It is with sadness that we farewell another long serving staff member of the college who will retire at the end of the year. Mrs Sheena Rak started at the college in 2001 She has taught English, Psychology and Literature. We wish Sheena the best in her future endeavours and know that she will enjoy the next phase of her life.
Congratulations to all students who were invited to attend Presentation Night on Friday 13 December to receive an award. I enjoyed catching up with many students and their proud families during the evening. These students received awards because they have clearly demonstrated the ability to do their best always by working to overcome learning challenges to successfully achieve their goals.
Congratulations to our 2019 College Dux Thanh Nguyen who scored an outstanding 99.3 ATAR. We also had 21 students receive ATAR scores above 95 and 61 students scored above 90 which was a great achievement.
I would also like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the rest of our students who have done their best to fulfil their potential in all activities they have undertaken at Mount Waverley Secondary College. Such a positive attitude to learning enables our college to maintain its exemplary learning culture.
I wish all members of the Mount Waverley Secondary College community a well deserved safe and relaxing holiday. I look forward to joining you in 2020 for another successful year.
2020 Return to School Dates
The first day for Years 7, 9 and 12 students is Wednesday 29 January. Years 8, 10 and 11 students start Thursday 30 January. The General Offices will be open for business on Tuesday 28 January.
As we move further into December, the holidays start to draw closer, with students recently completing the Early Commencement Program. This year’s Year 8 students have become our Year 9 students for 2020 and our Year 9s moving into their Year 10 classes. This program has many benefits including helping to transition students into their new year level and it also allows them to better understand the learning program they will be undertaking in each subject in the coming year.
Year End Program
The Year End Program has again been a great success. The program provides a wide range of activities for students to engage with across a number of days. Students have been on a Street Art Tour, played Thunderhoc, visited Fun Fields, hit the waterslides at Adventure Park Geelong and climbed the Thousand Steps to name just a few of the many and varied activities on offer. Thanks must go to Ms Sarah Smith for her great work in organising this program.
Duke of Edinburgh Expeditions
Thanks to Mr Liam Wall, Mr Jaidyn Newport, Ms Ruby Hooke and Ms Emma Kerr for taking out our Year 9 students on their Duke of Edinburgh expedition last week. Two groups were out for the week, one trekking at Mount Stirling and the second on the Murray River canoeing. As students collected their bags and said farewell they all said how much they enjoyed the week. Well done to all!
Finally, as this year closes we start to look towards next year and the opportunities for learning and growth that will be provided at the college. I look forward to welcoming students back to college next year at they continue their learning journey at Mount Waverley Secondary College. Can I wish all families a safe and happy holiday.
It has been a successful Early Commencement Program for students in the Middle School, albeit challenging and exciting. We were joined by our 2020 year 9 students who have transitioned smoothly to their new campus which they will call home for the next four years as they journey to VCE and beyond. Students successfully found their way around what is a much larger campus both in size and population, with minimal complication. Year 9 students got to experience the core subjects as well as the elective subjects they have chosen to study and meeting their new teachers who will support them over the next year. During the second week of the program, students took part in an incursion called Smashed. This was a performance based session highlighting the risks and peer pressure surrounding alcohol use during teenage years. Year 9 students received valuable and life long information that will only better their health and wellbeing as well as inform their decision making in the future.
Our Year 10 students settled into their role as leaders of our middle school, supporting our new year 9’s whilst rekindling old connections from junior campus days. The year 10 students hit the ground running in their new classes, setting themselves up for a successful year that will lead into VCE. Majority of our year 10 students experienced their first taste of VCE life by attending their year 11 subjects for the first time. The introduction to a VCE subject saw some students surprised by the rigour and expectations of the courses however, the response has been extremely positive and motivating for our year 10’s to work hard and get themselves ahead in their studies.
Well done to all Middle School students on a great start to their 2020 subjects. Have a restful and safe break and we look forward to seeing you next year.
The ECP ran for students in Years 7 to 11 and was very successful. Students in Year 8 were able to spend time on the senior campus and had an opportunity to settle in and meet their new teachers. VCE students were given homework to do and this must be completed before they start school next year. Students have access to this information via the college intranet and through Google classrooms which have been set up by teachers.
Thank you to all of the staff who organised and taught in the program and to the students who attended classes. It makes for a very positive start to the new academic year.
All reports are available on Compass – please log in to the parent portal to access this. The reports provide an opportunity for further discussions at home around progress and achievement on Common Assessment Tasks and/or School Assessed Coursework and for Year 9 to 11 student feedback on exam performance. Each assessment item also includes advice on areas for improvement. I would like to acknowledge the hard work of teachers in assessing, marking exams and writing reports at a very busy time of the year. A special thank you to Andrew Wallace one of our Information Technology team who have overseen and managed the process.
Team Planning Days
A number of staff have been involved in planning in student wellbeing, subschool teams and Teaching and Learning. The days allow staff to reflect and review the work done in 2019 and provide a chance for planning to ensure a smooth start for all students in 2020.
I would like to extend my best wishes for a safe, relaxing and happy break and look forward to seeing everyone at the start of term one. Christmas and New Year.
On Friday 6 December the 2020 Year 8 and 12 Student Leaders took part in a Student Leadership Planning Day at the Junior Campus. Students had an opportunity to work in teams and start planning for 2020. Alumni Chester (Captain 2016), Maddy (Deputy 2017), Emma (Deputy 2017), Jessalyn and Demetri (2019) joined the students for lunch. Student Leaders took part in a range of sessions with a focus on leadership and teamwork. Thank you to Mr John Simon and Mr Andrew Batchelor for facilitating sessions on the day, and to Mr Liam Wall, Mrs Kydi Cassar and Ms Bec Kosach for attended in the afternoon to assist students in planning for 2020. Thank you to all of the leaders who attended on the day.
Student Voice, Agency and Partnerships International Conference
The Student Voice, Agency and Partnerships International Conference was held on 9 – 11 December at the University of Melbourne. The conference brought together students, teachers, school leaders, researchers, and policymakers. 2019 College Captain Demetri and Deputy Captain Jessalyn, along with 2020 College Captain Lynn Li, Deputy Captain Jennifer, and College Prefect Jesse, attended the conference. Demitri, Jessalyn and Jennifer presented a keynote session through which they shared some of the enablers and challenges to enhancing student voice in the secondary school context.
Monash University Research Project
Throughout 2019, students and teachers across the college were involved in a Research Project with Monash University which looked at the impact of student feedback on classroom practice. At the end of Terms 1 and 3 students in Years 7, 9 and 11 provided feedback to their English and Science teachers through the online Panorama platform. The teachers involved received a summary of their students’ feedback, and were given the opportunity to have one-on-one meetings with researchers from Monash University to discuss the feedback and possible implications for changes to their classroom practice. Thank you to Monash University for this opportunity, and especially to lead researcher Dr Ilana Finefter-Rosenbluh. We look forward to working with Ilana in 2020 and continuing to use feedback from students to improve our practice.
Lions Youth of the Year competition
Congratulations to 2020 College Captain Amit, Deputy Captain Jennifer, and College Prefect Erin, who have been shortlisted for the 2020 Lions Youth of the Year competition. The Lions Youth of the Year competition is a national competition that involves a written application, interview, and public speaking component. The focus is on leadership and community contribution. Amit, Jennifer, and Erin will be interviewed on Sunday 16 February and will take part in the public-speaking competition on Wednesday 19 February. The public speaking component includes a five minute prepared speech on a topic of their choice, as well as two 2-minute impromptu speeches. We wish them the best of luck!
In February 2020 we are hosting two groups of international visitors. Nine members of the Danske Skoleelever (Danish Students’ Association) will visit the college in Week 4 of Term 1. Danske Skoleelever is a nongovernmental organization located in Denmark, working to improve the democratic resources of pupils, the pupils’ academic abilities, their social commitment, and their wellbeing. Once a year, the leadership of the organisation (consisting of the current President, Vice-President, Head of Secretary, together with the deputy head of secretary, the HR Manager and three board members) travels abroad in order to exchange knowledge, and gain inspiration for new and different ways, in which to improve the abilities, well-being and growth of Danish pupils as learners. In 2020 they will visit “down under” to investigate how pupil engagement can have a positive effect on the pupils’ academic ability, well-being, and social commitment. They will meet with students, teachers and school leaders during their time at MWSC.
In Week 5 of Term 1, twenty-two educators from the Netherlands will visit the college. In 2019 a group of Dutch school leaders/ teachers visited MWSC and had a great time meeting with students, teachers, and leaders and learning about Mount Matters and Student Voice. In February they another group will visit Melbourne and visit schools to see and experience best practices around the ‘Visible Learning’ work from John Hattie. We look forward to hosting the group at Mount Waverley Secondary College!
Thank you for another wonderful year in Student Voice!
Throughout 2019 Student Leadership Teams at Years 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 met each week and students worked on organising a wide range of projects and activities to improve the school experience for staff and students across the college. They demonstrated passion and initiative, and further developed organisation, communication, and teamwork skills. It has been amazing to see what a significant impact student leadership and student voice has had on the college climate again this year.
Thank you to Ms Sarah Smith for her ongoing work and support with our Year 8 Student Leadership Team, Miss Elektra Sassos for her ongoing support of the Year 9 Leadership Team, Ms Megan Reynolds for her support of the Year 10 team, Miss Emma Kerr for all of her time and effort in supporting the Year 11 Student Leadership Team, and to Ms Linda Crook for her work with the Year 12 student leaders. Thank you to all of the sub-school teams for their time and effort in supporting student leadership and Mount Matters teams across the college. Thank you to Junior Campus Principal Mr Andrew Batchelor for his ongoing time, effort and support of the Student Voice and Leadership program across the college. We are very proud of all of the students involved in student voice and leadership initiatives at the college, and congratulate all of them on another very successful year!
“My opportunity to work at the Australian Cybersecurity Centre (ACSC) in Canberra entailed many new learning experiences. These experiences ranged from gaining and nurturing new skills in the field of I.T all the way to learning about independence and being far away from home. Whether it be meeting new people, solving problems that required me to think outside the box or even just simply trying to figure out where I wanted to go for dinner, every day in Canberra provided me with many challenges from many different areas to overcome.
I got to work with 11 other students from all around Australia, whose passions for I.T were much the same as mine. We were given a scenario to work on throughout the week, which required us to find a fictional character called ‘BloodMoon’ who had hacked into an employee’s computer. The scenario was used as the basis for which many different skills and concepts were taught. For example, we learned about cryptography/cryptanalysis, forensics analysis, programming, robotics and more. We used these concepts to find BloodMoon while at the same time learning how to work as a team as well as solve everyday problems faced in areas of I.T that I did not know much about.
As for my time after work, I was given the opportunity to explore my own independence. The first day was a little bit daunting because I had never been interstate on my own before. However, as I got used to being on my own, I chose to branch out from my hotel and explore the rest of Canberra. I discovered the Chadstone Shopping Centre of Canberra, the Canberra Centre, a place in which I spent two of my days after work exploring as well as the suburb it is located in, Civic. I decided to go and see the Parliament House as well. Having my own independence was a relieving change but I also had to make sure that I went to bed and woke up at a reasonable time each day in order to be able to focus on the challenges I faced as well as making sure that I ate healthy food as much as possible.
Ultimately, this work experience opportunity is one that I will never forget. For me, this was an important step in starting my future career in Information Technology. I learned many things in my time in Canberra and I would highly recommend that any student who is interested I.T to give this work experience opportunity a go when it is offered next year.”