High Notes, Vol 10 No 4, February 20 2009
From the Principal
Science Laboratory Refurbishment
Early Bird Discount ends Friday 27th February
"Special guest, the Honourable Michael Kirby, Ms Clover Moore, Member for Sydney, Relieving School Education Director, Gavin Patterson, distinguished guests, Old Boys, staff, prize winners and families, welcome to our 125th Speech Night.
"2008 was a memorable year for High. Our outcomes for the total curriculum were high quality and our cultural development most pleasing. We celebrated our 125 years of secondary education with a well organised and entertaining Cabaret in partnership with SGHS. Special dinners for Cadets and the Rifle Club honoured the unbroken commitment of school organisations since 1883. At the Rowing Reunion Dinner more than 200 guests celebrated 85 years of GPS rowing and raised significant funds for the program. The Chinese New Year celebration, organised by the Sydney High Development Committee, was a sell out success and is being held again this year.
"The introduction of a new Film Making elective proved popular with the boys. Using the new facilities in room 611 and the video editing software, our students were soon producing competition standard film products. Our offerings in Studies of Religion were expanded with students opting to sit the HSC at both 1-unit and 2-unit level, allowing more flexible HSC course selection. Subject acceleration pathways were undertaken by more than 120 students, not including the 2-unit mathematics group sitting the HSC in Year 11. The Year 10 Commerce program was rewritten as an extension course, exposing students to political philosophy and science, as well as to an outline of the evolution of economic ideas. The two-elective policy in Year 10 appears to be achieving its objectives. The incoming Year 9 class made a seamless transition into the life of High. Our Literacy Strategy is in its third year and appears to be impacting on writing across the school. The most rewarding change for me has been that our sports assembly culture is becoming more positive, respectful and celebratory in its student recognition rituals.
"Whole day and fractional attendance rates are at an all time high, thanks in no small measure to our period by period electronic roll marking procedure. I want to thank Bob Dowdell for his creativity and initiative in fast tracking this important incentive for student responsibility. Our expanded ‘Find A Student’ program, also written by Bob, allows staff and coaches to track, record and publish participation data for our Student Awards Scheme and Student Reports.
"Our training logbooks, weights room attendance checks and Monday Sprints data, have combined to help us monitor and acknowledge regular student training. Richard Ayre and Jason Tassell are building momentum in the important area of physical preparation and preseason training.
"More coaches are appreciating the value of this attempted cultural change. We are tightening our sports and activities management. Individual and team discipline needs to be stronger, given the recruiting practices and training regimes of our GPS opponents.
"The Student Awards Scheme has been an outstanding success during the last nine years in encouraging student participation in school activities. As we have added categories and increased requirements over the years, the boys have responded by raising their commitment and participation. We have had to add two levels of award since the scheme began in 2000 and still many boys exceed the benchmarks. The highest level of the scheme requires 64 awards over six years. By the end of Year 12 in 2008, Nathan McDonnell had accumulated an astounding 87 awards, with Alex Shapilsky earning 75 and Anthony HO, 74. These boys model just how much can be achieved in co-curricular activities. In our leadership program we trialled an Internee School Prefects system that makes Internees accountable for their service. Their final investiture ceremony will be later this year. Our successful Parent Mentor Scheme has been mirrored by our Student Mentor program.
"At High our co-curricular programs are dependent upon the volunteer assistance of parents, Old Boys and friends of High. I want to thank the hundreds of people who help us, but my special thanks go to the Bowes, Cerecina, Coutts, Hayes, Hui and Nadkarni families leaving us tonight. Amongst many others they have given great service to High. I continue to be humbled by the countless hours of volunteer work performed by High parents to support our governance, businesses and programs.
"The ‘living museum’ plan was enhanced by three blazers mounted on the wall in the main building, along with other memorabilia. The Ethel Killip Memorial Art collection was increased by two art works by an Old Boy and a photograph collage by a recent Old Boy. Our special 125th activity at the Foundation Assembly was to honour the school’s OAM recipients. The honour board unveiling was attended by over 30 Old Boys. We intend to repeat the process for AMs this year.
"Our major achievement in 2008 was to graduate 204 boys with an average UAI of 93.6. Forty-five students had UAIs of 99 or higher. An encouraging 159 boys earned 90 UAI or better. Our value added data were the best since the comparisons of SC and HSC student performance commenced. Justin Zuo was Dux with 100 UAI. He topped the HSC in Economics and was placed 7th in Mathematics extension 1 and Physics. Simon Liu was 5th in Legal Studies and 9th in English Advanced. Alvin Leung was third in Legal Studies. Muhamed Mehmedbasic came 5th in Music extension. Nathan Lieu was 8th in Legal Studies, Ajay Balachandran 9th in Economics, Thomas Wilson 9th in Latin Continuers, Daniel Chim 10th in Chemistry and Michael Bock 10th in Legal Studies.
"In academic competitions John Wormell won third prize in the UNSW Mathematics Competition. In the ICAS competitions, Andrew Hau and Jarrod Chan won medals for the highest score for their age group in the state. The senior chess team won the NSW Schools Senior Chess championship. The first grade debating team were co-premiers in the GPS competition. Zhi Zhu was invited to perform at Encore. In sport, High had quite a successful year. Our basketball program is gaining strength as evidenced by our win in the U15 CHS Knockout Tournament. We also placed 5th in the Open Division of that competition. Spencer Llewellyn was chosen in the NSW U-18 basketball team.
"At the AAGPS Athletics carnival, Shadman Ali won the 100m. and Chris Morrow the high jump. At the CHS carnival our team won seven medals. Michael Denny-Smith won gold in the 400m. hurdles, as did Dinghua Xiao in the shot put. Michael and Dinghua qualified for the national championships in Canberra, along with Joshua Tassell who won a bronze medal there in the 4 x 200 relay – a great effort. The U-17 cross Country team earned a bronze medal at the All Schools championship – another great result!
"High crews won 23 medals at the CHS Rowing Championships. Gold was won in the championship division in: the Men’s VIII, the coxed IV, the quad scull and the coxless pairs. The quad sculls won gold in the U15 through to the U17 age groups with double scull gold in the U15 and U16 finals. Daniel O’Keefe was selected by Sydney Rowing Club to compete in the Fawley Cup for U-19 quad sculls at Henley, UK – a significant achievement!
"The Open Volleyball team won a silver medal at the National Championships in Melbourne – a fine effort! They were also GPS co-premiers and semi-finalists in the CHS Knockout tournament. Phillip Kurts was first in Division 1 at the CHS Sailing championships in his 29er. John Gaunt was selected in the GPS first grade tennis team and Ivan Cerecina was chosen in second grade. Razeen Ahmed was chosen in the combined Five Highs team after the annual tournament. Our first grade Target Rifle Shooting team was 3rd at the GPS Shoot at Hornsby with Ishan Nadkarni third overall in the individual point score. Both Ishan and Matthew Tong were selected in the GPS Combined Rifle Shooting Team. Lachlan Street was chosen in the combined CIS football team, while Daniel Campion was selected in the Combined GPS first grade team.
"I am confident that in 2008 our students in teams and as individuals enhanced High’s reputation as a school for high achieving all rounders.
"As we say farewell to the class of 2008 for the final time, we are sending you into troubled times. Derivatives trading, greed, misrepresentation, lax supervision, outright fraud and a lack of political will to regulate financial markets internationally, combined to produce a crisis which undermined our collective confidence and choked off commerce and trade around the globe. Our economic self-efficacy is shattered and the doomsayers rule. The devastating effects of centuries of neglect of our planet have been starkly brought home to us recently with the horrendous bushfires in Victoria and the unprecedented floods in North Queensland. As university students (2009-2011) you will be facing the toughest economic climate since the 1930s. You will await anxiously the effects of the latest stimulus packages attempted by governments. You will need to trust that they and business can combine to restore enough jobs by 2012 or 2013 for you to be employed on graduation.
"In my customary homiletic observations, tonight I offer you the antidote of hope. To Napoleon, leaders are dealers in hope. They trade in and manipulate hope. He exhorted his men to achieve great feats of arms. He inspired them with unshakeable belief in his ability to deliver victory. Emily Dickinson, the great nineteenth century poet, left us with an evocative metaphor of hope as a spiritual, yet tenacious song bird in each soul that requires no sustenance yet sings in the direst circumstances to every one of us. Humans have an abiding capacity to be hopeful. Martin Luther King, in August 1963 delivered his famous Lincoln Memorial speech. He said. “In a sense we have come to our nation’s capital to cash a check[sic]. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all men would be guaranteed the unalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note insofar as citizens of color are concerned.” King called on his followers, whom he labelled “veterans of creative suffering”, to return home in the knowledge that: "somehow this situation can and will be changed". King’s speech resonated with our human craving for a right direction – for orientation – for hope. When struck by confusion, chaos and despair we cling to beacons of hope to show us the way. When confronting enormous challenges and trying to put policy propositions into context during an election campaign, Barack Obama (2008) consistently held to his mantra: “Yes, we can”. In an environment where America’s financial cheque is bouncing, at least politically, King’s promissory note has been honoured in part by Obama’s election.
"Hope is a belief that the future can be better than the past. If you believe you can make a
difference, you will. Maintain a teleological disposition. Focus on ends and the means will come
to you. My earnest wish for you all is that you can maintain and develop a hopeful demeanour that
will sustain your resilience, inspire your perseverance and fuel your task directed energy. It is
all about attitude. At High we trust we have provided opportunities for you to experience
hopefulness in action and to believe in its efficacy. Congratulations to all prize winners and
farewell to those leaving us for the last time."
From the Andrews (Junior) Library
Printing and Photocopying
Premier’s Reading Challenge
New Library Prefect
Senior Students - exclusive use of computers
Seniors Reading or Working in Quiet Area
Parents please note
Orders are placed with the library. You can pay by either cheque, credit card or cash. Scholastic
offers cheap books and posters. So why not use this service as encouragement to read and as a
reward to your son for hard work?
Year 12 Parents Surviving the HSC seminar
The P&C is organising a seminar for Year 12 parents on stress and the HSC. The guest speaker, Jane Sleeman is an experienced psychologist and school counsellor.
Jane gives lots of good advice and practical tips such as how to:
Jane allows lots of time for answering questions and talking to people afterwards.
Many of last year's Year 12 parents found this seminar very helpful.
The Seminar is on Wednesday 25 February in the Great Hall. It starts with drinks and plenty of finger food (including Halal & vegetarian) at 6:15pm, with the presentation beginning at 7pm sharp.
The seminar costs $10.00 payable at the door.
or Toni Lindeback 0403
Tournament Events for 2009
During the coming weeks we will begin to plan for the following events. The boys will be notified of meetings via the daily notices.
Da Vinci Decathlon is an academic gala day hosted by Knox Grammar at Wahroonga. The competition will be held on 2nd and 4th June 2009.
The disciplines contested include Engineering, Games of Strategy, Forensics, Creative Producers as well as General Knowledge, Maths and English.
Each team consists of 7 students. There are no replacements allowed on the day.
Positions in teams 8-10 are offered to students on all rounder lists from the previous year. Students who have cross discipline success are of the most value as tasks often overlap, both on the day due to timetabling and in terms of skills required. For instance, the engineering task also requires dexterity and artistic ability. Creative Producers requires performance- singing, dancing, acting, script writing. For this reason, students who might not appear as outstanding all rounders but who are consistent across core subjects and outstanding in DT Art or Drama are needed for their expertise. Often, students who are invited to participate are not prepared to be involved or are too busy to attend training sessions which occur weekly. Also, some students who are academically gifted are not suited to team activities. The final team selections will be made by the Da Vinci decathlon coordinator.
The Year 7 Group
The students are given a general knowledge test. They are evaluated for their ability to work in a group to solve a problem. Their academic ability, as indicated by their class work results so far, is considered in order to determine the team. This team trains on a different day from the 8, 9 and 10 teams to enable the older students to mentor the beginners.
Tournament of Minds
Interested students from Years 7-10 are coordinated by team facilitators. These are students who have been involved in the Tournament and are either ex-students or are no longer eligible to participate. Each team consists of seven students and must contain two Year 7 boys and at least one representative from the other years. The selection process is carried out over a number of sessions. During this time, the facilitators will engage the students in a range of problem solving activities, observing the participants, with the aim of culling the group to create the strongest teams for the disciplines being contested. They are trying to identify specific aptitudes. It is an advantage for boys who have previous experience in these activities.
The facilitator role is very specific. They are responsible for choosing teams. They prepare the
students for competition utilising their expertise and experience. Once the teams receive the
task, the facilitators cannot help any further. The students have 6 weeks to prepare for the
Regional Tournament in August.
From the Canteen Team
Last Wednesday evening, on behalf of the canteen committee, all its volunteers and staff, I had the very pleasant task of presenting a cheque for $30,000 to the P&C Association the first instalment of our 2009 donation. In 2008 our school canteen donated a total of $60,000 to the school via the P&C Association. These much needed funds supported projects within the school to benefit our sons.
One such project is the awning which will be installed in the next few weeks over the canteen serving area to provide the students with additional shelter from the weather. Again we thank the many volunteer parents who help make such projects possible. We also thank the prefects who assist us during the recess and lunchtime rush.
As we are a high activity canteen we know you will all understand that the volunteers and canteen staff need to stop for their lunch from 12 noon 12.20 pm each day. We would truly appreciate it if you could refrain from visiting us during this short 20 minute break.
We will then be recharged, ready to serve you during your lunch break.
Our range of freshly prepared foods continues to be popular. Remember the best way to guarantee
your favourite is available for lunch is to place an order before school (from 8.30 am 9.00 am).
We look forward to continuing strong patronage from students and staff in 2009.
From the High Store
School Trousers NOW $65.00
NEW Autumn-Winter price sheet will be available in next week’s edition of the High Notes.
Any boys wanting to purchase a 1st XI or 2nd XI training polo, we have reduced the price by 20%. Only selected sizes available!
To volunteer for the HIGH STORE call Michelle on 9331 7075
UNSW Leadership Programme for High School Leaders
The two day motivational forum brought together approximately twenty Year 12 participants from schools including Normanhurst Boys, Hurlstone Agricultural, North Sydney Boys, Sydney Girls, Sydney Tech, St Aloysius’ College, Holroyd High, Cranbrook and of course myself from Sydney High. Together we shared in numerous theory discussions together with practical, hands-on exercises relating to leadership. Collaborating with other like-minded students provided an inspiring and enjoyable atmosphere for all involved. As Wheatley in 1992 once said; “Leadership is always dependant on the context, but the context is established by the relationships we value.”
Day 1 was made up of mostly conceptual ideas about: What Leadership really is, the Basic Principles of Leadership, Leadership Approaches, Leadership Models and Leader/Team Work; whilst Day 2 focused on one’s sense of identity and personality, relating to how one functions as a forerunner in life. In fact, as an added bonus, the official MBTI (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator) assessment was provided to all attendees. This questionnaire is a psychological experiment designed to measure how people perceive the world and make decisions. The MBTI is a well-recognized test used commonly in the workplace to sort out potential employees in some scenarios. All participants in this forum definitely learnt a thing or two about themselves and their personality.
I would like to thank Mrs Collignon, for putting me forward for this leadership opportunity- I really appreciated her making sure I had could be a part of this two day forum in the holidays. I encourage all future leaders to keep an eye out for these events, and make the most of them. Trust me, and I have done this first-hand, involving yourself in such conventions and forums is an unforgettable experience, and looks great on your CV.
Did I forget to mention that morning tea, lunch, and afternoon tea were provided to us for
SRC Elections 2009
The SBHS Student Representative Council Elections for 2009 are currently taking place. Students
in Year 7 were elected into position on the recent Year 7 camp. Students in Years 8-12 nominated
themselves for election in week 3 and they have now been put into an online preferential voting
election from Friday 13 -Thursday 19 February. Elected members will be notified on Friday 20th
February during junior and senior assemblies. Watch this space for more on our 2009 SRC!!!
Music Tour 2010 to France
As announced in last week’s High Notes, the Music Performance Department and Music Supporters Group is planning a Music Tour to France in 2010. The Marching Band will be performing at the Villers-Bretonneux ceremony in the Somme, and in Ypres. We are also looking to take an orchestra and stage band to give variety to our performances in Flanders and Paris.
We have had a good response so far, but still need more students to fill all the positions. This will be a magnificent opportunity for all our musicians to perform in some of the most important ceremonies and venues for Anzac Day in Europe.
Please speak to the Music Staff for further information. Expressions of Interest Forms are available outside the Music Staffroom and need to be completed and returned to the Music Staff as final numbers need to be given to the organisers.
Parents - if you haven’t yet provided your details, could you please give your contact details by filling in the below slip and returning it to the music staffroom as soon as possible so that we are able to contact you about any upcoming events involving your son. This will enable the parent committee to communicate with you more effectively and efficiently. Thank you very much. (Please print the information.)
Student’s Name: ____________________________________ Roll class: ___________________________ Parent’s Name: ____________________________ Contact No: _____________________________________ Email: ______________________________________________________________________________________ Music Ensemble(s): __________________________________________________________________________
Meet & Greet our new Coordinator
I’m super excited to have Dana Quick on board and taking over the reins of Debating in 2009. We would like to invite you to come along to the next Debating Supporters Group meeting on Tuesday 3 March at 6:30pm in the Staff Common Room. We will hold our regular monthly meeting followed by a light supper. It is a great opportunity to meet Dana before the season gets into full swing. We are also still seeking parent assistance in the role of Supper Coordinator…
How to Join Debating in 2009
YEAR SEVEN ALL NEW DEBATERS
YEARS 8-12 MUST HAVE PAID THE CO-PAYMENT BY FEB 20
More information can be found at: www.sydneyhigh.org/debating and will be emailed to you on a weekly basis. Please CHECK YOUR EMAIL regularly and ensure we have current contact details for both students and parents.
The Bulletin Board for Sydney Boys High P & C
Thank you to all the parents who came to our first P & C meeting for 2009 last Wednesday. A special thank you to Mr Ayre, Head Teacher Sport, for his very informative discussion. A summary of the minutes of the meeting will appear in next week’s High Society.
Our School Canteen is still keen to recruit parent helpers for this year. Please contact the Canteen directly on 9360 4027 if you can assist. They need our help.
The Summer Sport season is now in full swing. Come along to your son’s Saturday sport and support our High boys in their competitive endeavours and meet fellow parents on the side lines.
1. Upcoming Parent Events (details in High Notes)
2. Upcoming Supporter Group Meetings (details in High Notes)
Basketball: Shooting Hoops
High vs Riverview
Term 4 2008 (Last Time)
Term 1 2009 (This Time)
Congratulations 1sts and 2nds!
1st Grade Stats
By Chris Chiam
It's Your Call Ref! Yes It's Back!
Answer: If a player ACCIDENTALLY scores a field goal in their own basket the goal shall count as two points being scored by the on court captain of the opposing team. If a player DELIBERATELY scores in their own basket it is a Violation and the goal does not count.
Keep Collecting Video Footage of Your Basketball Games!!
~ Go High Basketball!
Sydney Boys High School Rowing Committee
St Joseph’s Regatta Results
All crews showed improvement from their hard work at training and the experience from last week’s racing. Most crews showed composure in the face of tough competition, maintaining their rhythm and power throughout the course.
A few crews had the satisfaction of finishing ahead of some opponents. Our Year 8 2nd Coxed Quad Scull - Ronald Tran, Allan Feng, Amabir Singh, Andrew Bui and Timothy Collier (c) finished 2nd to Shore with Joeys 3rd..
The School 2nd VIII – Dale Chen, Michael Ambrose, Neil Street, George Denny-Smith, Jack Musgrove, Jason Nguyen, Alexander Belokopytov, Andrew Blomberg and Gareth Deacon (c), whilst finishing behind in their heat, recorded a faster time than Newington and within seconds of Grammar and Joeys.
The senior crews have gained confidence for this week’s event at SIRC where they will meet all GPS crews in the one race. Our School 1st VIII this year is Vlad Boulavine, Clive Chen, Dominic Edgtton, Jack Wachsmann, Shahar Merom, Matthew Ling, James Whiting, Nelson Ridges and Patrick Desmond (c).
Newington Regatta Saturday 21 February
Newington are hosting a Junior Regatta this Saturday at Hen and Chicken Bay where our Year 8, Year 9 and Year 10 crews will race. The crowd of spectators will be at Bayview Park, Canada Bay, but you can watch from the bottom of the side streets on the other side of Great North Road (near the High sheds).
We are also in need of an additional small speedboat for the regatta. If you have a 30HP or slightly larger you will get the opportunity to see the regatta up close and personal. Mark Ridges has provided his boat for the last 5 years and is doing so again.
Year 10 Melbourne Trip
A report on the trip from the boy’s angle will appear next week.
The school swimming carnival was held on Tuesday 3 February at Des Renford Pool Maroubra. The perfect weather and the allocation of award scheme points for all participants saw record entries in all events with many going over 10 heats.
Age Champions 2009:
Congratulations to all participants and age champions.
Despite our best efforts, the war cry and school song from the rowers to encourage our opens relay team, we were unable to overcome a strong Newington relay team who went on to win the GPS invitational relay event. Congratulations to them.
The GPS preliminary carnivals have been held over the past 2 weeks at Newington and Riverview. We
were able to field a full strength swim team led by our captain Alik Belokopytov and vice captain
Jack Musgrove. Our most notable performer was Max Chien who took out the 50m Breaststroke and 50m
Backstroke. Other strong performances were displayed by Jack Musgrove and Enes Mehmedbasic. The
most improved performers were 12 year old Andew Tayeh and our opens work horses Alik Belokopytov
and Shahar Merom. I am hopeful that all boys will perform better at the SOPAC carnivals held over
the next three weeks. With continued hard work and swim squad practice, the boys should get
closer to achieving their goals. Well done to all.
Sydney Boys High Cricket
SATURDAY 14th FEB WASHOUT
WET WEATHER PROCEDURE – SATURDAYS and OTHER MATCH DAYS
Be aware that on some occasions that not all games may be cancelled at the locations. If no cancellations have occurred PLAYERS MUST ATTEND THE GROUND It is important on rain affected days that all calls are related to whether the match is on or off. All other details such as start time, location, how to get there is available on the website and will not be available whilst on these calls.
CRICKET COMMITTEE and GENERAL MEETING
CRICKET DINNER and AWARD NIGHT
REPRESENTATIVE ACADEMY - SQUADS
McKAY No.2 and No.3 FIELDS – SATURDAY PROCEDURE:
SHS Tennis Report
1st Grade report Although the weather was terrible, first grade still managed to sneak in most
games. It seemed fate was against us because of the 9 matches of the day, the 6 that were played
were lost while the 3 that were unfinished saw High having a great opportunity to win. The
results definitely did not reflect the day’s play with some close matches. All three
doubles were lost and this seems to be a weakness that we will be working on in the coming weeks.
Number 1 Hau Neo was simply outplayed but showed a lot of class in several points. Number 2 Frank
Zhang was part of a close match which would have been great to watch but was cut short due to
rain. Number 3 Kent Ngyuen played a match that could have been won but unfortunately he was not
on his game. Number 4 Simon Hoang played great tennis in the first set and most of the second,
leading 4-2 at one stage but was unlucky to lose that set 6-4. Number 5 George Panas had an easy
match that was almost won but was also cut short by rain. Number 6 Victor Lim played a solid game
but was facing an opponent who was clearly playing at his best.
Week 2 results – SHS v SIC
Week 3 Fixtures – SHS v Shore