FROM THE HEAD OF COLLEGE, GRAHAM LEDDIE
Online Naplan Test
This week our Year 5, 7 and 9 students underwent the practice online NAPLAN test in preparation for the official test later in the year. I would like to acknowledge the significant team effort and support that ensured this practice went smoothly. Thank you to our test administrators: Ms Cassie Foster, Ms Kaitlyn Downey, Mr James Horrocks, Ms Stephanie Boyce, Ms Deanne Seamons, Mr John McCoy, Ms Cassie Perry, Ms Karen Russell, Mr Greg Harris, Ms Katrina King, Ms Margaret Fitzgerald, Mr Matthew Barr, Ms Cathy O’Sullivan, Ms Gaby Bransby, Mr Anthony Stanton, Mr Tony Proudfoot, Ms Tracie Ryan, Mr Mark Claridge, Mr Tony Banboukjian, Ms Jacinta Scarf, Ms Angela Jordan and Mr Dominic Hearne. Thank you to our IT support staff: Mr Simon Potter, Daniel Maddern, Ahmed Kaddoura, Paul Sheehan, James Lu and Alex Nedanov. Also to the NAPLAN coordinator, our Head of Learning Support, Mr David Parnell and our Director of Learning and Teaching, Ms Elizabeth Watson.
Congratulations to our CAS swim team who performed very well at the CAS swimming carnival last week coming 4th. Well done to Knox Grammar who won the carnival. Our swimmers spend many months training and preparing for this event and I would like to thank all the coaches, the parent support group and the Convenor of Swimming, Ms Stephanie Floyd, for all of their efforts to prepare our swimmers well. I would like to acknowledge our standout performer, Stuart Swinburn, who won the CAS Best Performance Award on the night with 1st place in the 400m Freestyle, 1st place in the 200m Freestyle, 1st place in the 100m Backstroke and 1st place in the 50m Backstroke. We had a number of other top three swimmers who performed very well. Congratulations also to Ms Kathryn Knowles and our Diving team on their 4th place with Leon Bakis in the Juniors being the standout performer.
Special mention this week also to Lachlan Unsworth who represented Waverley and the CAS in Tennis against GPS and ISA schools.
I had the pleasure this week of attending the annual cadet camp at Douglas Park, approximately an hour and half south of Sydney in a beautiful bush setting. The cadets participate in a variety of activities during the week which include: camping, abseiling, climbing, orienteering, trekking, first aid, bushcraft skills and canoeing. Many of the activities require collaboration, leadership, trust and resilience which are all important skills in a 21st century learning environment. I also acknowledge the testing weather conditions the boys have dealt with well this week, ranging from 39 degrees heat to rain on a few days. Interestingly, when asking each platoon which they preferred, we are rain people! Thank you to the following staff for coordinating and assisting with the camp: Mr Peter Frost, Mr Anthony Evans, Mr John McCoy, Mr Brad Thompson, Mr John Walker, Ms Stephanie Floyd, Mr David McCormack, Ms Jannet Markey, Mr David New, Ms Tessa Prior, Ms Cassie Perry, Ms Nohara Binyamin, Ms Rachael Lawrence, Mr Peter Langdale and Mr James Spargo. The camp is also supported by a number of Old Boys, the Australian Army, and a paramedic who is stationed at the camp during day/night – thank you to all for their expertise and presence.
Principals’ Jewish Museum Visit
Last week I attended a Principals meeting held at the Sydney Jewish Museum, Darlinghurst. Other Principals in attendance included representatives from Reddam House, Emanuel School, Wenona School, North Sydney Boys High, St Catherine’s School Waverley and SHORE. We had the privilege of hearing from Holocaust survivor, Ms Olga Horak, who shared with us her story of survival through five concentration camps during WWII and her life since this ordeal.
Olga’s family were taken from Czechoslovakia to Auschwitz, where she came face to face with Dr Mengele. She endured nine months of starvation and slavery there with her mum, dad, sister and grandma all being murdered. Olga reminded me of the power of forgiveness and resilience even in extreme conditions. She has been able to live a full life, a life of care and education for others.