High Notes, Vol 20 No 29, September 13 2019

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From the Principal

High Talent

Our CHS athletes performed strongly at the state meet. Our U12 4 x100m relay team won a silver medal with a time of 53.82. Kane Shields won gold in the U15 800m in a smart time of 2.01.00. He won the double with gold in the 800m. Joshua Suto won gold in the U15 400m and placed third in the long jump. Raghav Ramanathan won the open high jump.

Governors Centre Update

I am pleased to announce that Stephen Edwards was the successful tenderer for construction of the Governors Centre. The contractor is scheduled to take possession of the site on September 30.

Reading, Writing and ATAR

Famous author Stephen King believed” if you don’t have time to read you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write”. Research suggests that reading content and frequency may exert more significant impacts on students’ writing than writing instruction and frequency. A 2016 survey was completed by 45 MBA students. Their regular reading content and writing samples were analysed for syntactical complexity. Strong correlations were found between the students’ most common reading content and their writing. Reynolds, in ‘Fire Up Your Reading Brain,’ cites deep reading – thoughtful, slow and immersive reading rich in complexity and sensory detail – as a great aid to better writing. Other variables, such as intelligence and working memory capacity, affect the quality of writing, too.

At High, our HSC results have shown consistently, that a lack of sophistication in our writing is costing us valuable marks and hence band %s and 6s and ATAR ranks. Developing writing takes time. A recent semester one survey of Junior High students (Years 7-9) by our Teacher Librarian, gives us ‘food for thought’. Unsatisfactory (0 or 1 book borrowed, including e-books): Year 7- 38%, Year 8 – 61%; Year 9 - 73%; good / very good (2-10 books borrowed): Year 7 – 55%, Year 8 – 32%, Year 9 – 22%; excellent (11+ books): Year 7- 6.8%, Year 8 – 6.5% and Year 9 – 3.9%.  If we want to improve our results overall and earn more Band 6 results in courses requiring sustained writing, we need to move more students from unsatisfactory to good / very good. We also need to move more students from very good to excellent. It is everybody’s task to improve reading!

Weights Room – Summer Sports

My belief is that core strength and conditioning is essential for all sports all the time. In sports where a weights session has been made compulsory for students for selection purposes, I am opening a window for these students to join the weights room. Membership will be open until the last day of the athletics season at a special rate of $75. These special memberships will expire at the end of the long vacation at the end of term 4. I expect all students to then take out full year memberships in 2020. The process is to pay at the front office and take the receipt to Mr Rich to be included in the Weights Room membership roster. This will entitle you to unlimited access to the Weights Room when it is open.
Dr K A Jaggar

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