Photo: Year 8's Eve and Hannah meet former Premier John Cain at the Alumni lunch

Northcote High School Newsletter

20 June 2017
Issue Ten
From the Principal
For your diary
Reporting and Feedback: end of semester update
This week: Mid Year Music
Change alert: Year 7 study skills
Change alert: Human rights on film one night only Wednesday 21 June
Taking the lid off the next Art Club project
Year 7s celebrate their 1st Semester
Year 9 Semester wrap up
Effort and achievement: Year 10
From the Senior School
Applied Learning at work
Farewell and welcome: staffing update 
Careers News
Our Library is online
Leading the way: NHS Respectful Relationships
Invitation: Parent seminar
Terrific telescope: next opportunity 27 June
Acting globally
Sports update
'Guys and Dolls': Production in progress
Back to Lunch
Stay safe on your bike
Community notices
Northcote High School
9488 2300
St. Georges Rd
Northcote, Victoria, 3070

From the Principal

Photo: Setting goals and making progress (photo from Divisional Cross Country)

Semester 2 begins

This week is the first of Semester 2. Many students are excited to begin new semester courses, other changes may include teachers and learning spaces. Timetables and key information is available on Compass and myNorthcoteHigh. 

The Learning Partnership

There is a body of contemporary research highlighting the links between student success and the importance of an effective home / school partnership.  Below is a link to one of many articles


The beginning of a new semester is a good milestone to spend some time with your child reflecting on Semester 1 learning successes and goals for Semester 2.  In Connect classes, students will be working with their Tutor reflecting on 2017 effort and learning to date and setting goals for future learning.  A positive starting point in your discussions is reviewing feedback from teachers in the form of comments and rubric assessments, reflecting on your child’s strengths and achievements by subject and also considering Learning Behaviours (GPAs), attendance and organisation, including punctuality.


A self-assessment by the student is also a great starting point – consider areas of strength and interest, subject highlights including knowledge and skills.  Highlight where there are successes to celebrate along with identifying learning challenges and areas for effort and goals.  For instructions and tips on accessing myNorthcoteHigh, see the article 'Reporting and Feedback'  in this newsletter.


In this newsletter we again celebrate the rich tapestry of life that is Northcote High School: young people involved at school and in the community.  Acknowledging and celebrating your child’s involvement supports their success. Involvement beyond the classroom is also critical to young people’s health and wellbeing, along with building skills in collaboration, communication and creativity and critical thinking.  Congratulations to all our young people contributing to the Northcote High School community and beyond.

GAT Day a success

Last week more than 60% of the Senior School, 440 students enrolled in one or more Unit 3 / 4 VCE studies, sat the General Achievement Test (GAT).  The GAT marks the midway point of the year for the Year 12 cohort. The GAT is an important part of the assessment process.  At the conclusion of the VCE, the school, and individual GAT results are used as part of the statistical moderation process by VCAA. 

This year our students had the opportunity to participate in a pre-GAT familiarisation program conducted by ConnectEd.  Feedback was very positive, highlighting how to approach the various elements of the GAT and why it is important to perform at your best.   Thank you to the GAT organisational team led by Shane Gemmola, supervisors and the team who assisted with the planning and coordination.


On GAT Day our Year 7s enjoyed a Fun Day Out and later in the week, the Drama Festival.  Staff have been working hard providing feedback on final assessments, wrapping up Semester 1 learning and setting up for the launch of Semester 2.  

Welcome new staff

A number of new staff will be welcomed to Northcote High across the next month.  See the article in this newsletter for a snapshot of new, returning and (temporarily) departing teachers.  In our Education Support Team we also welcome some new arrivals: Justine Sayers to the Library team; Vicky Cai to the Finance Team; and Xanthe Gunner who joins the Business Administration Team as a Trainee. Xanthe graduated from NHS in 2014.


VCE Offshore planning and preparations continue. Today Nick Murphy and Kun Qian returned from 5 days in China working with our partner schools – teachers, students and families. Hengshui No. 1 High School and Baotou Foreign Language School are both working toward establishing their first VCE Program Groups for launch in September 2017.  In partnership with teachers from Firbank Grammar, Thomas Carr College and RMIT, eight Northcote High School staff will be working in Nanjing with the schools and their teachers during the school holidays.  This will be followed by a 3 week induction Program for VCE teachers from China in Term 3. Thank you to Nick Murphy for his stewardship of this program.  In other highlights, six French students landed last week for 4 weeks in at Northcote High School. They will experience homestay with families (thank you) and activities coordinated by Pierrick Hubert and the French Faculty – bravo!  Next week eight Science students head to Fiji for Project Wallacea supporting marine science research.  Thank you to Megan Rolls for leading the way with this project. Over the holidays French students are also travelling to Noumea for language immersion and sunshine! Thank you Audra and Pierrick.

More great facilities news

The Performance Hub Project is on track for tender in August, with A block slated for demolition during the September holidays.  A feature of the planning process has been a strong collaboration between the architects and the school including the Performance Faculty team and Senior Years team. The StadiumThe School is undertaking a feasibility study / business case to support funding applications and partnership with clubs to ensure there is a strong narrative and identified need for an indoor facility (2 courts).  We are working with @Leisure who have a wealth of experience in supporting organisations to ensure they have the key information to seek funding.  Tomorrow, I am meeting with representatives from the Victorian School Building Authority, following meetings with Department of Education (North Western Region), David Feeney (Member for Batman) and Fiona Richardson (member for Northcote).  Beginning Term 3 schematic drawings will be available for review.

Events, Opportunities, Connections

As you will see in this newsletter, there is plenty to draw you into over school community over the next two weeks.  Music Concerts lead the way, along with year 7 study skills and parent education on sexuality, social media and pornography.


I also encourage you to join us for the brilliant Freedom Stories documentary (as featured at Sundance Film Festival and at Cinema Nova) this Wednesday evening: donations support the ARSC.


FINALLY – HOLD the date …. Northcote Comedy is back 07 September 2017!

The Northcote vibe lives through the myriad of opportunities to ‘get involved’ at our school – see you soon.

For your diary

Key dates 

  Please note the following events coming up:

  • Monday June 19              Start Semester 2 subjects
  • Tuesday June 20             Year 7 parent workshop: Elevate study skills 7pm
  • Tuesday June 20             Year 7 inter-school sport carnivals
  • Thursday June 22           Music concert - strings and vocals
  • Friday June 23                 Music concert - bands
  • Monday 26 June             Year 7 Elevate Study Skills workshop (rescheduled)
  • Monday 26 June             Operation Wallacea Trip (to 8/7)
  • Tuesday 27 June             Production rehearsal all day
  • Wednesday 28 June     Parent forum: 'Pornography, young people and sexuality today' 6.30pm
  • Thursday June 29          Senior students' Winter Solstice 4-7pm
  • Friday June 30                 End Term 2 (2pm dismissal)
  • Monday July 3                 French Study tour to New Caledonia (to 10/7)
  • Saturday July 15            Production all day rehearsal
  • Monday July 17               Start Term 3
  • Wednesday July 19       Year 9 Inter-cultural Discovery day
  • Wednesday July 19       Senior Years (Year 11 2018) Information Evening and Subject Expo
  • Tuesday 25 July             Year 9 & 10 2018 Family Information Evening
  • Wednesday 2 August   Year 9&10 2018 Subject Expo 

Reporting and Feedback: end of semester update

Photo: Using myNorthcoteHigh to access feedback

End of Semester Reports and online feedback

We know that many families have been engaging with myNorthcoteHigh across the year in order to keep track of their child’s progress and use the feedback as a prompt for a discussion about learning. We thank you for partnering with us in this element of the learning process.


The end of Semester 1 is an excellent opportunity to look back on the formal feedback that children have received across all subjects in order to celebrate their achievements and identify areas to improve in the second half of the year.


Online Feedback through myNorthcoteHigh

Teachers have endeavoured to give students regular feedback on their progress all year but it is important to note that teaching and learning sequences vary from subject to subject.


All feedback for assessment items completed in Semester 1 will be available through myNorthcoteHigh on June 30 which will give you a more complete picture your child’s performance for the Semester.


As we have now moved into Semester 2 the way to see Semester 1 feedback has changed slightly. To access Semester 1 feedback you will need to log in as usual, then when you click on the “Grades” tab you may notice that there is not much present.


To see Semester 1 results: 

1. Click on the button next to the Semester box. In the diagram below you will see a Green arrow pointing to the button you need to click on.

2.  You will see a drop down menu that says “select subject”.  This dropdown menu allows you to see all assessment items with feedback.

3. Click on the name of the assessment item for the detailed feedback (see pictures in Gallery)



Semester Reports

The Semester Reports provide an overall summary of the student’s performance across the semester.

They provide information on

  • Student achievement against the Victorian Curriculum Standards
  • Attendance
  • Submission of Assessment tasks
  • Behaviour and effort
  • Learning Behaviour performance


These reports will be available through the Compass portal on Friday June 30.


This week: Mid Year Music

Mid-year Music Concerts - get your tickets now!

Escape the winter blues with the Mid-Year Music Concert series. Come and enjoy our ensembles and bands over two special nights at the Clocktower Centre in Moonee Ponds. Starting time 7pm.


Tickets can be purchased online @
or by telephone: 9243 9191

Change alert: Year 7 study skills

Study Skills – Kick Start workshop for students rescheduled to June 26

The Year 7 Study Skills workshop promoted in the last newsletter has been rescheduled to June 26. The supporting Parent Seminar will still run as planned on June 20 at 7pm in the NHS Library. 


Over the last 15 years, Elevate Education has delivered award winning, research based Study Skills and Exam Preparation Seminar Programmes to secondary school students. Elevate now works with over 500,000 students across 1500 schools in 5 countries annually, empowering students with the most effective study skills to reach their academic best.


Northcote High School has run the study skills program with Year 11 and 12 students since 2010 and it continues to attract praise and positive feedback. To increase preparedness in the junior years, we have decided to introduce an additional program to further increase our students’ opportunities for success.


The workshops are designed to be interactive and dynamic, but also entirely practical. In this way, the students are more likely to acquire the skills long-term, and have sustained behavioural change. In particular, having effective study strategies will allow your child to save invaluable time in their study, so they can focus on higher value tasks, de-stress and be more productive in the time they spend at their desk. This will help to ensure that your child has embedded skills and extra confidence when exams arrive.


Year 7 parents, please log in to Compass to provide payment for your child to attend this session.


Supporting Study Skills at Home

Parent / carer seminar: 7pm 20th June in the NHS Library

Parents and carers of Year 7 students are invited to attend an informative session on strategies and approaches that can be employed at home. No additional cost is associated with this event.

Please RSVP here:


Additional information about the seminar is attached below


Change alert: Human rights on film one night only Wednesday 21 June

Freedom Stories: Australia and asylum seekers

To mark Refugee Week, the documentary Freedom Stories will be screened at the NHS Library on June 21. Please note that this event now also incorporates the Human Rights Short Film screenings previously advertised for Tuesday 20 June.

Freedom Stories is a positive documentary that explores the achievements and stories of former ‘boat people’ who arrived in Australian waters seeking asylum from the Middle East around 2001, a defining year in Australian politics.


Locked in remote detention centres and then placed on temporary protection visas, their limbo lasted for years. Now Australian citizens, they are finally building secure lives and contributing to their new country.


Freedom Stories premiered at the Sydney Film Festival and also screened at Cinema Nova for a season. It is rated PG and suitable for children in Grades 5 and above.


We will be joined by producer Lisa Horler (an NHS parent) who will introduce the film and answer any questions after the screening.


This is a great opportunity to further educate yourself and your children on the issues surrounding Australia's relationship with refugees.


All welcome!


Entry by donation to the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre: reserve tickets through

NHS Library

Arrive 6.30 for 7pm start

Cheese and wine provided

Contact [email protected] 

Taking the lid off the next Art Club project

Help us create....bring us your bottle tops!

The Art Club is embarking on a new exciting public art project in conjunction with the Green Team.


Don't bottle up your excitement any longer! Let it all out because we need your bottle tops and jam/pasta jar lids to create this 100% recycled artwork, which we will be working on throughout Term 3.


It will require thousands of bottle tops of all shapes, sizes and colours, both metal and plastic.

Examples might include lids and bottle tops from milk containers, soft drink bottles, jam jars, shampoo,skincare tubes etc. 


Please gather any bottle tops and lids you use in the home and put them in the designated collection point inside the main foyer of Northcote High School. 


We would greatly your participation.



Year 7s celebrate their 1st Semester

Photo: Year 7s at Latitude

Year 7 Fun Day

On Wednesday June 14, the Year 7s celebrated a successful first semester of secondary school with the traditional 'Fun Day'. This was the first responsibility for our newly elected Class Captains, who coordinated their form group's choice of activity and transport for the day.


Our classes visited Latitude in Heidleberg for some trampolining and rock-climbing; ArtVo museum; Strike at Melbourne Central for bowling and laser-tag; and the cinema for a movie afternoon. It was a very enjoyable day and a great time for the Year 7 Connect tutors, teachers and students to further develop their positive relationships with their groups and build our sense of 'community within community'.


Drama Festival

On Thursday 15th June, our Year 7 Drama students took part in the first Drama Festival held at Northcote High School.


Students enjoyed the ensemble performances that each group had been working on throughout term 2. Performing for a much larger audience can be incredibly daunting and our students performed exceptionally well.

Students also enjoyed several of the Year 12 Drama students’ solo performances. Special thanks to Adrian, Macsen, Xi and Charlie for their performances. The Year 7 students were very lucky to see how the skills they are developing in lessons continue to be refined and polished all the way through to Year 12. The Year 12 students commented on how prepared and advanced many of our Year 7 students are.

As voted by many of the Year 7 classes, the students in 7C who presented ‘What about the Ice Cream Parlour?’, were considered to have presented the most impressive piece.


Well done to Zoe, Tarrah, Alia and Lola for their work. Most impressively, Alia and Lola were recruited just moments before the festival to replace absent students!

Year 9 Semester wrap up

On track for success

Term 2 has seen many achievements for Year 9s and they are on track for building on that success in Term 3.  Here are some recent highlights. 



Well done to the Year 9s for completing their first exams. Students were well prepared and put in a great deal of effort in to performing at their best.


Fun theory projects

The idea behind the ‘Fun theory’ is that we can help people make changes for the better if we make it fun for them to do so. Year 9 students worked in groups to design and present a project that would bring about positive change at Northcote High School or in the City of Darebin. The projects that the students presented covered ideas from using music instead of bells at school, chill out areas in the school with bean bags and pathways that light up for pedestrian crossings. Students voted for their preferred project. Winners will be announced on Tuesday 27th June.  Stay posted!


General Reminders for Year 9s

We have recently been speaking with the Year 9s about the need to be in full school uniform each day.  Students can wear the school jumper, long shirt, spray jacket, school pants and stockings to stay warm in winter. Classrooms are heated and there are indoor options for break times.  Students are not permitted to wear non-school clothing such as hoodies, and they will be asked to remove them if possible. Students can only wear PE uniform on days that they have sport or PE.


Our processes for bringing a note from home to get a uniform pass at the sub-school office has not changed since the students were in year 7. They should all be well aware that they need to bring a parent note to collect a uniform pass before school for those rare occasions where there is a valid reason for being out of uniform.


The campus uniform shop is open Tuesday 12.30 - 4.00 and Friday 8.30 to 11.30 and uniform can also be ordered through Dobson's Hawthorn store or online

Login: NORTHCOTE HIGH SCHOOL   Password: NOR4433


Sarah Green and Steven Flight

Year 9 Head of School and Program Leader

Semester Two off to a busy start

New electives

Students started their new electives on Monday 19th June so they will have new teachers for these subjects. For most students their core subject teachers will remain unchanged.  If you have particular concerns about your child’s performance, we recommend that you get into contact with the teachers sooner rather than later.


Intercultural Discovery Day

Wednesday 19th July (Week 1) is the Intercultural Discovery Day, a whole year level excursion. Please see the article below for details.


2018 Subject Selection

During Weeks 1 – 5 of Term 3, students will participate in subject selection for Year 10 2018.  The main contact for advice about your child’s course planning will be their Tutor. It is important to us that families partner actively in the subject selection process, which is sure will generate plenty of discussion at home. To support this, students will be undertaking activities through the Connect program with their Tutor and other teachers to help them understand the process, and plot a possible course that parents will need to ‘sign-off’.  Family information evenings will also feature to assist you in supporting your child.


Further details and invitations to the events below (including booking information) will be communicated before the end of this term.


Key Subject Selection dates:  

  • Tuesday 25 July:  Year 9&10 2018 Family Information Evening
  • Wednesday 2 August: Year 9&10 2018 Subject Expo  
  • Monday 7 August: Draft subject selections with parent signature due
  • Tuesday 15 August - 22 August: Online subject selection window
  • Term 4 Week 1: Additional counselling / troubleshooting - Individual consultation as required
  • Term 4 Week 10: Course confirmation (parents attend with their Year 9 student)

Darebin Intercultural Discovery Day excursion- Wednesday 19th July

Wednesday 19th July (Week 1) is the Intercultural Discovery Day, a whole year level excursion visiting different places within City of Darebin or Federation Square in the city including:

  • Darebin Council Intercultural Understanding Centre, Preston
  • Darebin Ethnic Communities Council, Town Hall
  • Islamic museum, Thornbury
  • Chua Linh Son Buddhist temple, Reservoir
  • Koorie Heritage Trust, Federation Square

The purpose of this day is to develop the students Intercultural Understanding which is an element of the Victorian Curriculum.


Further details about the day will be provided via email to families.


If you have any queries about this excursion please contact Sarah Green or Steven Flight on 9488 2382 or email [email protected].

Effort and achievement: Year 10

Photo: Year 10 visit the Alfred Hospital

Year 10 round-up

Term Two has been busy for Year 10! After the exams everyone deserves a well-earned rest.  I want to thank students for the way in which they conducted themselves during the exams. It was clear that a great deal of effort went into them. Effort is something that we have seen a lot of this term. We were proud of the classroom leaders and other volunteers who helped raise over $650 for the Victorian Aboriginal Health Service in Preston with a BBQ as part of our Philanthropic project at the start of the term. I’ve watched our two ‘Youth for Causes’ teams enthusiastically work with the YHA to develop their ideas for a social enterprise that they will launch next term.


A group of around 30 Year 10s recently ventured out the Alfred hospital to partake in their P.A.R.T.Y. drug and alcohol awareness programme and with effort, they will share their learning with the rest of the cohort (see below for more details about this). Our ‘Young Changemakers’ team’s work with the Inner North Foundation, making a difference to people’s lives in Darebin has been ongoing and eventful.  Early in Term 3 the team will present to the whole school what they have learned and watch this space for a full report in the newsletter.


When I watched our Year 9 and 10 soccer teams go through to the Regional Finals, I was proud of the way our students played; as a team, having fun, demonstrating fairness in their sporting attitudes and with great effort. No doubt all the other teachers who have given their time, coaching our sports teams were also proud. Every Year9/10 Northcote team made it through to the Regional Finals!


We look forward to seeing this effort again in the next round of sporting competition and all the other events and programmes that our Year 10s are actively participating in, such as the School Production of Guys and Dolls, music events and more.


One of the highlights of this term was the Career Expo, which saw members of our community volunteer to give students an insight into the world of work. This event was a really important step on our Year 10s pathway into their senior years at Northcote High School. Thank you to all those involved!


Coming up in Term 3

Term 3 promises to be busy too! The course selection process starts in Week 1 with an assembly and a Senior Years Parent Information Night and Subject Expo. This will be a chance to find out more about pathway and subject options and help students make informed choices.  This term, during Connect students have already begun exploring career and Y11 subject options. Please ask to see their MIPS online Career Action Plan and the subject research worksheet that they will have brought home in the final week of this term.


During the first two weeks of Term 3 we are asking students to have active conversations with their families about their plans for Year 11. Students will work through the process of course selection in Connect Tutorial sessions. They will be bringing their Y11 subject and pathway application forms home so that families can also offer guidance.


In Week 1 Elevate Education will be working with Year 10 students in a session aimed at improving their study skills. Elevate has successfully worked with our senior students in the past and this session promises to be a great opportunity to develop essential study skills before the transition into Senior School.  I look forward to seeing you at the Information Night, please take note of some important dates for our Year 10 students.


Scott Macdonald and Meredith Gollan

Year 10 Head of School and Program Leader

Dates to note for Year 10s

Senior Years Parent Information and Subject Expo: Wednesday 19th July

Elevate ‘Study Like a Sensei’ session: Friday 21st July

Online Subject selections for 2018: Tuesday 15th August – 22nd August

Macbeth Performance: Wednesday 9th August

Immunisations: Wednesday 30th August

NT Camp Departs: Friday 1st September

Term 4 Work Experience: 20th- 24th November

P.A.R.T.Y program visit to Alfred Hospital

On Thursday the 15th June a group of year 10 students participated in the Prevent Alcohol and Risk-Related Trauma in Youth or P.A.R.T.Y Program at the Alfred Hospital.

The day was an interactive and designed to show students first hand some of the tragic consequences that can occur if they participate in risk-taking behaviour, as well as the choices they can make to avoid trauma and injury. Students got a chance to see the inner workings of the emergency department, trauma ward and the intensive care unit. They also learnt about injury prevention, rehabilitation and heard from a trauma injury survivor.

Students who participated in the day will share their experience with other year 10 students next term. 


Katie Archibald and Jessica Kelly

Student Services

From the Senior School

Photo: Learning about the GAT

Celebrations, support and plenty of hard work

Congratulations and Thanks!

For Year 11 and 12 students, we are over half way through either the last, or second last year of senior schooling. I was walking with some Year 11 students in the city the other day while on an excursion and they were remarking how quickly the year has gone and how they couldn’t believe that they were in Year 12 next year!  As a sub school, we always expect but can never quite believe how quickly it goes. Our first semester has been full of wonderful achievements of both students and teachers. The overwhelming feeling is that we are working well together and developing partnerships and relationships that will give us the best chance of achieving success which will sustain the students well beyond their last years of schooling.


Assessment and Reports

Students and families, it's important that you engage with all types of feedback offered by both teachers and peers. Your semester reports will be coming out soon and we encourage you to use these, in partnership with your ongoing feedback through myNorthcoteHigh, to identify areas of which you can focus next semester. Use these to have a conversation with your teacher on how best to improve your results.


Exams and GAT

We were so pleased with how both Year 11 and Year 12 students carried themselves during the Year 11 exams and the VCAA General Achievment Test. These are so important in preparing students for the second semester and beyond. We have been please with the collegiality shown in helping peers best prepare for their SACs and exams.


RMIT University Experience Day

Last week, Year 11 students were lucky enough to be able to enjoy the day at Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT). The day was designed to allow students to have the experience of attending university for the day. Many Northcote High School students nominate RMIT as their preferred destination for post-secondary studies. Students heard from NHS alumni, including our keynote speaker, Rebecca Loveridge, toured the trade areas, learnt how to strengthen wellbeing and tips on entering the workforce. Students also had participated in a session based on the ‘tutorial’ class concept and delivered through Elevate Education. We thank all those who participated and presented, making it a fantastic day.

Philanthropic Projects

We are so proud of the efforts of both Year 11 and Year 12 to help support some wonderful causes through our Philanthropic Projects. Year 11 supported the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre Foodbank by donating a ute-load of much needed supplies. Year 11 captains Eva and Finn were so happy to hand over the supplies and inturn learn so much about what the ASRC does. Did you know that the ASRC has over fifty people use the foodbank each day, some shopping for whole families? Over 70% of food is donated by the community, so they were so happy with the efforts of our Year 11s. Our Year 12s have been working with not for profit group ‘Homie’ who help people impacted by homelessness. Their project will finish up with selling beanies supporting ‘Homie’ and the good work they do.  


Coming up

Winter Solstice

Our second annual ‘Winter Solstice Festival’ will be taking place on the last Thursday of the term (29th June). Students of Year 11 and 12 and teachers are looking forward to getting together in a relaxed atmosphere to hear their classmates play in bands, share some food from the food trucks on site and celebrate the end of the first semester together. It was a great success last year and momentum is building to again make this one of the highlights of the year. 


Rest and recharge!

The upcoming holidays are so important for students to recharge their batteries ready for a new semester. A good balance of undertaking holiday homework tasks, preparing for the new semester and relaxing is highly recommended. Have a chat to your teachers on the best way to approach the break. In the Senior Years Centre, there is plenty of information on upcoming holiday study events through different private providers. Pop in and visit to find out more!


Shane Gemmola

Head of Senior School

Applied Learning at work

Photo: VCAL students earlier in the year explore the Grand Prix

VCAL update

We are just over halfway through our first year of VCAL at Northcote High School and we have had a great start to the Northcote program. Students have engaged in a number of different projects at school, as well as getting practical learning at their VET courses, which in turn is supplemented by Structured Workplace Learning Placements. Students have been able to apply lots of the things we’ve learnt in class (leadership, teamwork, project management) to create and publish an online walking map, creating an Amazing Race for Year 9 students who completed on the day of the GAT, June 14. For many of the students, it has changed the way that they’ve engaged with school and has allowed them to work at school on things that would help them prepare for their future pathway and/or area of interest.


Students have enjoyed being able to complete their learning in the world outside school, through excursions – such as going to the Australian Grand Prix and completing an Amazing Race around Melbourne – and through connecting with the local community.


Students are currently finishing up a project through the Foundation for Young Australians to develop entrepreneurial skills called $20 Boss, where students are given $20 to try and create a business and support a social or environmental cause. This is again pushing students to try and create real-world learning opportunities that help them develop skills they will use in their future pathways.


Planning is currently underway for the Intermediate (Year 11) VCAL program for 2018. Information will be available at the various upcoming parent evenings but if you would like more details about the program, please contact Paul-Micah Sullivan at [email protected] or on 9488 2368. 


Paul-Micah Sullivan

Head of Learning - VCAL

Farewell and welcome: staffing update 

Staffing news and teacher changes
Semester 2/Term 3

As we are nearing the end of Term 2 we would like to communicate some staffing changes required for Term 3 as a  number of staff will be taking or returning from Leave. We understand the importance of quality handovers  between teachers to ensure there is minimal impact on the learning for our students and incoming teachers are well informed and know their new students. Included below is a list of the changes that will take place:

  • Mr Andrew Kyprianou will be returning from leave in Term 3.
  • Mr David Norman will be taking Leave for Term 3 and 4, he will be replaced by Mr Jonathan Hoon (details below).
  • Mr Mike Grose will be taking Leave for Term 3 and 4, his various classes will be taken by a number of different teachers for Term 3 and 4 (Mr Hefford, Mr Hoon, Ms Oberthier and Mr Melican), with this transition happening from this week so the students will have both Mr Grose and their new teacher for some sessions.
  • Mr Leondidis and Ms Cosaris will both be taking leave during Term 3 and their classes will be taken by Mr Erik Koopmans (details below).
  • Mr Richard Ryan will finish his current replacement role (replacing Ms Ana Brandler). The French classes currently taken by Mr Ryan will be taken by Ms Katherine Koopmans (details below).
  • Ms Peta Siric will conclude her current role at the end of term. Her classes will be taken by Ms Paula Andreovski (details below).


New Staff for Term 3:

  • Ms Paula Andreovski is currently teaching at Elwood College and has in the past held a number of leadership role in both Faculty and Student focussed areas. Paula will be teaching Art and VCD.
  • Mr Jonathan Hoon: Jonathan is a graduate of the University of California, Berkely and from the Graduate School of Education at the University of Melbourne. Aside from being in the top of his class academically he was also a rowing coach and taught Primary School in San Diego and Texas. Mr Hoon will be teaching his classes whilst the school advertises a longer-term position.
  • Ms Katherine Koopmans is a graduate of the University of Waterloo in Canada (where she was a classmate of Ms Elisha Templin) and she will be teaching French and Mathematics from Year 7 to 10. Katherine is currently teaching at College level in Canada.
  • Mr Erik Koopmans is qualified in Physics, Maths and Computer Science and has been teaching at the Senior Years in these subjects for two years in Canada.


Departing Staff / Staff on Leave for Term 3:

  • Mr David Norman and Mr Mike Grose will both be on leave for Semester 2, 2017.
  • Mr Michael Zambon and Ms Peta Sirec will conclude their current positions at the end of Term 2. We will continue to see Mr Zambon around the school, however, and thank him for his many contributions in Maths and Music this term. Mr Kyprianou will be returning in Term 3. We will also continue to see Ms Sirec as she will be undertaking some short-term leave replacement roles in Term 3.
  • Mr Richard Ryan has been working with us this term and replacing Ms Ana Brandler and he has made a great contribution to the French program during his short stay. Ms Katherine Koopmans will take on these French classes as well as teaching Maths.

Careers News

Photo: Visit the Careers page on myNorthcoteHigh

Work Experience for Year 10s

Year 10 students and their families are reminded that students need to be finalising their placements as soon as possible in order to secure one which will have value in terms of career and study planning. All Year 10 students are expected to be completing a placement during the week of November 20-24, although additional placements can be organised at other times – see photo for block-out dates.


Remember that volunteering offers a wide range of rewarding and informative experiences as well as paid work!


Year 12 reminders for Term 3

Next term will be a busy one for Year 12 students as they focus on completing their secondary school studies and working out which path to follow when they leave NHS. For those who wish to pursue further studies in Victoria (including diploma and certificate courses in many trade areas), students will need to register and apply using VTAC. Numerous activities will support students through this process, including assemblies, Connect lessons and the opportunity for individual counselling if needed. Families will also be invited to an information evening on August 10.


In Term 2, all Year 12 students filled out a “Health Check” survey, to see whether they were on track with their planning. For some, this will have revealed a need for some further reflection and research, and the forthcoming holidays represent an excellent opportunity to do this. Students will also be given a tip sheet just before the holidays, so families are encouraged to engage with the various items on this, especially if special consideration for any of the categories of disadvantage apply. Being prepared before VTAC opens will make the application process much easier to navigate.


Key dates:

  • VTAC opens August 7
  • VTAC registration closes September 28
  • SEAS applications due October 10
  • Change of preference possible until December 20 (International students earlier – date TBC)

Open Days 2017

Start thinking about which unis you would like to check out during next term and calendar in the dates on this flyer. Preparing for these events well in advance helps you get the most out of them, especially on days when more than one uni is holding its Open Day. Check individual websites for events, seminars and scheduling options to ensure you experience the aspects of the uni that interest you most. Start visiting unis well before Year 12!


Early Entry University Schemes for Year 12s

Year 12 students should check to see whether they are eligible for any of these programs, and whether they would like to apply. Various deadlines apply, and they are all coming up quite quickly.

Examples include:

  • La Trobe’s Aspire Program – closes August 31
  • ACU’s Early Achievers Program – closes July 17
  • ACU’s Passion for Law Program – closes September 15
  • ACU’s Passion for Business Program - closes September 15

See early newsletters or google the uni name + program name to find out more and apply.


Our Library is online

Photo: Year 7s explore the Library website

Self service on the John Cain Library webpage

We have been happy to see many students using the self service options on the library webpage to manage their borrowing from home. Students can log in to the library website ( with their Compass details to check on their loans, renew items and place reserves for books they want to borrow.

Students can borrow up to 6 books for 2 weeks, and 2 magazines for 1 week. Loans can be renewed two times online.

Leading the way:
NHS Respectful Relationships

Leading Respectful relationships and gender equality

In Term 1 Northcote High School was selected to be a Lead School in the Department of Education's Respectful Relationships Initiative 2017-2018. 


What is the Respectful Relationships initiative?

Respectful Relationships is about tackling family violence and respectful relationships through education. As part of a staged process, all Victorian schools will be supported to implement a whole school approach. As a community we will look at staff practices, classroom management, school events, sport programs, uniform and other occasions, to ensure all aspects of a school’s operation and culture are underpinned by gender equality. This work also ties in with our school values of fairness and humanity.


We will be providing training opportunities for staff, students and parents to raise awareness and to start community conversations. Look out for further information and events in newsletters and Compass news items throughout 2017 and 2018.


For further information please have a look at the following links:

Respectful relationships in schools
Start a conversation with your child -


Katie Archibald

Head of Student Services

Invitation: Parent seminar

How can you help your child navigate issues of pornography and sexuality?

As part of our Respectful Relationships Initiative, NHS invites all parents and carers to a free seminar:

It's time we talked: Pornography, young people and sexuality today

Wednesday 28th June 

NHS Library
Reserve your place via:


Readily available and aggressively marketed online, exposure to hardcore pornography is now mainstream. Porn has become a default sex educator for many young people, with serious implications for their capacity to negotiate free and full consent, for mutual respect, sexual health, and gender equality.


This session will be led by Maree Crabbe, coordinator of the community education project Reality & Risk: Pornography, young people and sexuality.

This session, led by Maree Crabbe, Coordinator of the community education project Reality & Risk: Pornography, young people and sexuality, will explore:


  • What do parents need to understand about pornography and its influence on young people’s sexual understandings and expectations?
  • How can parents support their children’s healthy social and sexual development in an age of pornography?


Maree is Co-Producer and Co-Director of the documentary films Love and Sex in an Age of Pornography, broadcast on SBS in Australia and in six other countries, and The Porn Factor, recently broadcast on SBS. She is also author of In The Picture – a whole school resource to assist secondary schools to address the influence of explicit sexual imagery. Maree’s articles on young people, sexuality and pornography have been published in online and print media.

Terrific telescope: next opportunity 27 June

Photo: Saturn

Night sky viewing

Our terrific telescope will be set up in the courtyard near D13 on

  • Tuesday 27th June 7.00pm to 8.00pm*

Students, teachers and families all welcome.

Bring your cameras, phones and ipads to take some of your own photos of Saturn!

For more information please see Ms Hutchens.


*Weather permitting. If it is a cloudy evening we will reschedule.

Acting globally

Photo: At sister school Huaibei No 1 High School

International Students celebrating the end of term

Following the fun & exciting basketball game, the International Student Office organised a celebration dinner last week, to thank both the International Student Team and the Staff Team for carrying on the great tradition at Northcote High School over the years. Each year the International Student VS Staff Basketball Game is indeed a school yard highlight. International Students feel it is a great honour to be able to play with staff team. The pleasant dinner celebration is another high note to conclude the term.

International Student Office

Welcome to our French Exchange Students

Last week we welcomed the arrival of NHS’s first reciprocal exchange students from the Centre International de Valbonne (CIV). Valbonne is a small village located near Antibes and Cannes on the French Riviera. Students from Northcote will visit CIV later this year and be hosted by families in the school community. Thanks to Pierrick Hubert for his coordination of the homestay arrangements and to our families who have volunteered as hosts.


Sean Butler

Assistant Principal

Huaibei No 1 High School 

Northcote High School and Huaibei No. 1 High School in China formed a Sister School relationship in 1999 and since that time more than 700 students and 50 teachers have been exchanged through annual visits. This, and other international relationships, are part of the fabric of who we are as a school community. Our Sister School will be visiting in August  for approximately 7 days including their arrival and departure day.  As in past years, students will participate in homestays with Northcote families and will attend some classes as well as excursions around Melbourne.

Sports update

Photo: Divisional Cross Country

Term 2: an exciting time for sport

What an exciting term we have had! Throughout Term 2 NHS have participated in a variety of sporting events with the majority of teams and individuals securing places at Regionals. Our vast sporting calendar would not be possible without the commitment of our Staff/Student Coaches and Competing Students. An intense training calendar with many early morning training sessions contributes to our success, but most of all the pure dedication, pride, friendships and enjoyment our students display tops it all. I look forward to more laughter, fun and celebrations in Term 3.


Sarah Blanchard

Sport Coordinator

Recent results

Division Cross Country

On Friday 2nd of June the Division Cross Country was held along the Darebin Creek in Reservoir.  60 of our students qualified for the upcoming Regional Event which is to be held at Bundoora Park on Wed 21st June.  Good Luck to all students competing.  


Congratulations also to Javier Tabit and Guy Fricke who competed in the School Cross Country Championships on Saturday 17th June: both finished in good positions. Well done!

Year 8 Carnival Day

On Thursday 15th June the Year 8 Divisional Carnival Day took place at a variety of venues.  We had teams representing in Football, Soccer and Netball.


Having success throughout the day the Year 8 Boys Football Team then moved through to the final where they had a 60-point win against Thornbury. They now move onto the next round to be played on August 1.


Well done to our Year 8 Netball Team who also won and secured a placed in the next round. 

Our combined Year 7 and 8 Boys Netball Team automatically move through to the Regionals as no other teams were entered in the Divisional Competition.


Both Year 8 Soccer Teams had some success. The boy’s team cruised through the day finishing champions in the final.  Our girls' team competed in some nail-biting matches but unfortunately lost in their final game against Thornbury.

The cold early morning training sessions have really paid off!



We have an exciting new opportunity this year at Northcote High. We have been working with Southern Cross Cheer to develop a Northcote Cheer Squad with a view to entering competitions later in the year. The first taster mornings took place in term 1 and early term 2 where we had a great turn out from students across the year levels. Taster morning will continue until the end of term 3. If you would like to attend come along at try it out there will be another taster morning running this Thursday (22nd June) in the Gym (8am-9am). Please come and see me in the PE Office if you would like further information. 


Coming Up

Tues 20 June: Year 7 Carnival Day – Football, Soccer, Netball (90 students competing!)

Wed 21 June: Regional Cross Country (60 students competing)

Thurs 22 June: Year 7 Badminton (8 students competing)

Term 3: lots to look forward to

Training for term 3 sports will commence within the first two weeks back. Keep an eye out for the new training calendar in the gym foyer window. Simply turn up to any tryouts that you like. Term 3 sports include Hockey, Basketball and Table Tennis.


Fri 18th Aug: Hockey (G) 7-10

Wed 23rd Aug: Hockey (B) 7-10

Thurs 31st Sept: Basketball and Table Tennis Year 9/10

Tues 5th Sept: Basketball and Table Tennis Year 8

Fri 8th Sept: Basketball and Table Tennis Year 7


NHS Instagram

Keep up-to-date with training, team news, results, pictures and much more. You can find us by searching northcote_high_school_sport.

Have a great break!

'Guys and Dolls': Production in progress

Rehearsals in full swing

The sounds of harmonies and dancing feet have been filling the Hall recently with rehearsals well underway for the annual school production, this year 'Guys and Dolls'.  The cast has had a number of full-day rehearsals, as well as shorter ones at lunchtimes and after school, and will come in over the holidays for more.  Keep an eye out on Compass and in this Newsletter for booking details. In the meantime, enjoy the very contemporary poster designed by student Year 10 Ella Richards.


Back to Lunch

Photo: Dimi of Year 9 speaks with Alumni

Celebrating Northcote's history

Last week we enjoyed the annual 'Back to' alumni lunch, held in the training restaurant at Melbourne Polytechnic. Alumni from across the decades enjoyed catching up old friends, reminiscing about their own school days and hearing about how much the school - and schooling - has changed. Alumni in attendance included former Premier (and our Library's namesake), John Cain, and retired County Court judge, now author, Graham Fricke, who delivered an entertaining keynote speech. Year 8 and 9 student leaders and members of the Ripples Magazine editorial group were also in attendance, making the most of the opportunity to learn about their school's history.


Stay safe on your bike

If you've got a head, you need a helmet!

A reminder that, as required by law, students should wear helmets if they are riding bikes to and from school (the contents of their skull are too valuable to risk!). We have been receiving a number of calls from community members about seeing our students riding to school with their helmets hanging from the handle bars. 


To ensure pedestrian safety, bike riders should also walk their bikes through the school grounds, and park them only in designated areas.  If your child rides to school we would appreciate you discussing these points with them.

Community notices

Merri Park works

Please find attached notification regarding upcoming works in Merri Park


Public safety: a message from the Victoria Police 

I write on behalf of Inspector Anthony Ryan, North West Metro, Division 5, Community and Road Safety in response to recent incidents affecting perceptions of safety amongst our community members.


Given the recent events in Brighton and overseas local police wish to address any feelings of uncertainty or concern amongst our local residents and understand that there is a need for continued police reassurance throughout this time.  Please assure your community members that they can feel comfortable and safe going about their day to day activities and that although you may see an increased police presence at sporting events, transport hubs and in other public spaces, this is solely for reassurance purposes and there is no cause for concern.


There is no intelligence to suggest any increased threat to anything in Victoria. Our national security level has not changed and remains at ‘Probable’, as it has been for the past few years.  Victoria Police continue to do everything possible to keep Victorians safe, are confident there is no increased threat and encourage community members to go about their business as usual.


Should you have any concerns please do not hesitate to contact your local police station for advice or myself. If you do see or hear something that doesn’t feel right please contact the National Security Hotline on 1800 123 400.


Jo Parissis

Darebin Police Youth Resource Officer

Preston Police Station

55 Roseberry Ave Preston

Blue Light Disco June 30

The next Preston-Darebin Blue Light is on Friday 30th June.  This is our annual Red Nose Day Blue Light where we are pledging $2 to SIDS & Kids for Red Nose Day so we can make a difference when it comes to saving the lives of babies and children.  We are having a photo booth, and we will be giving away prizes for the child in the best red outfit.  I will also be doing giveaways for kids wearing red noses on the night!

Jo Parissis 

Darebin Police Youth Resource Officer


School Holiday workshops for creative kids


Northcote High School Newsletter
Parent Seminar - Summary.pdf
OPEN DAYS 2017_by date.pdf
Community bulletin-Merri Park_FINAL.pdf
Bike Parking map 2017.pdf