Looking back over the past fortnight we have had so much to celebrate and enjoy with our Senior School students.
We had to reschedule our Year 7 Welcome Church Service and Dinner to Tuesday 3 March and were rewarded with perfect weather for the event. Personally the change in timing of this event made for greater mingling of students, parents and staff as they had already had an opportunity to begin to form friendships and connections.
The Year 12 Formal at Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club lived up to all expectations with the students and partners enjoying a night of dancing, lovely food and a particularly well scripted and produced video. Thank you to the organising committee and the film crew who ensured everyone had a special night.
In Assembly on the Tuesday I was able to share with the students and staff a heart-warming message from a lady from the general public who had been sharing a tram with a number of our students. She stated our students had been polite, well mannered and did not hesitate to offer her their seats. She was so impressed and grateful that she contacted the school.
I might add this is not an isolated instance, as yesterday I received another message, this time from an elderly gentleman who needed help to get on and off the tram. He made contact to say that while he did not ask for the name of the student who assisted him, he wanted the school to know how grateful he was for this assistance. This morning I had the pleasure of again sharing this information with our students via email and restating how proud they make us all feel through their kind actions and truly living our school motto of Utilis in Ministerium.
Our Year 10 Days for Girls on Wednesday 5 March was again a huge success with the next cohort of students undertaking this special day and gaining the insights into how other young women less fortunate than ourselves can be provided with the opportunity to attend school through the making of sanitary kits at our school each year.
The International Women’s Day breakfast was a most memorable morning with past student Kim Henderson, Director Policy and Evaluation from “Our Watch” as our guest speaker. Everyone in Robinson Hall on this morning felt privileged to hear from Kim.
The long weekend was welcomed by all and I wish you all well for this coming weekend.
Year 7 Welcome Dinner
On Tuesday 3 March, Year 7 students and their families enjoyed an opportunity to come together as a community to officially welcome the new year and the students’ transition into secondary school. The church service, led by School Chaplain Rev Helen Creed, focused on students learning about the conventions of an Anglican service, as well as hearing readings and stories from the Bible.
The church service was followed by a dinner in the Fig Tree café where students and families had the opportunity to get to know each other better and enjoy delicious food from Pinwheel & Co.
Although this event is ordinarily held in the first full week of the term, having it postponed was favourable as it showed the strong connections that many students have forged in the first weeks of Year 7. We look forward to welcoming Year 7 families to many of the events that will occur throughout the year as part of the Centenary Celebrations.
Please note the Year Level Representatives for Year 7 are also keen to facilitate more opportunities for families and students to build their connections to each other throughout the year.
Year 7 Coordinator
AGSA International Women’s Day Breakfast
CGGS students and staff again attended the annual International Women’s Day breakfast at Parliament House, hosted by the Alliance of Girls Schools Australasia. This highly anticipated annual event is designed to bring students from Years 10-12 and their teachers together to celebrate the importance of International Women’s Day.
The International Women’s Day breakfast was an eye-opening experience for us all. Sitting in a hall surrounded by portraits of male Premiers, we were treated to great food and even greater speakers. Issues such as women in politics, gender-biased language and the lack of recognition for women were highlighted and discussed by those in attendance.
Our biggest takeaway from this insightful opportunity was the importance of being a confident feminist. Especially being able to attend an all girls school with a nurturing culture, we are so fortunate to have access to numerous advancement opportunities to prepare us better for the future. We have learnt that as empowered women of tomorrow, we are deserving of equal rights and should be fearless when progressing towards our goals.
Emily Zhang & Elizabeth Waite
The International Women’s Day Breakfast at Parliament House was an interesting and empowering experience. The guest speaker this year was Yvette Arnott, a literature teacher and assistant principle at the Mac Robertson girls’ high school. She spoke passionately about the power of feminism and language and the ever-increasing need for equality in today’s society; particularly in parliament where there is a lack of representation for a gender that makes up 50% of the world’s population. Her words were spoken with absolute conviction and I confidently day I wasn’t the only girl walking out the room feeling inspired and empowered!
Year 12 Formal
Last Saturday week, the annual Year 12 Formal took place at the Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club. The Year 12s and their partners had an amazing night full of socialising and dancing. It was a special night and one that all that were there, will remember in the years to come. Again, the wonderful positive vibe throughout the whole evening was indicative of the strong level of cohesiveness that exists within the year level. Special thanks to the Year 12 organisers of The Formal, Felicia Spiridonos, Lauren Palma and Laurya Dang-Nguyen who did a wonderful job in terms of organising the evening. A number of mothers also helped out on the Saturday morning decorating the function room and thanks is very much extended to them as well.
Year 12 Coordinator
Congratulations to the CGGS Diving Team for a successful performance at the GSV Preliminary Carnival last Friday. Everyone performed extremely well against a very tough competition. The girls have put so much hard work into mastering their three dives, and everyone has been so dedicated to the early morning training sessions.
On the day, the Juniors came 6th, an incredible effort considering this is the first competition for many of the girls, the Intermediates came 5th and the Seniors came equal 4th. Everyone should be very proud of themselves, as they have progressed so much during the past few weeks of training in preparation for the Preliminary Carnival. We were very excited to place 5th overall against some tough competitors, which has placed us in good stead for the Division 2 Championship Carnival on Tuesday 17th of March. A huge thank you to our coach Jenny, Mrs Robinson and Ms Law for everything they have done to help the CGGS Diving Team.
Eloise Webster and Ella Robinson
CGGS Diving Captains
On March 1 a field of 50 girls woke up bright and early to compete in the annual GSV Triathlon at Altona beach. CGGS had a record number of girls taking part in this event and was represented across almost all year levels. 50 students competed in the team event and 3 girls participated in the individual event, completing all three legs – swim, bike and run. We had 3 teams place in the top 5 and one team which included Ella Robertson-Brown, Frida Andreasen and Sasha Feldman finished second and was awarded a silver medal. This is the second year this event has been held at Altona beach and it’s great to see so many girls across lots of different schools get involved. It was a fantastic atmosphere and we were very lucky to have our family and friends cheer us on along the way.
Making Days for Girls Kits
On Thursday 5 March the local Days for Girls Camberwell Chapter (seven ladies) helped all our Yr. 10 students make components for Days for Girls kits.
Days for Girls is an organisation that makes, educates and distributes feminine hygiene packs in developing countries. These washable packs allow girls to stay in school when they have their period. A basic right!!! The organisation is dedicated to creating a freer, dignified, and educated world, through providing lasting access to feminine hygiene solutions and health education.
Last year Days for Girls International distributed 45 thousand kits to refugee camps in South Sudan, Somalia, Lebanon and Afghanistan through World Vision. Twelve thousand were made in Australia!
Later this year the students going to Cambodia on the Service Learning Tour will take as many kits as they can fit in the luggage.
Head of Service Learning
Year 10 Mentoring Breakfast
On Wednesday March 11 the Year 10s attended their first mentoring breakfast. Mentoring has been identified as both an important tool and an effective way to gain skills via knowledge transfer from an experienced student/OGA to a fellow student at key moments in their education or at the start of their career. The theme for this week’s event was ‘Broadening Your Horizons’.
During the breakfast, Samreen Kaur and Harriet Gibson (Class of 2019) spoke to our Year 10 girls on why getting involved in school co-curricular and other activities was so important.
Samreen and Harriet were amazing contributors to, and ambassadors for, our school. They shared their considerable experience and expertise with our Year 10s and spoke about their involvement as Tour Guides, Mentor leaders, House Captains in various areas, GSV Sport, volunteering and the service-learning trip to Cambodia. They shared their belief that participation in these activities contributed to their own personal growth and certainly grew their skills portfolio in areas such as leadership, organisational, communication and interpersonal skills. They particularly emphasised the important ability to participate in these activities and balance a demanding academic curriculum.
With more institutions requesting evidence of these types of activities as part of their selection criteria, it is a relevant area of focus for students. ANU scholarship applications seek corroboration of a student’s commitment to making a difference to others. Monash Community Leaders Scholarship looks for potential mentoring students. Deakin Students helping Students has employers asking for students to demonstrate enterprise skills such as communication skills, leadership and teamwork. It is clear that Samreen and Harriet 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 and 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.
Thanks to the support of the OGA, the students were able to enjoy a wonderful breakfast while listening to this valuable presentation. Both students delivered the same message: make the most of the opportunities available to you here at CGGS.