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FEATURE SCHOOLS St Mark’s Anglican Community School Trinity Anglican College

From the Chief Executive Officer THE REVEREND PETER LAURENCE OAM

Our Principals, senior staff and teachers have this conversation at every meeting I attend. For you, it is always on your mind. The answers to this question lie in a conversation on any day in any classroom, playground, chapel or camp. One way I have found most helpful in recent years to glean the opinion of Australian teenagers is through the Mission Australia Youth Survey, the largest annual survey of young people in Australia. Now in its 20th year, the Youth Survey aims to identify the values, aspirations and issues of concern to young people. CEO pictured with students at Esperance Anglican Community School.

Dear Colleagues What’s important to students? It could be argued that the CEO is the position most removed from the 15,000+ students in ASC schools. You could be right! So some of you may find it odd that I ask this question regularly? Maybe this is the old adage that ‘once a teacher, always a teacher’, even if the classroom was many years ago.

Contents From the CEO 2 Across the ASC 5 Trinity Anglican College


St Mark’s Anglican Community School


John Wollaston Anglican Community School


Cathedral College Wangaratta


Frederick Irwin Anglican School


St James’ Anglican School


Peter Moyes Anglican Community School


Esperance Anglican Community School


ASC Language School


Staff Spotlight 17 Swan Valley Anglican Community School


Peter Carnley Anglican Community School


St George’s Anglican Grammar School


Anglican Identity 21

Cover Images: Main - Christian Purposes Day, Victoria/NSW. Left to Right 1. Frederick Irwin Anglican School - Keagan’s Leukemia Journey 2. Secondary students at John Wollaston Anglican Community School for Gifted Awareness Week 3. The Rite Journey Program at Peter Carnley Anglican Community School 4. PMACS Service Learning Representatives Martino Bellu and Abby Palmer-Smith, with Deputy Principal Mr Roger McNamara 2

Last year over 20,000 15-19 year olds nominated COVID-19, the environment and equity & discrimination as the key issues that Australia needs to address… in that order, they were the key issues of importance to them in 2021. Of note, the 2020 survey listed equity & discrimination as of greatest concern, COVID-19 as number two and mental health as the third. The concerns around COVID-19 are to be expected. These have not dissipated over the past term. Indeed, with cases growing dramatically since the removal of pretty well all restrictions, case numbers have escalated disproportionally during the term, especially in Western Australia. Our schools in Victoria and New South Wales have been significantly impacted too, over a far longer period of time. Schools have been the ‘epicentre’ of the spread. We know that both physical and psychological harm comes from a prolonged global pandemic, so it is important that so many of our current resources are focused on supporting both students and staff in our schools. Term Two has been a real challenge and test for everyone. If we look ‘beyond COVID-19’, the survey is clear that young people are deeply concerned about issues of equity and discrimination. The two top reasons given by youth in the survey for unfair treatment this past year were ‘gender’ and ‘mental health’. So I ask of myself and our leaders… how will our decisions help address these issues of concern, or indeed compound them for those in our schools? The CEO of Mission Australia James Toomey says that with equity and discrimination identified as an important national issue by our young people, it’s gravely concerning that more than one third of those surveyed had been unfairly treated in the past year. According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, discrimination – being treated unfairly on the basis of individual characteristics such as appearance, cultural background, gender, sexuality and disability is a key social determinant of health and wellbeing.

The Institute reported that experiencing discrimination can have devastating consequences on the health and wellbeing of young people. It’s been shown that discrimination (whether direct, indirect or systemic) is associated with anxiety, depression, self-harming, suicide risk, poor physical health and behavioural problems. Our schools deal with these issues every day. Anglican schools are, and always must be, safe places for all young people who form a part of our caring learning community. At what is one of the most vulnerable times of their lives, adults need to ensure we give messages of inclusion, affirmation and acceptance. An important message today as we are wearied by the third year of the pandemic; a vital message tomorrow and every day, because these must be some of our points of difference as Anglican schools.

The Bishop of Wangaratta, The Right Reverend Clarence Bester, blessing the All Saints Anglican School site in Shepparton.

A Blessing! In the last edition, I was excited to announce details of the ASC’s newest school, All Saints Anglican School in Shepparton Victoria. Mid-term (Tuesday May 24th), The Right Reverend Clarence E Bester, Bishop of Wangaratta blessed a large ‘patch of dirt’ in Shepparton to become our fourth eastern states school and the 16th ASC school. It will open in 2024 with all classes from Prep to Year 7, growing to a full P-12 school by 2029. Some 50 minutes down the road from Cobram, just over an hour to Wangaratta and approximately two hours from Albury, the four schools will become a dynamic Anglican education hub over east. It’s now twelve years since the ASC first expanded ‘over east’. Defying all odds (and many sceptics) we crossed WA’s rabbit-proof fence at the turn of last decade, acquiring a fledgling Anglican school in the Diocese of Wangaratta called Cathedral College. Today the College has almost four times the enrolment of 2010, being a thriving Preparatory to Year 12 school.

Cathedral College choral group at site blessing.

I’m often asked how a WA-based ASC ended up in Victoria and NSW. After all, both Sydney and Melbourne have an ASC, albeit Melbourne is very small, with only one school on two campuses since its inception some 15+ years ago. In short, it was only in 2009-2010 that the Commonwealth Government amended legislation to allow an entity to own schools outside their homestate. Since Federation in 1901, Catholic and other non-government schools were required only to operate in their state. This legislative change meant that the ASC, with the support of the Archbishop of Perth and Diocesan Trustees, could respond to the Diocese of Wangaratta’s request for support, in a way that Melbourne could not do. The Perth Diocese was viewed as well aligned with the Diocese of Wangaratta, allowing a logical partnership in mission to be established. The three schools’ acquisition last decade has made our family of schools stronger in every way. The ASC’s new Strategic Plan, taking us to mid-decade, is clear about our strategy. The first responsibility is to our existing 15 schools, that they remain thriving centres of learning and well resourced to serve their local communities. Looking beyond, growing new schools will be focused on our home-base of WA, then regional Victoria and the border region. Our eyes are focused on the horizon. We are in the latter stages of due diligence into a block of land in the northern outskirts of Perth, to be the next low-fee ASC school serving this fast-growing coastal corridor. The greatest challenge today is finding blocks of land that are affordable to buy… sound familiar? Each new school site blessing marks a new beginning for tens of thousands of young people who will be educated there over the coming decades. What exciting days are ahead.

ASC News


From the Chief Executive Officer


Christian Purposes Days Each year we hold a Christian Purposes Day in both the west and the east for our teachers. It’s a day to focus on the Anglican Identity of our schools, this lying at the heart of our mission and purpose. Reflecting the relative positions of the three states in relation to the Omicron strain of COVID-19, the west was held as a virtual day, whilst over east we gathered in person at Trinity Anglican College in Albury.

The Most Reverend Kay Goldsworthy AO, Archbishop of Perth.

The six pillars of Anglican Identity - Faith, Reason, Worship, Inclusion, Character and Service - define who we are and provide the foundation of all we do in ASC schools. So it is good and right that from next year we rename this important day of learning, inspiration, challenge and fellowship as our ‘Anglican Identity Day’.

The CEO presenting a 20 year service award to Kaz Gehrig-Kent at Trinity Anglican College.

Both days commenced with The Reverend Dr Daniel Heischman from the USA challenging teachers on how our classrooms reflect the Anglican Identity of our schools. The days also included others (The Most Reverend Kay Goldsworthy AO, Archbishop of Perth; and Ms Jules Allen in Albury) who engaged with participants on the importance of our work amongst young people. Worship formed an important part of the day as it always does, with a virtual liturgy conducted by Archbishop Kay in the west and a Eucharist in the east at which Bishop Clarence Bester presided and preached.

The Reverend Dr Daniel Heischman. 4

FINALLY, as we reach the mid year mark, it is time for our students, teachers and many of our support staff to ‘take a break’. You have earned it. Everyone is Covidweary, not to mention outbreaks of the flu and other illnesses that tear-through school communities. My thanks beyond words go to every one of you in our schools for going ‘to the moon and back’ these past months, to ensure the wellbeing of the young people in your care, and for caring for one another. Amidst the winter chills, may you stay safe and well. Take time to rest and renew. Do at least one thing you have been putting off all term that is ‘just for you’. It will do your spirits the world of good! Every Blessing…

Across the



Staff from All Saints Anglican School in Samoa.

The ASC has a partnership with All Saints Anglican School in Samoa. With the country now experiencing the spread of the pandemic, ASC schools wanted to help by sending some Rapid Antigen Tests (RATs) for our friends at All Saints Anglican School. After purchasing RATs earlier in the year, ASC schools each gave a donation to assist staff and students in Apia as they respond to the pandemic. The tests arrived at the perfect time, just as students were preparing to return to school.

PRINCIPALS MEET For the first time since the pandemic began, Principals from all ASC schools were able to gather in person at the ASC. The quarterly meetings of Principals provide an opportunity for gathering as a group for planning and professional development. It was especially good to welcome our three Eastern States principals back to WA. Principals’ quarterly meeting.


Len Collard leads ASC Head office staff into the bush for a Reconciliation walk.

The ASC office, along with our schools, has accepted the to challenge proposed as part of Reconciliation Week 2022 to ‘Be Brave’ and tackle the unfinished business of reconciliation so that we can ‘Make Change’ for all. As part of Reconciliation Week, the ASC held a Reconciliation morning tea with homemade damper, learnt some of the stories of the local Noongar communities, and were treated to a guided walk through Bold Park with Professor Len Collard from Moodjar Consultancy to learn more about the country on which our offices are located.

A SHARING VISION FOR LEARNING The purpose of educational activity is always driven by a telos, a vision of what students can be in addition to who they are currently. The ASC is establishing a Working Party to bring teachers and school leaders together to work on a shared vision for learning in ASC schools. The Working Party will be responsible for consulting with ASC stakeholders and drafting a shared vision for learning that will then be distributed

for further consultation. This is a key part of the ASC Strategic Plan 2025 in which a core activity is a learning community where excellence is pursued. We look forward to the involvement of students, teachers, school leaders and school communities as we work towards achieving this.

ASC News



TOGETHER IN CHRISTIAN PURPOSE On Friday 27 May, Trinity Anglican College welcomed colleagues and friends from the Anglican Schools Commission, Cathedral College Wangaratta and Cobram Anglican Grammar School for Christian Purposes Day. After two years of COVID disruptions in the three Eastern schools, staff were pleased to be able to gather in-person for the annual professional development day for staff in ASC schools. Local Wiradjuri elder, Aunty Edna Stewart, conducted the Welcome to Country and the James Fallon High School Wiradjuri Dance Troupe provided the opening performance. There were two keynote speakers for the day. The first speaker was Executive Director of the National Association of Episcopal Schools USA, The Reverend Dr Daniel Heischman. Based in New York, Dr Heischman’s presentation was delivered remotely. He spoke about the inclusive nature of our Anglican schools, our Anglican identity and how this can be upheld in an ever-changing education environment, and the characteristics of being an Anglican school that is open to families of all faiths and none. The second keynote speaker was Jules Allen, awardwinning Australian youth advocate and dynamic 6

motivational and inspirational speaker. She spoke passionately of her experiences raising foster children and the importance of building relationships in challenging situations. She also spoke about tackling the multitude of issues affecting young people, parents and adults in this current, challenging climate. Her talk was captivating, humorous and from the heart, with the underlying message of spreading kindness and her philosophy of ‘the more you give, the more you get back’. The day also provided an opportunity to formally recognise three dedicated staff members from Trinity Anglican College who have all served 20 plus years at the College. Davina Gibb, Kaz Gehrig-Kent and Jennifer McMillan were formally acknowledged and congratulated by ASC CEO, The Reverend Peter Laurence OAM, and presented with their 20-year pins. The day concluded with the Holy Eucharist, led by The Right Reverend Clarence Bester, Bishop of Wangaratta and supported by the CEO, The Reverend Peter Laurence OAM and Cathedral College Chaplains, The Reverend Cathy Carden and The Reverend Dr Mark Mickelburough.

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A POSITIVE INFLUENCE To those who know her work, it is no surprise that Dr Deborah Netolicky has been named as one of Australia’s most influential educators. The trailblazing Head of Teaching and Learning at St Mark’s Anglican Community School was one of five WA teachers to receive the honour in The Educator’s Top 50 list, recognising those who have introduced innovative programs that are changing Australian education for the better. In her current role at St Mark’s Anglican Community School, Deborah oversees the learning and growth of 1800 students and 180 teaching staff. But over the last two years, she has also led the development of the school’s Distance Learning Plan, the co-redesign of a suite of differentiated staff development mechanisms, the creation of a whole-school teaching and learning philosophy, initiation of school-wide strategic project groups, and a review and redesign of the K-12 end-ofsemester report. 8

“Dr Netolicky is such an amazing teacher and role model. She never fails to make lessons engaging and Literature a subject to look forward to.” Year 12 Literature student She was also responsible for the development and implementation of the school’s Learner Attributes, a review and rebuild of the Secondary timetable structure, enhancement of inclusive teaching and learning, and expansion of a whole-school approach to staff wellbeing. Beyond her role at St Mark’s, Deborah is an Honorary Research Associate at Murdoch University and peer reviewer for several education journals. She is a member of national and international education advisory committees and networks, and is a regular contributor to podcasts, webinars and conferences. St Mark’s Principal Steven Davies said Dr Netolicky’s expertise contributed greatly to high-quality teaching and learning at the School.

“We want our students and staff to be on a path of continual improvement, not because we aren’t already doing well, but because we can always be better. Deb has focused on providing quality professional learning to our staff in support of our Strategic Plan, and on implementing rigorous ways of providing valuable feedback to staff about our practice,” he said. “Deb has also contributed significantly to our Future Ready Curriculum that provides our students in Years 6 to 10 with opportunities to engage with authentic problems and tasks and develop essential life skills and attributes, such as employability skills, entrepreneurial capabilities, financial literacy, creativity, collaboration, intercultural capability, ethics and character.” Dr Netolicky said: “Those of us in education do what we do because we care deeply about students and want to have a positive influence on our communities and on education more broadly. We have learned that schools are more than places of learning. They are sites of community, relationships, society, values and care.” Deborah loves to share her education practice, research and learning, on her well-established blog, and in 2022, she launched The Edu Salon podcast, featuring conversations with global education thinkers, scholars, practitioners, and leaders. Deborah has written for several peer-reviewed academic journals and her 2020 writing on school leadership and pedagogy during the pandemic continues to be influential with educators. She has also written a number of books including Flip the System Australia: What Matters in Education (2019), Transformational Professional Learning: Making a Difference in Schools (2020), and Future Alternatives for Educational Leadership: Diversity, Inclusion, Equity and Democracy (2021).

EXCELLENCE SHINES St Mark’s Anglican Community School is celebrating the success of their staff and programs with two finalists in the 2022 Australian Education Awards. Deputy Head of Primary School (Early Learning) Linda Sweet is a 2022 Excellence Awardee and finalist in the Department Head of the Year category. Linda is an esteemed trailblazer in early learning leadership and practice leading the Early Learning Centre (ELC) since 2017. She has developed the ELC as a beacon of pedagogical and well-being best practice in early years education. Well-respected within the school and in the wider community, Linda is an outstanding and inspiring leader. She ensures that the St Mark’s ELC fosters an environment and relationships that honour the development of the whole child through play and inquiry-based learning in an intentional, nurturing environment for children and where staff and families feel valued and connected. St Mark’s second finalist is a School Award for Best Remote Learning Program. Since emerging at the beginning of the pandemic, the St Mark’s Distance Learning Plan (DLP) has evolved based on research, best practice, and the needs of the School community. Its pillars include tailoring our approach to different ages, stages and subjects; a balance between live teaching and content that students can access in their own time; streamlined communication; manageable workload for students; opportunities for collaboration and reflection; and a focus on the wellbeing of all in our community. Principal Steven Davies said it was wonderful to see the School’s high-quality leadership and programs acknowledged. “Our students are at the heart of what we do at St Mark’s, and this is reflected in not only our Distance Learning Program but also in the care, energy and expertise that pervades our Early Learning community,” he said. Winners in the Australian Education Awards 2022 will be announced in August. ASC News



GIFTED AND TALENTED AWARENESS Secondary students at John Wollaston Anglican Community School were eager to celebrate Gifted Awareness Week during Term 2, participating in a range of activities designed to encourage higher level thinking skills, including problem solving, creativity and critical thinking. An initiative of the Australian Association for the Education of the Gifted and Talented, Gifted Awareness Week aims to raise awareness of the identification, support and learning needs of gifted children and to celebrate those making a positive difference in the lives of gifted children and their families. Students across the Secondary School were invited to participate in Gifted Awareness Week activities including House Group Challenges, quizzes, a Rubik’s Cube challenge and a Periodic Table challenge. Year 7 student, Barath Thandapani set a new school record of 3.78 seconds for solving the 2x2 Rubik’s Cube, while Year 10 student, Anna Shaw was able to recite all 118 elements of the Periodic Table in 1 minute and 22 seconds. Secondary Science teacher Rebecca Phillips said it was wonderful to see staff and students embracing the challenges and activities that were set during Gifted Awareness Week. “Large crowds gathered to watch and encourage the participants in the Rubik’s cube competition, and it was terrific to celebrate the diverse range of skills that our students possess. We aim to build on the success of this event in the future and planning is already 10

underway to create further opportunities to challenge and inspire our students in 2023,” she said. John Wollaston is expanding its provision for gifted and talented students through a range of initiatives to be implemented in the life of the new strategic plan. Importantly, staff have been invited to share their ideas about how the School can support gifted students across the School from Primary to Secondary, providing a seamless transition of learning extension. This year a new Year 9 Science Challenge elective offers students the opportunity to conduct scientific research to develop solutions to real world problems. An example has been the opportunity to work in partnership with Plastic Oceans Australia, to develop ways in which the School can become more sustainable and proactive in waste management. Principal Anne Ford said: “At John Wollaston, we pride ourselves on our commitment to offering a wellrounded, inclusive education and as part of that, I believe we need to do more to expand our educational offerings and experiences for gifted and talented students.” “We have an opportunity to be a disruptor in this education space leading the charge to innovate and nurture students with unique gifts. These gifts look beyond a student’s academic performance to include students who are creators and innovators with a unique ability to understand the crux of complex problems and find out of the box solutions,” Ms Ford said.


THE CHAPEL OF THE GOOD SHEPHERD On Thursday, March 24, 2022, The Right Reverend Clarence E Bester, Bishop of Wangaratta, formally consecrated the Cathedral College Wangaratta Chapel, ‘The Chapel of the Good Shepherd’. Distinguished guests, community members, staff and students were welcomed into The Chapel of the Good Shepherd by a smoking ceremony conducted by Bpangerang Elder Aunty Betty. Participating in the consecration and the dedication were The Right Reverend David Farrer, The Reverend Peter Laurence OAM, CEO of the Anglican Schools Commission; The Reverend Canon Scott Jessup, the Bishop’s Chaplain; and Cathedral College chaplains, The Reverend Dr Mark Mickelburough and The Reverend Catherine Carden. The Right Reverend John Parkes AM led the Sermon, and readings were shared by Principal Nick Jones and College Captains Bella Bridgeman and Skip Pieper. Mr Jones said the Chapel of the Good Shepherd was an inclusive, inspiring, peaceful and reflective space where students, staff and the wider College community will gather in worship and communion. “The Chapel proudly resides in the heart of our school. It is a place where all members of our community will gather to find peace, calm and comfort, irrespective of religious tradition,” he said.

“It symbolises our commitment to ensuring worship is an essential and integral part of our students’ life at Cathedral College Wangaratta. It is a place where students and staff will celebrate their spirituality and participate in the religious and liturgical aspects of our fortnightly Chapel Services”. The Chapel is named in honour of Christ the good shepherd. In Jesus’ description of himself in St John’s Gospel, he says: I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father. And I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd.’ (John 10.14-16) Within the main Chapel sits a smaller, more intimate side chapel. The side chapel was dedicated in honour of Saint Catherine of Alexandria. According to legend, Saint Catherine of Alexandria was an extremely learned young girl of noble birth, possibly a princess. She protested the persecution of Christians under the Roman Emperor Maxentius - whose wife and several soldiers she converted while imprisoned - and defeated the most eminent scholars summoned by Maxentius to oppose her. Catherine is the patron saint of students and teachers, and therefore a suitable patron of the internal Chapel. ASC News 11


KEAGAN’S JOURNEY Year 3 students at Frederick Irwin Anglican School had cause to celebrate when their classmate, Keagan Laubscher, shared that he had completed his final round of chemotherapy. As part of the learning journey for his classmates, Keagan and his mum Dana gathered with the Year 3 students to share Keagan’s journey booklet and answer any questions about his illness and journey to wellness. Keagan’s blood cancer journey started in February 2019, however it had been a very eventful few years as not only did Keagan receive this diagnosis, but he also was bitten by a spider and was found to have thrombosis during this period. Principal Tracey Gray said the support for Keagan and his family by his classmates, teachers and school families showed the true community spirit of Frederick Irwin. “The support his classmates have shown him from his initial diagnosis, through his treatment and now, the celebration with his classmates, is a beautiful example of the kindness our students show to each other every day,” she said. With his family and friends thrilled that this is the end of a long journey, a donation of cupcakes from a School family was the icing on the cake.


Keagan’s mum, Dana, helped him read his journey booklet to his classmates. Written at the end of his journey booklet is: Never stop believing in life because Hope and Miracles happen every day.


INTERNATIONAL AWARDS A SUCCESS Named as a Centre of Excellence and in the top ten schools delivering the Duke of Edinburgh Award in WA, St James’ Anglican School is expanding its program to include the Ignite Award program for Years 7 and 8 students. The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award is open to students from Years 9 to 12 and aims to allow students to explore their full potential and find their purpose, passion and place in the world. St James’ has offered the Award program since 2019, with more than 60 students successfully achieving their Bronze level of the Award. Year 10 student, Abhiraj Deol, enjoyed the challenge of the program: “The Duke of Edinburgh Award was a lot of effort but it was rewarding as I helped people. The best aspect was having to move out of my comfort zone.” Award Leader Stacey Syme said the School currently had 47 students enrolled in the Bronze Award from Years 9 to 12 and three students enrolled in the Silver Award.

“Over the past two years, St James’ Anglican School has been acknowledged as a Centre of Excellence for both the enrolment and completion numbers in this program, with St James’ listed in the top ten schools delivering the Award in Western Australia,” Mrs Syme said. “These Awards play a vital role in providing opportunities for young people to develop essential life skills, increase their employability and foster their creativity and innovation.” Following this success, St James’ introduced the Ignite Award program in 2022 for students in Years 7 and 8. Currently, there are 36 students enrolled in the Ignite Award, with three students who have completed Level 1, one student who has completed Level 2 and four students have completed Level 3. Mrs Syme, along with Head of Year 10 Sian Yates and Head of Year 11/12 Ryan Marlow act as mentors and guides, helping students translate the Award, setting achievable goals and offering encouragement.

ASC News 13


HELPING HAND Amid a surge in COVID-19 cases in Western Australia, access to readily available Rapid Antigen Tests (RATs) is vital to the community, particularly for at-risk and vulnerable groups.

“We chose to donate to Freo Street Doctor as they provide a free and vital service for many of our fellow West Australians who otherwise would go without medical care and support.”

Service Learning Representatives at Peter Moyes Anglican Community School (PMACS) set about helping to make the testing kits fully accessible and available to vulnerable people who may not have appropriate documentation to access RATs via pharmacies or Government programs.

Black Swan Health Chief Operations Officer Sarah Tadier said they were immensely grateful for the donation of the testing kits and appreciated the support of the School community.

Led by PMACS Chaplain, The Reverend Jean-Pierre Schroeder, the group of students organised the distribution of surplus test kits to Black Swan Health for their Freo Street Doctor program, a mobile medical health service that provides primary health care to disadvantaged and homeless people in the community. Reverend Jean-Pierre said: “We recognised that the School had a large number of RATs which were surplus to our needs and so our Service Learning group discussed ways in which we could assist the community and make a big impact for people in need.

“With low vaccination rates among the homeless community, the current surge of COVID-19 cases in WA is particularly concerning,” she said. “To be able to provide more free RATs to these vulnerable members of our society will make a real difference in slowing the spread of the virus and providing appropriate healthcare to positive COVID cases. We thank the students of Peter Moyes Anglican Community School for their kindness and compassion.” The Freo Street Doctor clinics are held for three hours per week across the cities of Fremantle, Cockburn, Melville, Canning and Rockingham. Image PMACS Service Learning Representatives Martino Bellu and Abby PalmerSmith, with Deputy Principal Mr Roger McNamara

Editor's Note: These RAT kits were privately acquired and were not part of the State Government's free kits for schools distribution. 14


THE BIG PICTURE A focus on student-centred learning through the Big Picture program is paying dividends for students at Esperance Anglican Community School (EACS). The Big Picture Education Australia program allows young people to be driven by individual passion and curiosity, rather than a traditional fixed learning environment. Students can network with professionals in their field of passion, complete internship projects and seek real life learning that prepares young people uncommonly well for successful futures. Big Picture Advisory teacher Kallen Williams said the School supported students to grow as unique individuals, harnessing passion and capabilities. He said one of the School’s great success stories this year came from Year 11 Big Picture Student, Jandré Viviers, whose work epitomised both the values of EACS and the Big Picture Program as he embarked on a journey into the world of bees and honey making. “I am very interested in honeybees, so for my Term 1 Big Picture Project I made a honey brand which is named Sticky Fingers,” Jandré said.

“I did an internship with a local beekeeper, where I learnt the ropes and he showed me the entire process from making the boxes to catching swarms, hive inspections, the extraction process and the business side of bee keeping. “I collaborated with a fellow Big Picture student, Charli, who made my brand logo. My original thought on bees were that they are stupid little bugs, but through me exploring the intricate world of bee keeping I learnt that they are extremely important and most of all they make beautiful honey. I can’t wait to continue my Bee journey and I hope to grow my business through a social media platform.” Jandré is a busy student who is also juggling a Big Picture ‘leaving to learn’ internship at the Esperance Port, where he is currently completing his Coxswains training. Mr Williams said the staff were proud of Jandré’s autonomy and commitment and couldn’t wait for another batch of honey to reach the school after the first batch of jars sold out in under 2 hours!

ASC News 15




Par t of The Anglican Schools Commission (Inc.)

LANGUAGE THROUGH SCIENCE Learning a new language though science and other education pathways can make the process of learning fun, easy and effective. Our international English language students have been learning about cell biology, exploring the differences between structure and function in plant and animal cell organelles, including cell membrane, cell wall, nucleus, cytoplasm, chloroplast, and vacuole. ASC Language School teacher Lydia Roo said it was important to create interactive English lessons. “In order to engage students through a hands-on learning process, we did a science project on making an edible cell,” she said. With a partner, students had to choose either an animal or plant cell and plan their drafts on worksheets. Afterwards, they used various candies and other snacks to make the cell on a plate and try to make it look as realistic as possible. The students labelled each part of the edible cell and shared the outcome with the rest of the students, taking turns to explain the role of each organelle within the cell in their own words.


Students had to use everyday vocabulary to discuss with their partners to come up with a decision, read the instructions and previous PowerPoint slides to review the content. Students also learnt new science vocabulary words which they may not be exposed to in language classes. ASC International Acting Director Kate Simeon said doing a simple science activity supported English language learners to develop their language skills in various ways. “Science is a compulsory subject in the national curriculum, and while our students have learnt the content of science in their own languages, they need to learn the English vocabulary of the content,” she said. “Teaching English vocabulary through science content is a great way for the students to do this in a hands-on manner.” ASC International’s Preparation for Secondary School program teaches students the academic terminology, writing and reading skills for science, maths, and humanities subjects.


introducing. .

Patrick Tansey

Meg Watson

Brooke Tonev

Community Relations Officer Cobram Anglican Grammar School

Deputy Principal Georgiana Molloy Anglican School

Director of Teaching and Learning Middle School John Septimus Roe Anglican Community School

I graduated from La Trobe University (Melbourne) in 2017 with a Bachelor of Journalism. In 2018, I set off for a new adventure and my first professional experience in a faraway town by the mighty Murray River – Cobram, Victoria.

I was very fortunate to be awarded a position at Georgiana Molloy Anglican School in 2022, making the move from Perth to the beautiful South West. Settling into the wonderful extended GMAS community has not been difficult and I have been welcomed in such a positive way.

My journey to teaching took a few twists and turns but I feel that I was always on the path, perhaps just the scenic route. I worked in quite few different areas including corporate administration, marketing, public service and policy implementation in Canberra for the Federal Government before coming to teaching. During my time working for Federal Government, I was engaging in workplace training and found that I loved teaching. I eventually, turned to completing a postgraduate degree in Education. I was privileged to be appointed to Perth College and worked there for 8 years. I also completed some relief teaching at other schools including St Mark’s Anglican Community School.

After 12-months cutting my teeth as a rural journalist at the Cobram Courier covering news, politics, sport and everything in between, I relocated back to Melbourne where I took up the position of Communications Coordinator at the Fire Protection Industry (ODS & SGG) Board (FPIB). The FPIB is a national permit scheme funded by the Federal Government, aimed at minimising the release of environmentally harmful chemical agents used in the fire protection industry. Following 2.5 years at the FPIB, the lure of the Murray lifestyle and being closer to my partner Courtney’s family drew me back to the Cobram area. Thankfully an opportunity presented itself at Cobram Anglican Grammar School to become their Community Relations Officer. Having only recently commenced this role, my attention has been captured by the speed and vibrancy of the school environment. Each day throws up new challenges and opportunities and I am loving that side to this role. It is rewarding working in tandem with so many passionate educators and our administration team who are consistently striving to create an atmosphere and environment where students can flourish and be the best versions of themselves.

My career in education began over 30 years ago as a Home Economics and Science Teacher, with various appointments in the Catholic Sector across the years. My most recent position was at Iona Presentation College in a range of roles including Head of Learning, Dean of Operations and Dean of Curriculum. I am thoroughly enjoying my new experience at Georgiana Molloy Anglican School, immersing myself in the Little Georgies to Year 12 environment. It is a joy to attend meetings with Year 12 leaders, receive beautiful drawings from Kindy students, join in cooking with Year 6’s who are learning through the Stephanie Alexander Garden experience, or to sit and discuss stories that are written and illustrated on Ipads with Year 7 students, all in one day! To remain effective and motivated in my role I enjoy my weekends by spending time with my family and friends, hiking, beach adventures and enjoying the great food and wine options around my new home.

Across the journey I have engaged in various roles with curriculum advisory committees, consulting, writing tasks for SCSA and WACE Marking. Eventually, I realised that I needed to grow and leave my PC nest, and applied to join the community at JSR. Being appointed as the Director of Teaching and Learning in Middle School has been a blessing and the challenge I needed. During my time here at JSR I have implemented the Gifted and Talented Programme, starting working with staff implementing Data informed pedagogical change, along with engaging with a supportive and friendly community who strive every day to serve our students with gracious hearts. I feel being part of this community has allowed me to truly understand the phrase “servant leader” and I thank all those in our community who welcomed me and supported me.

Seeing the outstanding efforts of our students in their academic, sporting, community and cultural pursuits only heightens my passion to come into Cobram Anglican Grammar School each day and showcase what our school can offer in a holistic sense. ASC News 17


JOURNEY THROUGH SCHOOL AND COUNTRY To celebrate the 15th anniversary of Swan Valley Anglican Community School (SVACS), Primary students worked together to create an Indigenousinspired artwork. The project was guided by SVACS parent Bethany Farmer, who helped students understand the importance of the relationship between the local Indigenous people and their land and how this could be incorporated into the story being told through the students’ artwork. The concept for the painting incorporates a SVACS student’s journey through the school, along with the story of the local area. The blue circles represent each year the school has been open, 15 years in total. The footprints represent a student’s journey from Pre-Kindy to when they finish in Year 12, with footprints getting bigger as students progress through their school journey. The red, yellow and black feathers represent Indigenous Elder Yagan who ruled over the local Whadjuk Noongar people. Yagan was a Noongar leader and resistance fighter during the early years of the Swan River Colony. In the conflict that ensued, Yagan was both feared and admired by Europeans as a patriot fighting for his land. In today’s Noongar community, Yagan is an iconic figure in the fight for Noongar rights and recognition. The swan not only represents the school but is also designed with open wings to represent the teachers giving students their wings to fly. The grapes and vines 18

represent the Swan Valley known for its vineyards and wineries. Larger circles painted in the school colours (orange, maroon, blue and green) represent the school meeting place. The handprint of the school’s youngest Indigenous student can be seen in the top left corner. To complete the painting, every Primary student left their fingerprint around the central path in a choice of varying shades of yellow, orange and red. Principal Melissa Powell said: “We are absolutely delighted with our stunning painting which tells such a powerful story. I have no doubt that through this project our Primary students came to better understand and appreciate the story of our local Indigenous people and their land, as well as our own school’s history.” The painting is now hung in pride of place in Student Services Reception for the enjoyment of all.


THE RITE JOURNEY In its fourth year of delivery, The Rite Journey program for Year 9 students at Peter Carnley Anglican Community School is having profound impact on its students. The corner stone programme within the senior school’s pastoral program, Compass, The Rite Journey, which runs for the duration of Year 9 and provides a rite of passage experience to assist the students on their transition from childhood to young adulthood. The journey involves acknowledgement of the end of childhood and a show of gratitude to those people who influenced the students through their childhood. Students participate in a ‘calling’ ceremony at the beginning of the programme in which the students are ‘called’ on their journey to young adulthood. The ‘Departure’ ceremony is celebrated at the same time allowing students to receive the parents’ blessing and support to work with their child during The Rite Journey year. Students receive a letter from their parents to help them reflect on their childhood and commence their journey to young adulthood. Director of Pastoral Care Rebecca Weddikkara said the experience is having a profound effect on the students. “With a focus on wellbeing, adolescent development, understanding of self and looking towards adulthood, the programme is equipping our students with the skills to journey the teenage years and, ultimately navigate their way through adulthood,” Mrs Weddikkara said. “They are growing their understanding of what it means to be respectful, responsible, resilient men and women.”

Throughout the year, Year 9 students spend a weekly session with a same-gender staff mentor, working through an intricate programme to guide, educate and celebrate this important rite of passage. For the mentors, the Rite journey program is a unique invitation into the inner world of our students. Making connections with the students in these sessions can bring mentors face to face with a rollercoaster of teenage emotions. Rite Journey Mentor Lynne Rouda has found the experience so far rewarding and has seen some incredible transformations from the girls in her Rite Journey Group. “The pastoral care and wellbeing of students has always been a passion and priority of mine. The Rite Journey program targets the social and emotional needs of students by empowering them to understand and appreciate their unique gifts and talents,” she said. “The weekly sessions deepen student experience through connection, collaboration, consciousness and conversation. The personal growth I have already witnessed within my group is remarkable. The nurturing and supportive environment has strengthened the bond between the girls, and it has been so rewarding to see students wholeheartedly engage in the journey.” Following the Year 9 program Journey Within, students continue their learning within Compass, the Senior School pastoral programme. Compass provides students with a skillset to journey through school as self-aware, responsible and resilient young adults, with a focus on developing the whole child and preparing the child for the road, rather than the road for the child. ASC News 19


AWESOME ART Igniting students’ artistic imagination is a driving force behind the celebrated successes of the Visual Arts Department at St George’s Anglican Grammar School and its Head of Creative Arts Carol Wohlnick.

Students are also exposed to a range of experiences beyond the classroom with specialised teachers, practising artists, industry professionals and opportunities within the city continually raising the standard of art produced by the students.

The dedicated teacher who has more than 20 years’ experience in teaching and a place on the SCSA Curriculum Advisory Committee for Art, inherited a small vibrant program that has risen to new heights with what Ms Wohlnick says is an essence of: “fabulous ideas that are well put together and seek to harness the enthusiasm of the students.”

“We are within easy reach of the Art Gallery of WA and the many art installations that take place within the City of Perth. We study the architecture and people within Perth as visual stimulus for work and we were recently invited to be part of the Lester Prize City Walking Tour,” Ms Wohlnick said.

Students’ creativities are fuelled with work in a range of mediums including photography, painting, drawing, sculpture, film, video, digital media, graphic design, printmaking, animation, designed objects, and textiles. Their hard work culminates in an annual Art Exhibition which is held at Brookfield Place, where the creative voice of the students and their artwork is on display for both the School and the city community to enjoy.

“We take full advantage of our position in the heart of the City of Perth to prepare our students for their future careers given the essence of critical and creative thinking skills are transferable and valued across all units of study and industry, not just in the Arts.”

Students in all year groups, but more especially in Year 11 and 12 are given the opportunity to create, display, respond and reflect on their own and others work by being involved in the wide variety of Art and Design courses at St George’s. Students are encouraged to work both individually and collaboratively within the unique artistic space located on the top floor of 50 William Street in the heart of the city with views across the City of Perth to enhance the creativity and imagination of the students. 20

St George’s also engages its students in a vast array of competitions both locally and state-wide with 2021 graduate Mckenzie Wilson’s work recently selected for the PULSE Exhibition (previously known as the Year 12 Perspectives). Other exhibitors include Bethany Watt (Year 12), Ruby Eccelston (Year 12 graduate) and Mckenzie Wilson at the 2021 St George’s Cathedral Art Awards, Ruby Eccleston (2021 graduate) and Elizabeth Copping (Year 12) at the 2021 META Art & Design Exhibition, and Katelyn Barr who was a finalist in the 2021 Lester Prize Youth Awards.


Religious Studies


Religious Studies teachers from around the country joined online for the inaugural Connections Conference in March.

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The one-day Zoom Conference, broadcast from a makeshift studio at the ASC’s Head Office in Mount Claremont explored the theme of Connections through three lenses – Connections with God, Connections with Others and Connections with God’s World.

The conference was a collaboration between the ASC and our counterparts in Queensland and Newcastle. WA organiser and ASC Director of Teaching and Learning Penelope Russell said the conference was the first collaborative venture of this type targeted specifically to religious studies teachers in Anglican schools. “The idea was to equip and inspire religious studies teachers in their vocation,” Mrs Russell said. “We had almost 30 conference speakers from around the nation, providing expertise, innovation and insight to our audience.”

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Connecting students with ‘crazy’ Christian concepts Living a Christ-shaped theology and practice of peace and non-violence Critical connections in RE: listening to our students’ voices Where in the world is God? – Using creation stories to connect with students in RE Belonging to a community Everything is connected – climate change action Making connections with self, others and God through music Connecting with Anglican agencies in Religious Studies Context and connections in New Testament stories School and church connections.

Mrs Russell said the organisers had received positive feedback to the conference program and hoped that they could build and expand the 2023 program.

Attendees heard almost 30 conference speakers, ranging from Diocesan Bishops and School Chaplains to CEOs and religious educators across Australia. The sessions included both live and pre-recorded speakers and included interactive sessions and breakout rooms allowing for further discussion and between speakers and attendees. The sessions included: • •

The inner life of the religious studies teacher Sacramentality and students ASC News 21


ASC News 23

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