High Notes, Vol 18 No 37, November 24 2017

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From the Principal

Orientation Day 2018

Thank you to Maria Glenn and her staff, teachers, students and parent volunteers who worked so well together to make the orientation / enrolment process as smooth and efficient as possible this week. The enrolment processes were completed with impressive efficiency and effectiveness, thanks to the smooth organisation and hard work of the SAS staff. They had to process over 200 new students. The Great Hall was full for the assembly at the new time of 3 pm. Many new students and their parents were shown around the school by School Prefects. These boys also did a wonderful job assisting the SAS staff in the Common Room as they processed applications. Volunteers who attended the various activity stalls did a great job too, as did the parents who gave up their time. Thank you also to the P & C for providing refreshments. Thank you to Mr Aldous for his organisation and to everyone associated with the day. It was certainly very well organised. Thank you to everyone involved. A great High team effort!

Summer Sports Assembly

At our summer sports assembly, basketball Olympian Shane Heal urged our boys to find something they loved doing and do it with great energy. He talked about how passion, commitment and perseverance carried him to the highest levels of his sport. He cautioned the boys that setbacks are inevitable in sport. Effort does not always equal reward. The test is how much you want it to keep on trying without giving up at the first big setback. My speech to the assembly is reprinted below:

"Special guest Shane Heal, staff, parents, GPS representatives and students – good morning and welcome to our summer sports assembly. Today I am pleased to make welcome to High our newly appointed Head Teacher of Sport, Steven Marcos. Steven comes to us with a wide experience of schools, students and sports administration at several levels. I know everyone will work collaboratively with Steve to promote and nurture sport at High. GPS competition is underway for some summer sports and just about to commence in others.

"Our cricket program is being managed this season by David Smith, an Old Boy and former Combined GPS cricketer. I would like to thank him for taking over a complex role so seamlessly, especially when we are hosting the Five Highs tournament this year. Our thanks go to first XI coach Andrew Walters, 2nd XI coach Glenn Holstock, Tushaar Garg (SHS 2016) as coaching coordinator and to Darius Visser and his coaches Luke Bartier, Pete Francis and Devlin Malone. The training intensity has definitely lifted. Thank you to the members of the Cricket Committee for their work: Sandeep Mahajan, Ben Giles, Andrew Roland, Jay Goonaratne, Gracey Joseph, Shakeel Memon and Manisha Shridokar. I look forward to an improved showing from our teams this year.

"In basketball, long-serving MIC and first grade coach, Ben Hayman, has led his team of coaches really well again this year. Our boys won the Yeend Shield in second grade last weekend. I’d like to acknowledge the work of two volunteer stalwarts in the basketball program. Bruce Gordon - the strapper/ first aid/ tour manager guy and Chris Chiam (SHS 2012) who produces game statistics for the coaches at each break – a marvellous service. Nima Sedaghat (SHS 2004) is still our long standing Treasurer. Thank you for the ongoing contributions of Sam Higgins, Eamon Kelly (SHS 2013), Tom Neal, Erik Dorbek, Shiraz Biscevic (HS 2010) and the Basketball Committee. There is much to do running the kiosk, rounding up parking volunteers, scoring games and preparing food for after game functions. Thank you to everyone involved!

"In sailing, I want to thank MIC Matt Cotton for his efforts this year, particularly in the off season when we moved from Double Bay to Woollahra and took delivery of two new boats. Thank you to the South family for their ongoing support for sailing. I would like to recognise the work of Sailing Committee members Bill de Araujo, Georgina Kernohan and Tom Beer. Thank you to Richard James on behalf of the Sydney High School Sailing Association. We are rebuilding our program at Woollahra and should get more time on the water in an easier location to navigate.

"Jessica Millar has backed up again as MIC of Water Polo and done a great job. Our development is dependent upon High having good swimmers who also want to play this demanding sport. The standard of our teams seems to be lifting year on year which is gratifying. Peter Loizou has been MIC of Swimming for many years and all the events he is associated with are run very smoothly and efficiently. He has a lean and efficient operation that I can count on to work each year without a hitch. We have had some really good support from our boys as spectators at recent GPS Swimming carnivals. I appreciate your support.

"Kurt Rich has worked very well as MIC of tennis and is working closely with David Deep, our Coaching coordinator and Head Coach, to build up the tennis program. My thanks go to these two men for their efforts. One of the hardest achievements in sport is to back up after a big win. Our boys are taking on the challenge of defending our first and second grade titles. It was a strong start against Riverview last Saturday. The big test is Newington this week.

"Thank you to our piano players for today’s assembly – Lingyu Wong and Sampson Xie. In closing, I want to make a few observations about sport and goal setting:

"The goal setting process helps athletes to understand the quality of their current performance and also to clarify where they want to go and by when. Trained professionals help athletes to set systematic goals that are focused on the process and personal performance parameters rather than unpacking possible outcomes from the competition they are training to compete in. Teams respond well to SMART goal setting. When you set specific, measurable, achievable, realistic time bound goals, you are more likely to achieve them.  They are designed to narrow focus and galvanise action. SMART goals begin the process of turning the invisible into the visible. Who is involved in our process? What do we want to accomplish? Where will we be doing our training and competing? How long have we got to get to where we want to be? What are our requirements and what is constraining us? Why do we want to achieve the goal we have set for ourselves? Teams need a process for setting individual and collaborative goals.  Write them down. Compose them with only positive statements. Put in enough detail to make the goals clear. Have them observable at training each day by all the team members.

"How do teams and individuals derive benefit from the goal setting process? Goals provide us all with direction. Goals remind us to focus on what is important. Goals help us to become clear about what decisions need to be made. Goals empower us because we are managing our own futures. Goals help us with our motivation because a big task has been broken down into achievable parts. We can remain really keen to tick off each goal as we reach it. Our sense of self-efficacy or personal satisfaction can be enhanced by the process of setting goals. Above all, individual and collective goal setting provides individual and communal purpose.

"Coaches in all sorts of sports have sets of saying and slogans to help bring team culture to their group. One I like is to task team members what ‘success’ looks like. See your goal. Understand the obstacles. Create a positive mental picture. Clear your mind of any self-doubt you have. Embrace the challenge. Stay on track. Show the world you can do it. That is what success as an acrostic looks like. Goal setting is a valuable life skill in academic as well as sporting situations.

"I congratulate all boys selected in GPS teams this season. I exhort all team participants and coaches to work with goal setting to improve performance."

Student Awards Scheme

Last points for the Award Scheme can be earned up to Friday 24 November. If you check your participation file and detect that something is missing, it is up to you notify the MIC in charge of the activity to have the text file of successful participants compiled and sent to Mr Dowdell. Awards have to be determined and medallions/ plaques ordered before the end of the school year so that they will be ready in time for our awards assemblies early next year. Don’t miss out on getting all the points you should!

Scholarship Applications

There is only one week left for students to apply for the Phillip Day Memorial and Sir Roden and Lady Cutler Scholarships. If you have financial needs due to family or special circumstances; if you are a great all-rounder; or if you have a special talent that needs extra resources to help you develop, please consider applying. Scholarships are valued at $1500 in school credit. Application forms can be downloaded from the school website – www.sydneboyshigh.com/scholarships/. Applications close now on Thursday 30 November.

End of year Reports

All boys in Years 11, 9 & 7 should have discussed their reports with me. Boys in Year 7 requiring Clearance Forms who have not collected their reports will have time slots available to book in for interviews next week. I will have a ‘Stragglers Reports’ session when I can find some time. Check out the Waterhouse desk to enter your name on a sheet. Thereafter, they will join the other Years in having appointments only out of school time or in breaks. Please make sure that your son meets his obligations to the school and then books in for an appointment.
Dr K A Jaggar

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