At a recent whole school assembly I focussed on our school value of Growth, fundamentally challenging the students and staff to constantly be improving by always learning and finding better ways to do things. In looking deeper into this value, I talked about our expectations for behaviour, these being:
Embrace challenges and learn from mistakes: mistakes are proof that you are trying and you have to trust yourself to have a go.
Help and involve others: this is the power of collective learning. Everything you don’t know is something you can learn, and learning from and with others increases your opportunities to understand.
Deal with disagreements in a positive way: if you make mistakes with people, learn from these. There may be consequences as a result but if you understand and learn, there is less chance you will repeat the action.
Actively participate in all learning: grasp all the learning opportunities made available and be able to state at the end of the year that you have made a year’s growth of attainment from a year’s worth of learning. That is our minimum goal as teachers for all students, it should also be the students’ minimum goal for themselves.
Ask for help and accept feedback: both of these are an integral part of learning. At times someone may not know what is needed and needs to ask for additional information or help. Feedback is a tool to affirm and improve what is already known, or to help fill in any gaps.
Have a go: the famous inventor Thomas Edison once said, “Our greatest weakness lies in giving up … the most certain way to succeed is to try just one more time”.
Further to the work we have done with students and community to develop the student Expectations of Behaviour matrix, our next phase is to work together to develop one specifically for staff and adults in the school. More information will be coming out about this in due course.
At the assembly we were able to recognise a number of achievements, including:
- Jackson Richards, who won the Robert Bleakley Medal STJFL Best & Fairest U14 div
- Demi Batchelder, who was the leading goal scorer for Southern Youth Girl’s Soccer, playing for the Cygnet Sea Dragons. She also played on the Southern Youth U/15’s team, being one of only two girls on that team.
- Abby Watson, who was a finalist in School-based Apprentice of the Year in the Tasmanian Training Awards.
- Josh Ayers and Mitch Eiszele, both who were recruited directly from the 11/12 Cert 2 Automotive class for Apprenticeships with Local Motors Group (formerly DJ Motors)
- Blake Lovell, winner of the Under-18 Underhand Woodchopping Australian title at Sydney Royal Easter Show
- Students in Year7/8 who played in the Southern Tasmanian Basketball Finals (watched by nine staff who made the effort to go up to Kingston Sports Centre)
- Seventy-one students going up to Kingston High School for a sports day.
- The Year 10s being involved in the RYDER Driver Education Program and;
- All Year 9s participating in the Wired for Health Program.
External School Review
Since the last newsletter, we have also had our External School Review, involving three leaders from the Department of Education spending three days in the school looking at our data, processes and programs.
With the review following a line of inquiry, the focus questions were:
- How does the school use data to identify starting points for improvement and monitor progress over time?
- To what extent does the school create a positive 7-12 learning culture and align school resources to support this?
- How effectively is the school creating classrooms and applied learning environments in which all students are engaged, feel challenged, feel safe to take risks and are supported to learn?
What is affirming are the comments made about some of the fantastic things already happening here and the opportunities many of our students are able to access. These included the structure of the professional learning based on our school focus in writing, the work we have undertaken to embed School Wide Positive Behaviour Support (SWPBS) as a measure to establish calm learning environments, amongst others, such as the 11/12 Advanced Learning Centre (ALC) and Café.
At the same time, the suggested recommendations will require us to reflect on our practice and look to how we can better serve the needs of our students and school community.
Over the coming months, we will be sharing the recommendations with the school community, and working to create a collective vision statement that will underpin the commitment we have as a school to our students and region.
Student Support Team
Finally, well done to our student support team consisting of Lauren Asschers, Denise Richardson, Monique Blomfield, Tracey Dayton, Jason Engen, Anna Knopf, Debbie Eaves, Vanessa Body, Sarah Ward, Jo Oates, Jesse Johnston and Robert Prince, Connor Bryant. The team, led by Karen Russell, Jenny Coulson, Dan Bailey and Joe Stanny were nominated by Dan and were named as finalists at the recent Department of Education Together We Inspire Awards, in the category Outstanding Support Employee of the Year.
The awards are based around the Department’s values of Aspiration, Respect, Courage and Growth, and of course are reflected in our own School Values.
Whilst not winners on the night, it was a proud moment for all of us there supporting the team as the work they do in the school is core to the success many of our students enjoy.
Have a safe and relaxing term break.
Term 3 has been a busy period for our students in English.
They have both excelled and grown as learners in the subject area. We have had two opportunities to highlight how our students have demonstrated this.
Firstly, We had a number of our students enter the 'What Matters' writing competition. These actions epitomise our school value of growth, where the students want to challenge themselves and include their ideas in competitions. We'd like to commend them on their efforts.
Secondly, our students challenged their perception of English and art by attending a play called Much Ado About Nothing written by William Shakespeare and performed by Bell Shakespeare at the Theatre Royal in Hobart. Grace Bianchi, Year 10, has shared her reflection on the evening below.
On the 29th of August some of the year 9 and 10 English students went to the Theatre Royal to watch ‘Much Ado About Nothing’. We left school at 6pm with Ms Nowak, Mrs Morphett, Vanessa and Mr Butchart and returned at 11pm. The play was originally written by William Shakespeare and was adapted to modern times still using 16th century English.
The play is a comedy about two people who hide their true feelings for one another by arguing and hating on each other. One of the actors got sick so the director had to step in. It was a very funny, intriguing and at times a confusing performance that I think we all enjoyed. We’d like to thank staff that went with us and took time out of their day.
Congratulations to Matthew Woolley who was the lucky winner of the iPad donated by 26TEN at this year's Wired for Health program.
Matthew was presented with the iPad at an all school assembly last week at Huonville High School.
Wired for Health is a health and wellbeing program coordinated each year by the Huon Community Health Centre for Year 9 students from Huonville High School, Dover District High School, and St James College. This year over 90 students took part in the program, attending a range of workshops held at the Huon Community Health Centre, Huon Valley Council, and Huonville Library.
The program helps students to develop a more rounded view of important health topics such as healthy bodies, the effects of alcohol and other drugs, positive relationships, oral health, sexual health, and mental health.
The program also introduces the students to the health and wellbeing services available to them and their families in the Huon and Greater Hobart.
‘The program was hugely successful again this year and the feedback from the students was positive and encouraging’ says Kim Bevan, senior Social Worker at the Community Health Centre.
‘Local youth are now aware that they are supported and that they can access the Huon Community Health Centre for support or referral.’
The program this year has attracted more sponsors than ever before who realise the importance of health literacy. Sponsors this year were the Huon Community Health Centre, Huon Valley Council, Willie Smiths Orchards, and 26TEN.
26TEN is proud to be a sponsor of the Wired for Health program by donating the lucky draw prize of an iPad. 26TEN is a network of organisations, businesses and individuals all working together to improve adult literacy and numeracy in Tasmania.
‘Health literacy is important for improving health and wellbeing, and reducing health inequalities in Tasmania.’ says Toni Shea-Butler representing 26TEN. ‘63% of Tasmanians aged 15 – 74 yrs need better health literacy to meet the needs of everyday modern life. People who struggle to read and write often have poor health.’
‘By improving health literacy with programs such as Wired for Health, the community is empowered to make better, informed choices about their own health.’
Help to access free health information is available at your local library at Cygnet, Geeveston and Huonville, or any Libraries Tasmania site.
If you know of someone who would like help to improve their reading, writing or maths contact 26TEN on 1300 00 2610 or www.26ten.tas.gov.au
More than 17,000 students from around the world participated in the NCSS Challenge 2019. They competed for 5 weeks, learning to code by solving interesting and engaging problems.
The results of the competition have now been released, and a student from Huonville High School came in at the top of the leaderboard with a perfect score! Another student gained a credit, and two other students gained merit certificates.
Josh Hale - 100%
Oliver Ferrier - Credit
Caleb Duggan - Merit
Nathan Coles - Merit
Computer science skills are critical, whether you want to cure cancer, solve global warming or unlock the secrets of the universe. It’s really good to see these students making a positive start at a young age, and we hope their successes may encourage other people to take up coding too!
The NCSS Challenge is a collaboration between Grok Learning, The University of Sydney and the Australian Computing Academy.
“The future is built with code, and it’s wonderful to see so many students getting involved” said Dr. Nicky Ringland, co-founder of Grok Learning and one of AFR's 100 Women of Influence 2018.
“The NCSS Challenge is a key force in transforming Australian students from tech consumers, into tech creators.”
It is wonderful to recognise the work and achievements of these students as they stayed engaged, excited and inspired for the 5 weeks of the Challenge.
2019 School Production - November 20th, 21st & 22nd
This year our year 9/10 drama students have been developing their own production, entitled Looks to Die For.
The production will be shown at 6pm over the three nights in the High School's drama room.
Tickets are $5 each and are available from the front office at the High School.