High Notes, Vol 19 No 2, February 09 2018

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From the Principal

High Talent

Congratulations to our 1st XI cricket team for their win this week against Picnic Point High. They have now qualified for the quarter finals of the Davidson Shield. At the recent international NZ Queen’s shoot for the best target rifle shooters from around the world, three Old boys were sponsored by the Sydney High School Rifle club to compete in the event. Jeremy Chan (SHS-2014) won the C grade competition with Wilbert Wu (SHS-2013) runner up. In the more challenging open B grade Wentao Ruan (SHS-2017) finished 19th.

School Swimming Carnival

At the School swimming carnival this week, school records were broken by Patrick Yi (8F) in the 50m backstroke (34.24), 50m butterfly (31.22) and the 200m freestyle (2.17.41); David Goh (11R) 17 years 400 individual medley (5.45.00). Age Champions were: 12 years Kaden Kuang (7E), 13 years Jaden Yi (7T), 14 years (Patrick Yi (8F), 15 years Ike Matsuoka (9M), 16 years Derek Sae-Jong (10T), 17 years David Goh (11R), 18 years Luke Posumah (12E). congratulations to all these athletes and to Mr Loizou and the High staff for organising and managing a great event.

Year 7 Transition

At the Year 7 First day Assembly, Ms Powell, our Junior School Deputy Principal, demonstrated a thinking routine called ‘Compass Points’ with the entire audience in the Great Hall. N- What do you need to know? E- What are you excited about? S- What suggestions do you have? At the end of the transition program, the students had their questions answered (87%), 85% said their worries were removed. During the Transition time in week one, we focussed on the W- responses to the question –what are you worried about? The boys were worried about: getting lost at school, making new friends and managing the workload. Over coming weeks, we will work more on providing information about our academic expectations. I want to congratulate and thank Ms Powell and her team for the success of our Transition Program for Year 7. Although only in its second year, it will become an annual and important variation to our process for welcoming new students to High.

I welcome your feedback and suggestions about how your son has settled into school life and how we might improve our practice.

New Students’ Parents Welcome Evening

Tuesday evening was very well attended by our incoming parents. The speeches were kept to a minimum so that parents had well over an hour to talk to each other, to other parents, to staff and to our boys who helped out at activities stalls or with serving the supper. I want to thank our speakers, Gavin Thomson (Development Director), Professor Ron Trent (P & C President) and Charlie Appleton (Parent Representative) for their insightful contributions to the evening. In particular, my congratulations and thanks go to Ms Angela Lam and her Committee for their most effective organisation and management of the evening. As always, the Sailing Committee provided the catering, which was up to the usual high standard for innovative canapés and finger food. Thank you to the parents and boys in the sailing program for their support.

Traffic Movement on School Grounds 

Staff members have complained that car spaces in the Cleveland Street car parking area are unavailable in the mornings due to parents occupying the spaces waiting in their cars or parents blocking access to spaces. School policy is that parents are asked to enter from Cleveland St. via gate one and drop off boys at the end of the tennis courts and then proceed out through gate two. Cars driving through the car park and doing three-point turns near the bus bay and driving out again cause congestion and can prove hazardous to pedestrian traffic through the area. The safety of our students is paramount. Parents are asked to try to stay out of the car park area around the gym and to observe school policy concerning dropping off students.

The Sydney Boys High Student Research and Resources (Public Library) Fund 

The Sydney Boys High School Student Research and Resources Fund is a fund to resource our two school libraries. Purchases of books, e-books, subscriptions to magazines, databases and streaming services and minor equipment can be made from the Fund. In addition, the wages of a second Librarian and staff employed to extend library hours and run Library archives, are paid for from the Fund. As contributions to the Fund are tax deductible, it provides a very cost-effective way for parents and Old Boys to help fund an important and growing area of school life – online learning. As well, 248 boys can enjoy the library facilities simultaneously. Your support will be greatly appreciated.

Collection of Reports

All boys should have collected their reports. Regrettably, there are still many boys who have not fulfilled their commitments and completed their Clearance Forms and booked an appointment time to see me to discuss their progress at school. This is an important step in our feedback loop and I insist on speaking to boys personally. Boys can come and get their reports before or after school and at lunch or recess on most days. There are also sheets provided for ‘Stragglers’ Reports’ for an hour on selected days. Boys just need to make an effort to comply with policy and come and see me. Once I have had a short feedback session with each boy, his report is loaded online against his personal file on Find a Student. Appointments can be made in the new school year by filling in one of the sheets on the Waterhouse desk in the corridor or just drop by before school, during recess and at lunch (except Tuesdays). The benefits of my interactions with boys lessen if the discussion is too far removed from the assessment events being discussed.
Dr K A Jaggar

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