Message from the Principal

I warmly welcome you all to the new school year after what I hope, has been a relaxing and rejuvenating holiday break.  There has been a great deal of excitement and energy as our students returned this week ready to embrace the opportunities that await them this year.  For those students who are commencing their formal education in Early Learning 3, Foundation and at the start of secondary school in Year 7 it is important to acknowledge the significance of these milestones.

At the conclusion of 2017 we celebrated many student achievements at Presentation and Graduation evenings, however there are two I would like to highlight as they occurred after these events.

After taking out 1st Prize at the Girls Invent and Scale Angels Pitch Evening for their ‘Score Buddy’ invention, our team of Year 7 students Mikalya Lee, Susannah Lutze and Alice Wilson were interviewed by Channel 9 News at Camberwell Girls about their device.  A representative from Tennis Australia was also present and have indicated their support to assist the girls to try to bring their product to market.  The Channel 9 News segment was screened a few days before Christmas and I encourage you to take a look at it here. I look forward to updating you on the development of this project throughout the year.

We were also delighted to congratulate the Year 12 Class of 2017 for their extraordinary VCE results.  I would like to thank our VCE teachers for their commitment to and support of the girls during their final years of schooling.  It is important to also recognise teachers from earlier years as they too engaged and inspired the girls through high quality learning experiences.  There are so many personal stories of achievement that cannot be represented by the scores alone, and we are immensely proud of the courage and commitment demonstrated by these girls in their learning.  Importantly our Year 12 girls concluded their secondary education with impressive academic results and a wide range of leadership, co-curricular and service experiences.  These are important components of a holistic education as we value the development of compassionate leaders who have courage to embrace change and new opportunities.

In the Class of 2017

– 38% of students achieved an ATAR >95 (placing them in the top 5% of the State)

– 62% of students achieved an ATAR >90 (placing them in the top 10% of the State

– The Median ATAR was 93

– Four girls have been awarded entry into prestigious Vice Chancellors Scholars Programs with a number of other students in different Scholars Programs.

The next stage of their story is the most exciting, as we have been learning of the course offers that the girls have been receiving and we will be sharing  a number of their stories in CamNews this term.  Camberwell girls have been accepting places in courses such as Medicine, Biomedicine, Law (also combined with Global Studies, Commerce or Arts), Fashion Design, Aerospace Engineering, Art and Design, Science Advanced – Global Challenges, Engineering Practice, Pharmacy, Dentistry, Business/Accounting and Nursing.  These courses reflect the diverse interests of our Year 12 cohort.

This year we have welcomed a number of new teachers with extensive experience and interests to Camberwell Girls.  These staff are:

Mrs Karen Coom (Foundation Teacher)
Karen joins Camberwell Girls having moved to Australia from Christchurch New Zealand where she taught for the past five years.  She has integrated reflective practice in her teaching programs and uses peer teaching as a useful tool in her classroom.

Dr Charlotte Forwood (Director of Learning Design and Development)
Charlotte brings a wealth of experience to this new role and as a Learning Enrichment teacher. In addition to her Doctorate of Philosophy, she also holds a Masters of Teaching and is a certified practising Speech Pathologist and most recently held the role as Leader of Advanced Learning at Strathcona.  Charlotte is a highly regarded author and series designer for many publications, is a webinar presenter and also author and presenter of the Independent Schools Victoria Language Consultancy and Middle Years Language Consultancy Programs.

Ms Dot Georgiou (Head of Health & Physical Education – Ormiston & Senior School)
Dot has extensive experience teaching and as a Head of Department in the areas of Physical Education, Health and Sport. She has also held the position of Professional Learning Coordinator at ACHPER, the Australian Council for Health, Physical Education and Recreation.

Ms Jennifer Gordon (English and Literature)
Jennifer is an experienced English teacher and most recently taught at St Aloysius College. She is a passionate advocate for student wellbeing and service initiatives.

Ms Asia Kosowski (Art and Design)
Asia is an experienced teacher, having taught in metropolitan and regional areas and is a practising artist. Her most recent teaching position was at St Catherine’s.

Mr Luke LoBello (Physics and Mathematics)
Luke is an experienced Physics and Mathematics teacher and most recently taught at Carey Grammar. He has also commenced studies in Student Wellbeing at the University of Melbourne.

Ms Sally Oliver (Drama)
Sally joins us as an experienced Drama and English teacher from St Francis Xavier College. As a trained dance teacher with a musical background, she is excited about taking on the role as Director of the school musical, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, this year.

Mr Anthony Pasinati (Physics and Mathematics)
Anthony is passionate about STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) and has most recently taught at Mercy College. He has been actively involved in the Robogals and Girls in Physics

Mrs Nicole Rogers (Head of Strategic Initiatives, Science and Learning Enrichment)
In this new leadership role, Nicole joins us from Yarra Valley Grammar School where she has held a number of leadership positions including Junior School Deputy Principal, Junior School Curriculum Coordinator, VCE Biology Coordinator and Innovation and Excellence Educator. She will be overseeing a number of key initiatives at CGGS including the coordination of the STEAM and MakerSpace programs across Ormiston and Senior School as well as developing projects with our partner schools in the Strategic Alliance of Global Educators.

Ms Zoe Swindells (Early Learning Teacher)
Zoe is an experienced Early Learning Teacher with over 16 years working in this field. She most recently worked at St Peter’s Learning Centre as Lead Teacher, where she taught for the past 9.5 years.

Ms Karoline Walter (Head of Geography)
Karoline is an experienced teacher of Geography most recently working at St Michael’s Grammar. She is also qualified in Outdoor Education and has coordinated the Duke of Edinburgh program in her schools.

Mrs Lisa White (Learning Enrichment)
Lisa is an experienced Learning Support teacher, across both Junior and Senior levels. Her most recent position was as an Education Coordinator at Ronald McDonald House.

Ms Maggie Wighton (History)
Maggie is a passionate History teacher, joining us from Camberwell High School. She brings with her a wealth of global experiences and has taught overseas at the Australian International School in Vietnam and at an International School in South Korea.  She is also an experienced English and EAL teacher.

Mr Brent Woodlock (Head of Mathematics)
Brent joins us from Camberwell Grammar School and is a very experienced Mathematics teacher. Prior to teaching, Brent had a career in project management responsible for large commercial projects.

Mrs Barbara Woodward (Head of Art and Design)
Barbara joins Camberwell Girls as a passionate and experienced practising Artist, Art Leader and teacher and a previous member of the Top Arts Selection Panel, State Reviewer and Examiner for VCAA. She has taught in both metropolitan and regional locations.

We were also delighted to welcome back from leave Mrs Melissa Donelly, Mrs Helen Pappas, Mrs Di Schiller, Mrs Emily Pandya and Ms Peipei Liu and I would like to welcome Miss Ruth Smith, Ms Anita Coffa and Ms Lucy Schneider as our Deakin Associate Teachers for 2018.

I am very excited about the calibre of our teaching team and the extensive programs and opportunities for our students at Camberwell Girls.

I am also pleased to report that we have commenced the renovation of our Physics Laboratory and that it will be completed during Term 1.  The final stage of our Science re-development project will be the renovation of the Chemistry and Biology Laboratories to be completed during the next two years.

With very best wishes for the year ahead.

Debbie Dunwoody