High Notes, Vol 5 No 26, August 20 2004

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From the Principal
Writing Contest
From Science
The Onion Bag
Debating Dinner
Immunisation Program 2004
P and C Minutes

From the Principal

Lodge Sydney High School
Last Tuesday I was a guest at the final celebration of Lodge Sydney High School. It has a proud history of 75 years of service. Lodge 631 donated a prize for Speech Night each year. It had many Old Boy members who served on the school's governance organisations. Lodge members from other GPS schools were in attendance. It was a nostalgic occasion for many of the fifty diners like Laurie McKay, Ken Baret, Ray Smee and Lee Ruth who were long time members of the Lodge. In proposing a toast to the school, Ken Baret expressed the longing that I suppose many Old Boys share, that zoning should be integral to the selection policy for Sydney Boys High School. In my response to the toast, I identified the characteristics of passion and pride that seem to be recurring in the utterances of Old Boys. They seem to express how much they liked the school but invariably have an opinion on how boys should be selected to go there. I averred that the principle of choice for parents was the current political thinking. I promised to work with some of the Lodge representatives to find a large wall in the school to display the Lodge memorabilia - its prize board, honour board and banner.

GPS Heads Meeting
A wide ranging discussion of educational issues and pedagogy, as well as sports matters, was enjoyed by participants at our GPS Heads meeting at Scots held last week. One decision of note was that the Heads accepted the recommendation from the AAGPS Committee that games not be played on the long weekend in June next year and that the athletics season would be shortened by one week. This decision will allow families to plan for a June long weekend break. Concern was expressed about the lack of identification of boys in winter teams without numbers on their jerseys. It was recommended to the AAGPS that it might be possible for all boys in a cohort to be allocated a discrete number to be used to identify them in rugby or soccer or any winter sport.

GPS Heads have supported Mr Scott's initiative for a combined music evening to be held at Newington on September 4 at 1830. Our boys will be playing and it promises to be an evening of high quality entertainment. Tickets will be limited. High's allocation will be available by contacting the Music staff. I trust our music committee will support this very promising trend towards broadening the activities that GPS schools engage in together.

High Talent
Ronald Yu (Year 11) has done it again. He has been chosen to represent Australia at the World Junior Chess Championships in Heraklion, Crete, in November. Congratulations, Ronald! Well done to Sriram Srikumar our Regional SRC representative and member of the DET Young Peoples Reference Group.

Season 2005 - the last home games
The boys from SGS had not read the script for our last home game at McKay. We were supposed to have a morale boosting ending by knocking over the premiers in the soccer and securing the wooden spoon for Grammar in the rugby. As it happened, Grammar finished the season as undefeated champions of soccer, handed us the wooden spoon in rugby and inexplicably beat us in the Friday night debate. Some good rugby victories in the junior grades helped to make the day more bearable, but I was disappointed that we did not get away with a win in any of our important fixtures.

After their demolition of Shore the first grade soccer had every reason to come out fighting against a very accomplished Grammar outfit. They scrambled a bit in defence in the first half and created only a few chances. Our boys were losing everything in the air. Against the run of play Mischa Steen pounced on an opportunity and scored off the cross bar. The boys lifted and seemed to have Grammar becoming frustrated until a couple of minutes before half time when an offside trap did not work and Grammar equalised. The boys were disappointed at half time. Grammar came out firing in the second half and put our defence under a lot of pressure. In return, our attacking moves broke down before we got ourselves into good positions to score. Two defensive lapses were seized on by Grammar to put their stamp on the game and the 2004 season. They were worthy champions.

The first XV walked out through a tunnel of their peers stretching from the boundary to the cricket pitch. With a large and vocal home crowd behind them, they had everything to play for. SGS started well, putting our line under pressure with driving mauls. An early soft try boosted their confidence. The High boys fought back with a solo effort from Cameron Conway. In a half of good ball movement and 'willing' exchanges in the forwards, Grammar held onto their lead. A swirling breeze made judgement of kicks tricky. Some of High's attacking raids broke down very close to the line, whereas SGS converted most of their chances into points. Coach Serdar Bolen had set the benchmark of 4 tries required to be competitive in a GPS match. Ben Mitchell's runaway effort adjacent to the posts inspired another effort. The game was marred by a scrappy period of play in the middle of the second half. When a SGS penalty goal put them beyond the converted try range, the game was won. Our boys were as usual valiant in defeat, scoring 3 tries to 4. Grammar was a better team on the day. In a nostalgic, post game afternoon tea, Mr Stein presented bouquets and libations to an array of stalwart supporters of rugby, some of whom were catering for their last function at High.

At the end of the winter season of games, High boys can be pleased with themselves for having given their best in a high standard competition. We know that the GPS is the right competition for us. We face the challenge of resourcing a deeper infrastructure of coaching to build a skill base in the junior school. Some of our competitors have over 100 people engaged to support their sports programs. We can never hope to match their resources, but on the other hand we cannot assume that what we have done in the past will suffice for the future. The inexorable trend is towards coaches coaching and teachers teaching. The necessary link is in recruiting boys to sports and managing their discipline and supervision.

The Weights Room
Session times for boys wishing to improve their strength and fitness. Monday and Tuesday: 0715-0845, 1530-1700; Wednesday: 0715-0845; Thursday: 0715-0845, 1530-1700. Sign up now!
Dr K Jaggar
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Visit http://neilwhitfield.tripod.com/week.html for more detail and the relevant links.

There are two new FAQs up for students:
14: Can you help me with paragraphing? and 15: Can you help me with punctation, especially in speech?

On the teacher page you will find much that is new. "The 'me' behind the mask: Intellectually gifted students and the search for identity" by Miraca U M Gross (1998 - Online since: November 2003) is one such item. "As educators and community members it is in our power, and it is our responsibility, to help our gifted students seek for and accept, with love, 'the me behind the mask'." This is part of the SENG website library of resources. In 1981, SENG (Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted) was formed to bring attention to the unique emotional needs of gifted children. It provided adults with guidance, information, resources, and a forum to communicate about raising and educating these children.

If you really want to think a bit outside the square on issues raised by the idea of "multiculturalism" you could do worse than follow the controversy stirred up by a very thoughtful article in the UK magazine "Prospect" (February 2004) by David Goodhart. It has the challenging title "Too diverse?" but is not a rant. "Prospect" followed up with a range of views accessible from the foot of Goodhart's article. "Prospect" is annoyingly framed, but non-subscribers can access the February 2004 issue if they are clever enough to follow the navigation! It is definitely worth the effort. Relevant to Australia? Oh yes. Recent history here raises many of the same questions. Here is a very brief extract from the conclusion of Goodhart's article:

"Too often the language of liberal universalism that dominates public debate ignores the real affinities of place and people. These affinities are not obstacles to be overcome on the road to the good society; they are one of its foundation stones. People will always favour their own families and communities; it is the task of a realistic liberalism to strive for a definition of community that is wide enough to include people from many different backgrounds, without being so wide as to become meaningless."
Neil Whitfield
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Writing Contest

Commonwealth Essay Competition:

Write Around The World 2005.

Prizes range from $500 to $1500.

Enter via internet:www.rcsint.org
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From Science

Results of Science Quiz no.10
A question about "Messenger", was asked in last fortnight's quiz.
  1. How long will the voyage take?
  2. Explain why Mercury is known as "the planet of ice and fire"
  3. Nick Lamb, from the Powerhouse Museum's Observatory, says that Mercury would be a very strange place to watch the sun rise and set. "The sun would come back up before setting again." Also anyone on the equator would have one year (88 days) of daylight and a matching similar period of darkness.

Try to explain these phenomena bearing in mind - the length of a 'year', the rotation time and the length of a 'day'.

It was attempted by Andrew Tang (8T), Bernard Fang (8T) and Peter Luu (8S).

Peter and Andrew managed to fathom out the answer to question 3, which had been challenging the compiler!
(a useful web site - StarChild.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/StarChild/solar_system_level2/mercury.html)
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GPS Volleyball Report
High vs Grammar
7th August continued
First Grade Report

In the last round of GPS volleyball, High traveled to Grammar, to come up against a well drilled and fast team. We always knew this would be the hardest game of the competition, but were still surprised at the ferocity with which Grammar started. Caught completely unawares, High let Grammar build up a lead in the first set, before reeling them in to 25-25. The set then see-sawed between teams, until High finally won, 32-30.

This attacking play by Grammar was completely unexpected, and the High team had to play a clever game in order to win, something usually not needed in the GPS competition. The 2nd set had fewer mistakes, but Grammar continued to attack, and High only managed to win 25-21, an improvement, but still poor.

The third set started off brilliantly, with Karl making some quick hits. High built up a large lead, until Bill sustained an ankle injury. Grammar then managed to creep up on us, but we were too far ahead, the set closed at 25-21, once again.

Not High's greatest game, but we still pulled of a victory in straight sets, crowning us GPS Champions, without dropping a single set.
Dominic Grimm
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From the Rugby Master's desk:
What a "fan"tastic day it was last Saturday at McKay against Grammar. The crowd support for High soccer and rugby was amazing. It was well beyond what I had hoped for. Thank you to all the students, staff, old boys, parents and friends that turned up to support High. Too often the rival Winter football codes take pot shots at one another but on Saturday everyone cheered loudly and in unison for High. It should always be that way.

There was to be no fairy tale finish for either the soccer or rugby and my congratulations go to Grammar. But nothing that appeared on the scoreboard on Saturday could detract from what we have achieved this season. Make no mistake we have laid a solid foundation this season for further success, if we can maintain our determination and enthusiasm to take up the challenge of GPS rugby.

A special note of congratulations and thanks must go to Mr Ben Ingle, the McKay groundsman. McKay 1 playing surface has been a sensation this season and the source of much positive feedback from visiting schools. I know the players have appreciated his tireless efforts making McKay one of the best rugby fields in Sydney.

For the record our results v. Grammar were:
  • 1sts XV lost 19-31
  • 2nd XV lost 0-25
  • 3rd XV lost 0-25
  • 15As won 10-5
  • 15Bs lost 5-14
  • 15Cs won 34-17*
  • 14As lost 17-24
  • 14Bs won 12-5
  • 14Cs won 12-0
  • 13As won 55-0
  • 13Bs won 71-0
  • 13Cs won 31-19

* The 15C's did not exist at the start of the season but managed to form a team as the season progressed playing against Joeys, Newington and Grammar. At the conclusion of the Grammar game Mr Beringer remarked that every player was in their first season of rugby for High. Congratulations.

Also for the record the "Hide and seek" champion on Saturday was Nick Levanic who was the first person to see me at half time and won the rugby ball signed by the 1st XV.

As this is my last column for the season I have included a summary of our season and its comparison to 2003, for people to make their own assessment of High rugby.

To everyone who has been involved with High rugby this season my sincere thanks, you have made my job very enjoyable and rewarding.

To the players, I hope you take the opportunity to get into the weights room during the off-season and develop your strength. Get involved in a Summer sport for High. Whether it is rowing to improve your aerobic endurance, basketball to improve your ball handling skills or cricket to improve your ... ability to concentrate for long periods. Just get into High sport and give it your best shot.
Geoff Stein MIC Rugby
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The Onion Bag

High V Grammar
The 2nd Grade Premiers came to McKay full of confidence but High matched them and created the better chances in the first half but failed to capatilise on the fighting display. Unfortunately Jongha was missed upfront due to his shocking injury obtained earlier in the 16As fixture but High certainly matched Grammar throughout the first half when the story of the 2XI season unfolded once again in the second half. Shortly after the break the referee gifted Grammar a penalty which the Grammar coaches apologised for. High then again went to pieces losing their shape and organisation allowing Grammar to dominate and score three more in the space of ten minutes. High finished the game well and should have snatched a couple back but a lack of confidence in front of goal coupled with a lack of self-belief meant the chances went begging. It has been a steep learning curve for a new unit and one which has given a valuable experience to a number of young players.

1st Grade 1-3
Scorers: Steen

In First Grade it was a similar story with High starting well and taking the lead through an unstoppable left footed drive from Mischa Steen that cannoned off the underside of the bar and bounced high into the Grammar net. High withstood some Grammar pressure but the inevitable equaliser came after a number of corners and long throws just before half time. The second half was all Grammar as their superior work ethic and fitness eventually broke High down. Grammar controlled the second half almost from the kick off and it became increasingly difficult for High to keep possession or to create anything. The two goals came in quick succession and there was never going to be any way back as Grammar kept the pressure on and pressed the High players continually. Grammar richly deserved the win on their second half performance and although High made both first and second grade look ordinary for much of the first halves their sheer self-belief and organisation coupled with their fitness were too much for High to cope with. They did the simple things well and dominated in the important areas of both games.

So Grammar win both premierships, unbeaten in both and only conceding six goals, scoring a massive 38 over the two grades.

GPS Results Round Seven

1st Grade
Shore 2-2 Riverview
Newington 5-3 Scots
Kings 2-0 Joeys
HIGH 1-3 Grammar

2nd Grade
Shore 0-1 Riverview
Newington 1-1 Scots
Kings 2-0 Joeys
HIGH 0-4 Grammar

Next season (not in order)
Riverview Home
Joeys Home
Newington Home
Scots Home
Kings Away
Shore Away
Grammar away

14C 2-0
The High 14Cs won 2-0 against Sydney Grammar in their last match. High started the game very well putting pressure on the Grammar goal. Alex scored the first goal with a header from a Charles corner. Minutes later, George Lo almost increased his tally of 13 goals when his shot just shaved the left post. The score remained at 1-0 in favour of High at halftime.

Grammar stepped up their game in the second half with the strong wind behind them. High defended well with Cary, Vijay and Charles not letting up. A good move started by George sent Josh through one on one against the Grammar keeper. Josh was brought down but Peter took his opportunity well to slot the ball into the net as the referee waved play on. Man of the match was Daniel Vijay who was here, there and everywhere.

Well done 14Cs. The 2004 Dolan Cup Champions!

Quote of the Week
"We are going to talk to Paul, he has fitted in well. Being from the north east nobody can understand a word he says but he nods quite a bit and I hope he will be nodding after our chat"
Sheffield United boss Neil Warnock on trialist midfielder Paul Thirlwell.

Match Reports
7th Grade 1-1
For the last game of the season, High went out pumped on a small Bus Loop field against a disorganised Grammar side that delayed the game about five minutes. Winning the toss sent High into a tight first fifteen minutes, where neither side budged an inch off their territory. It was here that Grammar found the back of the High net against the run of play, but with the superb work of Chris Tran, Albert Hwan and Andrew Lin, High nearly managed to equalise, but choked on the opportunity. Half Time 1 - 0.
The second half started strongly for High, with dominance in possession before the continued perseverance from the midfield saw the gamble in taking Paul Wong out of defence into the midfield pay off when he cleaned up a spilled ball in front of goal. Even though High maintained the pressure on the Grammar goal, there wasn't enough time to snatch the victory and High went out on a one all draw. Stats of 7th's season:
Win: 3 Draw: 3 Loss: 1

16Cs v Grammar 2:2
Going into the final game of the season the 16Cs were keen to finish off on a high note. However, the opening minutes saw us go down to an unlucky own goal. The half continued with High having the majority of the possession, but not being able to get the vital goal back. However, not long into the second half, Henry was able to put in a long-range shot that beat the Grammar keeper and we were right back into the game. Not long after that, the Grammar keeper fumbled a cross and essentially scored an own goal to put High in front for the first time in the game. The game looked won; however, with a few minutes remaining, a mix up in the back line meant that an unmarked Grammar player was able to get through and score. And so the 16Cs finished the GPS season with 3 wins, 2 draws and the one loss, with Henry grabbing the man of the match for the final game. The man of the season, however, went to Kevin Ho for his consistency, determination and enthusiasm. Well done 16Cs! It was a good season, which I thoroughly enjoyed and hope you guys did too.
Max Kletski (coach)

Congratulations to the 14Cs on their tremendous season and to their Coach, Parent Mr Peter Lee.

The 14Cs lost only one game the entire season which was 2-1 loss to Riverview. In winning the remainding 6 games they scored an amazing 40 goals and conceded only 5. This was after two wins a loss and a draw in the trial games which again they scored freely with 15 goals conceding three in the four games. A truly remarkable season and one that won the Golden Boot for George Lo. What are the odds on George playing A grade next season?!

Congratulations to the 14As and 5th Grade who remained unbeaten.

Quote of the Week
"We used to go to the pictures every Saturday night but we had to leave a little bit early and get home and watch Match of the Day - and my wife still complains she missed the last five minutes of every film we saw."
Brian Clough celebrates 40 years of Match of the Day.

Soccer Committee
The Season in Review and AGM will take place late this term or early next term. Please email me if you are not already involved and would like to be so I can notify you of dates directly.

The final game this season will be the OBs game on September 11th.

To all Staff, Parents and coaches for your hard work and support this year especially to the Old Boys who put in so much time coaching and reffing games. If you are interested in becoming involved next year please email me so we can start assigning teams.

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Debating Dinner

Debating Dinner

WHEN: Saturday 11th September 2004

WHERE: The Outterside Centre, Teviot Avenue, Abbotsford

TIME: 6:00pm for drinks 6:30 pm for dinner

COST: $30 Please pay at the SBHS Office by 31st August

DRESS: School uniform and blazer

All debating boys and families are invited to attend our annual dinner to celebrate SBHS debating achievements for 2004


Payment may be made at SBHS Office by cash, cheque or credit card.

Please complete the following:


Roll Class:

No. of tickets at a cost of $30 each

Method of payment: Cheque_________ Cash__________ B/Card______________ M/Card_________ Visa___________

Name on Card_______________________________ Expiry date_________/_________

Card No. __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __

Amount $_______________________ Signature_________________________________
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Immunisation Program 2004

The next round of vaccinations will take place on Monday August 30 when a team of specially trained registered nurses will be visiting the school to administer diphtheria/tetanus/pertussis [whooping cough] vaccine to Year 10 students.

After the boys have been vaccinated they will be given a Record of Vaccination to take home so that you can keep their immunisation records up to date.

During the next week parent information kits will be distributed to all boys in Year 10. If you would like your son to be vaccinated, please complete the Consent Form in this kit and return it to the collection boxes in the Main Office as soon as possible.

Some translated material for parents about the program is available at www.health.nsw.gov.au

If you have any queries, please contact Mr Beringer.

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P and C Minutes

Sydney Boys High School Parents' & Citizens' Association
Minutes of the May General Meeting
Wednesday 19th May 2004

Meeting Opened: 7:40 pm

Present: 13 participants as per Register

Apologies: Paul Girdler

Minutes of Previous Meeting and Business Arising: The minutes from the P&C General Meetings of 18th February and 24th March 2004 were distributed and accepted with minor corrections. Amended minutes will be posted on the web-site. Motion - Sue Levy, Second - Sue Polis.

The Great Hall was inspected this week for registration as a Place of Public Entertainment. Interim certification will be sought, pending recommendations from the inspector.

Refurbishing/replacing existing wooden School signs on Cleveland Street and Anzac Parade is approved and included in the Council's budget for 2004.

Treasurer's Report: Our bank balance stands at about $15,000, after making the final $25,000 Canteen building repayment to the Foundation. Fabienne Ovadia presented a cheque for $15,000 to the P&C, being quarterly profits from the Canteen.

2004 Budget: Based on recommendation from the P&C Executive and review at the March P&C General Meeting, it was agreed that $40,000 (representing Canteen profits for 2004) be contributed to the following School projects/expenses (identified as priorities by Council) during the year -

Library Building Fund $20,000 ($10,000 paid immediately for Term Deposit)

Grounds Refurbishment $10,000 (eg - Concrete for basketball courts)

Teacher's Computers $5,000 (Purchase residual on PC leases)

Foundation Administration Costs $5,000 (Without precedent for future years)

Motion - Valda Roser, Second - Marilyn Mittelheuser

Additional funds raised by the P&C during the year can be applied to discretionary projects and activities (eg - Great Hall acoustics, Open/Orientation Day, Toilet Block renovation).

Principal's Report: Dr Jaggar addressed concerns raised by parents and students over the simultaneous loss of three senior English teachers on long service leave. Formal steps were discussed to avert a repeat of this unusual and regrettable coincidence, including suitable advance notice of leave intentions, finding replacement teachers prior to leave approval, not assigning teachers taking LSL to senior classes and early communication with affected students. The P&C supports the Principal in ensuring the academic integrity and excellence of all school programs.

The underlying causes of waning participation in senior Music were discussed and a range of options for reinvigorating the program were explored. To this end, the Music Department is conducting a survey of all junior and senior boys. Dr Jaggar encouraged the Music Committee to take a proactive role in setting the agenda for the extra-curricular Music program.

School Tie for SRC: Brian and Leong explained efforts being made to revitalise participation in the Student Representative Council. Communication is improving among the 5 SRC Representatives from each Year, who meet on Fridays at lunchtime. In recognition of their role, the boys proposed a brown tie with School crest for SRC Representatives. P&C approval was given for an SRC Tie to be included in the School uniform and stocked by the High Store. Motion - Jeffrey Tripp, Second - Fabienne Ovadia.

Speaker for Joint General Meeting: Sue Levy volunteered to source a guest speaker for the upcoming Joint General Meeting, possibly a GERRIC workshop on "Assisting Gifted Children In Selecting Careers".

Schools Expo: Feedback from Kim and several parents who attended the event on 15th & 16th May 2004 was very positive. The view was expressed that we need to get in early to lift the profile of High with prospective students and parents.

OBU/School Sports Day: Valda Roser gave an update of plans for the event on 16th October 2004. Things are progressing well, building on the experience of last year. The P&C will provide a BBQ at lunchtime and the OBU will run the bar.

Parking: To expand the volunteer base for P&C Parking, Year Groups are requested to send their contact lists (especially e-mail addresses) to John Mittelheuser. $5000 was raised at the recent Australia vs Turkey soccer match.

Fundraising: It is hoped the Krispy Kremes sale coordinated for 22nd June 2004 will raise $1-3,000. The P&C will earn $7 for each dozen glazed donuts sold at $12. If successful, a second sale is scheduled for September. From the quick disappearance of the samples Valda Roser provided for the meeting, this will be a popular fundraising event. Watch for details in High Notes.

Red Carpet: Valda Roser literally rolled out the red carpet, from the main entrance through to the Hall. The carpet is available for $1000, negotiable. The P&C Executive will review the proposal in June.

Year 7 Group: About 30 parents attended the initial Year 7 Group meeting on 13th May 2004. Vera Dimitropoulos and Suze Greenslade will represent Year 7 on the P&C Executive.

Year 11 Group: Approximately 32 parents met with Year 11 Adviser, Ms Berger, on 18th May 2004. Marilyn Mittelheuser will summarise the meeting in High Notes.

Foundation: John Kaldor advised progress on resolution of the Outterside Centre sea wall claim with the State Transit Authority will continue later this week. Negotiations with the new CEO of Sydney Ferries will occur tomorrow, prior to a court hearing on the acceptance of the expert's report on Friday.

Glynn Gill, solicitor and OBU member, is conducting a review of the Foundation rules. His recommendations (eg - use of alternate representatives, proxies, quorum and voting requirements) will come to the P&C for approval, probably at the August General Meeting.

Next P&C General Meeting: Wednesday 23rd June 2004 at 7:30 pm in the Great Hall - Joint Meeting with Sydney Girls High School.

Meeting Closed: 10:40 pm
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