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Newsletter 2017 – Term 2, Week 6

Posted in Newsletters

Important Dates

Thursday June 1 Legal Incursion – Year 12
Friday June 2 Year 10 Subject Selection Interviews
Tuesday June 6 Pure Gelato Excursion
Friday June 8 Sydney North Cross Country
Monday June 12 Public Holiday – Queen’s Birthday
 Thursday June 15 Try a Skill Day
Year 12 Seminar
Friday June 15 Bioscience Selective Test
LMG Sport Gala Day

View and download PDF version of Newsletter here

From the Principal

Those ‘Rules’ that we may not always understand

We are all subject to rules throughout our day to day lives and sometimes we logically understand from where they were derived and at other times, they just appear odd or there for the sake of restricting freedoms. Many times, we know that rules have arisen from the actions of a minority, causing all of us to conform even though the majority had the common sense and decency not to need these rules.

Schools always have rules and I am sure that students and parents sometimes wonder why some of them are there? In part, we must remember that we work with adolescents and the research into brain development indicates quite clearly that the logical brain is “still under construction” (Andrew Fuller) and impulse, or acting without thinking, is a common feature of this period of development. In the security of your home and within the confines of your family grouping, your child may well make sensible choices, but amongst peers, that common sense may take second place to wanting to belong, be noticed or to lead. Some students navigate these years with little difference between home and school, but others need more support. We therefore have to have rules for those who need more guidance with their decision making.

What are some examples?

  • No tackling in sports – because some students don’t know when to stop
  • Mobile phone restriction – because some students can’t control their impulsive use of them
  • Teachers control the heaters – because some students don’t think about plastic chairs being too close, or that they need to be turned off at the end of a lesson…

Some rules that cross the divide of in and out of school include:

  • Staying on the school grounds during school time (unless given permission) – because students should be where their parents expect them to be and in the case of an emergency we need to know where they are
  • Permission to drive and have passengers – because it helps remind students to take care and not give in to impulsive behaviours (quick trips down the road with far too many passengers)
  • Waiting in the school grounds for the bus – because rushing across a main road can lead to accidents (and we have too many examples of students not following road rules) and then poor behaviour choices at the Shell which can lead to police involvement.

Why am I writing this article?

I want students and parents to understand that we have these rules for a reason. Yes, not every child may need them to make the right choices, but enough do and we need consistency of practice to ensure the safety of all. We don’t have rules for rules’ sake. It would be much easier to monitor nothing and do nothing, but then we wouldn’t care.

So, if a rule seems strange, restrictive or you think it is outside our area of influence, please remember this article and contact me for an explanation as to why we have that rule. I am open to alternative solutions, but must continue to be as proactive as possible (although I really don’t want to go as far as many other schools with multiple CCTV cameras and locked gates, which can only be opened by remote control, unless we had escalating issues that forced us to do this) rather than waiting to react after something has gone wrong.

Reconciliation Week 2017 May 27th – June 2nd

This year at the Anzac Day Ceremony the contribution that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island people made to our defence forces was finally recognised in a significant and respectful way. This week is also about recognition of the historic journey we are undertaking to lead us to greater reconciliation with Indigenous Australians. I have provided information from “Reconciliation Australia” to explain what this week is about, in more detail:

What is National Reconciliation Week?

Each year National Reconciliation Week (NRW) celebrates and builds on the respectful relationships shared by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and other Australians.

The dates that bookend the week are significant milestones in the reconciliation journey.

May 27 — Marks the anniversary of Australia’s most successful referendum and a defining event in our nation’s history. The 1967 referendum saw over 90 per cent of Australians vote to give the Commonwealth the power to make laws for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and recognise them in the national census.
June 3 — Commemorates the High Court of Australia’s landmark Mabo decision in 1992, which legally recognised that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have a special relationship to the land—a relationship that existed prior to colonalisation and still exists today. This recognition paved the way for land rights or Native Title.

Who is involved?

All Australians are invited to participate in our nation’s reconciliation journey.
Reconciliation must live in the hearts, minds and actions of us all as we move forward, creating a nation strengthened by respectful relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and non-Indigenous peoples.

What is the theme?

The theme for NRW 2017 is ‘Let’s take the next steps’

This National Reconciliation Week we reflect on two significant anniversaries in Australia’s reconciliation journey — 50 years since the 1967 referendum and 25 years since the historic Mabo decision.

As we commemorate these significant milestones, we ask all Australians to be a part of the next big steps in our nation’s reconciliation journey.

Copied from the Reconciliation Australia Website: http://www.reconciliation.org.au/nrw/what-is-nrw/

Ms Anne Vine
Principal

From our Deputy Principals

Deputy Principal

Our school has a range of support processes and programs to assist students at an individual level. The Head Teacher of Student Wellbeing oversees the Student Welfare Team and the Learning and Support Team.

Programs such as Managing the Bull, Drumbeat, Young Men’s and Women’s groups and KARS (Kariong at Risk Students) are examples of what can be offered to students in need. Behaviour Support Plans as well as Individual Learning Plans are also developed for identified students. Other activities such as Brainstorm and Student Wellbeing Days are provided throughout the year.

Students have a range of support personnel within the school who they can access in times of need. These include Year Advisors, Girls Supervisor, Boys Supervisor, Head Teacher Wellbeing, Learning and Support Teachers, Deputy Principals and the School Counsellor. A student services room (Nara Nganga) is available for identified students who require ‘time out’ for a short duration.

PBL voucher winners for the past fortnight are Ryley Caldwell (9) and Kyle Young (11):

PBL Students of the Week

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mr Scott White
Deputy Principal

 

Year 7

Being STRONG

This term, the focus of our Year 7 CELL program is ‘Being… STRONG’. Core features of the ‘Being… STRONG’ lessons are on developing the qualities of persistence and confidence, both of which contribute to individual resilience.

The program includes an introduction to ‘Habits of Mind’, which can best be described as ‘ways to think’. We will be looking at ‘Habits of Mind’ which help build persistence and confidence. Two examples of these are:

  • ‘I can do it!’. This ‘Habit of Mind’ translates to a student thinking, ‘When learning something new, I am more likely to be successful than to fail’ and thinking, ‘If I try very hard, I will probably be successful’.
  • ‘Working Tough’. This ‘Habit of Mind’ translates to a student thinking, ‘While I would prefer, I don’t need everything I do to be fun and exciting’ and thinking, ‘To be successful, I sometimes need to do things that are not easy or fun’.

Revisiting last term’s components of the CELL program, ‘Being … ORGANISED’ and ‘Being… ON TRACK’ will also be integrated into this term’s lessons. In the next week, your child will bring home an assessment grid for the term. This grid should be placed in a prominent place (eg. on the fridge or above the homework desk), thus supporting your child in being organised and in submitting work on time.

The Year 7 English teachers will be delivering the CELL lessons this term, with the first lessons of the term taking place either this week or next week.

Year 12

Term 2: The ‘Long Term’

Of the four terms that are the HSC year, I call the current term (Term 2) as the ‘long term’. This is because the term is not broken up with exams and is a full 10 (long) weeks of lessons. Year 12 students need to be on guard during the ‘long term’: it is too easy to fall into a lull, to relax and to lose some momentum. Maintaining a study/ homework timetable, keeping on target with the timetable and consistent application will make a difference to continuous improvement and helping reduce stress next term with the Trial HSC Exams.

‘All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.’ (Gandalf, Lord of the Rings)

The above quote by Gandalf (Lord of the Rings) is extremely relevant to Year 12 at any stage during the HSC year and is one that I have referenced on many occasions to individual students. For a student it means that from this point in time to the end of the HSC, what ‘I’ do can make a difference to ‘my’ results. If a student is already achieving at a very high level, the mindset should be to try and achieve a little bit higher; for a student whose achievement is not at the level of potential, it means that there is time to improve. It is never too late! In my many years of teaching, I have seen countless numbers of students make incredible improvement between now and the end of their HSC.

Helping with Stress and Pressure

Stress and pressure are experienced by many Year 12 students. If your child is experiencing stress and pressure, we have wonderful support personnel who can help. Mr Beau Crum, who is strongly committed as Year Advisor, Ms Leanne Foubister, our school counsellor who has been working with Year 12 students, and I are just three people who are available to support students. Additionally, Ms Foubister will be delivering some stress management sessions to Year 12 this term.

If at any time you have any questions, I encourage you to contact me at school.

Ms Lidia Jeffrey
Deputy Principal Year 7 and Year 12

Food Forest

Food Forest at Kariong Mountains is a program which is run to enable our students to undertake new practical experiences and take further responsibility for their own learning. Students focus on effective communication and the development of positive interrelationships between themselves and others in the school with the aim of using these skills in their everyday schooling. Participants work in a small team situation with the aim of achieving a set goal, which for this term is to create a functioning herb garden adjacent to the school canteen.

Students working hard in the KMHS Food Forest Program
Students working hard in the KMHS Food Forest Program

Thus far, students have been clearing the existing plants from the area, topping up the soil, transplanting lemon grass plants and researching other suitable plants for the garden. Stay posted for further updates.

Mr Gibbs and Richard

Canteen News

Canteen Wednesday specials

 

Notices

KMHS HP chromebook hire to buy program

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