High Notes, Vol 18 No 8, March 24 2017

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From the Principal

High Talent

Last Saturday, the Head of the River regatta was held in rainy weather with a tricky crosswind. Times were slow on the day as a result. The best High row of the day came from the 2nd VIII (6.32.31), at WT+ 5.28%, it was High’s best result since 2005. This was followed by the 2nd Year 10 VIII (6.59.86) at WT+5.99%, the best performance since 2003 and the second best since Year 10 competition began in 2001. The first VIII (6.21.64) had a margin slightly higher than last year at 6.1%, but still the second best row since 2005. Again, our sportsmanship at the pontoon was notable. I received this email: “I am a Riverview boy who rowed at the head of the river on Saturday in the 2nd VIII. After coming off a depressing loss, we were clapped off the water in a tunnel by all of your boys there on that day. It was really special as it was one of the best expressions of sportsmanship I have ever witnessed”. Well done to all our rowers.

Old Boy Khushaal Vyas (SHS-2014), currently debating and public speaking coach at High, was awarded the NSW Premiers Multicultural Youth Medal at the Premiers Harmony Day Dinner for the community work he has been doing at University and whilst at school. Congratulations, Khushaal!

Caught Being Chivalrous

The following email I received this week speaks for itself. “I am a student in Year 8 from Sydney Girls High School and I wanted to thank a student of yours immensely. I  do not know what his name is but this is why I'm very, very grateful: on Tuesday, as I was walking down Cleveland street between the two schools, a young man in a car seemed to glare at me for no apparent reason - I really don't know what was wrong - and then skidded very fast near the curb, soaking me with a wave of water (it was raining and the gutters were full). It isn't that I was collapsing on the ground or anything, but a student of yours ran over to me, seeing that I was soaked and shivering, he asked profusely if I was ok, held his umbrella over me and it made my day, it was very nice and made light out of an irritating situation. I was quite quiet when it happened because I was pretty shocked, but if you can, please bring it up at an assembly or a year meeting or something, because, for some reason, it really touched my heart and I didn't think of thanking him at the time!” To our Good Samaritan- thank you.

HSC Results Presentation and background files

The HSC Results page of the school website has been updated with the Principal’s presentation to the P & C and the data  can be accessed at - http://www.sydneyboyshigh.com/publications/hsc-results

Harmony Day 21 March

Staff and students wore orange ribbons to celebrate our cultural diversity. We reinforced the purpose of the day was to highlight inclusiveness, respect and a sense of belonging for everyone. At lunch, a basketball game between two ethnically diverse teams was held. The day coincides with the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. This year’s theme was – racial profiling and incitement to hatred, including in the context of migration. Racial and ethnic profiling is defined as “a reliance by law enforcement, security and border control personnel on race, colour, descent or national or ethnic origin as a basis for subjecting persons to detailed searches, identity checks and investigations, or for determining whether an individual is engaged in criminal activity”. Our school community needs to be aware of issues surrounding the treatment of different races

The Co-Curricular Supervision Levy  

In order for us to run a six-day school with after-hours activities for 15 sports, debating, music and chess, we need to provide a teacher / MIC / manager for organisation of the activity and supervision of staff to meet our duty of care obligations. Some parents are asking: ‘Why should I pay this co-curricular levy when I’m paying quite a lot in co-payments for a sport or activity for a season? The money raised from the levy is used to pay for the time that supervising teachers/MICs have to spend: hiring and managing coaches, organising teams, fixtures and venues, buying and managing equipment, supervising coaches during training sessions, coordinating results recording / publishing, following up on attendance, awarding participation points in a text file, getting reports from captains, managing assemblies and dinners, as well as travelling and being there for competition fixtures on Friday nights or Saturdays. All these duties take time for which personnel must have some compensation, by way of time, money or a combination of both.

In addition, the levy is used to pay for physiotherapy services at venues and for the extra allowance given to the Head Teacher Sport to manage the overall sports program. The levy has to meet the cost of running athletics and swimming programs which are provided free of charge to all students. The levy does not cover the running costs of sports – coaches’ fees, venue hire, equipment, consumables. All these have to be funded through co-payments.

To clarify why the levy is necessary and should be supported by all parents, I want to share with you the direct costs to the school of management, supervision and duty of care. Staff members are remunerated by way of allowances (time free from face-to-face), or the period equivalent in money or a combination of the two. Non-teachers are paid the equivalent of the period allowance that would be offered to teachers. The cost to the school for these services in 2017 will be $497,140. At its present level of support, the co-curricular supervision levy is contributing 27.8% of these supervision and management costs borne by the school and none of the coaching costs. The shortfall has to be made up from general contributions. Please support the school and your sons in their sports by contributing to the Co-Curricular Supervision levy each year.

Summer Co-payments

In this very busy and complicated year, we will be switching to a no account, no cheques finance system. The critical stages of this transition begin as from Term 1 Week 10. Eventually, OASIS will cease to exist and all our ledgers will have to be rebuilt and re-entered into the new system. There will be no migration of financial data to SAP. It would be extremely helpful and would save the school considerable time and money, if all outstanding summer sports contributions were paid by the end of this term. I ask for your cooperation. Ideally, all other invoices should be cleared before the middle of June.

The Governors Centre Joint Entity

On Tuesday a combined SBHS/SGHS meeting was held where Darren Fittler, partner in Gilbert and Tobin, explained the agreed Constitution for the entity. A great deal of drafting effort has been donated by Geoff Andrews, Kate Morgan and Paul Almond. I thank them and Darren for his patience. Minor edits were made to the Constitution. The entity is all but ready for incorporation. The first meeting of Directors will be held next week.
Dr K A Jaggar

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