Our MFG Newsletter

28 June 2017
Issue Six
Principal's Report
Learning @MFG
What's On @ MFG
Reunion Island - Host Families Wanted
Matthew Flinders GSC
03 4243 0500
Lt Ryrie St
Geelong, Vic, 3220

Principal's Report

Buildings Update

Once again, thank you to the students, parents, carers and staff who have provided feedback, ideas and suggestions on the various sets of plans that have been shared in different forums.

Here is an update on the current thinking of the architects and what has been happening in the planning for our school’s upgrade.

Staff have visited the following schools and brought back photos of ideas:  Marian College,  Ashwood High,  Ruyton Girls, Sacred Heart College and John Monash Science School. Some of the photos from these schools are included below.

The following plans are still open for discussion but already there has been feedback from teachers and students that will be considered. However, these diagrams will give you an idea of some of the thinking to date.


Old Building

The Heritage Council has approved the demolition of two wings of the old building. They are still considering the development of the front of the school and how we can use this space and retain the public view of our magnificent Old Building. Part of the Old Building upgrade will require us to return the interior to its original state.

The Old Building will house the new canteen which will be located in 0.17 and have a deck on the side. The toilets will be moved to the other end of the building. The demolished wing on the Latrobe Terrace side will provide the space for an outside classroom and sunken garden space.


Embling Building Upgrade

The Embling Building will be repaired so that it stops leaking and there is adequate heating and cooling. The layout will be very different too.


Ground Floor

Teaching staff will be all located together in the lower level for easy access for all students. In the current open area (where the canteen is) there will be different learning spaces to allow students to study in different ways.


This is a more detailed view.

Drama will move to the hall stage area and a separation between the stage and the hall put in place. Under the hall on the Fenwick Street end the building will be opened up and music will be located there.

Another concept.

Second Floor

There will be general purpose classrooms and an Information Learning Centre (Library).

And the more detailed view.

Third Floor

Will house our STEAM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths).

An updated more detailed view.


Fenwick Street Buildings


The existing building will stay but it will be redesigned to house Food Technology and the office.

A more detailed view.

Part of the challenge for us as a school is to reduce our class spaces to the designated provision that the Department of Education will support. We have had too many classrooms for our student population for a long time. This means we will need to develop multiuse spaces and we will not be able to spread out as we have done in the past.

School Council wrote to the Department of Education about the discrepancy in funding for the repairs and the actual cost of them. The Department of Education responded saying that the $7 000 000 included funds for the buildings to be refurbished to an acceptable condition.


We welcome any further feedback you would like to provide. Please email this feedback to: [email protected]


Staff Update

Our Assistant Principal of nearly 10 years, Fiona Taylor, has successfully gained the position of Principal of Western Heights. While she will be missed at MFG we wish her well and know that she will allow Western Heights to flourish.


Mary Connoley and Marg Hannan, long serving staff members and librarians in our school are retiring in Term 3. We wish them both well in their retirement and thank them for the impact they have made on our students over many years.


Anne Halliburton will be on leave in Term 3 and she will be replaced by Margaret Macauley. Karen Cousins will also be on leave for semester 2.


Melissa Walker will return from leave in Term 3.



Michelle Crofts


Learning @MFG

Victorian Curriculum and Reporting to Parents/Carers

Below is the cover letter that accompanies will accompany the Semester 1 reports – this outlines some of the key changes for this year in terms of Reporting to parents/carers about our students’ learning progress and achievement in relation to the Victorian Curriculum.


Semester 1, 2017


Dear Parents and Carers,

Common Reportable Learning Tasks (CRLTs)

At the start of 2016 we began using the Learning Task feature of Compass to provide your child with concise and specific feedback about the main assessment tasks, as well as future learning strategies. We are referring to these assessments as Common Reportable Learning Tasks (CRLTs).

Our teachers are using the following guiding questions to write their feedback comments in relation to each CRLT:

  • What did the student achieve? What did the student do well?
  • What did the student not do? What is missing?
  • What can the student do to improve?
  • What can the student do to make that improvement?


One of the features of Compass is that it allows us to make the CRLT feedback visible to you at the time your child receives it, instead of waiting until the end of the Semester. This 2017 Semester 1 report is a collection of the feedback your child received for each of the CRLTs. This will vary between subjects – some subjects will have 2 to 3 CRLTs, others will have more depending on the time allocated to each subject.

One of the benefits of Compass is that you are now able to access ongoing information about your child’s learning and progress throughout the semester instead of waiting until the end the Semester Report or at a Student Learning Conference.

You can view the specific Victorian Curriculum levels that your child achieved, her results and her teachers’ feedback relating to some of her main Assessment and Learning Tasks by viewing her Learning Tasks on Compass.




If you are unsure about how to access your child’s Learning Tasks using Compass then please contact Mr Zak Constable at the College on 4243 0500.


Victorian Curriculum


This year we have moved to teaching and assessing the Victorian Curriculum F–10. This sets out what every student should learn during their first eleven years of schooling. The Victorian Curriculum is the common set of knowledge and skills required by students for life-long learning, social development and active and informed citizenship.

The Victorian Curriculum F–10 incorporates the Australian Curriculum and reflects Victorian priorities and standards. More information about the Victorian Curriculum can be found here: http://victoriancurriculum.vcaa.vic.edu.au/

This End of Semester Report includes a Victorian Curriculum Learning Summary.


DNP – ‘Did not participate’

A ‘did not participate’ or ‘DNP’ entry is used for students who are not being assessed in a Victorian curriculum area due to special circumstances.

Special Circumstances

An explanation of the special circumstances is as follows for when a ‘did not participate’ or ‘DNP’ entry is selected:

  • Exemption from a Curriculum Area – the student participated in a targeted intervention program instead of a curriculum area or was on an approved extended absence during the reporting period, and has a personalised learning plan in place.
  • Late enrolment – the student was enrolled at our school towards or at the end of the reporting period.
  • Low participation – the student has low levels of school participation and is not participating in an approved re-engagement program.
  • Serious illness – the student was seriously ill during the reporting period.
  • Unapproved extended family holiday – the student was on an unapproved extended family holiday during the reporting period.

Breaking of data chain

In 2017 progress in the Victorian Curriculum F-10 will not be linked to historical AusVELS achievement data as the data chain will be broken in all curriculum areas except English and Mathematics (Victorian Curriculum F-10 taught during 2016) and English as an Additional Language (EAL).

For the Victorian Curriculum F-10, comparative data related to student achievement progress will only be shown when a curriculum area is reported on for the second time.


Approaches to Learning

This report also includes the teachers’ judgements about your child’s Approaches to Learning, in each subject, using the following scale:


Each of your child’s teachers has commented on two Approaches to Learning:


We are excited about the introduction of the Victorian Curriculum, the ongoing evolution of our reporting process and the difference these improvements will make to improve the way we communicate with you about your child’s learning progress and her achievements.


Mr Damien Toussaint

Assistant Principal

Attitudes to School Survey

This is the annual survey offered by the DET to find out what our students think of school. It helps schools in gaining an understanding of our students’ perceptions and experience of school.  We will use the survey results to plan programs and activities to improve their schooling experience.


This year the questions are different and improved. We’ll be using our students’ responses to develop some student focus groups in Term 3 and zoom in on the areas that require some focus and improvement. Below is an example of the kind of questions asked:


Domain: Effective Teaching Practice for cognitive engagement

Effective teaching time

It is important to provide curriculum and instruction tailored to the needs and abilities of students and engage effectively – maximising the time during which students are actively and appropriately engaged (Aronson, Zimmerman & Carlos, 1999; Hattie, 2012).

Description: Teachers prepare students for learning, use class time effectively and provide useful feedback.





Our involvement in this global project officially ended in June this year. For 3 years we’ve been involved in a Global Project with 1000 schools across the world and our work will continue informally with a number of local and Melbourne schools and we’ll continue to access the professional support and resources through the NPDL projet.

What did the involvement in the NPDL mean for our students and teachers?

  • The development of a Digital Technologies curriculum (prior to the Victorian Curriculum)
  • The shifting of curriculum priorities so that Digital Technologies is now a core part of our curriculum
  • Recognition of our work locally and internationally
  • The development of MFG resources, curriculum and assessments
  • Access to ongoing, quality professional learning for 5 teachers at MFG
  • X2 ‘Maker Faires’ events involving over 300 primary school students from the local area in 2015 and 2016 and the establishment of this as a model promotional event involving primary schools
  • Professional learning workshops run by MFG for teachers from across the state
  • The development of individual Dig Tech programs for individual students
  • A focus on ‘collaboration’ and the ‘6 Cs’ at MFG

And some questions that will inform our future work:

  • Does the computer program the child or does the child program the computer?
  • Where in our curriculum do students get to explore their own questions?
  • What would we have to do to make school the best 7 hours of a student’s life?
  • What if we were free of assessment requirements? What would we teach and how would we do it?


Kelly Barrett – a student in Year 10 – finished her placement at JMSS as part of the 2017 Annual Regional Exchange. Kelly had a wonderful experience but commented that she missed her MFG teachers and thought they were much better than the teachers at JMSS!


We look forward to hearing from Kelly at our STEAM Assembly during National Science week in August.

Subject Selection and Pathways Process 2017

This the Pathways and Subject selection process for students starts in the last week of Term 2 and runs for 5 weeks. There will be some changes this year and a few more assemblies for students to support them through the process as well as to help them make some better informed selections and decisions.


This year we are introducing Year 10 Pathways Mentoring Interviews in Term 3. This will replace the annual Later Years Information Night for Parents/Carers. These interviews will involve interviews for all Year 10 Students and their parents over two days.

Year 8 Student Leadership Conference 2017 at MFG

Late in May we hosted the 2017 VAGGS (Victorian Association of Government Girls Schools) Year 8 Leadership Conference for 60+ Year 8 students from the 7 other Victorian Government Girls’ schools. The students had a great day – they participated in some mindfulness/breathing exercises in the morning with Ms Mullen-Walsh; a range of digital technology focused activities in the middle of the day with Mr Bonner and Bailee Adamson and then a Leadership workshop in the afternoon.



We had one of our two Professional Learning Days on 30th May. This day was internally run and had three key foci:

  • Staff participated in the mid-cycle sharing of their professional Goals 1 and 2
  • Activities for all staff to participate in focused on activity, creativity and staff well being
  • Staff working in Learning Area teams on curriculum, assessment and teaching.



Damien Toussaint, Assistant Principal, Learning and Teaching


What's On @ MFG

Sayembara Finals - Indonesian Speaking Competition

Congratulations to Gendhis Saputro (Year 10), Jasmin Thomas (7L) and Chloe Visser (7B) for their achievements in this year’s Victorian Sayembara Lisan (Indonesian Speaking Competition). After qualifying for the finals in the regional competition in May, Gendhis, Jasmin and Chloe attended the state finals at Melbourne University.

Well done to Gendhis for coming second in her category. Jasmin and Chloe achieved a ‘Highly Commended’, which is a great effort.

Everyone who competed worked very hard in the lead-up to both the heats and the finals, using class and home time and giving up lunch times to practice.

Well done to all our participants and a big congratulations to our place getters!

Ms Caroline Hall

Language Leader


Year 7 Geelong Gallery Visit.

As a culmination to the end of Year seven’s time doing Visual Art this semester they visited the Geelong Art Gallery. The students viewed three different exhibitions and also mads a quick visit of the new Geelong Library.


The exhibitions were:


Still life paintings by Adam Pyett

This survey exhibition of works spanning over ten years charts Adam Pyett’s long-standing interest in the still life genre.

Luminous relic

Luminous relic presents a major collaborative painting and moving image work by Mandy Martin and Alexander Boynes, with a score by Tristen Parr. Based on fieldwork around industrial Geelong, this urgent politically charged work examines the ongoing and cumulative effects of industry on landscapes, fragile ecosystems and human conditions.

Lets talk recognition- a children’s art exhibition

An exhibition of student works created in classroom workshops lead by local indigenous artists’ in response to Reconciliation. Programmed to coincide with National Reconciliation Week and NAIDOC week. Ms. Van Galen and year eleven students participated in this project and their work is represented in this exhibition.


Let's Talk Recognition

On Tuesday April 18th, year 11 ad 12 VCE Studio Arts students DETV participated in an Arts Workshop organised through The Geelong Art Gallery. The workshop was funded through the Department of Education and Training Victoria. Students worked with Nathan Petersen, a local indigenous artist and Gail Frost, Education Officer from Geelong Art Gallery.


Students were given an insight into Nathan’s knowledge of his cultural heritage and his practice as an artist. The design was based on totems for the four student houses at MFGSC in connection with the local land area of the Waduruwung people.


Within the mural, Beachley House is depicted by a yellow surfer, Gilmore is represented by a blue feather, Lipson by a heart and musical symbols in red and white and, Freeman by a running figure in black surrounded by green. The totems flank the central section of the mural which represents the land of the indigenous Waduruwung people and their country. The middle section layers include, the rising sun over the You Yangs, granite rock, basalt plains, the meeting place of Geelong, the river bank, the Barwon River, the surf coast and blue ocean.


The mural is currently on display in the “Let’s Talk Recognition” Exhibition at the Geelong Art Gallery until July 9th for public viewing. It will then be returned to MFGSC where it will be displayed in the Old Building on the Main Campus alongside the mural painted in 2016.

Jana van Galen

ARTS Learning Area Leader


7L Visit to South Geelong PS

On Wednesday the 14th our 7L students had the opportunity to visit Geelong South Primary School's Prep class to present and read the great picture story books they have created over the last three weeks. This task was designed to enhance their understanding of different book genres, encourage them to use their imaginations and practice/enhance their creative writing. Once at the school, their presentation of the books and reading time provided them with a chance to practice their public speaking skills infront of a new audience. They all did a fantastic job and represented our school very well. Many high-fives and thanks were given by the excited preps! 


Annie Mullen-Walsh 7L HG and English Teacher

Engineers Without Borders

All Year 7 students have been lucky enough to participate in a workshop run by Engineers Without Borders.  The students learnt all about the different types of engineering and what this looks like in our community.  They were then challenged with the mock task of building a water filter for a particular community.  Each team had a different country, tricky instructions to use, and different amounts of resources.  The students worked collaboratively to create some amazing filters that appeared to be very successful…although we didn’t drink the water! 


This workshop enhanced our learning and curriculum perfectly as we finish our Water Unit and begin our Mixtures and Separation Methods Unit


7L Students Love Their Mummies!

The students in 7L having been learning about life in ancient Egypt and have spent some time working in groups to research an aspect of daily life. 

Here’s some of the things they discovered:


  • ancient Egyptians ate flamingo
  • mummifying a body took up to 70 days
  • if the family cat died, everyone in the household would shave off their eyebrows as a sign of mourning
  • many Egyptians shaved their heads and wore wigs
  • women would place a lighted candle on their heads during the day, so the scent would mask their body odour
  • the kohl they used to paint black lines around their eyes contained lead, which caused eye infections and blindness


Towards the end of the unit, 7L participated in a mummification competition.  They worked in small teams to compete for the prestigious Mummification Trophy.  The winning team was both ‘rapt’ and wrapped!


Senior VCAL News

This term we completed our Bake Sale task that we started in term 1, which was a total success. Since then we have been on an excursion to the Geelong Library, where a lady talked to us about Gallipoli and how to find soldiers in the war.  We also got a tour of the library and they have a floor dedicated to history and have hundreds of books with newspaper announcements for the arrival of babies  


We have also been learning about the 5 different dimensions of wellness. We have done activities that are associated with the different dimensions of wellness, one being we went to the local café for a technology free catch up with the class.  We also have been down to the Geelong Botanical Gardens for some meditation and peaceful writing on how autumn makes us feel. We have also had two guest speakers come in and talk to us.  We had Mrs Eastwood come and talk to us about spiritual wellness, while Amanda, the school nurse, talked to us about safe sex + STI prevention.  After every activity we had to write a reflection on our thoughts.


 We have recently started our next project called the Pop Up Market, which is where both Senior and Intermediate students hold a market on the day/evening of parent-teacher-student conferences. We will be selling what we have crafted over the past weeks. All the profit goes to a charity that the Senior class will chose.


At the end of May we went up to Melbourne as part of one of our creative writing task. We visited Artvo and have to incorporate the pictures from Artvo into our creative piece of writing and present it to a group of people that we aimed our work at.


In the second week of June all year 12 students went on camp to Melbourne. On the Thursday we had a number of workshops at school from different Universities and TAFE. In the afternoon we headed up to Melbourne by bus to Urban Central Hostel, where we stayed for the night. We had dinner at Crown Food Court and visited the Eureka Sky-deck. The next morning the VCE students went on a tour of RMIT City Campus and the VCAL students did a Ghost + History tour around Melbourne. We all met up at the Queen Victoria Market for lunch before heading home.


Before end of term we will be going to the Queen Vic Market to observe an operating market place. We will be required to complete a task on OH+S in preparation for our Pop Up Market project.

Senior VCAL Bake Sale

On Tuesday 3rd of May the Senior VCAL class organised a Bake Sale that sold sweet treats such as Cameral Slices, Lemon Slice, Oreo fudge, Chocolate truffles, Chai Cupcakes, Chocolate freckles and more! Our aim was to raise money for Relay for Life. Leading up to the Bake Sale our VCAL class researched three different recipes each and narrowed it down to one recipe that met our requirements for this task. The recipes we decided to make for this task, we created 3-5 minute video showing step-by-step instructions and demonstration. We investigated our recipes, researched ingredients, how much ingredients cost to buy for your sweet, how could we change the recipe to make it our own recipe.


Our products had to be affordable for everyone to enjoy. On the day we presented our sweets and slices in the Open Area at lunchtime. We baked our sweets and slices in the cooking room the day before, keeping our baked goods in the fridge until ready to sell. Planning our time was a major task for everyone to make sure they could bake and clean in a double session. We had to bake our sweets or slices in the time frame given, which everyone in our class successfully achieved.  


Our class raised money earlier in the year for Relay for Life by creating different fundraisers. On the day we raised over $300 towards this, which was a really amazing effort. Thank you everyone for coming to our Bake Sale. We managed to sell almost everything on Tuesday and sold the remaining products on Wednesday at recess.

Year 12 Camp

On the 7th and 8th of June year 12s attended camp.

On day one representatives from Universities and TAFE visited the school to talk to the year 12 students.


The Universities that attended were Victoria University, Federation University, Australian Catholic University, Deakin University and the Gordon (TAFE). Each student either attended sessions with Universities and TAFES or sessions on how to be presentable for the workplace. Some students who attended the sessions with the Universities found it beneficial, as for other students they realised they needed to further consider their options. With many students keeping in mind that the "world is your oyster". After our sessions students were given the option to ask a panel of TAFES and Universities any further questions that they may have.


We had a special guest speaker, Sasha Kuluri speak us about her life journey so far. It was not only inspiring but Sasha is great at telling her story, so it was very entertaining. The students who were staying overnight got on the bus and headed to Melbourne.


We arrived at our hostel in Southbank, after settling into our rooms we headed out for dinner and night time activities. All of the year 12's were able to overlook the city at the amazing  Eureka Skydeck. The elevator in the Skydeck went up 88 levels quicker than the elevator in the hostel that only went up 4 levels. It was the perfect night for it, the teachers thought it was a great opportunity to practise their selfie skills! 


On day two some students went to RMIT to watch a presentation and take part in a short activity.A small group of students went off to a ghost tour as an alternative activity. This was completely discussed, planned and arranged by the VCAL students. The tour began at Federation Square and was a 2km walking tour around the CBD, with a guide who told history and stories about the buildings and laneways, of Melbourne and its spooky residents.


To finish off the day everyone was given the opportunity to explore Queen Victoria Market and do a bit of shopping before returning back to Geelong on the bus.


The Hub News

Make-up Frenzy Day

On the 7th of June we had a make-up artist come in to The Hub for a special session on skin care and how to correctly apply make-up. The girls were lucky enough to all have their make-up done and had a visit to Pheobe Kent's pop up hair salon. It was great to see how happy and beautiful the girls felt afterwards. Overall it was huge a success and we are hoping to make this an annual event!


Praise Box

The Praise Box has been put to good use and there has been great feedback and thank you’s coming in! Keep them coming! You can put your name on it or remain anonymous….


“Holly has been working hard and doing fantastic work – especially in English! Well done Holly!!”


“Massive thanks to Jo for being such an IT wizz!! You are always so helpful THANK YOU!!”


“Love to see the door open to all our MFG students and to see how kind, inclusive and welcoming everyone is”


“Col’s Kitchen, what an amazing vibe! Love it!!”


“Really awesome and supportive place and staff”


“Gracie has done a great job of reading and going out of her comfort zone while reading to the Kinder kids during Term 1.”


“Thank you Ash for being so kind and welcoming”


Staff Professional Day

As you know Tuesday May 30th was a student free day at MFG to enable our staff to be involved in a day of professional learning.

The first part of the morning saw our staff gathering in small teams to share best teaching practice. Teachers of year 12 VCE outlined their data analysis from 2016, identifying specific areas for improvement and strategies for improvement with 2017 VCE students. Teachers of years 7 to 11 also shared the ‘detective work’ they had completed on their classes to identify the range of ability levels and strategies of differentiation used to progress learning.

This was followed by a well-being and mindfulness session which carries over from the professional learning our staff were introduced to at the end of 2015 by Dr Richard Chambers of Monash University.

Staff worked with their Learning Areas or Focus Teams in the afternoon on various issues such as preparation of Learning Tasks, On-going Reporting, Curriculum documentation and any of the myriad of tasks that need to be neatly put in place for a smooth start to semester 2 which starts this term on Monday June 19th.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the parents/cares and families for accommodating this day and all the organisation that has to be put in place on the home front for their child/children to stay at home.

Thanks also to the staff who stepped up to lead the many working parties throughout the day and to all our staff who take up and contribute to ensure this is a valuable learning experience on the MFG calendar.


Joy Carr

Professional Learning Leader


Reunion Island - Host Families Wanted

Host Families Wanted For Our Reunion Island Friends – March 2018


Planning is already underway to receive the tenth visit from our Reunion Island sister school, Lycée Sarda Garriga, in March 2018.


A delegation of students and teachers has visited Matthew Flinders every two years since January 2000.


Approximately 22 students and three teachers (including Monsieur Said, of course) will stay in Geelong for 12 days from Saturday, March 10 and until Wednesday, March 21st. They will spend time in classes at Matthew Flinders and visit local tourist attractions.


This is a rare opportunity for students of French to form a friendship with a native-speaker of French. Our sister school is a senior high school so students are usually 15-16 years old. Students from Matthew Flinders often stay with the family of the student they hosted if they go on the trip to Reunion Island the following year. Throughout the seventeen years of this program, many enduring connections between students, families and teachers have been formed. One former Matthew Flinders student even shared a flat with her Reunion Island ‘sister’ while studying at university in France!


Students who don’t study French are also welcome to host. After all, the Sarda Garriga students are here to improve their English not their French! It is a great way to learn about the everyday life and interests of young people your age who live in another part of the world and speak another language.


Host families will treat their Reunion Island guest as a member of their family for the duration of the visit. By staying with your family, the Sarda Garriga student will get to learn about family life in Australia and perhaps your family might be able to take her or him to an event or place that is not part of the program organised by Matthew Flinders, such as an AFL football match, a netball match, Jirrahlinga or the cinema.


Some families prefer to host two students and there are occasions when we need families who are willing and able to welcome two Reunion Island students into their family.


If your family is interested in this program, please fill out the form below and return it to a French teacher.


An information night will be held early in term 4 when further information will be distributed and any questions will be answered. In the interim, please do not hesitate to contact us at school if you have any queries or concerns.


Michael Keast, Sue Smith, Delphine Pacifique



Host Family Program for the Reunion Island Visit March 2018


Our family is interested in hosting one/two Reunion Island student(s) from Saturday March 10 until Tuesday March 21, 2018.


Name of Matthew Flinders student:_______________________________________Year level:________


Parent/guardian signature:______________________________________________________________


Please return slip to your French Teacher  asap.


Student Exchange Applications Now Open


Breakfast Club


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