Head of Campus update – 1 December 2016

We were thrilled to receive the news in early November of the safe arrival of baby Patrick Alexander, a son to English and History teacher Katrina Matthews. Mother and baby are both doing well.

As the 2016 academic year draws to a close, I would like to take the opportunity to congratulate our students on their progress over the course of the term. During the past two weeks, our new VCE students have been fully engaged in their Yearstart classes and have made a great head start on their 2017 studies. Our middle school students have been involved in Themes and Dreams (TAD) preparation and I am looking forward to their final TAD presentation on Thursday 8 December commencing at 6.30pm. I hope you will be able join us to share in the excitement of TAD.

Other end-of-year events which are well worth adding to your calendar are the Alumnae Public Speaking Competition, which commences at 9.00am on Friday 9 December and the final Colours and Awards assembly at 1.15pm also on 9 December.

Over the summer holidays Year 9 students Rebecca Dack, Darcy Hetherington, Carmen Ubermanowicz will be venturing to York as part of the SMS Exchange Program. We look forward to hearing all about their experiences from upon their return to school next year.

December is the time for fond farewells. We have a number of staff who are changing direction in 2017. Rebecca Lim, Ross Rafferty Brown and Georgia Armstrong are all taking a well-earned long service leave break over 2017. We wish them a restful break and look forward to their return in 2018. Mrs Bronwyn Huisintveld is also spending 2017 away from school. She will be busy looking after her new baby which is due in January.

We also have a number of staff moving on to new ventures at the end of this school year.

Vicki McArdle has taught VCE Accounting and Business Management in semester two. We are indebted to her for her smooth transition into St Margaret’s School and her engaging teaching of her students. We wish her well in her new teaching position.

Katie Martin has made an indelible mark as AFL trainee this year. She has fulfilled all of her administrative duties to the highest possible standard. She has worked collaboratively with both teachers and students. We are indebted to her for inspiring and coaching 5 aerobics teams, 2 of which made it to state championship level. She has been a fantastic role model to the girls and we thank her for her contributions

Deborah Kerry has been a member of the SMS staff for the past 8 years. In that time she has taught Health and Human Development and Food Technology classes to a huge number of our girls. She is a well-respected teacher, known for her thoroughness in her work preparation and her gentle and caring nature. She will be missed by the students and her colleagues at SMS and we wish her all the best in the future.

Terry Trevena’s impact on both the SMS and BGS community has been significant. In January 2004, having recently retired from a Deputy Head position at Berwick Secondary College, Terry was asked to take on a part time short term replacement position teaching Physics at St Margaret’s School. That part time, short term replacement position lasted 12 years! Sadly for us, Terry has decided to retire for real this time. So it is with much sadness that we say farewell to him. Terry is an extraordinary teacher who is much loved by his students. His teaching is extraordinary because he is passionate about what he is teaching and he loves who he is teaching in equal measure. Terry has been instrumental in nurturing and inspiring a love of science and maths in our students and has been a valued mentor to many members of the teaching staff. He is also responsible for creating a community within our community which is the HPV team. Here again he shared his passion for cycling and showed genuine interest in every individual within the huge SMS/BGS HPV community. We are sorry the time has come for Terry to say goodbye. We sincerely thank Terry for all of his contributions to our school over the past 12 years and wish him well in his retirement.

We wish all our departing staff the best in the future.

The new staff for 2017 are;
Merrin Keir – Maths and Science
Danijela Draskovic – Maths and Science
Whitney Stiles – Humanities (maternity leave replacement)

With our much loved Year 9 Coordinator, Georgia Armstrong on leave in 2017, we have appointed a new Year Level Coordinator to the team. Congratulations to Mrs Brooke White who has experience as a Year Level Coordinator in the past and who is well equipped to take on this new responsibility.
The Year Level Coordinator team for 2017 is as follows;

Year 7 – Mrs Emily Bermingham
Year 8 – Mrs Brooke White
Year 9 – Mr David Bennett
Year 10 – Mrs Jacqueline Atkins
Year 11 – Mr Stewart Cameron
Year 12 – Ms Carolyn Bennett

During 2016 the school undertook a review of all Head of Department positions. From the review a decision was made to change from Heads of Department to Leaders of Learning. This change was to reflect our alignment with the Australian Curriculum and F-10 Victorian Curriculum Learning Areas. It also enabled a more strategic focus for our school in accordance with the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL).

The Leaders of Learning are:

Leader of Learning (English) – Mrs Rebecca Fernandes
Leader of Learning (Mathematics) – Ms Brigid Alexander
Leader of Learning (Humanities and Social Sciences) – Mr Mark Easton
Leader of Learning (Performing Arts) – Mrs Judy Taylor
Leader of Learning (Science) – Ms Krista Bayliss
Leader of Learning (Art and Design Technology) – Mrs Heather Landman
Leader of Learning (Health and Physical Education) – Mr David Anderton
Leader of Learning (Languages) – Mrs Marianne Welton
Leader of Learning (Learning Diversity – Summit) – Mr Chris Wyatt

Within this new structure, we will continue to have a Head of Sport who works closely with GSV (Mr David Bennett) and a Head of Music who works closely with the VSPA (Mrs Christine Cochrane).

A reminder that your daughter’s school report will be emailed to you at the end of the academic year. If your email address has changed, please inform the school as soon as possible.

On behalf of all the staff, we wish you and your family a very merry Christmas and a relaxing and safe holiday.

Mrs Fiona Williams
Head of St Margaret’s Senior School