School Chaplain


School Chaplain

April 1, 2021

It has been such a joy to share in the celebration of the Easter story with students and staff in both Junior School and Senior School this week.  Last year at this time, I was learning how to use “quick time player” to send an Easter message to our students! How wonderful to be once again gathering together “in person”.

The Easter message is, of course, about the God who respects “persons” in all our uniqueness, and who wants to bring us to fullness of life, without taking away any of our freedom to choose. This morning I spoke to the Junior School students about what makes Easter Sunday the most important day of the year for those who follow Jesus. It’s the good news that God’s love is the most fundamental reality of life. We trust that nothing will be able to overcome that love in the end.  That does not magic away the hurt that we feel sometimes in our lives. But it does give us the strongest reason to hope.

May I take this opportunity to wish those who celebrate Easter a most holy Easter this year; and to everyone a very happy break.

My prayers over this Easter weekend will be for those who are facing difficulty and sadness at this time.

God bless, and see you in Term 2!

Rev Creed

Senior School


Senior School

April 1, 2021

It is hard to believe Term 1 has concluded. In the Senior School we have filled the 9 weeks with so many learning experiences and opportunities for our students, parents and staff to connect again. The Learning Conversation days, held through Zoom, have ensured the programs that commenced in lockdown have been developed to a new level to include the Upskill … BY DESIGN opportunities at each year level. I extend my thanks to Ms Kate Manners, Head of Strategic Initiatives and Ms Kath Woolcock, Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing and all the staff who have assisted in the two days to date for their enthusiasm and planning. The students and staff throughout the Senior School have commented most positively on the learnings from these days.

Our House events have enabled us to re-build a sense of belonging and connection to the school. The compulsory Athletics Day in February, as an outdoor event, was our first in person House activity since the same event in 2020. This was followed by the House Dance Competition which is a voluntary event, however the numbers involved from each House showed just how much we all missed being together. The excitement on the night was palpable and whilst our audience was restricted to the students involved, some staff and the parents of the House Dance and Technical Captains, this event highlighted our community collegiality.

This term we have been able to share again with our parents through editions of CamNews the re-introduction of some incursions and excursions. Enlighten Education, Ceres, Luna Park, Healesville, as well as Days for Girls and visits from student alumnae in presentations arranged by our Careers and Service Learning departments.

Highlights of the term for me also include seeing the Year 9 students using the gaga pit in the Woodstock courtyard. Constructed precisely by our own Maintenance team, this was a gift of the Parents & Friends Association in 2019 and I have enjoyed hearing the laughter at recess and lunchtimes. Another highlight has been the return to GSV Sport from watching the students play softball during home games on our own front oval, to the number involved in events such as the GSV Triathalon. Within the past 5 years enthusiasm for this event has only increased. In 2017 nine students participated and last week we had 57 students, which is all the more impressive given they were required to be at Altona beach for 6:00am. Thank you so much to our parents for supporting your daughters in this experience.

The Year 7 students have settled into the Senior School magnificently. Their teachers have commented that they are developing good routines in the classroom and with Home Learning and they are certainly taking up the opportunities to be involved in the multitude of clubs, sports, music, drama and more.

And in the older year levels our School Captains and Leaders have all been exemplary in making sure their various portfolios have provided options for active participation. SRC, Reconciliation, SWAG (Student Wellbeing and Action Group), Mustard, Frisbee Friday, Book Club, School Production, Art Club and now House Music. Thank you to all the student leaders and the staff who assist these students in the organisation of these offerings and in particular Mr Shane Maycock, Deputy Head of Senior School – Co-curricular Programs.

Yesterday Rev Creed and Bella Bruce, our Faith and Worship Captain, led our annual Easter Service, from Barbara Sutton Hall. The guest speaker for the Service was Erin Juers, a Melbourne English teacher, mum and blogger. She spoke on the question, “How is Easter good news for us today?” Erin used the image of wearing a mask to speak about how we all put on “masks”, often to cover up our hurt or lack of confidence. She explored how Jesus is the one who loves us “just as we are”, and invites us to take off our masks, so that we might live in the freedom of God’s extravagant love.

Having immersed themselves completely this term, the students are in need of a good break and as I always do, I ask parents to please be mindful of this and for those students in Years 7 – 9 do not set holiday tasks, but rather provide the time for your daughter to undertake passion projects and recharge ready for Term 2.  Students in Year 10 may be doing some preparation for Term 2 which may include revision or the reading of a new text. For our Year 11 and 12 students, specific revision will have been set by VCE teachers, however we ask you to encourage your daughter to take a break from their studies as well to ensure that they are balancing all aspects of their wellbeing.

With my best wishes for a safe and relaxing holiday.

Warm regards,

Cathy Poyser
Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School

2021 VCE Season of Excellence: Music

The aim of the Top Class concert series is to provide current VCE Music students with a valuable insight into what is required to present a musically engaging performance. The concerts encourage and inspire students during their own performance preparation, providing real-world benchmarks alongside realistic examples of best practice.

Our VCE Music students attended the Melbourne Recital Centre on Tuesday 30 March and enjoyed performances by students of VCE Music Investigation, VCE Music Performance and VCE VET Music Industry (Performance) from last year. Despite the events of 2020, these resilient student musicians delivered impressive performances, showcasing their hard work, passion for music and outstanding talents.

Kate Savige and Mathew Duniam
VCE Music Teachers

The concert we were fortunate enough to attend on Tuesday, was inspirational to say the least. To see VCE music students, just like ourselves, play at such an elite level was truly mind blowing and something that all of us looked upon with great adoration. Aside from being a huge motivator, it was amazing to witness the wide variety of instruments and pieces that were showcased to us.

Serena McGrath – Year 12

In the midst of Melbourne’s most prestigious arts precinct, we were able to witness first hand again, after a halted period of time, the simple yet thrilling experience of sitting in a performing arts hall as an audience member. Through a diverse range of instruments, from the traditional guzheng to a string quartet, all playing varied repertoire, we were able to observe high quality playing from past VCE Music students. Indeed, my favourite moment was feeling absorbed in the musical journey each of the artists communicated to the audience. This unforgettable experience has definitely sparked encouragement within us to emulate their achievements. We hope to encapsulate a range of interpretive skills, stylistic conventions and expressive qualities in our end of year performances.

Emily Wu – Year 11

I really enjoyed watching the performances and I found it to be a really valuable experience. I thought it was good to see how people expressed the music on stage and it made me think of the ways that I could express my pieces in a live performance context.

Lucy Van Der Arend – Year 11

The Top Class Concert was an amazing experience, especially for a student just starting VCE Music. I was able to appreciate the importance of musicians connecting on stage and keeping the audience captivated throughout the performance. This was especially evident when some of the musicians had periods of artistic silence in their pieces. The audience was still engrossed in the performance and connected to the expressive outcomes. I am grateful I had the opportunity to attend the concert.

Haripriya Pathmaraj – Year 10

Kate Savige and Rohan Mack
Directors of Music

Year 10 Alumnae/Careers Breakfast

On Tuesday 23 March the Year 10s attended their first Alumnae/Careers event. The theme for this event was ‘Broadening Your Horizons’.

Old grammarian Angelica Salaoutis (2019) spoke to our Year 10 students about her experiences at CGGS. Angelica was extensively involved in many school activities through her role as House Captain. She believes participation in these activities contributed to her own personal growth, and certainly grew her skills portfolio across leadership, organisational, communication and interpersonal skills. She advised students not to give up their sport/leisure activities. Time management and organisational skills are important to develop over the two year VCE program. Angelica highlighted how a healthy balance with academic work could be achieved and gave some great study tips.

Angelica is a terrific example of someone who worked as a volunteer netball coach continuously through her VCE program and achieved a high academic result. Her Duke of Edinburgh award also contributed to her successful Aspire application for Physiotherapy at La Trobe University.

Angelica was also joined by two current Year 12 students, Ella Barmby and Claire Robertson. They spoke warmly about their journey from Year 10 to now, advising students about subject selection (choose subjects you really enjoy); work experience (try before you buy!) and recommended involvement in a range of activities. Ella and Claire are great ambassadors for the school!

Angelica, Ella and Claire are fine examples of what our Year 10 students can aspire to achieve, if they take advantage of the wealth of opportunities presented here at CGGS. The skills/experiences they develop at school will help them in the transition from school to part-time employment, from school to university and from school to a career path.

Our students, both past and present, delivered the same message: make the most of the opportunities available to you here at CGGS.

Trish Dolan
Careers Counsellor


The second of our Upskill…BY DESIGN program was undertaken at all year levels on Wednesday 24 March in parallel to our Year 7 and 8 Learning Conversations. The Upskill…BY DESIGN is a series of bespoke learning experiences, curated and designed to align with our year level spotlights. As students move up through the year levels, the program is responsive to the growing independence, self-efficacy and self-regulation that comes with being older. Throughout 2021, the program will encompass the delivery of accredited and non-accredited short courses, co-curricular experiences and other pop-up learning opportunities for all year levels.

Upskill…BY DESIGN has been designed in accordance with our Teaching and Learning Architecture. The fundamental characteristics of our community, Connection, Growth, Grit and Sustainability, amplified within this framework, articulating how we make sense of the world with others and pursue ongoing improvement with passion, courage and perseverance and work sustainably, in service of self, others and the environment. The experiences of the Upskill…BY DESIGN work in service of these qualities, strengthening these characteristics and a suite of transferable skills, that tertiary institutions and employers are seeking direct articulation of by their applicants.

‘What if you came to school and there were no bins?’ This was the question facing our Year 7 students in their first Upskill…BY DESIGN session on March 24th. Students learned about the environmental, social and economic problems created by a ‘throw away’ culture. Using the 5Rs, students then began to rethink waste, and consider the opportunities that exist to ensure our precious resources are used most effectively. Environmental educator Bev Liang provided inspiration, demonstrating the circular systems we can learn from in nature, and innovative reuse and rethinking of materials in industries such as manufacturing and fashion. Students then were charged to research and identify the opportunities that exist at CGGS, and rethink and reduce our waste. Students made pledges for individual actions and identified their big dreams for sustainability at CGGS:

Bring reusable containers to reduce our waste. Sahana A

Bring my own cutlery Ky-An F

Clean my (single-use) containers so they don’t go to landfill.

Add a compost bin inside to reduce the amount of waste in our landfill bin. Hannah N

Bring a nude food lunch every day Serena H

Rethink our waste – Use a chip packet for planting seeds and fruit. – Raina G

Educate others about sustainable solutions to common problems Rithanyaa

At CGGS, we can reduce the amount of paper we use by doing things digitally. – Vanessa G

For our Year 8s, Upskill…BY DESIGN provided the second day for the completion of the Girls Invent with Beyond Design+ program with Dr Forwood. This provided Year 8 students with the opportunity to review feedback from their 2020 designs before building their final product. Once final prototypes have been created students evaluated and shared their solutions. Students were then asked to indicate their levels of interest in investigating the next stages in design, including taking a product to market. Year 8s also continued with a project started in their Wellbeing Curriculum. With a focus on character, the Year 8s identified their top five character strengths, and together worked to recognise how these show up now, how they have presented themselves before and how the five strengths operate together to make each of us unique.

It was a playful start to the Year 9 Upskill…BY DESIGN day with, Year 9 students taking part in a sequence of purposefully designed games. This session was informed by educational research that documents the contribution of ‘play’ to improved wellbeing and academic achievement. Games were specifically selected to align with the broader wellbeing and relational curriculum conducted during the CGGS Year 9 Wellbeing program. Led by Mrs Wood, Year 9 students then undertook the first of a two day program where they were apprenticed into using a Micro:bit, undertaking a design challenge to build a Micro:pet. Students learnt how to use a Micro:bit and MakeCode, importing a program and downloading this to their Micro:pet. They also consolidated their understanding of the design process, as they collaborated and developed a Micro:pet protype.

For our Year 10s, the Upskill…BY DESIGN program provided the first of several intensive sessions related to our Careers program for 2021 and led by Mrs Dolan. Year 10 is an important time, as students look to make decisions around their learning, subject choices and future pathways, post-VCE. Planned career development learning is therefore integral, enabling students to discover their strengths and talents, explore the world of work and their place in it, focus on their values and interests, use decision-making skills to plan their learning and career programs, decide on their best options and opportunities, and apply their skills and knowledge to their learning and career planning. These steps provide the skills and knowledge for lifelong career self-management. A deep understanding of education and training is required to inform students of their post Year 12 options, as a guide to VCE subject selection. On this day, our Year 10s explored types of higher education, university terminology, available courses, the University of Melbourne Model, university prospectus, the Open Day experience and other useful resources, all related to thinking about their futures.

The Upskill…BY DESIGN program saw our VCE students were engaged in a series of short course in First Aid, Responsible Service of Alcohol, Food Handling and Barista skills. These were undertaken online and onsite in partnership with RSA for Schools and it was great to have 41 students across Year 11 and 12 take up the opportunity to gain an accreditation, developing new knowledge and skills and amplifying their employability in the process. We were also pleased to offer an online Graphic Recording credential in partnership with Think In Colour. Listen-Think-Draw is a three module, online course for sketchnoters, budding graphic recorders, facilitators, teachers, consultants and anyone interested in leveraging the power of visual thinking and communication for themselves and others. It was also great to offer our students the opportunity to attend the SingularityU Online Youth Summit, across March 23rd and 24th. The SingularityU Australia Summit brought together leading futurist minds from across the globe to gather in community to reveal and discuss the impacts of converging exponential technologies and how they’re being used to solve humanity’s greatest challenges. Sessions available to our students included topics on outer space, leadership, entrepreneurship, STEM and technology, with an emphasis on transferable skills such as critical thinking, networking, communication and adaptability.

Finally, the Upskill…BY DESIGN program recognises the intentional practising of wellbeing. The OECD 2030 Future of Education and Skills project identifies the Wellbeing of society as a shared destination for the individual and the collective. Wellbeing is characterised by a sense of resilience, purpose, engagement and optimism about the future and can be fostered in different ways. For this reason, Ms Woolcock’s curated activities were open to the entire CGGS community were designed to revive, refocus, recalibrate and reconnect across the three domains of wellbeing: Mind, Body and Soul. In addition to the program provided as part of the CGGS Wellbeing website (

Planning for our next Upskill…BY DESIGN day on 4 May is already well under way and we’re looking forward to continuing to share the story of this program as it develops.

Kate Manners
Head of Strategic Initiatives

Healesville Excursion

On Wednesday 24 March, twelve Year 8 & 9 CGGS students travelled to Healesville Sanctuary to visit Coranderrk, Murrundindi’s country. This ‘on country experience’ was a significant way to learn about indigenous perspectives for the elective ‘Lake Mungo’. Listening to the stories of Murrundindi gave us a feeling from the deep past. To hear stories from and about country gave us a strong sense of belonging and pride. We could feel the attachment to country, so now we may respect the legacy.

Murrundindi shared knowledge about Coranderrk’s history, his ancestors, bush tucker, animals, seasons, tools, artifacts, rituals, stories, and more. The highlights of the day included foraging for wild strawberries, throwing and catching boomerangs, viewing Manna gum carvings, experiencing ceremony, and feeling the energy of the birthing tree.

Amelia Dudley (Year 9)

This week we went to a place called Coranderrk, it is right next to Healesville Sanctuary. Coranderrk is a place of spiritual significance for the Wurundjeri people. We went to a place called the birthing tree, this tree is 450-560 years old. But the best part of the tree is the energy of the tree, it feels safe and peaceful when you are in its presence. It feels as though it is talking to your raw self and raw emotions. It was a very emotional and touching process for all of us. We also got a chance to throw a few boomerangs and a lucky few even caught it. This experience has taught me give worth to every piece of land, as I could be worth the world to someone else.

Anna Clarkson
Mathematics and Geography Teacher

Cross-Curricular Connections: Learning German Through Art

Cross-curricular collaboration across subjects is a philosophy in education that avoids isolated learning but creates deeper learning experiences when relevant content areas are combined in more than one subject.  This type of learning was explored in the Year 9 German class, where students studied and learned about the highly successful Austrian Artist and Architect Friedensreich Hundertwasser and his particular style. Born in Vienna in 1928 he was no ordinary architect but was keenly aware of the impact of humans on the planet and ensured all his constructions were sustainable, ecologically built and reflective of the local culture. He had a very particular style, which allowed student to learn German words to describe the trademarks of his art, such as spirals, wavy lines, bright colours, elements of nature, spindle eyes, onion-like towers and human faces, as well as presentation skills and language phrases to describe a picture.

The German students explored Hundertwasser’s art through a series of You Tube clips and reading texts before embarking, with the help of the Art Department, on creating their own artwork, using typical elements of Hundertwasser’s art. In addition, they completed language worksheets to reinforce their understanding of the artist’s work.  After completing their final piece of art, the students used language vocabulary cards to write a script for their artwork picture, which they shared in a presentation.

As with Hundertwasser’s individuality, exploring new and different ways to learn allow students to find joy in learning across different subject areas, being art, culture and language.

Ingrid Beck
German Teacher

GSV Triathlon

Meeting before dawn, 57 girls assembled on the shores of Altona ready to jump into the ocean, ride their bike or run alongside the beach. With a record number of teams from CGGS this year, girls supported each other in a friendly but competitive event. Despite the weather conditions prior to the event and temperature of the water, the swimmers raced into the ocean at 7:00am, swimming a total of 300m. Back onto the shore, the swimmers handed over to the cyclists, prompting them to begin their 10km ride. After much anticipation and return of rain, the cyclists handed the timing chip over to the runners, and they were on their way. Running along the esplanade with a fantastic view of Altona beach, the 2km run was the quickest of them all, finishing the race with a bang!

Over the past three years, we have loved competing in the GSV triathlons. Not only did it give us an opportunity to bond with each other and other girls in younger year levels, but it also gave us confidence to compete in many other GSV events, including swimming, cross country and many more.

Sincere thanks to Ms Law, Mr Clark, and supervising parents for assisting on the day and a special thank you to all parents for waking up so early on a Sunday to get us to the beach by 6am.

Chelsea, Seanna and Emily (Year 12)

Service Learning

We were so pleased to have old grammarian, Sophie McLeod (2010) visit our Year 9 students as part of their Service Learning program. In Year 9 our focus for Service Learning is on local disadvantage and this term the students have been deepening their understanding of homelessness.

In 2011, after graduating, Sophie began volunteering for Vinnies Fitzroy Soup Van on a Friday night, distributing food to those in Melbourne.  She was also able to share her experience of her work as a Lawyer and the pro bono work she does assisting people at risk of homelessness.

We loved hearing about Sophie’s life since leaving CGGS and the way she has sought to continue to serve and use her skills and time to help others. Here are some reflections from students in Year 9.

It was really interesting to be put into the shoes of someone who is exposed to the serious issue of homelessness. Personally, I don’t know much about being homeless and the adaptability that people have to go through from their homes to the streets or, moving around constantly to friends’ places etc. But when Sophie McLeod came in, I gained insight into the idea of how people stereotype what it means to be homeless. I guess, growing up we have this sense and idea of what type of people are homeless but in reality, that is not the case. I have developed a deeper empathy and understanding to what being homeless really is and how we can help. Jessica T

Listening to Sophie McLeod speak to us about the incredible work she does with people experiencing homelessness was a really eye-opening experience. I loved hearing about how her work has changed around COVID-19 and I had never thought about how covid has and still is affecting people experiencing homelessness and we have all been inspired to think about how we can help in our own communities. Helena M

I found it so interesting and inspiring to listen to the speech given by Sophie McLeod. The insight she gave on the way COVID impact those who were ‘sleeping rough’ was something I had never thought about. It was also good to hear how we as students can help this very important cause.Sara R

Jennifer Gordon
Head of Service Learning

GSV Championship Swimming Carnival

Congratulations to the CGGS swimming team who participated in the Division 2 GSV swimming carnival on Tuesday 23 March. Despite the dismal weather conditions, everyone tackled the competition with a fierce, positive attitude and a great sense of team spirit. Right from the outset, the cheers and support from CGGS students could be heard from across the grandstand which pushed our swimmers to achieve tremendous results. These performances are also thanks to our Head Coach Peter Kitney who trains the swim team on Monday and Thursday mornings.

The afternoon resulted in the Juniors and Intermediates both placing 4th and the Seniors placing 8th. Overall, CGGS placed 6th against seven other schools in Division 2, which is an amazing result considering we have previously been competing in Division 3.

On top of this, 10 swimmers qualified across 8 individual events and 3 relays for the GSV Finals Evening on Tuesday 30 March. We also have a number of events in which our swimmers are emergencies, which is also a fabulous achievement! Congratulations again to all the girls who participated last Tuesday and good luck to our finalists!

Emily and Scarlett
CGGS Swimming Captains

GSV Championship Diving Carnival

Congratulations to the CGGS Diving Team for a successful performance at the GSV Division 2 Championship Carnival on Tuesday 23rd of March.

Everyone performed extremely well against a tough and close competition. Every girl has put in so much hard work at the early morning training sessions learning and mastering their three dives for the competition. It was great to see everyone’s hard work pay off as every diver at the competition.

On the day, the Junior team came 5th, which is an incredible effort considering it is the first season for many of the girls, and they were against some strong competition. The intermediate team came 2nd and the Senior team came equal 2nd, which were amazing results. We were also very excited to place 2nd overall in Division 2, which is the school’s best ever result at GSV Diving! Everyone should be very proud of how they dived regardless their individual result, as everyone put in so much effort at training and contributed to the team’s overall success.

A massive congratulations to two girls who have qualified for Diving Finals Evening. Summer Zhu from Year 7 qualified in the Junior division and Ella Robinson from Year 11 qualified in the Senior division. This is a testament to the girl’s dedication to the CGGS Diving Team and we wish them the best of luck for this competition.

A huge thank you to our coaches Jenny and Helen, Ms Law and Mrs Robinson for everything they have done to help the CGGS Diving Team!

Eloise Webster and Ella Robinson
CGGS Diving Captains

GSV Swimming and Diving Finals Evening

Well done to Angela Liu, Emily Price, Scarlett Giang, Anneka Sinnappu, Claire Fleming, Christina Weickhardt, Maddie Wood, Jasmine Rees, Elysia Wang and Sunny Sun who qualified for the Girls Sport Victoria Swimming Finals Evening last Tuesday. With a crowd of students cheering from the sidelines, the girls showcased their skills in the swimming pool at Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre.

They were very competitive against the top swimmers from 24 GSV schools, recording some personal best results. Congratulations to Emily Price who won a silver medal in the 50m Breaststroke where she displayed admirable determination to come from behind and win the medal. Another congratulations to Angela Liu who swam a very strong race to also win the silver medal in the 50m backstroke event. The girls are to be commended on their hard work throughout the season and we look forward to their future success.

For the first time, CGGS had 2 students compete in the Diving Finals evening. While Ella Robinson is well experienced in competing in this event, we were very lucky to welcome Summer Zhu to the night competition. The girls performed their best 4 dives and were extremely competitive in a very talented pool of divers. We look forward to seeing Ella, Summer and our diving squad back in the diving pool in term 4 for our House Diving competition and we are also excited to welcome any new divers to the pool in Term 4.

Ella Robinson – Diving

Summer Zhu – Diving

Angela Liu
100m Freestyle
50m Freestyle
50m Backstroke

Emily Price
50m Breaststroke
50m Butterfly
50m Freestyle

Scarlett Giang – 50m Backstroke

Anneka Sinnappu – 50m Backstroke

Claire Fleming – 50m Butterfly

Medley Relay and Freestyle Relay
Christina Weickhardt
Anneka Sinnappu
Claire Fleming
Maddie Wood

Medley Relay
Jasmine Rees
Angela Liu
Elysia Wang
Sunny Sun

Lauren Law
Head of Sport

Junior School


Junior School

April 1, 2021

As we approach the end of Term 1, I would like to take the opportunity to thank all our Ormiston families for their continued support this year. I hope families are able to spend some quality time with family and friends throughout the Easter holiday break and I encourage our students to rest during this time to ensure they are ready for a very exciting and dynamic Term 2.

Welcome Back Event

The much anticipated annual Welcome Back Event finally came about last Friday. In previous years a similar event known as the Junior School Twilight Picnic was held during Term 1 and this has now been merged into the Welcome Back Event where families come along and take the opportunity to meet other families in a relaxed atmosphere.

With social distancing in mind, this year we divided our Junior School year levels into two sessions with the Early Learning 3 – Year 3 students from 5.00pm – 6.30pm and the Year 4 – 6 students from 7.00pm – 8.30pm. This strategy allowed for additional outdoor space for families to spread out across the campus. Also, it was great to see new families to Ormiston meet other families in their child’s year level.

I would like to thank Susannah Jepson and her Foundation Team for organising the event. Depending on the circumstances at the start of Term 2, we look forward to seeing more parents at Junior School throughout the year.

Foundation – Year 6 Easter Service at St Mark’s Church

It was a wonderful opportunity for the Foundation – Year 6 students to walk down to St Mark’s Church today to experience our annual Junior School Easter Service. As always, the Reverend Helen Creed took the special service and many students from different year levels took an active role in this important event. There were lots of songs and prayers and the story of Palm Sunday when Jesus entered Jerusalem, the Maundy Thursday Story and the story of Easter Sunday were explained to the Junior School. Our Principal, Mrs Dunwoody read out the Easter Greeting and our School Captains finished off the Service by saying the Lord’s prayer.

Foundation – Year 2 Swim Carnival

On Wednesday our Foundation – Year 2 students put on a swimming exhibition at the CGGS Aquatic Centre at Senior School. Each student actively participated in three events on the day and two of those events included the strokes of freestyle and backstroke. The overall standard of swimming during the morning was of a very high standard and each student must be congratulated for doing their own personal best.

Our students were representing their CGGS House – Lawrence, Singleton, Taylor and Schofield where house points were allocated throughout the carnival. Thank you to our Junior School Physical Education Teacher, Miss Liana Kitsou for organising the carnival and Ms Kitsou received a lot of support from Lisa Williams our Swim School Coordinator. Ms Williams’ team helped in the pool during each swimming event, and this enabled the event to run smoothly. Additionally, the Year 6 house leaders assisted on the day with the recording of results and thank you to Samantha Lovell, Selena Chen, Alexandra Bartnicki and Angel Li for their excellent work.

I wish everyone a happy and safe Easter and look forward to seeing everyone back at Ormiston for our first day of Term 2 on Tuesday 20 April 2021. 

Yours sincerely,

Paul Donohue
Head of Junior School

Early Learning 4 Full-Time

EL4 full time children are connected to the wider world. Our journey to connect to the wider world began with our class examining their own identity. The children were encouraged to look at themselves and describe what they look like. We used a variety of mediums to help the children feel safe and confident to express their thoughts and ideas.

Connecting to grandparents and parents was the most effective way to affirm the children’s identity and connect to the wider world as well. We had grandparents share aspects of their cultural roots along with Mums share their stories of childhood connections to India and to a kindergarten in China. Many similarities and differences were identified as we connected to our own lives.

Children grew in confidence to express themselves as they used puppets and a variety of new resources purchased to explore their environment. Their contribution to enrich their own play is embedded in their ability to sustain reciprocal relationships that are respectful, caring and fun.

What is beautiful about this journey of identity is the children’s capacity to embrace the richness of diversity and celebrate their own unique sense of self. It has been a very rewarding term where the children’s growth and development is intrinsic to their own sense identity.

Ramila Sadikeen
Early Learning 4 Full-Time Teacher

Year 1 Incursion

Last Tuesday, Mrs Sargood from the National Trust transformed the Year 1 classroom and gave the students a taste of what school and life was like over 150 years ago. The students dressed as children from the past and took part in lessons using a dip pen and ink, listened to stories of what life was like in the 1800s and learnt about rules and expectations, as well as the consequences given to children who were disobedient at school! The students viewed photographs and images of Queen Victoria, Rippon Lea historic estate and Sargood family who built and lived in Rippon Lea in 1868. This engaging incursion gave the students the opportunity to further develop and apply their knowledge of our Inquiry unit, where they are investigating the question: “How do events, stories and objects from the past help us to understand our present?”

The students thoroughly enjoyed the experience and were keen to share some of their thoughts:

Isabella-Rose – I loved writing with ink.

Sofia – I enjoyed acting like a kid from over 100 years ago.

Olive – I loved it when Mrs. Sargood told us teachers would write silly names on the slate when they are being mean to kids. It was part of their punishment.

Evie – I found ink writing challenging, it was hard dip the pen in the ink and sometimes I had too much.

Nicole- I like the bell she used at the start of the lesson.

Olivia D. – I liked it when she showed us the black and white photos of her children.

Stephanie – Mrs. Sargood was very strict. She had 35 servants in her house.

Cathy – I liked the work Mrs. Sargood gave us.

Aryana – I enjoyed when Mrs. Sargood showed us pictures of her home in Rippon Lea and Queen Victoria.

Isabelle – I enjoyed going up the front and pretending to do the washing. 

Angela Columbine
Year 1 Class Teacher

Year 4-6 Digital Wellbeing & Technologies Parent Webinar

On Tuesday evening, a group of Year 4-6 parents joined our Head of Digital Learning – Micah Wilkins and I on Zoom to discuss the importance digital technologies and digital wellbeing within the home and school environments.

We revisited the Junior School Digital Wellbeing Guidelines (see image) and discussed how these could be implemented at home.

Parents also shared their own tips and experiences about using technologies with their children at home and we shared some examples of the ways in which our students are developing their digital literacy, citizenship skills and wellbeing at CGGS in both the Junior and Senior Schools. We hope to offer some on site opportunities for parents to have a go at using some of our technologies including our Spheros later in the year.

There was a strong interest from parents in the current screen time recommendations for children. There are currently no formal set time limits on this due to the proliferation of screens in our day to day lives these days, it is the quality and nature of the screen time that is most important. We encourage you to use the following recommendations from the Canadian Paediatric Society (2017) as a guide to develop good screen time habits at home.

Minimise screen time:
> Screen time for children younger than 2  years is not recommended.
> For children 2 to 5 years, limit routine or regular screen time to less than 1 hour per day.
> Ensure that sedentary screen time is not a routine part of child-care for children younger than 5 years.
> Maintain daily ‘screen-free’ times, especially for family meals and book-sharing.
> Avoid screens for at least 1 hour before bedtime, given the potential for melatonin-suppressing effects which can negatively impact on sleep.

Reduce the risks associated with screen time:
> Be present and engaged when screens are used and, whenever possible, co-view with children.
> Be aware of content and prioritise educational, age-appropriate and interactive programming.
> Use parenting strategies that teach self-regulation, calming and limit-setting.
> Conduct a self-assessment of current screen habits and develop a family media plan for when, how and where screens may (and may not) be used.
> Help children recognise and question advertising messages, stereotyping and other problematic content.
> Be reassured that there is no evidence to support introducing technology at an early age.

Adults should model healthy screen use:
> Choose healthy alternatives, such as reading, outdoor play and creative, hands-on activities.
> Turn off adult’s own devices at home during family time.
> Turn off screens when not in use and avoid background TV

This term in Year 4, we learnt all about Digital Citizenship and how to stay safe online. The students identified strategies for keeping themselves safe online such as: using age guidelines, keeping personal information private and how to deal with cyberbullying. This unit brought up many interesting class discussions around online etiquette and the responsibilities we have as digital citizens.

As a summative task, the students were placed into groups and took on the role as teacher by teaching the Year 3s about a specific topic related to digital citizenship. As a group, they planned, prepared resources and taught a mini-lesson for the students.

Here are some thoughts of what the Year 4s have learnt this term about Digital Citizenship:

“This term I learnt not to put your personal details online or you could get hacked”Kathleen

“Something that I learnt this term is that even if a website looks trustworthy, it may not be” – Ruth

“I learnt how to stay safe online by asking a parent if that website is safe to go on”Joyce

“I have learnt never to click on pop-ups that seem untrustworthy” – Ailey

Emma Hinchliffe
Deputy Head of Junior School

Year 4 – 6 Netball

The CGGS Junior School Netball Program commenced this term with many enthusiastic students wanting to partake in this team sport.

Year 2/3 Program – Thursday afternoon

The response to the program has been overwhelming currently with 43 registered players. The program is aimed at introducing the students to the game of netball teaching them the basic preparation skills in order to progress onto games.

Year 4 Opals – Friday afternoon

The Year 4 team participate on a Friday afternoon at the Boroondara Netball Association and currently have 9 registered players. So far, this team is undefeated although being a non- competitive competition, it is wonderful to see the smiles on their faces and most importantly having a lot of fun.

Year 5/6 Teams – Saturday

The Year 5/6 teams compete on Saturday mornings at the Boroondara Netball Association. We have entered one Year 5 team and two Year 6 teams. It has been a great start, although weather conditions were not favourable and commend the players for performing superbly in the rain and still managing to enjoy themselves.

We are still seeking additional players for the Year 6 teams so if your child is interested in joining any of the teams next term, please contact Kim Bailey at

Kim Bailey
Netball Coordinator

Connected Community


Connected Community

April 1, 2021

Time Capsule

In 1995, Camberwell Girls Grammar School celebrated its 75th anniversary. One of the ways the school community commemorated this milestone was with a time capsule – a collection of items showing us what school life was like in 1995. This time capsule was buried in a garden bed in the Senior School. While some of the artefacts in the time capsule were damaged, many gave us a glimpse into how the school has changed over the past quarter of a century.

As the school is celebrating its Centenary, we have decided to collate items to commemorate 2020/2021 life at CGGS. Teachers will work with students to select examples of student work to be included in the Time Capsule. There will be ceremony in Term 3 where all items will be placed within the capsule and sealed for 25 years, to be opened in 2045.

A Century of Stories – CGGS Centenary Book

In Camberwell Girls Grammar Schools 100-year history, so much has happened within the walls of our beloved school to make it the institution it is today. So we decided to go and discover some of those stories and share them with our community in commemorative book to celebrate our centenary year. We are so proud to bring you this collection of stories, of moments in time, the highlights of our history and interesting insights.

A Century of Stories, has been written and published by Hyphen (formally known as Bounce Books), a company which specialises in telling stories, creating anniversary books and helping organisations to celebrate milestones. They have recently published similar story books to CGGS’ for Qantas, Arnott’s, Coles and Akubra.

A Century of Stories will be delivered to the school in late April. We are offering a pre-sale price of $50, including GST. You have the option of picking up the book from CGGS Main Reception or having it delivered at a standard shipping fee of $15.

To purchase a copy, please click the button below.

The PFA celebrates CGGS Community Events

2021 PFA Welcome Evening

The Parents & Friends Association was delighted to welcome over 130 parents and staff from both junior and senior campuses at their Annual Welcome Evening on Friday 19 March. With most social functions cancelled in 2020, this evening provided an opportunity for the CGGS community to gather and reconnect.

It was a warm autumn night and the Fig Tree Café Quadrangle was decorated beautifully with fairy lights, market umbrellas, candles and colourful cushions. Guests were entertained by a very talented roaming magician and enjoyed delicious food from Pinwheel and Co. and refreshing beverages provided by the PFA.

Junior School Welcome Picnic

A lovely night was had by all those who attended the JS Welcome Picnic last Friday evening.

Families from Early Learning to Year 6 were eager to come together on the junior school grounds after many months of restrictions surrounding school gatherings. It was wonderful to see so many smiling faces and children enjoying free play on the playgrounds and PFA climbing frame and using basketballs, skipping ropes and hula hoops. An impromptu game of cricket was held between dads and their kids.

The PFA is always delighted to support this event and looks forward to bringing more events to the CGGS Community in the coming months.




March 19, 2021

CGGS Dads Group and The Fathering Project

Dear Parents and Guardians,

There was excitement in the air last week as we held our inaugural CGGS Dads Group event, a BBQ in the quadrangle at Senior School which over 70 dads attended.

The CGGS Dads Group is a sub-group of the Parents & Friends Association. Its purpose is to engage dads from Early Learning 3 through to Year 12 so that they can socialise and network with others and attend events, including some with their children. We hope that this group will assist some fathers and father-figures of CGGS students to feel more welcome and engage further with our community and with their children. We currently have 6 fathers on the organising committee who are from both Junior and Senior Schools.

Our group was initiated through our partnership with The Fathering Project, an organisation that aims to improve a child’s developmental outcomes through enabling fathers to better engage with their children. This year CGGS has joined The Fathering Project and they will support us by providing resources, as well as delivering programs and events. We certainly hope to build upon this positive engagement for the benefit of students, parents and the school.

After the success of the first event, we will be offering further events in Term 2 and plan to include opportunities for fathers to learn more about our Respectful Relationships programs, initiatives and leadership, drawing upon our experiences in working with students and leading other schools in this area. We will also be able to share some of our new work with ‘Our Watch’ to initiate change.

Kath Woolcock (Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing) has led our Respectful Relationships programs working closely with Cathy Poyser (Deputy Principal/Head of Senior School) and Emma Hinchliffe (Deputy Head of Junior School) during the last four years. She has summarised some of our key work in the article below, and this information along with other resources will be permanently located on SEQTA for parents to refer to at their leisure.

Next term I will also update parents on our work with Our Watch in further engagement with other schools. Our Watch believes that the voices and experiences of young people are central to this work and they have been involved in research around masculinity and harmful relationships where men bond over disrespect for women. The findings of their research was published in 2019 in their paper titled ‘Men in Focus: unpacking masculinities and engaging men in the prevention of violence against women’. If you are interested, please see the link via the button below.

Please refer to Kath Woolcock’s article on Respectful Relationship Initiatives at CGGS below.

I look forward to our continued engagement next term on this important area of focus.

With best wishes,

Debbie Dunwoody

Respectful Relationships Programs at CGGS

Following on from the Principal’s communication to parents on 6 March, we will be sharing a range of articles and resources in CamNews. We have also created a dedicated ‘Respectful Relationship’ icon on Parent Engage where materials will be uploaded to provide parents with an overview of our programs and structure across both Junior School and Senior School – and then click on the Respectful Relationships icon.

If you wish to discuss any aspects of our programs, please don’t hesitate to make contact with:

> Kath Woolcock, Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing

> Emma Hinchliffe, Deputy Head of Junior School


Respectful Relationships Programs at CGGS

Respectful Relationships are at the core of healthy relationships, whether that be in friendships, between teachers and students, workplaces, families or within intimate relationships.

As a result of the findings from the Royal Commission into Family Violence in 2016, the Respectful Relationships education became a core component of the Victorian Curriculum. Secondary to this, was the establishment of the Respectful Relationships Initiative and for the past four years, CGGS has been a lead school delivering professional learning to a number of independent and government schools across Melbourne’s Inner East including; MLC, Strathcona, Ruyton Girls School, Camberwell Grammar School, Trinity Grammar School, Xavier College, Scotch College, Balwyn Primary School, Boroondara Park Primary School, Camberwell South Primary School and Blackburn Primary School.

The Respectful Relationship initiative aims to equip schools and educators with the skills and knowledge to tackle the issue of family violence and gender equality through a preventative whole school approach. It provides a framework to support school settings in promoting and modelling respect and equality, whilst explicitly teaching how to build healthy relationships, resilience and confidence.

The Respectful Relationship Team at CGGS has worked closely with staff and students to cultivate an understanding and appreciation for respect, resilience, rights and responsibilities within and across all types of relationships. We have focused on three key areas to shift the dialogue both our own and the wider community across both the Junior and Senior School:

> Student Voice

> Awareness Raising

> Curriculum and Programs


Student Voice

Student voice has been a pivotal component of ensuring that our students take an active and authentic leadership role in the whole school approach to Respectful Relationships. This has been achieved through the following:

> Establishment of the CGGS Annual Student Survey from Years 5 – 12

> Establishment of Student Wellbeing Captains at both Junior and Senior School

> Student Representative Council at both Junior and Senior School

> Senior School Student Wellbeing Focus Groups

> Establishment of the Student Wellbeing Action Group

> Leadership Focus Groups and workshops at both Junior and Senior School

> Attendance at Student Conferences such as International Women’s Day Breakfast and The School Leaders for Gender Equality and Respect Workshop, yLead workshops

> Engagement in Respectful Relationships collaborative projects at both Junior and Senior School


Awareness Raising

In raising awareness of stereotypes, inequalities, power and control in relationships, the aim has been to create a community environment that is informed, confident and ready to step up, lead and to challenge the people and opinions that perpetuate gender inequality. This has been achieved through:

> The Junior and Senior School Respectful Relationship Badge

> Establishment of our annual whole school Celebrating Diversity Week and Diversity Forums

> Student Gender Equality Assessment Tools at both Junior and Senior School

> Celebration of Harmony Day

> Celebrating strong, successful young women across all aspects of society

> Parent Education Seminars and Student Workshops that focus on creating healthy, happy families and building respectful relationships

> International Women’s Day Celebration events

> National Day of Action Against Bullying activities at both Junior and Senior School

> Safer Internet Day event at Junior School

> Hosting of the Anglican Diocese ‘Preventing Violence Against Women’ Conference on 15 May 2021


Curriculum and Programs:

Curriculum has enabled us to provide opportunities for our students to understand relationships, the law, gender identity and to shape their self-concept, self-efficacy, and self-confidence so that they can develop the knowledge and skills required to reject and overcome the gender stereotypes that may attempt to define them. This has been achieved through a number of curricular and program initiatives including:

> The purposefully designed Year 9 Respectful Relationship Health Unit, that tackles gender stereotypes and challenges the ideas of power and control in relationships

> Years 9 and 10 Health Curriculum that explicitly explores consent and the law.

> Junior School BRAVE Curriculum

> Social and Emotional Learning Units across both Junior and Senior School

> Relationship, empathy, conflict resolution and communication skills developed through Mentoring and Wellbeing classes

> Years 11 and 12 workshops and guest presenters from Family Planning Victoria, Sex Education Australia, Red Frog, Paul Dillon and Victoria Police.


Respectful Relationships Curriculum (including consent)

As part of our work with the Respectful Relationship Initiative, our students explicitly explore consent in an age appropriate and scaffolded manner, using a three-tiered approach to build on prior learnings from year to year. The first two tiers focus on creating a common language, culture and understanding, including being able to critically evaluate messages on and offline, and the third tier is the explicit teaching of content that explores more complex ideas such as consent.


> Resilience, Rights and Respectful Relationships Curriculum is taught from Foundation to Year 6 and in Years 7 – 10 as part of Health and/or Wellbeing.

> This curriculum was established as part of the Respectful Relationship Initiative and focuses on positive education and social emotional learning, which are the foundations for respectful relationships, positive self-identity and body safety.

> In Years 7 and 8 Health we explicitly teach decision making, safe choices, conflict management, communication styles (assertive, passive styles) media literacy, bystander, support networks, as well as personal boundaries and personal respect.

> In Years 7 and 8 Wellbeing we look explicitly at values, character and personal identity.

Tier 1 lays the foundations for positive relationships and are explored further in Tier 2 and 3 as we move towards more explicit teaching of gender inequity, power and control in relationships, sexual health, intimacy, including consent.



> Years 4 – 8 – Puberty, Personal Identity and Development Units including personal values, families, the human lifespan including reproduction, changing relationship dynamics and strategies to reduce harm.

> Year 9 – Diversity in relationships is explored, including the changing nature of families, diversity and roles in families, gender stereotypes, gender equality and equity, support networks.

> Years 9 and 10 – Values in relationships, including sexual relationships. Understanding power and control, what the law says, rights and responsibilities, healthy and unhealthy relationships, peer pressure and support networks.



> Child Safety Presentations which occur twice yearly to all Foundation – Year 12 students and staff.

> Foundation – Year 8 – scaffolded ‘No, Stop, Don’t’ programs, personal boundaries, body awareness, support networks and trusted adults.

> Year 9 – Sexual Health including consent and law. Power, different types of control and violence in relationships. Imagery and social media and the impact on relationships.

> Year 10 – Sexual Health including the influence of drugs and alcohol on relationships, safety in relationships, the role of pornography, intimacy, consent and the law.

> Years 11 and 12 – Year level workshops and guest presenters from Family Planning Victoria, Sex Education Australia, Red Frog, Paul Dillon and Victoria Police.

When we look explicitly at consent, our teachers and students take time to explore what consent looks like, what it feels like and what it sounds like. Consent must be:

> Explicit

> Mutual

> Freely given

> Informed

> Specific

> Enthusiastic

> Ongoing

> And the right to withdraw consent can occur at any stage


Parenting: Respectful Relationships, sex education and consent

As parents, it can be difficult to navigate the discussion around respectful relationships, sex education and consent; however, research shows us that parental voice is an essential part of children feeling supported and safe in their relationships and the notion of “Talk Soon and Talk Often” is key to this.

The Western Australian Government has produced a guide for parents on talking to their children about sex, including age specific conversation starters, expectations and a detailed section on consent (pg. 81). Parents are encouraged to download the resource and to start or continue the conversations at home. The resource can be found here.

Additionally, it is helpful for parents to have an understanding about the law and the age of consent. Youth Law Australia, which can be accessed here, has prepared detailed information for parents and students which has been summarised below:

> It is never okay for a person to have sex with another person who is under 12 years old.

> If you are aged 12-15 years old, you can legally have sex with another person who is less than 2 years older than you (as long as you both actively agree to it).

> Once you turn 16, you can legally have sex with another person who is also aged 16 years or older (as long as you both actively agree to it).

> Also, a person in a position of care or authority eg. a teacher, parent, step-parent, guardian, counsellor, doctor or sports coach cannot have sex with a person aged 16-17 years old under their care.


Please note that Respectful Relationships resources are now located on the CGGS Parent Portal for reference as needed –  and click on the Respectful Relationships icon.


Kath Woolcock
Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing

Senior School


Senior School

March 19, 2021

We would all agree that the Labour Day long weekend which coincided with International Women’s Day was a welcomed extra day. Returning to face-to-face lessons and a full co-curricular program has required us all to re-adapt and re-build our physical and emotional fitness. Feelings of tiredness at the end of the day and week are very normal and I encourage all our community to make sure our students are maximising their sleep at night. Quality sleep is the key to achieving our best during the day.

In this edition of CamNews articles include summaries and photographs of our International Women’s Day breakfast at CGGS with Lyn Talbot (1983) and Kathy Kaplan from Impact, the Year 10 Days for Girl’s incursion, our magnificent House Dance event, National Day of Action against Bullying and so many other activities in only one fortnight at Senior School.

In the previous edition of CamNews I wrote about the excitement we all experienced at our first House event for the year – the House Athletics Carnival; and in this CamNews it is a pleasure to be able to highlight the return on the first onsite House event since 2019 – the House Dance Competition. On Friday 12 March students from Years 7 – 12, of all dancing abilities took part in either the auditioned Theme section or the all-inclusive Group sections.

A full report is included in this edition of CamNews, however I take this opportunity to thank the very many students and staff who were involved in making this evening so special for our entire CGGS community. Our Head of Drama and Performing Arts, Keira Lyons along with her team of drama staff, Claire Colthup and Sally Oliver supported the House Dance Captains with all their skill development, choreography and organisation. Whilst Kim Perkins, our Head of Media Technologies worked with each of the House Technical Captains and past student Maddy Brake (2019) to teach them the skills required to execute sound and lighting during the performances. Shane Maycock, Deputy Head of Senior School- Co-curricular Programs, along with the House Teachers, Daniel Loff – Lawrence, Asia Kosowski – Schofield, Tom Clark – Singleton and Christa Cook – Taylor, along with many Senior School staff supported and supervised the many rehearsals in the 4 week lead up to the event.

I am always in awe of the House Dance Captains and the amazing dance spectacles that they create year after year, particularly in the short period of time they are given to produce their performances. Many congratulations to the following leaders of the 2021 House Dance competition and to Dance Mentor – Charlotte Kutey for her support of all the House Dance Captains throughout the rehearsals. Also, to Charlotte and Sabrina Renzi, School Drama Captains for their superb hosting of the evening.



Dance Captains – Felicity Vanin and Ella Ding

Technical Captains – Anastasia Konstantinou and Jessica Leung



Dance Captains – Jessica Nguyen and Emily Wu

Technical Captains – Jane Pekin and Kelly Ta



Dance Captains – Natalie Hudono and Alyssa Wong

Technical Captains – Chloe Chan and Chloe Lindsay



Dance Captains – Gabrielle Abbott and Natasha Rupar

Technical Captains – Natasha Mak and Lucy Van der Arend

Tonight, we all look forward to welcoming parents to the Senior School for the PFA Welcome event. Please remember to wear your PFA name badge and I know the staff are keen to mingle and chat at this social event.

Warm Regards,

Cathy Poyser
Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School

Parent Education Seminar – Dr Lea Waters

On Tuesday 16 March we were privileged to hear from Professor Lea Waters as part of our Parent Education Seminar series for 2021. Lea’s keynote provided parents with an understanding of how to use a strength-based approach to change the narrative default from one about weaknesses to one that celebrates the potential and existing strengths of children in an ongoing and authentic way. In recognising a child’s innate strengths parents are able to create an environment to support and nurture their children, ultimately breaking down barriers and opening up the dialogue between parents and their children.

Lea also spoke about her extensive research in this area, discussing that a strength-based approach is linked to higher levels of life satisfaction, self-efficacy and positive emotions and lower levels of depression and anxiety. Lea also spent time exploring stress related growth in the context of COVID-19, explaining that when children understand and recognise their strengths, they are better able to cope with challenges including friendship issues, homework and academic stress.

Lea finished her talk with a very powerful quote “where attention goes energy flows” and she encouraged parents to utilise the wealth of resources available on her website to support the conversation and shift the attention to strengths within families for both parents and their children

If you would like to know more about Lea’s work and the range of strength-based parenting resources she has available, you can access them through her website here. The parent resources are located towards the bottom of the page under the “Free Resources” section.

Additional resources that may be of interest to parents include:

Lea’s free Wellbeing resources (20 free activities and videos for parents to do at home with their children)

Discount code for parents, with 50% off Lea’s on-line Strength Switch Family Course 
click the ‘Have a Coupon’ button and enter ‘50Off’`

Order Lea’s book
Go to

Buy Lea’s Strength Stars Framework, Strength Stars Cards (3-8 year olds) and Strength for Kids and Teens Cards (9-19 year olds)

We look forward to seeing parents at our next Education Seminar ‘Sleep and the impact on cognitive performance” on Tuesday 12 May.

Kath Woolcock
Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing

National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence (NDA)

On Friday 19 March, Australian schools stand united in their communities to join the national conversation to help address bullying. The National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence (NDA) is Australia’s key bullying prevention initiative, connecting schools and communities to find workable solutions to bullying and violence, and where schools are called to imagine a world free from bullying.

Across the school, students were involved in a different activity that raised awareness about bullying, and demonstrated our students’ commitment to taking a stand against all forms of bullying.

In Years 7 – 12 as part of the House Mentoring program, students explored one of three core concepts and strategies to prevent bullying: Calling Out, Words Online and Supporting Others. Year 11 and 12 leaders facilitated conversations that aimed to raise awareness, brainstorms solutions and look at support networks.

To demonstrate CGGS’s commitment, each mentor group also created a banner and took a photo that provided a platform to show our collective support and take action together in recognition that bullying prevention is everyone’s responsibility.

Kath Woolcock
Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing

House Dance 2021

Last Friday, Barbara Sutton Hall was thrilled to welcome back live performance in the form of our annual House Dance competition.

For the past 5 weeks, the House Dance Captains have choreographed, encouraged, nurtured and motivated our students back onto their feet and, safely, back into a shared space. This role has been vital to the reparation of incidental attributes – such as passivity and the difficulty to sustain motivation – acquired over the extended and uncertain lock down periods last year.

And what a thrilling event it was. Supported by beautiful, exceptionally rendered lighting designs, created by their Technical Captains, the extraordinary vision of this year’s Captains provided us all with a moment of joyous relief and celebration.

Congratulations to all of the participants – the Camberwell House Spirit is stronger than ever!

To watch the recording of this event and to read the program, click the buttons below.

Award for Best Theme: Schofield House

Award for Best Group A: Singleton House

Award for Best Group B: Singleton House

Award for Best Technical Support: Taylor

Winners of the 2021 House Dance Cup: Singleton


Keira Lyons
Head of Drama

Days for Girls

To celebrate International Women’s Day as well as engage in the Year 10 Service Learning focus Global Issues for Women, on Tuesday the Year 10s were able to have an incursion with the team from the Camberwell chapter of Days for Girls (DFG).

This is a partnership that both CGGS and DFG really value and it was wonderful to have the group of skilled volunteers speak with our students about the evolution of the work of Days for Girls and better understand how the kits they create empower girls.

On Tuesday 9 March I was fortunate enough to participate in the Days For Girls initiative. During the session we were able to help create kits to aid women and young girls around the world who don’t have access to sanitary items such as pads, soap, clean underwear etc. There were multiple parts to creating the kits and I was able to be a part of the group threading string through the drawstring bags. Although it seems like such a simple task, talking to some of the DFG representatives whilst helping make the kits was an experience that was really special. I felt a sense of gratitude for the basic sanitary items that we can simply go to the store and buy and overall, really enjoyed being able to help give back days to girls.

Julie Yap
Year 10

Days for Girls was an amazing experience for the Year 10 cohort where we were able to help pack menstrual kits for underprivileged girls who do not have access to those basic necessities. Each group had a different task to do such as folding and packing underwear, stitching and threading drawstrings. I really enjoyed helping with an issue that is so important and needs to be addressed, knowing that it would make someone’s life so much better because they would be able to go to school and do other activities even when they are menstruating.

Haripriya Pathmaraj
Year 10

International Women’s Day – Grand Hyatt

As part of the 2021 International Women’s Day celebrations, together with seven of my Year 11 peers we attended the Alliance of Girls Schools of Australasia (AGSA) at the Grand Hyatt with Rev Helen Creed and Mrs Jane Bergamin.

The speaker at this year’s event was teacher and author Dr Amy Brown.  After completing her own studies, including her PhD at the University of Melbourne, she returned as a teacher of Creative Writing, alongside teaching Literature and Philosophy at Mac Robertson Girls’ High School.  This year she has taken a year of leave to write her second book.

As students at Camberwell, we are privileged, and this can be difficult to understand in conjunction with the universal systemic discrimination of women. The 2021 International Women’s Day breakfast provided an opportunity for a diverse collection of secondary students from all girl’s schools to grapple with this. Dr Brown drew upon the experiences, lives, and words, of women throughout history; all of different backgrounds, lines of employment, and privilege. Poets, philosophers, scientists, politicians, and suffragettes were included, all connected by the shared experience of womanhood.

I, among the other students from our school that attended, were rapt. As we sat on the bus during the return to school, a discussion was opened. Amy’s words struck a chord, she was able to explain experiences, ideas, and emotions that we were all familiar with, but unable to articulate.

“How do you understand your place in the world as someone who both has immense amounts of privilege, yet is still systemically disadvantaged by being a woman?”  Dr Brown answered this question for us, you must be aware, and you must listen.

Olivia Jones

International Women’s Day Breakfast – Impact

On Wednesday 10 March CGGS held its annual International Women’s Day (IWD) Celebration Breakfast. The breakfast forms part of a week of activities at CGGS, that explore the importance of IWD, including its history and how our collective strength can help empower women and enable them to live free from stereotypes, stigma and violence, and with this, move towards a global future that is more sustainable, peaceful and provides opportunities for all.

This year, our guest presenters at the IWD Breakfast were Old Grammarian Lyn Talbot (1983) Board Member of Impact and Kathy Kaplan OAM, Founder and President of Impact

Impact is a non-profit organisation that is committed to supporting Victorian women and children fleeing extreme violence at home, and sadly, the domestic violence statistics in Australia are very alarming. While Kathy presented some confronting stories and data, she pointed out that it is only when we are “challenged that change occurs” and her call to action for students and staff was to #ChoosetoChallenge and call out the key drivers of domestic violence including rigid gender roles, unequal distribution of power in relationships and victim blaming or situation blaming.

Impact have recently established a student leadership and advocacy program, ImpactChamps, that focuses on education, mentoring, leadership and activism for senior students. Through these key areas, ImpactChamps works with students to provide support, fundraise and awareness raise for those affected by Domestic, Family and Relationship Abuse and Violence, whilst also helping close the gender gap that contributes to its cause.

Over the next few weeks CGGS will be working with Impact to finalise the partnership and we look forward to inviting our senior students to take part in this valuable and meaningful community and service-learning opportunity.

Kath Woolcock
Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing

Year 12 Physics Trip to Luna Park

The Year 12 Physics class recently went on a trip to Luna Park in order to consolidate their learning of the first topic on motion. The day was organised by The Victorian Physics Teachers’ network (Vicphys) specifically for Year 12 Physics students from a number of schools throughout Victoria.

At 10:00am we arrived and immediately headed to our first ride called The Enterprise which began moving in a horizontal circle then slowly swung into a vertical one. Our class got to experience circular motion in all forms on this ride and as there were no seatbelts or harnesses we experienced how if your acceleration is greater than that due to gravity, when upside down you will ‘stick’ to your seat.

We then braved the heights of the historic Great Scenic Railway. After a 50-minute wait we finally were able to enjoy a traditional roller coaster that had a great view and allowed us to really feel our apparent weight as we travelled over the dips and humps in the ride. Lunch was also a highlight, tasting Luna Park delicacies such as curly fries and corn dogs. The rest of the day was spent on the other rides and some highlights included watching one classmate spin uncontrollably around in circles on her dodgem car causing a pile up of all the cars and experiencing the forces as we collided with both stationary and moving objects; going on The Pharaoh’s Curse, relying on our thighs and a small bar over them to hold us upside down as the carriage hung in the air. Many different measurements were taken throughout the day so that all of the physics concepts we had learned could be calculated and our experiences on the rides explained.  A final ride on the beautifully restored 1913 Grand Carousel finished our fun and educational day at Luna Park.

Eliza Shrimpton
Year 12

MapIt Competition (Geography) – State Finalist/Top 10 Winner 2020

Since 2019, Year 7 students at CGGS have been entering the MapIt Competition run as a partnership by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, the Geography Teachers’ Association of Victoria and ESRI.

Students are firstly guided through the process of identifying liveability features in their local neighbourhood as they complete their Liveability Project in Geography. They then apply key Transferable Skills of Critical Thinking and Problem Solving in order to make recommendations to improve their 20 Minute Neighbourhood. Finally, to enter the competition, entrants create a digital map to display their geographic solutions using the ESRI spatial technology mapping software.

We are very proud to once again have a student place in the Top Ten of the state for 2020. Congratulations to Alicia Baik on her exceptional achievement.

Karoline Walter
Head of Geography

Quote from Alicia’s entry:

Residents are frequently elderly, as shown in the map data, and are not able to walk to some specific shops as they are too far away, this is why a pet shop and 7/11 would be handy.

ICAS Piece

The ICAS competition is a school-based competition that students from Australia and international schools sit annually across six subject areas – including Mathematics. ICAS goes beyond the classroom curriculum and focuses on deep subject knowledge and higher order skills such as critical thinking and problem solving.

In this week’s Senior School assembly I was pleased to present two ICAS Medals for Mathematics. These meals recognise the achievement of students who are placed in the top 0.3% of the 2020 worldwide cohort. This is  a truly amazing achievement by these students.

Congratulations to Sunny Sun, ICAS Medal for Year 7 and Shuhan Zeng, ICAS Medal for Year 10.

Anthony Pasinati
Head of Mathematics

Return to Co-Curricular Music

It has been wonderful to see so many enthusiastic students and staff commence participation in a new group or reconnect with the ensembles and choirs on offer in our co-curricular Music programs. The Music Department corridors and rehearsal spaces have been buzzing with creative activity and have come alive with the many and varied ‘sounds of music’. We thank our music staff and Music Captains for encouraging students to participate in a group that is suitable for their instrument and level of skill. Involvement in our Music ensembles and choirs at CGGS continues to grow and go from strength to strength. Students are encouraged to build individual performance skills, explore ways to express their musical interests and nurture partnerships with others in a wide range of contexts.

The Senior Choir recently performed at the International Women’s Day Assembly, where they sang a rendition of Helen Reddy’s ‘I Am Woman’ with much confidence, vigour and musicality. It was inspiring to hear them perform this classic song and see them validate the power of teamwork, through the Performing Arts.

The recent filming day for our virtual tours was a real-world experience that our student musicians actively engaged with. The collaboration between groups was a highlight, with string playing and drumming featured in the recording session.

Student anticipation and excitement is high, as we progress towards House Music auditions. They will take place in Week 8 & 9, alongside our regular rehearsals, and we are looking forward to this much-loved event next term. Our House Music Captains have been working very hard to prepare and arrange their selected repertoire and are immersing themselves in a wide range of creative challenges. The Music Department will also kick off Term 2 with the annual Music Camp, to take place at Camp Manyung in Mount Eliza from Friday 23rd – Sunday 25th April. Students who currently participate in an ensemble or choir are encouraged to attend this fun weekend of music making with our CGGS music ‘family’.

We look forward to seeing you at the next Music event!

Kate Savige and Rohan Mack
Directors of Music

State Library of Victoria Online Excursion

The previous 12 months has seen a rapid change in the way schools can access materials, collections, and expertise from a variety of institutions. Last week, the 9B class was able to benefit from an online excursion with the State Library of Victoria, which virtually introduced items from the Library’s collection into the classroom. Students learned about the history of colonial Victoria, and how to analyse visual images from this period. This experience provides students with deeper knowledge and appreciation for the history of the land that is home to us all.

Last Wednesday, my class and I were lucky enough to have an online excursion with the State Library of Victoria about Colonial Victoria. During this excursion we learnt about Melbourne’s history and how to understand historical evidence. One important person in Melbourne’s history we discussed was John Batman, who is credited as one of the first pioneers of Melbourne, and the history of the Batman Treaty. Another pioneer of early Melbourne we discussed was John Pascoe Fawkner who established Melbourne’s first newspaper and hotel, the suburbs Pascoe Vale and Fawkner were actually named after him. Something that stood out to me was the importance of analysing and interpreting primary sources. As a class we looked at a painting by R. Hofmann of Melbourne in 1836, created after 1838. On the surface it just looked like a painting but from that painting we learnt about the start of infrastructure and agriculture in Melbourne in 1836. Learning about Victoria’s history is important in understanding how Melbourne has changed over time and allows us to recognise our rich history even the mistakes. Mia Paulse

Our Virtual Incursion with the State Library of Victoria last Wednesday was amazing. We studied many different sources that gave an insight into life just after the settlement of the First Fleet and how it shaped our country. We were presented with many questions such as, “what can we learn from this source” and “how might this have effected lives”. A standout for me, was when we were shown two different pictures, side by side, of Melbourne. One was from a few years ago, whilst the other was from around 1836. The differences were spectacular, as you could barely tell that they were the same place, from the city scape, to the barely inhabited land along the Yarra River. This history is relevant to the lives of all Australians, as it is always important to know where you come from. I can’t wait for the next opportunity to participate in one of these events! Emily Price

Last week, Year 9s got the fantastic opportunity to participate in a virtual incursion with the State Library of Victoria. We learnt how to analyse historical images, use historical perspective and discussed the importance of the State Library. Our SLV hosts gave us the chance to examine various historical paintings and spoke about how our modern-day bias can affect the way we viewed the images. Learning how to find a neutral stance when analysing information or artworks, is not only beneficial for our history studies but can be applied to nearly any piece of work we might come across in future. The experience of hearing from professional state librarians was amazing, thank you to Ms Wighton and the State Library of Victoria for putting this together for us!  – Sienna Catalogna

Ian Lyell
Head of History

In Conversation with Annabelle Lee

Last week the Year 9s spent time with old grammarian Annabelle Lee (2015), Shameless podcast producer and journalism student as part of their media investigation unit titled ‘Fake News, Filters, Feeds and Followers’. Annabelle spoke about her perspective on the media industry and the challenges that come with representation, ethics and bias in this field. We spoke about sensationalist media, gender bias, how to deal with generational divide and working through disagreements on key issues. The students posed questions and she spoke candidly about her journey to becoming a podcast producer and writer and gave the Year 9s some advice on how to balance commitments when they finish school. A significant point that resonated with the Year 9s was her discussion about taking time to discover your passions and finding your voice, particularly as a young woman in a fast-paced media landscape.

Below are some reflections from the Year 9 students. 

I found that her coming in as a past student at CGGS was very helpful and interesting. I think that her talking about how she followed her passions and her love of writing was truly inspirational. It was easy to engage with her as she wasn’t talking down to us and it felt like a conversation.

During Annabelle Lee’s conversation, I enjoyed how it was simple, yet inspiring. I’m sure we all learned many things to use in the future. She seems like she’s grown so much while learning through the years and has encouraged us to come out of our shells and to be the person we want to be. But also to use media effectively and to be careful what you trust and what’s reliable. Thank you so much Annabelle.

Listening to Annabelle’s story was quite eye-opening. We learned about the insider life of a journalist and it allowed us to view issues in the media through the eyes of the person writing it, rather than the one consuming it.

Maria Litchfield
English Teacher

2021 Victorian Age Swimming Championships

At the recent 2021 Victorian Age Swimming Championships, the CGGS Aquatic Swim Club had 18 swimmers qualify and represent across a range of age groups in both individual and relay events over 5 days of tough competition.

CGGS Aquatic swimmers performed extremely well, representing in 4 State finals and placing as the 1st and 2nd emergency in 4 additional State finals.

Year 9 student Emily Price competed across 7 events, finishing in 9th place in the final of the Girls 15 years 100 breaststroke and just missed the final of the 15 years 200 breaststroke finishing in 12th place.  Emily secured a place in the 15 years mixed (2 boys / 2 girls) medley relay team that will represent CGGS Aquatic at the upcoming Australian Age Championships to be held on the Gold Coast from 7 – 12 April.

Year 7 student Summer Zhu competed at the meet representing her club, Whitehorse, in the 1 meter springboard, 3 meter springboard and platform diving.  She has shown great commitment to training and should be very proud of winning silver medals in all her events.  Summer performed particularly well in the 1 meter springboard where she received a personal best score for her inward dive tuck. These results have seen Summer qualify to join Emily for the 2021 National Age Championships in both the springboard and platform competition.

Congratulations to Emily and Summer on their achievements, and we wish them well at the upcoming Australian Age Championships.

Peter Kitney
Aquatics Program Manager

Food: Different BY DESIGN

It’s dinner time in the year 2045. What will you have? A beef burger grown in a laboratory or insect protein pasta? And why might you eat these things instead of more traditional foods? Year 8 students are investigating this, and other questions about the future of food, in this year’s Science Talent Search unit, “Food: Different by Design.”

On their excursion to CERES Community Environment Park in Brunswick, our students got their hands dirty as they learned about urban farming, worms and compost and the untapped potential of Australian bush foods. They took action by planting their own seeds to grow vegetables, saltbush or Warrigal greens. Back at school, we followed up with a tasting session of some edible insect products. The barbeque flavoured crickets and mealworm chocolate were big hits!

Food is such an intrinsic part of our lives. These activities help add an extra dimension to our students’ research projects – lived experiences to learn from and to highlight the links between science, food, culture and tradition.

Student Quotes:

“Since I was brought up thinking that insects were bad, disgusting and gross, I was hesitant about tasting the bug food. However, after I tried it, I thought it was really good, it felt filling and I would definitely try it again.”Alicia Baik

“Cricket corn chips? Mealworm chocolate? This was all very strange and new to me, but I think this is a great way to solve food scarcity issues”Rachel Tan

“Even though some of us were not used to the food; statistics show that insect species are low in fat, and high in fibre and minerals. This may be one of the foods we will have for our meals in the future.”Jessie Chen

“Seeing everyone in my class lining up and enjoying such types of food was quite entertaining, peculiar too. Usually these unique types of foods aren’t talked about as much, which is a pity considering how delectable they are, even if you don’t want to admit it.”Hanna Wang

“I found this morning interesting to say the least. I found the foods had quite an acquired taste, they were definitely not my cup of tea. I only tasted one cricket and i didn’t really enjoy it, they had a strange texture with the first flavour being ok but it got worse as you kept chewing.”Sophie Towns

“When I first saw the various edible insects I was bit grossed out and disgusted by the thought of eating crickets and mealworms. However, as I tasted the different snacks, I quite liked the flavour of them as they didn’t taste that different to our normal food that we eat. For example the corn chips with cricket powder in them tasted like normal corn chips.”Aliyana Rajakulendran

“I ate some corn chips and pasta both of which had crickets mixed in. The corn chips tasted pretty good like normal corn chips just a tad plainer and I actually enjoyed them. The pasta however was very garlicky and had a really bad aftertaste. It made my breath smell horrible and I would probably not eat the pasta again.”Amanda Lee

“It was delicious, interesting and fun. I enjoyed eating it as well as watching my friends try new, exotic foods.” – Sarah Chan

Penny Dumsday
Science Teacher

Staff GSV Service Award

While we often acknowledge and present awards to students, we don’t often get the opportunity to celebrate staff achievements. Every year GSV recognise the service of staff and coaches who have contributed to the GSV program for 5, 10 or 15 years.

Today we will be celebrating a staff member who have given 5 years of service to GSV through coaching soccer at CGGS. Shane Maycock has been a passionate soccer coach since arriving at the school in 2015. It is here that Mr Maycock has helped to build the skills and knowledge of his soccer team and has also played an important role in mentoring other soccer coaches and helping out at training sessions whenever possible.

We are very lucky to have Mr Maycock as a passionate and committed coach at our school and we look forward to seeing him out on the soccer pitch again in term 3.

Cathy Gu
CGGS Sport Captain

House Athletics – Year Level Champions

Last week we announced the winning houses of the House Athletics once again congratulations to Lawrence on winning both the overall trophy and the spirit stick. This week, we would like to celebrate the outstanding individual results that were achieved at the carnival.

There were some exceptional performances in the both on the track and field and the following girls should be very proud as they received the Year Level Champion Awards. The year level champions recognise the top 3 students in all year levels from 7-12. This award is calculated by taking the results of 4 individual A events only, and students are required to participate in both track and field events to be eligible for this award.

Year 7

1st – Anika Selvaratnam

2nd – Ruby Edge

3rd – Christina Weickhardt


Year 8

1st – Angela Liu

2nd – Atara Paul

3rd – Abigail Lee


Year 9

1st – Ashleigh Western

2nd – Emily Price and Sofia Sanfillipo


Year 10

1st – Sasha Feldmann

2nd – Maddie Giagoudakis

3rd – Frida Andreasen


Year 11

1st – Emma Peak

2nd – Emmelyn Choo-Lambropoulos

3rd – Tina Ma


Year 12

1st – Sophia Giagoudakis

2nd – Sarah Stephen and Emily Arvidsson


Lauren Law
Head of Sport

Junior School


Junior School

March 19, 2021

Eastern Metropolitan Regional Swim Championships

Congratulations to the Ormiston students that participated at the Eastern Metropolitan Regional Swim Championships at Boroondara Sports Complex last week.  They all are to be commended in their outstanding achievement individually and as a team.

Cecilia Yang

Genevieve Khaw

Jasmine Xie

Anthea Vais

Olivia Yang

Chloe Lau

Jasmine Li


Listed below are the results from each swim event:

Open Medley Relay – Third Place
Cecilia Yang, Chloe Lau, Jasmine Li and Olivia Yang

Freestyle Relay – Third Place
Genevieve Khaw, Anthea Vais, Olivia Yang and Jasmine Xie

50 Metre Breaststroke – Second Place
Cecilia Yang

50 Metre Backstroke – Second Place
Olivia Yang

50 Metre Freestyle – Second Place
Olivia Yang


Only the first-placed swimmer or relay team in each race can move to the next level of competition which is the School Sport Victoria State Swim Championships. These students were recognised for their achievements at this week’s Junior School Assembly and we look forward to more personal best efforts in swimming in the future.

The National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence (NDA)

On Friday 19 March, Australian schools stand united in their communities to join the national conversation to help address bullying. The National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence (NDA) is Australia’s key bullying prevention initiative, connecting schools and communities to find workable solutions to bullying and violence, and where schools are called to imagine a world free from bullying.

Across the School, students were involved in a different activity that raised awareness about bullying and demonstrated our students’ commitment to taking a stand against all forms of bullying.

The Junior School classes explored the importance of standing up to bullying and different age appropriate ways of taking action against bullying. Our Year 6 students also participated in the ‘Being an Upstander’ webinar run by the Office of the e-Safety commissioner to learn how to be upstanders themselves and recognise the harm that can be caused by cyberbullying.

To demonstrate CGGS’s commitment, the Junior School Student Council created posters and took photos to provide a platform to show our collective support and take action together in recognition that bullying prevention is everyone’s responsibility.

Foundation – Year 6 Child Safe Standards Workshops

Every year, our School Counsellors Beth Sarlos and Paula Kolivas present information to our Foundation – Year 6 students about the topic of Child Safe Standards. The slideshow promotes the safety of children and encourages them to ‘have a say’, especially on issues that are important to them or about decisions that affect their lives.

The presentation empowers each student at Ormiston to take charge of their own body and that everyone has the right to be safe and be protected from abuse. Both Counsellors discuss that no one should behave in a way that makes you feel unsafe or afraid, including anyone in your family, anyone at school or anywhere else in the community. Our students are strongly encouraged to tell a teacher or any adult if they feel unsafe.

Finally, our Junior School students learn that child safe standards is everyone’s responsibility. Adults at school must listen and respond to concerns of students, and if any staff member or student suspects abuse of any student or young person, they have a responsibility to report it, even if they are not sure.

I would like to thank Beth Sarlos and Paula Kolivas for their work in this very important area over many years at Junior School.

Early Learning 4 Part-Time – Working in the ELC Garden

The EL4 Part-time children love being outdoors in our playground and in nature. Exposure to nature has been shown to reduce stress and increase attention spans. When children are in nature, all of their senses are activated. They see, hear, touch and even taste. During a morning meeting this week, the children used their senses to explore some different plants with different scents. They observed, touched and smelt lavender and a variety of potted herbs.

The EL4 Part-time children worked with Martin Conlon, our Head Gardner at CGGS, to plant the different scented plants.  As they worked side by side, Martin shared his knowledge about plants and gardening. The children were highly engaged and actively listened to Martin. They demonstrated dispositions for learning such as curiosity, confidence and enthusiasm by asking Martin a range of questions. He showed the children how to turn the soil, they added compost to the soil and learnt how to loosen the roots of the pot plants before planting them. After Martin had left, the children used their new skills and knowledge to plant the remaining herbs in a garden bed.

We are fortunate at CGGS to be part of a wider school community, who have additional knowledge and skills to share with the children. Our Early Learning community will continue to work with Martin on improving and taking care of our outdoor learning environment.

‘Experiences of relationships and participation in communities contribute to children’s belonging, being and becoming.’ – Early Years Learning Framework

Lilian Bishop
Early Learning 4 Part-Time Teacher

Year 4

This term we explored about Digital Citizenship and how to stay safe online. The students identified strategies for keeping themselves safe online such as using age guidelines, keeping personal information private and how to deal with cyberbullying. This unit raised many interesting class discussions about online etiquette and the responsibilities we have as digital citizens.

As a summative task, the students were placed into groups and took on the role as teacher by teaching the Year 3 students about a specific topic related to digital citizenship. As a collective group, they planned, prepared resources followed by teaching a mini-lesson for the students.

Here are some comments from the Year 4 students of what they have learnt this term about Digital Citizenship:

“This term I learnt not to put your personal details online or you could get hacked” – Kathleen

“Something that I learnt this term is that even if a website looks trustworthy, it may not be” – Ruth

“I learnt how to stay safe online by asking a parent if that website is safe to go on” – Joyce

“I have learnt never to click on pop-ups that seem untrustworthy” – Ailey

Ellie Zarfaty & Jasvindar Gill
Year 4 Class Teachers

Year 5 Excursion – How do you organise a space excursion?

You Plan It!

On Monday 15 March, the Year 5 students went on an excursion to the Victorian Space Science Education Centre (VSSEC) as part of their inquiry exploration focus: What is our place in space?

The students participated in two hands on programs called “Expedition to the M.A.R.S. Base” and “Size of Your Sol” programs and were engaged from the moment they walked into the complex.

The Expedition to Mars workshop involved students being part of Mission control where they observed the astronauts, working at the Mars Australian Research Station. The students used interactive software to monitor systems and the experiments being conducted by their peers. They had to use their ability to think calmly during a crisis of intergalactic proportions.

The Size of Your Sol workshop gave students a realistic feel for the relative size of the sun compared to the planets and also, in relation to their orbit. The students had to work co-operatively in small groups and use their measurement skills to find the diameter of each respective planet compared to the sun.

It was a truly memorable experience for students and staff. The posing of questions and the conversations amongst themselves, as well as with the staff at VSSEC, were exceptional.

What a great day!

Fiorella Soci & Craig Goodwin
Year 5 Class Teachers


It has been an incredibly exciting term in the Junior School Library as we have introduced a new library management system called Orbit. This engaging and colourful web-based system which can also be accessed from home, allows students to search and reserve selected books and resources, manage and track their borrowing and provides access to safe and age-appropriate online research resources such as World Book Online. Another very popular feature has been the integration of a large eBook and audio book collection which can be accessed both through the website and the Sora App.

Students from Years 3 – 6 have had the opportunity to investigate and explore Orbit throughout their library sessions and it has been wonderful to watch them quickly utilising all of the features and functions to support their reading and research.

We have also been fortunate to receive many visits from our library dog – Ivy this term. Ivy puts a smile on everyone’s faces and students across all year levels enjoy the opportunity to spend time quietly sitting and reading with her.

Sally Spencer
Library Teacher

Mountfield Maestros

As we welcome a new musical year at Ormiston, we celebrate the opportunity of once again coming together and breathing new life into the rooms and halls of Ormiston.

Last year we experienced our first Mountfield Maestros via video conference which proved to be not only a success but a charming variation to the art of performance.

With the uncertainty of these recent times, Mountfield Maestros once again took place via video conference and it was wonderful to see so many enthusiastic participants and hear musically engaging performances. The students celebrated the opportunity to share and showcase their performances to very appreciative audiences at both the Early Learning 4 – Year 3 session with Mrs Adams and the Year 4 – Year 6 session with Mrs Byrne. The diverse range of presentations illuminated the many and varied talents of our Ormiston musicians across all year levels.  Overall, 43 students participated in this popular school event.

We congratulate our students on the courage and confidence they displayed in presenting their selected pieces. Thank you to our Music leaders for helping with the event and to our music staff for enabling their students to build individual performance skills and encouraging them to explore ways to communicate their musical presentations.

Nichole Adams
Music Teacher & Violin & Viola Tutor

Physical Education

Throughout Term 1, Year 3 – 6 students have been undertaking an Athletics Unit in their Physical Education classes. The benefits of this are twofold with movement skills forming the basis of all activities and team sports which students will be involved in at CGGS this year.  The students are also being prepared for more discipline specific track and field events for the upcoming House Carnival.

Through a variety of warm-up games, activities and skill progressions, students have been developing greater agility, balance, speed and acceleration. The fundamental motor skills of jumping, leaping, skipping and hopping are also being covered. Students have particularly enjoyed the acceleration games and the mini hurdles which we look forward to seeing these developed new skills on display at the upcoming House Carnival.

Our specialist Athletics coaches from “Aussie Aths” have assisted our teaching staff in Years 5 & 6, bringing with them the current National U20 100m women’s champion. Hana has recently qualified to compete at the Junior World Championships to be held in July and is pictured here with some our students. Learning and being present which an elite athlete is certainly an inspirational treat!

Congratulations to all students on their willingness to be so involved and committed to their learning in each of the sessions and we encourage you to continually practice your skills throughout the year.

Nareen Robinson, Dot Georgiou, Kath Woolcock & Liana Kitsou
Physical Education Teachers

Connected Community


Connected Community

March 19, 2021

CGGS Dads Event – the first of many to come!

It was wonderful to welcome so many fathers at the recent CGGS Dads BBQ. Fathers and father-figures came together in a relaxed social setting and enjoyed an evening of delicious food and refreshments while meeting other dads from the school. This was the first event held by the newly formed CGGS Dads Group.

This group is run by CGGS dads for CGGS dads and they have planned at least one event each term for dads, and dads and their daughters.

To become apart of the CGGS Dads Group and to learn more, click the button below.

Old grammarian shares her journey with Year 9 students

As part of their media unit titled “Fake News, Filters, Feeds and Followers”, the Year 9s were fortunate during the week to have Annabelle Lee (2015) visit the school to give them a perspective on these issues.

Annabelle, who is a podcast producer at Shameless Media, gave the students a professional prospective on the media industry and the challenges that come with representation, ethics and bias. She spoke about sensationalist media, gender bias, how to deal with generational divide and working through disagreements on key issues.

Annabelle shared her journey to becoming a podcast producer and journalist, whilst continuing her law degree and gave the students some advice on how to navigate balancing commitments when they finish school.

A Century of Stories – CGGS Centenary Book

In Camberwell Girls Grammar Schools 100-year history, so much has happened within the walls of our beloved school to make it the institution it is today. So we decided to go and discover some of those stories and share them with our community in commemorative book to celebrate our centenary year. We are so proud to bring you this collection of stories, of moments in time, the highlights of our history and interesting insights.

A Century of Stories, has been written and published by Hyphen (formally known as Bounce Books), a company which specialises in telling stories, creating anniversary books and helping organisations to celebrate milestones. They have recently published similar story books to CGGS’ for Qantas, Arnott’s, Coles and Akubra.

A Century of Stories will be delivered to the school in late April. We are offering a pre-sale price of $50, including GST. You have the option of picking up the book from CGGS Main Reception or having it delivered at a standard shipping fee of $15. 

To purchase a copy, please click the button below.




March 5, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians,

In recent weeks there has been considerable discussion in the media about sexual assaults of young people and the issue of consent.

Today I sent a letter via email to all parents, and whilst lengthy I ask that you take the time to read it.

If you have any aspect of this communication that you would like to discuss, please contact myself –, Deputy Principal/Head of Senior School, (Mrs Cathy Poyser) –, or Head of Junior School (Mr Paul Donohue) –, or if you would like further information or support, you can contact 1800 RESPECT: 1800 737 732,

With best wishes,

Debbie Dunwoody

Senior School


Senior School

March 5, 2021

The recent Australian Open Grand Slam Tennis Tournament provided two of our keen Tennis playing Senior School students, Kiki Page, Year 9 and Annabel Da Mina, Year 10 with the wonderful opportunity to participate as 2021 BallKids. Hopefully you have already seen the social media posts highlighting these two students and their experience at the AO 2021. Please read their own accounts of their fortnight at the AO later in this edition of CamNews.

It has been a big fortnight in Sport for CGGS and we have also been delighted with the performances of our Swimming and Diving teams that have both qualified for the Division 2 Championships on Tuesday 23 March.

On Tuesday we held our first in person whole Senior School event for 2021 – House Athletics. Notably in 2020 this was the only Senior School event that took place in person, as the COVID-19 limitations soon took hold and our events continued online. House Athletics is always one of my favourite days and this year was exceptional with all our students and their teachers keen to reconnect with colour, energy and of course great track and field achievements. Please read the full report later in this CamNews edition.

On behalf of all the students I would like to thank Ms Lauren Law, Head of Sport and our Physical Education Department for their exceptional organisation of this wonderful community building event.

Yesterday the first of our Upskill … BY DESIGN days for 2021 and the VCE Learning Conversations proved to be a huge success with the students commenting enthusiastically on the programs offered in the morning, the wellbeing sessions and their much loved co-curricular activities all being made possible on the one day. On behalf of the students, I would like to thank all the teachers for their contributions to support and conduct each activity and Ms Kate Manners, Head of Strategic Pathways and Ms Kath Woolcock, Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing for their organisation of this new initiative.

Have a lovely long weekend.

Warm Regards,

Cathy Poyser

International Women’s Day 2021

With International Women’s Day being recognised on Monday 8 March, our School Mentor Leaders led an activity with all Year 7 – 10 students during House Mentoring today to challenge and call gender stereotypes and biases, and to celebrate women’s achievements globally. In their mentor groups, students spent time exploring and discussing how our collective strength and commitment to challenging these behaviours can help create a future of equality for women and one where we are able to live free from stereotypes, stigma and violence, moving towards a future that is more sustainable, peaceful and provides opportunities for all.

This year, through the call to action #ChooseToChallenge, women are being asked to show their solidarity by choosing to challenge and call out aspects of society, culture and language that is unhelpful for women and in doing so, working to forge a more gender equal world.

As part of this, each student was given the opportunity to commit to a call to action by writing a statement on a house coloured paper hand which has be displayed around the school as a reminder of our collective strength and commitment to each other.

Examples of statements written by students include:

> I choose to call people out on comments that perpetuate gender stereotypes

> I choose to support women of all cultures and backgrounds

> I choose to be mindful of my own language

> I choose to speak up for my rights and the rights of all people

Next week, we will continue our celebrations and recognition of International Women’s Day through our Year 10 Service Learning incursion with Days For Girls on Tuesday, our Senior School Assembly and the International Women’s Day Breakfast on Wednesday 10th March.

Kath Woolcock
Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing

Enlighten Education 

Year 10 students participated in an Enlighten Education incursion on Wednesday, an event that was postponed multiple times in 2020 for these students, due to COVID-19. Founded by Dannielle Miller, Enlighten Education is a leading provider of personal development workshops run specifically for teenage girls. The students participated in a series of workshops led by the effervescent and energetic Danni, which were carefully chosen by the wellbeing team to respond to trends, challenges and opportunities facing adolescents and this particular cohorts of students.

This year, with the recent media coverage around consent and women’s rights, we felt it was essential to look at personal safety and role of personal voice in consent, including setting boundaries, managing conflict and feeling empowered. We also selected workshops that help to promote positive body image, gratitude and provide strategies for managing stress. Each of the sessions the Year 10s took part in have been outlined below:

Forever Friends 

Research tells us that friends are more important to teenagers than their parents or teachers. How do we make friends? Who should we make friends with? How should friendships be maintained? How do we decide if a friendship is helping or harming us? This workshop addresses these issues and equips the girls with the necessary skills to make safe, important decisions about their friendships.

Stop I Don’t Like It 

Every girl is concerned about her personal safety. Setting personal boundaries, safe partying, handling inappropriate text messages, managing conflict and using the internet safely – these skills are all vital. This workshop focuses on what’s right and what’s not right and how to tell the difference.


Instilling gratitude in our children is about so much more than politeness. Gratitude is linked to greater happiness, a more positive outlook on life, stronger social bonds and support networks, and higher achievement. This one hour seminar shows how fostering gratitude in our children helps them develop the skills they need for fulfilling and successful futures – in their studies, personal lives and careers.

Chill Out 

Relaxation, visualisation techniques, massage and more.

Learning how to manage stress effectively is essential for our modern lives.

Relying on crutches like alcohol, drugs, cigarettes or other unhealthy behaviours is destructive and wasteful. In this workshop we encourage girls to seek balance in their lives and teach them some skills to achieve it. We also teach skills to help them cope with exam and assessment pressure to help enhance performance. These strategies are fun, affordable, and will fit into any girl’s hectic lifestyle.

Love the Skin You’re In 

This is a core unit that will provide a context for all the day’s activities.

Negative stereotyping, sexism, media images, the fixation on being thin, these are all issues today’s girls are facing. In this workshop we encourage girls to critically evaluate the messages that bombard them every day and develop strategies that help them respond intelligently and objectively.

Kath Woolcock
Deputy Head of Senior School – Student Wellbeing

Upskill… BY DESIGN

On Thursday 4 March we were excited to launch our Upskill …BY DESIGN program to all year levels. Taking place on each of our Learning Conversation Days throughout the year, Upskill …BY DESIGN will provide an opportunity for students to engage in intentionally designed learning programs linked to our year level spotlights. The program is scaffolded in a way that recognises the growing independence, self-efficacy and self-regulation of students as they move from Year 7 to Year 12, and the need to apprentice younger students into these behaviours and routines.

Experiences were designed for each year level to intentionally scaffold new skills and strengthen the capabilities and characteristics that are integral to the CGGS community, under the strands of Connection, Growth, Grit and Sustainability.

Working onsite, Dr Forwood introduced Year 7 students to concepts related to the Science of Learning, including the hand-brain and the role of memory in learning. Students were then focused on the theme of connection, exploring the ways in which people and spaces are connected within and beyond CGGS. Using design principles, they explored these  connections creating a narrative that reflects the CGGS community using Adobe Spark and their iPads. Finally, the Year 7s took part in a science themed learning experience exploring, Oobleck, a substance which is paradoxically both a solid and liquid at the same time. For this activity, students enjoyed the outdoors environment, which provided opportunities for them to strengthen their interpersonal connections.

Also attending onsite, Year 8, students were introduced to the 2021 Science Talent Search by Head of Science, Ms Wood, an annual, science based competition open to all primary and secondary students in Victoria. The theme for this year is Food: Different by Design. The Year 8s were then immersed in Beyond Design+, a program led by Dr Forwood and in partnership with Girls Invent, that takes students through the next stages of the design journey, building on the work that students undertook in Year 7, in 2020.

Working from home, Year 9 students undertook a short course on Graphic Recording. In recognition that visuals are an excellent way to engage, understand, remember, connect and inspire others, the Listen-Think-Draw program is s a three module, online course for sketchnoters, budding graphic recorders, facilitators, teachers, consultants and anyone interested in leveraging the power of visual thinking and communication for themselves and others. Students who completed this online course successfully will have the opportunity to be credentialed in Graphic Recording, which is presented in partnership with Think in Colour.

Wellness warriors and nutritionists Bree and Alicia from WIRL (Wellness In Real Life), led three live online sessions with the Year 10s, each focusing on approaching nutrition in a holistic and enjoyable way. They explored ideas related to how the media portrays ‘nutrition’, challenging media portrayals of foods as good vs. bad and finally informing how great nutrition can be achieved through enhancing food colour, activity and mindfulness.  This program built on the learning that is currently being undertaken in Year 10 Health in these areas with WIRL providing a great networking connection for students to have in this area.

As students get older, their ability to self-regulate their learning and themselves grows and this is reflected in the design of the VCE Upskill … BY DESIGN program, where we enabled students’ greater autonomy over both their time and learning for the day. We were excited to share with our VCE cohort the upcoming opportunity for onsite and online short courses in RSA, Food Handline, Barista Skills and First Aid in partnership with RSA In Schools. Additionally, on Thursday, students also had the opportunity to attend the real time virtual VCE Top Talks showcase, a curation of some of the exceptional oral presentations from 2020 VCE Extended Investigations course.

Finally, the Upskill …BY DESIGN program recognises the intentional practising of wellbeing. Wellbeing is characterised by a sense of resilience, purpose, engagement and optimism about the future and can be fostered in different ways. The curated activities that were open to the entire CGGS community were designed to revive, refocus, recalibrate and reconnect across the three domains of wellbeing: Mind, Body and Soul. In addition to the program provided as part of the CGGS Wellbeing website, those students who are involved in House Dance, had the opportunity to attend a House Dance Community lunch and an extended workshop in preparation for the performance in a few weeks’ time. Students involved in GSV Sport were also given additional time for training, and together, we see these co-curricular activities as fundamental components of establishing connections, a sense of belonging and a life-long positive wellbeing practice.

We’re excited to continue to develop the Upskill …BY DESIGN program throughout the year and share with you the opportunities and experiences that are facilitated.

Kate Manners
Head of Strategic Initiatives

CGGS Students at the Australian Open

Over the span of three weeks, I was lucky enough to be one of the 380 ballkids working at Melbourne Park Precinct during the Melbourne Summer Series and Australian Open. I have been playing tennis for my local club for quite a few years now and each year have looked forward to going to the Australian Open to watch some of the top players in the world.

The ballkids have always been an essential part of the tournament and I thought it would be a great opportunity to get involved. This year, because of the delay from Covid, AO was postponed a month and took place in February.  Usually there is a 9-10 month lead up with trials and training, whereas this year, it was all squeezed into one month, minimising the amount of training we could undertake.

During the event, I worked almost every single day and had around 3-6 matches per shift. All of the AO tournament staff were really welcoming and made sure everyone was doing their best at all times. Being on court with the players gave me a different view on how they prepare themselves and just how they play everything out during a match. I also learnt a lot more about what goes on behind the scenes and how much organisation and preparation is put into these events to make them run smoothly.

One of my highlights from the first week, was when I got to ballkid for the ATP World Cup in John Cain Arena, with some of the best players from Italy and France. There were some incredible matches and it was my first time inside that particular arena.

With the absence of majority of the crowds, I noticed so many more things that happened in the environment than you usually would. You could hear each and every footstep and every word of support from the player’s teammates and crew. You could also hear every time a player was talking to themselves under their breath, pushing themselves harder after every point.

Overall, it was an amazing experience that I would definitely wish to experience again.

Kiki Page
Year 9

This year I was very lucky to be a part of the Australian Open for a second year, having been selected in both 2020 and 2021). I feel truly blessed with the friendships I have made and the lifetime experiences throughout these last 2 years. I got involved with ballkids originally through my brother as he was assisting at the Sydney International and I thought it looked extremely fun. I am also very passionate about Tennis so that made me even more excited for this opportunity. I was lucky enough to work on matches in both Rod Laver as well as Margaret and John Cane Arenas with high profiled professional tennis players such as Serena Williams, Rafael Nadal. The atmosphere was absolutely unreal with adrenalin pumping and the crowd cheering!!

This year was definitely more challenging than last year due to Covid 19, we were always having to exercise particular care about our surroundings,  to keep both ourselves and the people around us safe. There are many benefits of being a ballkid besides being up close to all the action. You learn leadership, communication skills and confidence. This is a fantastic way to get introduced to the ‘working environment’ as they treat you as adults, with rules and deadlines. There is not only the Australian Open but many other tournaments around Australia, not only being a ballkid but also lines men and women, court services or even behind the scenese too. There is a bit of a selection process as you have to be between the ages of 12-15, so sadly this was the last year I can apply tp participate – unless the Australian Open call me back for another role!

You can get involved through this website all that is required is for you to register and for you to attend the trial to get in. I highly recommend this opportunity as I loved every second on an off court!

Annabel DaMina
Year 10

House Athletics

Congratulations to everyone who participated in the House Athletics Carnival last Tuesday 2nd March. It was a sea of colour at Bill Stewart Athletics track with all girls from years 7 to 12 excited to showcase their skills in a range of track and field events and novelty events. The atmosphere was electric as students cheered on their friends and we were so excited to be back together, celebrating a house event. Well done to Lawrence who finished the day as champions of House Athletics and who also won the House Spirit Stick for their support and cheering throughout the day.

House Athletics Results

1st – Lawrence

2nd – Schofield

3rd – Taylor

4th – Singleton

There were some outstanding performances both on the track and in the field and we look forward to hearing the announcement of the Year Level Champion Awards at assembly on Tuesday 16th March.

Thank you to all the staff and students who assisted throughout the day to ensure the program ran smoothly, particularly the House Sport Captains who have put in an enormous effort to make sure all races were filled and to the School Sport Captain, Cathy Gu and School House Captain, Chloe Langley for their assistance throughout the event.

Lauren Law 
Head of Sport

Preliminary GSV Swimming and Diving Carnivals

Congratulations to the girls who competed in the GSV Preliminary Swimming Carnival last Friday at the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre. Under the guidance of our Head Coach Peter Kitney, there were some excellent results and many personal best performances.

We were very excited to have such a large swimming squad this year and the dedication from all our students whether it was through swimming, helping with timing or cheering on the team really contributed to the success throughout the day. Training will continue on Monday and Thursday mornings in preparation for the Championship Carnival on Tuesday 23 March. The results from the swimming carnival are below.

On the same day the Dive Team also competed against 7 other GSV schools at MSAC. After weeks of early morning training sessions the girls had the opportunity to showcased their diving skills, performing three dives each. Everyone performed extremely well against a very tough competition. We were very excited to finish  3rd overall, which has placed us in good stead for the Championship Carnival.

Thank you to our Head coach Jenny Donnet for preparing our girls so well for this competition. The results from the diving carnival are below.

Our swimming and diving teams should be very proud of their performance as they both qualified for the Division 2 Championship Carnival. We wish the girls the best of luck in their training and preparation for the Championship Carnival on Tuesday 23 March.

Lauren Law
Head of Sport