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Consent Education has been very much in the news over the last two weeks. I wish to alert parents to resources I have uploaded to the POD. I have placed our outlines of the primary and secondary approaches to education relevant to this topic. I also alert you to our School TV section where there is a particularly good video from Michael Carr-Gregg about the topic. In addition, the Tea Consent video which has been or will be shown to all Years 9-12 students is there for you to view so you can discuss further with your daughters (and your sons). I have also placed a couple of interesting and relevant opinion pieces for your interest. These can all be found on The POD - Parenting Resources - Consent Education.
There have been two questions which we have been asked since all the media coverage about Consent Education.
Are you shocked by the revelations?
What has happened to these young women is shocking; however, most of us who have been in education a long time have not been surprised by the revelations. For many years, we have been working with families who have had to deal with the aftermath of large gatherings of young people where alcohol has flowed freely and young women and girls have been the victim of unwanted sexual activity. Easy access to pornography online has given young people a skewed view about appropriate sexual behaviours, independent of an intimate relationship, and this has had a large effect on the pressure girls and young women feel in their early relationships.
What is St Margaret’s doing about this?
Through our Pastoral Care Program, right from the earliest grades we include units on Respectful Relationships. Whether or not the issues are consent or domestic violence, Respectful Relationships form a core of our program. You will note, references to the Daniel Morecombe Foundation; Body Parts from Year 1; Feeling safe; Confidence through to other topics in secondary school from Year 7, including sexual attraction; respectful relationships; and, healthy choices in relationships when you view these outlines on The POD.
What have we learned since all this has aired?
Parents and students often ask us how we can support and encourage a students’ social, emotional and academic development. Fostering a positive mindset is key to supporting them.
Studies suggest that students are more likely to engage in school, succeed academically and enjoy their learning if they adopt the following four positive mindsets:
Academic mindsets can vary throughout the school day and can be affected by so many variables. For example, some students feel more positive at the beginning of the day or at the end (usually due to fatigue), and some can even be very affected by fluctuations in temperature.
Equally, the work that students do at home on things such as homework, assessment and study can also be enhanced by having a positive mindset, and variables such as the time they are able to do their work, noise distractions and the set-up of their study environment at home can also have an affect on this.
Parents can help foster a positive academic mindset at home. Taking an interest in what they have learnt each day can help. Having a conversation about it and asking just a few questions can help, but ultimately letting students be in control of their own learning is important, particularly the older they get.
It was wonderful to see so many parents engaging with teachers at parent teacher interviews in the primary and secondary school over the past couple of weeks. We welcome open communication about your daughters and how best we can support their social, emotional and academic development.
This week, the Years 11 and 12 students welcomed guest speaker, Mr John Pink, who came to speak about mindfulness in their Religious and Values Education Masterclass. John had spoken with the Year 11 girls last year, and the positive response from the workshop meant that we asked him to come back and speak with the girls again.
There has been much research about mindfulness and how it helps with academic endeavour. Within Christianity, mindfulness has a rich tradition dating back to biblical times. The Sabbath used to be a time of reflection, prayer and mindfulness. For a variety of reasons, we seemed to have lost the concept of Sabbath, a time of rest and recreation.
Within the Christian tradition we have the example of the desert mothers and fathers who sought solace in the desert, some for many years. Now I am not suggesting that we go out to the desert and cut ourselves off from the world, this is not reality, but if we could find a space, and give ourselves permission to rest and reflect, we tend to be more creative, have more ideas, can focus better on our study and work. For the desert mothers and fathers, it was about being in the moment, about finding and being aware of God in every moment of the day. If you would like to know more about the desert mothers and fathers here is a link to a great page: Discover the sacredness of life with the desert mothers and fathers (uscatholic.org).
Mindfulness, meditation, prayer and reflection can each help us to be in the moment, to let go of our busyness, and to find the deep longings of our hearts.
Open Day was a wonderful day for Boarding. We were excited to be able to display our wonderful Boarding House after having no visitors due to COVID restrictions. Our senior students performed the tours and did a wonderful job. We received so much positive feedback which is a credit to all the staff who look after our department and the operations of the Boarding House.
Of course, a huge credit goes to our students who fill the Boarding House with so much life and joy. The personal touches in the dorm rooms are all about making their ‘Home Away from Home’ full of colour and personality. No dorm room or year level area look the same. We are a very proud Boarding House and all who live and work in Boarding cannot wait to open our doors again to you.
Release of QTAC’s ATAR Report for 2020
Late last week, the Queensland Tertiary Admission Centre released their ATAR report for the 2020 student cohort. The release of this report has had many parents and students contacting me about the implications of what is in the report. While this report is another piece of the picture of the QCE/ATAR system, it is important to note a few points:
For example: if English and Literature Extension is taken by students across Queensland who achieve highly in other subjects, then it will ‘scale well’.
As a school we have processes in place to assist with the decisions around subject selection and subject changes. These are done on an individual basis to maximise the post school opportunities for all students and we look at all data and processes, including scaling.
We are very proud of our results from the 2020 Cohort and this is a testament to their hard work and commitment to the subjects they selected and to the teaching and learning your child experiences every day.
Year 10 – Introduction to Years 11 and 12 Pathways
During this term, the Year 10s have been receiving information from Ms Naomi Holley, Director of Careers and Portfolio Pathways. All Year 10 girls have completed a career profiling program through Careers Avenue which will support the Set Planning and subject selection process later this year. Following this testing each student, in the next few weeks, will be attending a 30-minute individual career counselling session with a Careers Avenues Career Psychologist. To support this, in the last week of this term, Ms Holley and I will present to the Year 10 girls some introductory information about ATAR and the Portfolio Pathway. I have put a summary of the information we will be sharing below:
Both Ms Holley and I are looking forward to working with the Year 10 girls throughout this year to help them plan for Years 11 and 12.
As we reach the end of Week 7, most students will be experiencing an increase in workload due to upcoming assessments. At this time, it’s important for students to maintain positive and effective habits to ensure their best academic outcomes. It may help to remind your daughter/s that her Academic Advisor or Form Teacher can assist her to develop and implement effective study and time management strategies.
It’s important that all students schedule time to exercise and relax in addition to completing assignments and studying. This down time becomes even more important as the workload increases and eating healthily and getting plenty of sleep are just as essential. It is recommended that teenagers receive approximately 9 hours sleep a night. I recommend you and your daughter/s engage with the literature available via School TV regarding the importance of sleep with respect to learning.
Thank you to everyone who participated in the Secondary School Parent Teacher Interviews either online or in person this week. We appreciate the time you take to engage in your daughters’ learning journey. As you are aware, we trialled a new format this term and would welcome feedback, particularly on the online interviews. Any feedback can be sent either to myself or to Rosemarie Parisi: email@example.com.
International Women’s Day Assembly
This week, the school celebrated International Women’s Day with lunch time activities and a special assembly. Academic prefects, Celia Quinn and Ashleigh Witenden spoke about gender equality; educating our students regarding global gender issues. Both girls delivered an excellent educational address and are to be commended on their effort, research and presentation.
At this assembly, students also heard from guest speaker, Betsy Rutledge ('12). Betsy was the last of the four Rutledge sisters to board at St Margaret's, graduating in 2012 as Cricket Captain and School Captain. She completed her tertiary education at the University of Queensland and attained degrees in Law and Science (majoring in Biomedical Science and Genetics) in 2018, before being admitted as a solicitor in 2019.
Along the way, Betsy completed an internship with Virgin Galactic's Astronaut Management team in London, worked at law firms and barristers' chambers across Brisbane, and became a member of several committees, including the RNA Future Directions Committee, to link her strong ties to the agricultural industry with her career as a lawyer.
Betsy is now a lawyer in the Employment team at Clayton Utz, Brisbane, and frequently works directly with clients to enhance diversity and achieve equality across their workforce. I was delighted to see both primary and secondary students go out of their way after the assembly to thank Betsy for her inspiring speech.
Oh, what a way to start a week! On Monday, the world celebrated International Women’s Day: a day to remember how fortunate our girls are to be not only educated but do so in a single-sex school.
We saw the benefit of this when many girls headed to the Andrews Cup Swimming competition on this day; a competition against 9 other girls’ schools. Playing sport provides the opportunity to work in teams, encourage and support others. There were plenty of these qualities on display throughout the day as evident in the results. The 9, 10 and 11 Year age groups were placed 1st and 2nd in the 8 Years. These results contributed to the team bringing home both the Aggregate Cup (2nd year in a row) and the Springfield Cup Relay. It is the first time in Andrews Cup history that a school has secured the two trophies! Congratulations to our Springfield Cup swimmers - Adelaide Bothwell, Clementine Cooke, Mena Bertinato and Sophie Hebron - and to the entire team, their coaches and parents who supported them.
For the third year, International Women’s Day was the launching pad for Careers Education. Thank you to our parents - Kelli Martin (Lawyer), Eva Cho (Engineer), Kirsti Simpson (Interior Architect), Kimberley Middlemis (Accountant) and Captain Amanda Jackson-Andrews from Virgin Australia. All our speakers were inspirational and contributed to breaking down possible gender bias associated with different careers and bringing real life success stories to our students. This year, we have changed this week to an ongoing program, as we would like to continue to offer our students an opportunity to hear about careers throughout the year. If you are interested in sharing your career with our students, please make contact. This was a very deliberate decision as research has identified career-related learning in primary school benefits children in the development of a healthy sense of self and helps them achieve their full potential, while allowing for connection with the wider community and helping to gain a sense of what they could do in the future.
The use of Smart Watches in the Primary School
Mobile phones are deposited in the class phone box and sent to the office every morning. Students do not have access to their phone until the end of the school day. Smart watches, which have the same capabilities as mobile phones, can be worn in the Primary school, providing that the ability to send and receive messages is switched off. If this cannot be done, the smart watch must be placed in the phone box until the end of the school day or simply not worn to school.
Open Day Music Performances
Congratulations to all students who provided music performances on Saturday as part of St Margaret’s Open Day. Twenty-one different ensembles performed, showcasing what is on offer within the St Margaret’s Music Program, along with performances by Music Extension students and a preview of Matilda, the Musical. Thank you to all girls and their conductors for providing these wonderful performances!
Our Secondary school choirs, Encorah and Volare, will recommence rehearsals from the start of Term 2. Encorah is an ‘all-comers’ choir for girls in Years 7-12. All who enjoy singing are welcome to attend with no audition required. The choir will sing a wide range of repertoire from a variety of genres. The choir will rehearse from 3:30-4:30pm on a Thursday afternoon in the Arts Centre Foyer with the first rehearsal to commence in Week 1 of Term 2 (22 April).
Volare will also recommence in Term 2. Volare is an auditioned choir for girls in Years 7 and 8 who enjoy singing more challenging repertoire. Volare will rehearse immediately after Encorah from 4:30-5:00pm in the Arts Centre Foyer. (Exultate for students in Years 9-12 will also continue rehearsals at this time from 4:30-5:30pm in the Sister Helen Orchestra Room). Auditions will be held for students interested in joining Volare on Tuesday 23 March, 1:05pm in the Sister Helen Orchestra Room (students who have already auditioned are not required to re-audition). Girls are asked to prepare the pre-set round and a section of a song of their own choice. Please click here to download the pre-set round (PDF 69.1KB) or see Mrs Lloyd in the Sister Helen Orchestra Room for a hard copy.
Music Support Group
The next Music Support Group meeting will be held on Tuesday 27 April at 5:00pm in the Primary Music Room (second floor of Chaseley). Parents from both the Primary and Secondary schools are welcome to attend.
The 2021 Autumn fixture season will commence on Friday 12 March. Approximately 350 students will be involved in playing their first games of Basketball, Touch Football and Soccer at various away venues. Please note, there are no restrictions on spectators this week; however, all venues are operating under a COVID-Safe plan and spectators will be required to register via QR codes. Details of all fixtures can be found on each individual sport POD page.
This year, there are a record number of participants with their being 9 Basketball teams, 17 Touch Football teams and 3 Soccer teams, indicating that St Margaret's girls are passionate about being fit and healthy. We wish all teams a great start to the season!
Touch Football – Barbecue and Raffle donations
The Touch Football Support Group is asking for donations for their annual Easter raffle and home game barbecues. A list of items needing to be donated can be found by clicking here (PDF 85.8KB) and can be delivered to either Windsor Park at training or to the Sports Precinct Office by Thursday 18 March.
The Cross Country competition season is commencing next week with the following Invitational meets being held this term:
Details of the upcoming Meets and how to register can be found via the Cross Country POD page. We are very motivated to ensure all girls perform to the best of their ability, therefore an additional session on Thursday morning at 6:30am is now available for all girls, with Wednesday morning training COMPULSORY for all runners.
The Water Polo season is coming to an end with the final round games to be held on Saturday 13 March (PDF 145.7KB). All teams have developed their skills and fitness over the 14-week season which has resulted in over half of all teams securing a place in the semi-finals on 20 March. A huge thank you to all coaches, staff and parents for their continued support of the girls and the sport of Water Polo. Good luck to all teams in your final round of competition.
A Water Polo break-up has been organised for all players, coaches and managers to attend on Wednesday 17 March at St Margaret’s pool, from 3:30pm-5:00pm. A pool party will take place first, followed by pizza, sushi and team awards. For more information regarding the break-up party, please see the Water Polo POD page.
Lifesaving at St Margaret’s has had a long and successful history, with St Margaret’s winning the annual QLD Secondary Schools Royal Lifesaving Championships for 21 years in a row. Unfortunately, Royal Life Saving Qld is not in a position to hold the Championships at this point in time and will possibly be looking towards next summer. Lifesaving will however continue to be integral within the Health and Physical Education faculty with students participating in the Swim and Survive Program and the lifesaving awards of the Bronze Star and Bronze Medallion.
There are fewer than 15 tickets left for the Professional Women’s Networking Breakfast next week!
Don’t miss special guest speaker, Jenny Stevens (’73). Per Volar Sunata – Born to Fly Upwards. Jenny Stevens firmly believes in St Margaret’s motto and all young women embracing their full potential. In this first breakfast event of 2021, Jenny will talk about how she has fought her fear of failure, and how young women can live the lives they deserve to live.
Tickets can be purchased via Flexischools, or alternatively, please contact the Development Office on: firstname.lastname@example.org or 07 3862 0767.
Date: Thursday 18 March 2021
Time: 7:00am arrival - 8:45am finish
Enjoy Barista Coffee from a Wolff Coffee Roasters cart, before and after the event
Location: St Margaret's Anglican Girls School, 11 Petrie Street, Ascot
Tickets: $80 Adult, $40 Student (Tertiary, Years 10 -12)
Thank you to our generous corporate sponsors:
Major Sponsor: Pitcher Partners
Associate Sponsors: Programmed Property Services, Wolff Coffee Roasters
Supporting Partners: Downer Group, NAB, Clear Insurance, O’Reilly Shaw Lawyers and Red Oak Teamwear.
Tickets for the 2021 Father Daughter Breakfast (Years 7-12) are now on sale
Join us for the 2021 P&F Father Daughter Breakfast for students in Years 7-12. An annual favourite on the last day of Term 1, this sell-out breakfast this year will be held on Circular Drive and the Arts Centre Terraces.
Date: Thursday 1 April 2021
Time: 6:45am for a 7:00am start, 8:00am finish
Venue: Arts Centre, St Margaret's Anglican Girls School
Cost: $40 per adult /$30 per student (Years 7-12), includes a selection of individual hot breakfast boxes, fruit and yoghurt cups, tea, coffee and orange juice.
For all enquiries, please contact Chris Brown on 0400 319 545 or email: email@example.com.
Tickets are on sale via Trybooking: www.trybooking.com/BPFGG.
Past Student Awards - Saturday 24 April 2021
Tickets are now available for the 2021 Past Student Awards. Join us for a special evening as we celebrate two inspirational St Margaret's women and hear about the impact they have made within their field and community.
The Past Student Awards Dinner is a wonderful opportunity to connect with fellow Old Girls and parents and to hear from this year's amazing award recipients, while enjoying canapés on the Terraces, followed by a sit-down dinner and drinks.
Date: Saturday 24 April 2021
Time: 6:30pm for 7:00pm Dinner
Venue: Arts Centre Foyer, St Margaret’s Anglican Girls School
Tickets: $75 (adult) $55 (Student)
Tickets can be purchased via Flexischools.
Nominations are still OPEN for the 2020/2021 Distinguished Past Student Award and the Young Past Student of Distinction Award. To submit your nomination, please click on this link. Please note, due to cancellation of the 2020 Past Student Awards, all nominations from 2019 onwards will be valid.
Please send in your nominations and look out for further information about this special event.
Please check the Careers News section on the Careers and Pathways POD page for more information about upcoming opportunities and events.
UCAT 2021 Registration opened 1 March via ucat.edu.au.
Crimson Education entry into US and UK webinars:
ADF Gap year - Apply now
You can now apply for the 2022 Australian Defence Force (ADF) Gap Year, to experience life in the Navy, Army or Air Force. Click here to find out how to apply; you must be an Australian citizen, aged between 18 and 24 years on admission and have completed Year 12 (required passes vary by job).
Bond University Student for a Semester
Bond University’s Student for a Semester program gives high achieving Years 11 and 12 students the opportunity to gain an authentic university experience before they finish high school. Applications for the May 2021 semester will open on 17 March 2021.
Tuckwell Scholarship applications now open
The Tuckwell Scholarship Program awards 25 scholarships each year to talented and motivated students. Before commencing an application, you should:
To apply to commence study at ANU on a Tuckwell Scholarship in 2022, you must:
The ANU Direct Application will ask if you wish to apply for a Tuckwell Scholarship to which you must answer “yes” if you wish to apply.
Griffith Sports College
Griffith Sports College plays a vital role in fostering students who are also elite athletes, helping them devote time to training and competition while they complete their tertiary studies. As part of the Elite Athlete Friendly University Network, the Sports College integrates sporting and academic aspirations.
University of Melbourne
Aspiring Scholars Program for interstate and New Zealand Year 12 students, Aspiring Scholars is a community-focused program that brings together ambitious students interested in studying at Melbourne. Please visit here for more information.
Contact Our Admissions Team
An independent day and boarding school for girls from Pre-Prep to Year 12; Boarding from Year 5; Boys Pre-Prep and Prep
A School of the Sisters of the Society of the Sacred Advent St Margaret's School Council Ltd ABN: 69069684019 CRICOS Code: 00511K
The St Margaret’s community acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land upon which we gather each day. We pay our respects to the Elders past and present, for they hold the memories, traditions, culture and hopes of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples across the nation.