita Harshita (Yr 10)

Emma Semmens (Yr 11 - Credit)

Tanya Dalton  (Yr 11 - Distinction)


Congratulations to our talented Year 9 Art students for producing such incredible masterpieces.   Watch out Cezanne – you have some competition!




Mauritius and Reunion Island Trip

March/April 2017

Mauritius and Reunion Island Trip

March/April 2017


Attention French and Outdoor Education Students!


Following on from the successful visit from our French sister school, Lycée Sarda Garriga, in March this year, the Languages Learning Area is now calling for expressions of interest from members of the school community who are keen to participate in our trip to Reunion and Mauritius. These two exotic French-speaking tropical islands are located just off the east coast of Africa.


Please submit the expression of interest form below to one of the French teachers. An information night will be held in late August.


The proposed dates of this 18-day trip are:


Sunday, March 26 – Wednesday, April 12.  The dates include the last week of term one and most of the term one holidays.


Approximate cost: $3,900


Who can participate in this trip?


Students who will be in Year 9-12 in 2017 are eligible to join this trip.  It is open not only to students of French, but also students who enjoy outdoor activities, in particular hiking and camping.  Adult members of the school community are also welcome to participate.


What’s involved?


  • Take part in a three-day visit to Mauritius Island in the Indian Ocean where you will explore the island during two day-long excursions;
  • Visit attractions such as the tea plantation, an African zoo, the famous botanical gardens, the Sugar Museum, a local market and the monument erected in honour of Matthew Flinders who was held captive on the island for four years;
  • Stay in a beach-side hotel in Mauritius for two nights;
  • Spend thirteen days on Reunion Island during which time you will live with a host family, alone or with a friend;
  • Sit in on some classes at our sister school and help the English teachers teach English to their students;
  • Learn and practise French at your own level in many authentic contexts, especially with your host families and at school;
  • Participate in an overnight hike in a picturesque landscape of waterfalls, tropical rainforest, peaks and gorges;
  • Visit the key attractions of the island with the other MFG students, including the volcano, beaches, markets, the amazing valleys and mountains, the vanilla plantation and the rum distillery.


Please submit the expression of interest form to one of the French teachers before August 19.  An information night will be held in late August.


Expression of Interest Form.docx


Trip to France September 2017


The Languages Learning Area is currently exploring the possibility of organising a trip to France during the last week of the term three holidays and the September school holidays next year.


Subject to College Council approval, details of the proposed trip will be published in the next school newsletter. The approximate cost of the trip will be $6,800 and it will include 16 full days of travelling in France exploring the diverse history and cultural aspects of this beautiful country, the most visited country by tourists anywhere in the world.


Students in Years 9-11 in 2017 will be welcome to participate.  Parents of the MFG community will also be welcome to attend.


The French Teachers

Monsieur Keast

Madam Smith

Madam Pacifique


Welcome to the 60'S




Please note that the Uniform Shop will only be open on Fridays from 12-1.30 for all of Term 3.




Forms Must Be Returned:

As part of the School Bus Program review you should have received a new application form to complete.  This is for country travellers only.


If your child/children are currently travelling within the SBP network please complete the form and return it to the school at your earliest convenience.


If you do not complete these forms and return them to your child/children’s school they will be removed from the bus list until a form is completed.

If your child/children are unsure of the bus they travel on or any of the transfer buses they use please ask them to obtain this information from the driver of the bus.

It is very important that this process is followed and we have all travellers registered on their correct bus and transfers for emergency management purposes.

If you have more than three children travelling to the same school please obtain an additional form from the school office.

If you have any further questions or concerns please contact the school bus coordinator.

All members of the MFG community extend their thanks to the wonderful staff members at Cavalier Art Supplies located in the Little Ryrie Street carpark in Wright Place.


Recently one of our senior students required some support on her way to school.  The staff members in the store were very quick to look after her, contacting the school and ensuring that she was well cared for whilst waiting for a member of our staff to arrive.


Thank you for your wonderful community spirit – we appreciate it.