High Notes, Vol 7 No 32, October 20 2006

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From the Principal

Welcome back to Term 4.
Mr Beringer will be away for a couple of weeks after surgery on his knee. Mr Dowdell will be on leave during some of the HSC examination period. Mr Barris will be acting Deputy for the next few weeks. His place as Head Teacher will be taken by Ms Gowran. Mrs Gilmore has been appointed as the Year 7 2007 Adviser.

High Talent
Over the holidays Roger Burrell won the NSW All Schools Athletics Championship open shot put. Dakshika Gunaratne earned a bronze medal in the U-17 110m hurdles. Well done indeed! Stephen Garofano (Yr 9) won the HREOC Human Rights Essay Competition (Junior) for his essay on the ‘Pacific Solution’. It explained the plight of asylum seekers and highlighted the detrimental effects of long term detention on them. It argued for an end to social ignorance on the Pacific Solution Question and pleaded for informed people to push for policy change. Kent Nguyen (Yr 9) was highly commended for his essay on prejudice against Aborigines in Australia. It argued that despite remedial measures taken by governments over the years, prejudice against Aborigines still exists in everyday situations such as job interviews, loan applications or social occasions. It asks readers to question whether they truly judge Aborigines on their merits instead of the colour of their skin. Congratulations, boys.

Pricewaterhouse Coopers Presentation Evening - 28 September
It was a pleasure to attend the presentation evening for the PwC Australian Economics & Business Studies Competitions on September 28 at UNSW. I did not realise that the Economics Competition has only been going since 1991 and the Business Studies Competition since 1999. In 2006 the competition has spread to the Asia Pacific region with entrants from Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia. The competition is organised and managed by ASEC, a volunteer UNSW Commerce students’ group. They focus on economics and business current affairs, so contestants would be advised to check out what the UNSW students are reading at uni. Our prize winners were: Matthew Fetherston, Gehan Karunaratne, Michael Levy, Raymond Roca, Robbie Alchin, William Chan, Alvin Leung, Zhenghui Lu, Dinuka Gunasekera, Max Keldoulis, Kevin Lee, Henry Liu and Anthony Morris. Congratulations again, boys.

Foundation Day Assembly
This year’s celebration of our anniversary and School Prefect investiture was held this week. Mr Alec Tzannes, award winning architect and School Captain (1969), delivered the occasional address. He linked his experiences with the bicentennial design competition for the Centennial Park monument to the foundational dispositions and values he attributed to his time at High. He touched on the need for detailed research, considered judgement, perseverance, courage and professional integrity when individuals are pursuing creative, innovative projects. He averred that much of his personal strength to face the controversy surrounding his winning entry was forged in the robust intellectual debate and diversity of opinions, beliefs, personalities and cultures he was immersed in at High.

My speech to the assembly is reprinted below:

"Distinguished guests, School Family representatives, parents of School Prefects Elect, staff, students – welcome to our 123rd Founder’s Day Assembly. We welcome back a previous School Captain and distinguished architect, Mr Alec Tzannes, to deliver our Occasional Address today. It is important to remember the origins of the school on October 1, 1883. It was a ground breaking experiment in secondary education at the time, when the first 46 boys helped to forge our traditions. Given the importance of leadership to any institution, it is also very appropriate for us to celebrate our past leaders and welcome our new ones. The investiture of School Prefects is an important ritual in the life of a school. It serves as a link with the past, but more importantly, honours the contemporary school context.

"Thirty years ago, the Headmaster, Mr Bradford, was bemoaning the lack of financial support from the government and apologising for the necessity to cut back on budgets for materials and resources. He reported that the appraisal panel that had visited the school in October, 1975 commented that “there was no other school in the State which offers the number and range of opportunities and extra-curricular activities to its students.” It is to be hoped that today High can still claim to be unsurpassed by any school in the provision of opportunities for its students. We have certainly preserved and extended these activities in the generation since 1976. The school faced the problem then (as now) of trying to meet its GPS commitments in all sports with largely volunteer teachers, parents and Old Boys.

"Mr Bradford was able to announce the first appointment of Mr Stone as Special Master (Physical Education) and some reduced face to face teaching for teachers taking GPS sports. He wrote: “I see no way in which these teachers can be fairly compensated for their extra commitment, however I am delighted that this commitment is now officially recognised and that a substantial gesture of appreciation is possible.” Even this concession (withdrawn 20 years later by the Minister for Education, John Aquilina) was insufficient to run the sports programs optimally.

"High is much less recognised now by government as a unique and important state school than it was then. We have to compete even harder for resources than Mr Bradford did. We face the same challenges and obstacles. Assuredly, together, the High community will continue to thrive, not merely survive, in the intensely competitive context in which we operate. We have to seek innovative means of financing our co-curricular activities and attracting our teachers to give up a large amount of time for very little compensation. That they continue to do so is a credit to them and a symbol of the power of this institution to survive and sustain itself against the odds.

"We face very tight financial constraints today as we strive to raise the standard of our academic delivery and of our sporting facilities. Coaching in all facets of school life has developed very significantly in the last thirty years but even more needs to be done to ensure every student has an unfettered opportunity to maximise his potential. We need money or time from our Old Boys and parents to keep pace with the rapid escalation of the costs of educational provision at the elite level.

"Stephen Marquet was School captain in 1976. He wrote in The Record about the distinguished tradition of High. He stressed the importance of school spirit developed through participation in multiple activities. He reiterated the sentiments of a previous captain who highlighted the importance of student attitudes in making a good school a great one. Ultimately, it is not the buildings or facilities but the drive of the students and the dedication of the teachers that combine to make high quality learning and hence performance in any endeavour.

"I am struck by the frequency of sentiments expressed by outgoing School Captains who unprompted focus on involvement in school life. Even those most committed have a sense of something left undone, of an opportunity forgone. They often feel they could have done more for the school and for themselves as leaders. Student members of the audience might well ask of themselves: Am I getting as much out of school life as I could? Are my personal abilities being developed to their potential?

"The School Prefects chosen to represent the school in 2007 are worthy of the honour. They have made a commitment to the school and what it stands for. On our new Sir Roden Cutler Gates is his coat of arms with its motto: “service in all places”. Sir Roden’s career symbolised the pre-eminence of service as his ideal - service to his country, his state and his community. Our society is governed by the notion of standards and outcomes meeting them. Our school may well be judged by the standard of its leaders. Our School Prefects are elected to preserve and enhance the culture of the school. Their example is to serve in all places where school activities happen – at ceremonies, school functions, sporting fixtures, carnivals, assemblies, public functions, charity events, fund raising, joint activities with SGHS, debates, trivia nights or afternoon teas. They want to see the school achieve its principal goal of providing myriad opportunities for each individual to pursue personal excellence in many fields of endeavour. They are upright young men. They have proven themselves by completing a demanding qualification process before facing the three electoral colleges of Year 10, Year 11, and staff and Prefects 2006. I am proud of them all. I congratulate them and commend them to you. "

Parent Mentoring Scheme
Our new Parent Mentoring Scheme has attracted more than 40 volunteers so far. Dr Ovadia has outlined the possible role for a Parent Mentor. We are planning a session of Parent Mentor training for half an hour before the P & C AGM to make volunteers feel comfortable about expectations for the role.

  • Parent Mentors will be assigned 3-5 incoming parents to mentor.
  • Make contact by telephone with each parent during the first week of term 1.
  • Ring back in the second week to check on how the orientation to High is going for their son
  • Supply contact details and be available for contact during term 1.
  • Ring the new parents before the Welcome to New Parents evening to encourage them to attend.
  • Ring the new parents before Year Group meetings to encourage them to attend.
  • Contact the parents at critical times in the school calendar eg subject choices, sports selections.
  • Follow up phone calls once a term. Encourage support for the school and participation in school life.

If you have not yet registered your interest yet please email me. If you know someone who would be good at mentoring, please ask them to get involved.
Dr K Jaggar
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Year 12 References

We are currently experiencing some difficulties with some Year 12 boys’ references. Could the following boys please contact the school to assist in clarification of some issues:

Rezwan Ali
Sadat Cheema
Hieu Dang
Augustine Ha
Felix Taaffe
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P & C Parking

Helpers needed for parking on Friday November 10 from 5.00 pm till 8.00 pm Sydney FC's vs NZ Knights Please advise your availability to 0411 430 394 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  
Lyndell Evans
P & C Parking co-ordinator

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High Store - New Line

The High Store has now in stock a car number plate cover with HIGH SPIRIT at SYDNEY BOYS HIGH available to purchase for $44. Two different sizes to accommodate square or premium plates. A great idea for Year 11 and 12 boys with wheels!

Chlorine resistant new costume available for purchase from the High Store for $35. This fabric has approx. 4-5 times the life expectancy of the original swimmers. Made in Australia.
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Representative Basketball Trials

Dates for Various Basketball Associations in Your Area for the 2006/07 Year

  • Remember to take water bottles and that there is a fee for each session generally up to $5 per session.
  • There are no excuses boys. I expect that all players in the ‘A’ grade will attend the trials at an organisation and some ‘B’ grade. If you want to succeed in school basketball then get in the big league!!

Under 14's are born in 1994/95
Under 16's are born in 1992/93
Under 18's are born in 1990/91

Norths - www.nsba.com.au 
All ages - October 22 and 29.... times still to be advised

Manly - www.manlybasketball.com.au/reps/ 
All ages October 22 and 29..... times to be advised

Penrith - www.penrith.basketball.net.au/fs_home.asp 
No info as yet.

Hills - www.hills.basketball.net.au/_uploads/res/67_3179.pdf 
November 19 and 26 -
U14 Men - 9am - 11am
U16 Men - 3pm - 5pm
U18 Men - 3pm - 5pm

Bankstown - www.bankstown.basketball.net.au/FS_extra.asp?id=1187orgID=62 
November 9 / 16 / 23 / 30
U14's - 4:30pm - 6pm
U16's - 6pm - 7:30pm
U18's - 6pm - 7:30pm

Sutherland - www.sutherland.basketball.com.au/_uploads/res/155_31225.doc 
October 28
U14's - 12:30pm - 2pm
U16's - 2:30pm - 4:30pm
U18's - 7am - 9am

November 4
U14's - 10:30am - 12pm
U16's - 7am - 9am
U18's - 12pm - 2pm

November 18
U14's - 12:30pm - 2pm
U16's - 2:30pm - 4:30pm
U18's - 7am - 9am

Glebe - www.gbaonline.com.au/main.html 
Junior rep training and games are held every Friday for U14's / U16's and U18's between 7pm and 8pm.

Parramatta - www.parramatta.basketball.net.au 
No information available

Ryde - www.ryde.basketball.net.au/FS_extra.asp?id=30322&OrgID=408 
U14's - Nov 8 and 15 - 4:30pm - 5:30pm
U16's - 25 Oct and 01 Nov - 4:30pm - 5:30pm
U18's - 25 Oct and 01 Nov - 4:30pm - 5:30pm

Hornsby - www.hornsbyspiders.com.au/ 
Their trials have already started ... so I think this one is too late..... Boys can still make enquiries with the association if they are interested.

Sydney Comets - www.sydneybasketball.com.au/fs_home.asp 
U14's - 29 Oct and 19 Nov - 9am - 11am
U16's - 16 Nov and 03 Dec - 8:30am - 11am
U18's - 05 Nov and 12 Nov - 9am - 11:30am

This information has kindly been provided by the Basketball committee for your benefit! Please support your son in attending the sessions. When we have a minimum of five boys participating at a representative level in each age group we will have success at school level.
B. Hayman
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From the Office

When your son returns to school from being absent he is required to provide a letter of explanation signed by a parent or guardian. If your son is going to be late for school a note is also required.

If your son has an early leave note he is required to have his note signed by either Mr Beringer, Mr Dowdell or Mr Prorellis before 8:55 am and handed in to the Main Office immediately after. Each letter should be signed by a parent or guardian with the name, date and roll class of your son printed clearly. Your son needs to pick up a leave pass from the Main Office before he leaves the school.

If you require leave for your son please, apply in writing and address your application to the Principal, Dr Jaggar, stating the reason and length of time of the leave. Your son must then present this application to Dr Jaggar for permission for the leave. Please remember to apply before the leave and not after.

The Principal must approve all leave applications.

Another email service for parents
Parents who supply the school with an email address can now have two useful information streams. A reminder about High Notes with a link to the current edition can be emailed to you each week. An updated report on your son’s attendance record can now be sent to you on a daily or weekly basis. To get your electronic High Notes, enter your email on the High Notes page of http://www.sydneyboyshigh.com.

If you would like to have your son’s attendance record sent to you send your email address to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Please include your son’s name and date of birth in the email.
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Basketball: Shooting Hoops

First Game Countdown!
As Week 1 Term 4 draws to an end, the first basketball game for this season edges in closer and closer. This season our first opponent is The Kings School. Please remember that by choosing basketball as your sport, you are required to turn up to every game. We’ll be hoping to see full teams this Saturday and maybe even a crowd to cheer for our first grade team. Remember that you’re representing your school! There were some pretty spectacular results of last year’s results against Kings. 4th and 5th grade took their games easily 19-10 and 20-14 respectively. 16Bs grasped a 13point lead against their opponents whilst the 16Cs hammered them with a staggering 34-8 result. We should be seeing more of them this year with the effort that everyone’s putting in!

Rep Trials
The standard of play that each of us plays in rises faster if we play at a higher and more intensive level than we normally play in. So if high gets enough players in reps basketball, our winning rates will dramatically increase as they will also raise the standard within the school. We are encouraged to play reps as early as we are able to. Some of the information for some reps are shown below. If interested or for more details see Mr MIC Hayman (PE staffroom).

  Age groups Dates Times
Sydney Comets U14s 29 Oct, 19 Nov 9am-11am
  U16s 16 Nov, 03 Dec 8:30am-11am
  U18s 05 Nov, 12 Nov 9am-11:30am
Ryde U14s 08 Nov, 15 Nov 4:30pm-5:30pm
  U16s 25 Oct, 01 Nov 4:30pm-5:30pm
  U18s 25 Oct, 01 Nov 4:30pm-5:30pm
Glebe U18s/U16s/U14s Every Friday 7pm-8pm
Hills U14s 19 Nov, 26 Nov 9am-11am
  U16s 19 Nov, 26 Nov 3pm-5pm
  U18s 19 Nov, 26 Nov 3pm-5pm
Bankstown U14s Nov 9,16,23,30 4:30pm-6pm
  U16s Nov 9,16,23,30 6pm-7:30pm
  U18s Nov 9,16,23,30 6pm-7:30pm

Video Competition
Record footage of your game this season! The best video footage created will be shown at the basketball dinner!

~Brought to you by Francis Wong, Johny Shih and Justin Liang.
~Thank you to Mr Hayman for all his contributions to basketball and information