High Notes, Vol 17 No 27, September 02 2016

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From the Principal

High Talent
For the third consecutive year, High students have dominated the Australian Economics and Business Studies Competition. National winners with $400 cash prizes were:  Benjamin Wu (12F), Kevin Zhang (11M) and Jeffrey Zheng (11E). Six students earned $100 prizes: Raphin Hossain(12S), Sung-Chan Kim (12E), Anthony Rusli (12R), Nathan Sheng (10S), Ryan Sun (12F) and Kalvin Xu (11E).  There were 16 winners of $75 prizes and 11 winners of $50 prizes. Great work boys! Congratulations to Benjamin Kernohan (8S) who competed at the recent Robotics Championship, 'Robocup Junior Australia’ at UNSW. Benjamin won the contest ‘Rescue’ against 39 other teams and will go on to represent NSW at the National Competition.

Illuminate Festival
For four days this week we took time out to celebrate ‘cultural intelligence’ in the CQ quadrant in our enlargement model of personal growth. Much of what defines us as a culture can be found in the music, art, drama and film we produce. Scott Adams shed light on the idea of creativity when he said that it consisted in “allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep”. Making mistakes is an integral component of the creative process. Having a critical eye and a perceptive discernment are others. It is in the small but passionate group of students who follow their individual drive to create something different, original and non-derivative, where we will find the people who will someday change our tomorrows by invention, creation or production. They are the people who will make the future. We welcomed special guest, Oscar Winner, Damien Martin (SHS 1991), as our model of the path that a creative life can take.

A team of teachers, staff and students has put together an exhibition of students work and a series of student performances, celebrating students who articulate, create and innovate. There is impressive creativity and diversity of self-expression in the program. We have contributions from the English Faculty (coordinated by Xanon Shirley, Courtney Powell, Miri Jassy and Jo Curry): HSC students presented a film, a Drama monologue, a group performance, a poetry reading and a speech. From Music, Sarah Kim and Rita Miller showcase one of their extension students performing one of his examination pieces. The Visual Arts staff led by Jenni May and Lynnea Stewart curated the exhibition of HSC student artworks and Year 10 sculptures. Rebecca Dam and Paul Scrivener brought together Software Design and Design and Technology to exhibit an eclectic array of projects and games from Industrial Arts students. Staff from IT (David and James), our GAs (Jim and Stewart) and senior students (Vishal and Oliver) supported the exhibition through creating and displaying the publicity banners.

It is gratifying to be the leader of a school in which a multidisciplinary team can conceive of and work on an idea so autonomously and bring it together for an event such as this. Thank you to all staff and students involved in this initiative.

Parent Information Evening – Year 10 Acceleration and MOOCs
Next Tuesday in the Great Hall (6pm-7pm), there will be a presentation on the availability of Subject Acceleration for qualifying students going into Year 10. We will also present our inaugural MOOCs Elective option for self-selected, self-managed online learning modules (aggregated indicative time of 120 hours) as a potential third elective option for Year 10 students in 2017.  The proposed Elective will be restricted to a maximum of 20 places in 2017, supervised by Careers Adviser, Mr Cipolla. Access to special Electives is dependent upon the completion of an Independent Learning Plan and selection interview. There are also academic pre-qualifications for acceleration but for MOOCs technological proficiency and research capability will be important.

Year 12 References Assembly
Year 12 boys need to attend the Great Hall at 12:05pm on Friday 2 September to be briefed on the system of personal reference preparation. The type of information that is required and the sequencing of it in the document need every boy to be there. References for many boys need to be finalised during the holidays and uploaded onto the UNSW Co-op Scholarship site, so it is important that the process has all relevant data available by the end of term.

UNSW Research Project – Parent Participants Needed
High has a partnership with UNSW for professional learning. We have access to research resources at the University. One such resource is Dr Jennifer Jolly who is working closely with us in professional development, practicums and mentoring for early career teachers. Dr Jolly is interested in researching what influence parental beliefs have on the learning motivation and academic self-concept of gifted students. We need parent participants to find out more, using an anonymous survey. Their sons will complete a parallel questionnaire as comparison participants. We think we might find out more about how students are socialised and how they feel about their learning. Please be a part of this research. More than 30 parents have responded so far but we need at least another twenty before Dr Jolly can get a sample size to work with. Contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it for more information about the research or to register as a participant.

Harvey Norman Sponsorship
The Sir Roden and Lady Cutler Foundation which is the Year 11 Project, makes >9000 trips annually helping immobile people get to medical appointments. Our Year 11 students have a major collection day each year for the benefit of the Foundation and High boys help as volunteers for the Foundation’s major fundraiser – a golf day. Major retailer, Harvey Norman, have agreed to a two-year sponsorship arrangement to help fund the work of the charity valued at $75,000 per year commencing this week. I would like to express my thanks as a member of the Management Committee to the Harvey Norman Group for their generosity and compassion in assisting some of the most vulnerable members of our society.
Dr K A Jaggar

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