High Notes, Vol 16 No 30, September 18 2015
Term 3 Ends
ALTRAC Light Rail Notice
Year 12 Farewell Assembly 2015
"Good afternoon Year 12, parents, students and staff. Welcome to our Farewell Assembly. It is with great pleasure that the staff and I can host your visit to the school today to participate in our annual rite of passage - your sons’ graduation from high school. The Class of 2015 is unique in its experience of life at our school as I outlined in your program.
"It has been a cohort that should be proud of its undoubted achievements in a range of co-curricular activities. I have listed the most significant of these in my ‘Principal’s Message’. Nonetheless, you will always be able to say that in your final year the school earned five GPS Premierships as well as cross country U16 – a first in its history. Missing is the undefeated run by our first grade GPS debaters as Champions, bringing back home the Louat Shield; our open basketball team’s 2nd place at the NSW Schools Championship and the Senior Team Foil bronze at the NSW Schools Fencing Championships. High also retained the Kippax Cup as the champion CHS School in Athletics for the 3rd consecutive year. High also won back the GPS Chess Cup.
"We have as one of our marketing slogans “You can’t buy spirit”. The implied strength of our culture is in its resilience and generosity – our students participate in the co-curricular life of the school because they want to. They know it is good for their personal balance in life and good for the strength of the reputation of the school. Whether in sports, community service, music, chess, social justice, debating or public speaking, participation is our key cultural message. Thank you to the eighteen students in Year 12 who had a perfect attendance record. I customarily take this opportunity to thank the senior leadership group for their support: Luke Hoad has had a very challenging year with injury so it’s great to see him back at school. Niyaz Mostafa and Bosco Tran were called upon to fill in on several occasions and did so to their credit, particularly Bosco. I want to thank all the Year 12 parents who are coming to the school for an event for the last time for any help they have given to our programs over the years. We value your contributions highly.
"To ‘walk the talk’ of our scholar-sportsmen culture we need boys prepared to compete in two sports in their final two years at High. Thirty-five boys competed in two GPS sports each year for six years. Sam and Luke did three every year but Leonard achieved the rare feat of four sports each year for six years. I want to thank the 68 Year 12 boys who showed pride in their school and represented High in two sports at all levels in their final year at school. However, with only 14 Year 12 boys in GPS first or second grade in two seasons of sport this year, we were lacking in role models to define our culture for younger boys. Congratulations to those dedicated boys who represented the school at the highest levels in multiple sports in 2015. ‘Triple Firsts ’this year were: Sam Musgrove (4), Luke Hoad and Leonard Mah. Our ‘Double Firsts’ representatives were: Wesley Beare, Noah Fowler, Bailey Musulin, James Tinker, Stephen Ngo, Ian Lai and Jonathan Chew. The ‘One-Two- Club’ comprised Jing Li and Neil Song. Our lone ‘Double-Two’ was Rick Saha. In my ‘Farewell Message’, I quote from General Douglas Macarthur as he inspired West Point graduates in his speech about how he saw duty, honour and country. He urged graduates to build their self-awareness, to face their challenges – intellectual, psychological, emotional, spiritual or physical. I exhort the Class of 2015 not to seek the easy option, not to avoid the challenges life sets up, not to let yourself down by not reaching for that ‘high goal’ and when establishing your future not to forget the past here that helped to forge who you are.
"William George Plunkett worked for Collins Publishing and was credited with many aphorisms that
appear on desk calendars. I like this one: “People’s minds are like parachutes. To
function properly they must first be open.” I trust that the way you have been taught at
High and your learning experiences with your peers, will equip you well for a safe landing in
life by means of an open-minded approach to all the challenges you will face. I wish you all the
best in your HSC preparations and in the examinations that follow and expect that you will be
successful in gaining entry to your chosen tertiary options."
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