High Notes, Vol 8 No 30, September 28 2007
From the Principal
End of Term
Year 12 Farewell
Good afternoon parents of Year 12, staff, students and the class of 2007 we are saying farewell to today. Welcome to you all. We set aside this assembly each year to celebrate the achievements of Year 12 and to enact a rite of passage to close their secondary schooling. This year had a strong group of scholars, had within it bonded teams of sportsmen, contained role models for others, generated leaders with initiative, worked as co-curricular groups, and functioned as organising committees and as parking and charity collectors.
The Year 12 accomplishments in 2007 included the continuing success of first grade volleyball at CHS and GPS level – undefeated in both competitions. Our first grade basketball made history in the CHS knockout, placing third. In an era of sports high schools, this was a very significant achievement. Ironically, the team that received the most public attention and about which I received several congratulatory letters and emails – was the first XV. One King’s Old Boy from the 1930s was particularly impressed at the way our team stuck to the task right to the end. I want to thank the boys again for their courage and perseverance in what was a very difficult season. Our first grade debating team was a good thing beaten by a one-man band from Smiths Hill in the Hume Barbour final and unlucky in its GPS season. The CHS tennis team made it through to the CHS state knockout finals for the Stan Jones Cup.
I would like to honour several groups of Year 12 students today. To the keepers of High traditions, the boys I shall call ‘double firsts’ represent the epitome of dedication to the school’s purposes because they put in so much extra time and effort in their HSC year to represent their school. Dakshika Gunaratne played GPS combined cricket, medalled in athletics and played 1st XV rugby. Matthew Fetherston played 1st XI cricket, represented at combined GPS, swam for the school and was a stalwart in the 1st XV. Gehan Karunaratne played combined GPS football and 1st XI cricket. Tom Castleton was in the 1st XI cricket and football and represented in athletics. Michael Coutts featured in cricket, rugby and first debating. Aaron Shuttleworth was in 1st XI football, Regional athletics and rowed in the 2nd VIII. Victor Nguyen played regional level volleyball and first grade basketball. Frank Jin played firsts rugby, medalled at athletics and played cricket. Others in the ‘Double Firsts’ are named in the farewell program.
Another group of boys, hardly held in any less esteem, I label the ‘One-Two Club’. These boys also represented High in GPS sports at first grade and second grade level. David Kim was in the 1st VIII, the 2nd XV and the athletics team. Oliver Konakoff played state level volleyball and second grade basketball. Other notable one-two students were: Moussa Farhat (basketball and rugby), Harry Walker (basketball and football), Alexander Vertoudakis (basketball and rugby), Tasneef Rahman (cricket and rugby) Tom Hurrell (rowing and rugby), Alexander Le (basketball and volleyball) and Louis Yang (cricket, rugby and athletics).
Finally, a large group of boys ‘ the two sporters’ represented their school in GPS competition. Time does not permit me to name all 50 of them but I want to thank them all anyway. Their participation is what makes GPS sport in this school happen. Of significance among them were several multiple school representatives. Anthony Morris (rugby, cricket, swimming and debating), Blaise Prentice-Davidson (cricket, football, debating), Joseph Lai (basketball, football, athletics), Nik Levanic (rugby, cricket, athletics), Lachlan Deacon (cricket, rugby, performance music) and Weiping Lu (basketball, volleyball, cadets) stand out.
I was inspired for my parting offering to Year 12 today by the words of Thich Nhat Hanh, a Vietnamese Buddhist monk. In ‘Being Peace” he writes: “There is a Zen story about a man riding a horse which is galloping very quickly. Another man, standing alongside the road, yells at him, Where are you going?” and the man on the horse yells back, “I don’t know. Ask the horse”. I think that is our situation. We are riding horses that we cannot control.”(p65) Although published twenty years ago, the monks words relate to many examples of historical horses out of society’s control.
I think a contemporary example is the so-called ‘War Against Terror’. It is a horse we cannot control. Since the trigger of 9 / 11 we have allowed ourselves to gallop with George Bush into any country on the planet in search of terrorists allegedly trying to destroy democracy. The anti-terrorist horse has ridden rough shod over our own civil liberties, allowing imprisonment without trial, rendition and extraordinary government and police powers, couched in anti-terrorist legislation. Governments propagate the politics of anxiety, trying to make us see external and internal dangers so that we will leave it to them to keep us safe and so that we will acquiesce in allowing them to expand their powers over us. Ironically, bureaucracies and local councils are gradually restricting our individual freedom in the name of the security of us all.
As you leave High and your secondary education behind, I hope that you would all have the insight, the intellectual training and the courage, to challenge why society should mount these horses in the future without testing whether they are manageable or can be reined in when they wish to bolt. Without labouring the metaphor any longer, I trust you graduating students have the balance to see the other side’s point of view, beneath the rhetoric of the politicians. I know you can appreciate the poverty, the hopelessness, the political opppression and the sectarian violence fueled by ideologies of hatred, that drive people to use terrorist tactics. Janis Joplin once sang “When you’ve got nothin’ you’ve got nothin’ to lose”. The developing world’s politics of despair oppose the decadence of the developed countries politics of fear. We are the ones who have everything to lose.
The most important Buddhist precept supposedly is to be aware, to know what is going on, not only here but also there. I exhort you all to take the broad view, to consider not only ‘here’ – the immediate personal, local and national interests, but also ‘there’ – the effects of our interests on others, globally. International empathy is in short supply. I trust the breadth and depth of your training will equip you to predict what the next scared horses will do and urge us as a society, not to mount. The future is in your hands. I wish you most sincerely all the best for the HSC and for your tertiary education and careers ahead. It really has been my pleasure to have been your Principal.
High Boys Acknowledged by a Commuter
This email is a refreshing affirmation of how the public responds to our students when they do
the right thing in unsupervised circumstances. I commend the boys concerned and remind others
that the public are watching you, they know where you come from and they expect an appropriate
standard of behaviour and dress – as we stipulate in our policies, published in your
diaries. You represent to them what ideal public education is all about. Let us not disappoint
Road Safety Around Schools
We have been advised that City of Sydney Rangers will soon be actively monitoring and visiting schools to educate drivers to ensure that they comply with the road rules. They will also be issuing penalty notices where applicable.
The Rangers may be in plain clothes and can book drivers without approaching the driver; that is fines will be sent to offenders by mail.
It is worth noting that the Roads and Traffic Authority increased penalties for traffic and parking offences in school zones from 21 May 2007. The new fines and demerit point increases include:
Parents are encouraged to drop their children off within the School grounds for the safety of all concerned.Return to Index
Sailing Committee Annual General Meeting
Saturday, 20 October 2007 at 8.00 am at Woollahra Sailing Club Board Room
All welcomeReturn to Index
I would like to remind all boys that the weights room will be open during the holidays at the times listed below. For those boys who are yet to start their strength programs for summer sport, the holidays are an ideal time to start as the pressure of schoolwork is minimal and time is not a problem.
Week 1 1/10/07-5/10/07
Week 2 8/10/07-12/10/07
Skins Special Offer Continues
‘Some people dream of success….. while others wake up and work hard at it’
SHS Old Boys Union
Did you know?
Annual Combined GPS Church Service
The President, Ian Clarke, and members of the GPS OBU Council invite you and all friends in the GPS Community to attend this annual service.
Venue: Shore Chapel, North Sydney (Parking is available off Union Street)
Morning tea will be served following the service.
The ecumenical nature of our service enjoys the warm support of Headmasters and Clergy.
Reverend Nick Foord, an Old Boy, (80) has kindly arranged the service and the inclusion of the Shore Boys’ Choir.
Dr Timothy Wright, Headmaster of Shore will give an address.
Students, Old Boys and Parents are warmly invited to join us in this joint worship.
Year 8 Soccer Picnic
Date : Saturday 29 September
Bring your own picnic, join in the parents versus boys game or barrack (for the parents) from the
sidelines. Everyone welcome - hope to see you and your family there
125th Anniversary Ball and Cabaret
Friday 21 November 2008
In conjunction with Sydney Girls High School, we are holding an Anniversary Ball and Cabaret evening on Friday 21 November 2008.
If you are interested in volunteering to be on the organising committee for this important event in the School’s calendar, please contact Lynne Williams on 9361 6910, ext 114Return to Index
GPS Music Festival Photos
Spring/Summer Price List 2007-2008
Please ensure that when sending items for sale, you include your name and address.
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday & Friday from 10:30am to 1:30pm
Goods and Services Tax
GST is included on all prices listedReturn to Index
GPS Results and new website
The complete season’s results are now available.
Debating Dinner- September 1
Year 7 Christopher Chiam Year 8 David Chan Year 9 Antony Paul Year 10 Christopher Evans Year 11 Dominic Bowes Year 12 Kelvin Yu
The night concluded with 'The Great (and Hilarious) Debate' between the coaches and Year 12 - the topic was “That We Don't Need Debating Coaches”. The coaches took the affirmative side, attempting to do themselves out of a job! The Year 12s responded accordingly with completely irrelevant and off topic suggestions and by a unanimous decision it was decided that we do need coaches and we look forward to hopefully seeing them all back next year.
Ms Jocelyn Brewer
Rowing Season Launch 2007-08
If you’re like me you won’t know everything about rowing so come along and acquaint yourself with what goes on at the High rowing sheds.
All senior parents are needed to help with the boys camping at the sheds at least once during the season and all the junior parents need to help at the Saturday BBQs.
Program for Parents
Together we can make it a great rowing season
We are looking for new parent mentors
A Parent Mentor is an informal contact person who will welcome New Parents into the School Community and is available to them to help them through the difficulties encountered in their first year at the School.
The aim is to have every parent of a new boy starting at the School matched up with a mentoring parent already at the School. The role of the Mentoring Parent is
The scheme is informal, without a lot of structure and depends for its success on the enthusiasm of the Mentors.
The scheme has worked extremely well in its first year and has not been at all onerous.
All the Mentor Parents this year have enjoyed it tremendously and the New Parents have been extremely receptive and grateful for the contact.
As there is an attrition rate every year we need new Mentor Parents.
Please join us as the more parents we have the easier is the task.
Or fill in the form below and return to the Principal’s Assistant
Name: ______________________________________ Email Address: _____________________________ Contact Phone Home: ____________________________ Mobile Phone: ____________________
Return to Index
Well done to the 66 boys who attended last Saturday’s assessment trials and Team Selection sessions at the school nets and surrounds. Whist the weather got off to a poor start and it was generally chilly throughout the whole session all players put in very well and most covered all areas of assessment. It was also encouraging to see the commitment and improvement in many of the Year 7 boys. Players who did not receive a net assessment on the Saturday will be given the opportunity at sport on Thursday so we then have seen all of our Year 7, 8 and 9 cricketers
New Cricket Storeroom- Can you help?
Team Managers, Scorers and Assistant Coaches
Leadership and Recognition
Alcohol, Drugs and Teenagers
As parents we all wonder how best to discuss the complex issues of drugs and alcohol with our teenage children, and how to guide and assist them to make healthy life choices. Many of us are uncertain of the latest scientific data on drugs; and we often don’t know how much information or misinformation our boys have gathered themselves.
To clarify these issues and to provide a forum for our questions the P&C has invited an expert in the field to address the parents at the October P&C Meeting.
Who : Mr Paul Garufi, Drug and Alcohol Consultant for the Department of Education
When : Wednesday 17 October 2007 at 7:30 pm, in the first week of Term 4
Where: Staff Common Room, Sydney Boys High
Mr Garufi has a wealth of experience in talking to students, teachers and parents about these issues.
As part of Mr Garufi’s presentation there will be ample time allocated to answer any questions you may have. Parents are invited to join us in great numbers for this fascinating meeting.
After Mr Garufi’s presentation the P&C Meeting will proceed as per agenda.Return to Index
Canteen Price List
All canteen profits are returned to the school for the benefit of the boys’ education and development. Prices effective 16/7/07. Minor price changes will occur as a direct result of increases by suppliers.Return to Index
New Library & Performing Arts Centre
Tax Deductible 125th Anniversary Project
Sydney Boys High School depends upon its community of parents, Old Boys and supporters to further the School’s ethos of the pursuit of all-round excellence.
We have a bold vision for a two stage Library & Performing Arts Centre. With advances in information technology, there is a pressing need to create a facility which is able to adapt and keep pace with meeting the increasing needs of our students. The estimated cost of the combined project is $4m. Stage one requires $1.8m; we have $400k. A new tax deductible monthly giving program has been introduced to help fund our development goal.
We have implemented an arrangement with ANZ Bank for automatic monthly deductions from a nominated credit card. You can elect to give $50, $40, $30 or $20 each month for a period of twelve months. Your nominated amount, along with your name and credit card details will be sent to the bank electronically. At the end of the financial year, the school will issue an annual statement as evidence of tax deductible donations. You can opt in or out of the scheme provided you notify the school in writing five working days before the fifteenth day of each month.
Thank you for helping to make a difference for our boys
SYDNEY BOYS HIGH SCHOOL - MONTHLY PAYMENT ADVICE
Name: _________________ Daytime Phone Number: _______________
Postcode: _ _ _ _
Email Address: _________________________
I authorise SBHS to make the following deductions from the credit card nominated below:
Card Type: Bankcard __ Mastercard __ Visa __
Monthly deduction for 12 months:
$50 __ $40 __ $30 __ $20 __
Card Number: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
Expiry Date: ___/___
Cardholder’s Name: _________________________________ [please print]
Cardholder’s Signature: ____________________________