College News

Schools Back In

Excitement filled the air with the temperature soaring well above 25 degrees before 8 am, teachers were out nervously prowling the schoolyard filled with both nerves and excitement awaiting the invasion of over 3000 students about to enter the school gates for the first time for 2020.

The sound of laughter and joy quickly filled the schoolyard, warm greetings of high fives and many cuddles were to be seen amongst students seeing their peers again for the first time since they left last year. The rich culture of our student-teacher relationships was evident by many students running up to their teachers for the first greeting of the year. Holiday stories and activities were shared amongst the joy of seeing another friend walk through the gates and starting the conversations over again before long silence had quickly fallen over the school grounds again as students moved to their classrooms to formally start the learning journey with their teachers for 2020.

I would like to warmly welcome all new families officially to Hazel Glen College and welcome back returning families for another year. I wish all students, parents and guardians all the very best for a successful year ahead. We know education is more effective when a successful partnership between schools and homework together to support each child’s needs and educational journey. We look forward to working with you to ensure the success of your child this year.

This year we formally welcomed our first cohort of year 12 students. The 2-day study retreat has already been completed and students are already deep into their studies for their final year. For these Year 12 students their final steps in their 13-year educational journey has begun, we know that year 12 requires extensive dedication and commitment to their studies outside of the classroom and the pressures of meeting deadlines and strict criteria can be challenging. I would personally like to wish all year 12 students the very best for the year and remind them that they are never alone, support is all around them.

I would like to thank the College leadership team and all staff sincerely for their hard work to ensure the start of the year was smooth and successful for all of our students. The grounds and buildings look amazing and the classrooms have been set up to support and engage student learning to the highest standard. Many additional buildings have been located on-site with the final science labs to be here and operational shortly. I am extremely proud of the staff that we have at Hazel Glen and recognise the quality of the school is based on the wonderful work they do with your children.

I would like to acknowledge the inaugural College Captains and all other students that have been successful in obtaining student leadership positions across the College, I look forward to their leadership in each of the areas across the College and working closely with them in their personal growth and development.

Our College culture is very important to us and is embedded in all that we do at Hazel Glen. The Fish Philosophy is represented across the College from Kindergarten students and staff all the way through to our Year 12 student cohort and teachers in many different ways. These vary from visual displays, staff interactions and use of language, student engagement, assemblies, recognition of student achievements and the general climate and expectations of students and staff in the College. I would like to acknowledge our parents and community for their ongoing support and commitment to our College through their collective buy-in of our culture and values to ensure our College thrives through our core curriculum and extra-curricular opportunities.

Thank you to all students who have started the year in the full College uniform, seeing the thousands of students flow through the gates on day one filled me with a great sense of pride. Thank you to all families in ensuring your child was in the full correct uniform, this symbolically represents one of the elements of an effective partnership between home and school to provide your child with the best education possible.

I would like to take this opportunity to recognise our firefighters and volunteers that have served our country through the devastating fires over the holiday period. If any family has been affected by the fires and requires additional support please don’t hesitate to contact the College.

I would like to clarify my commitment to Hazel Glen College during my supporting role as Acting Principal at Mernda Central College, I will be present on-site at HGC throughout this period of time and continue to lead and drive the College goals and targets with the College Leadership Team and College Council.

I hope that all of your children have had a great start to the year and I reinforce that educating your children requires a partnership, between home and school to ensure your child’s success. We all want the same thing, the best for your child.

Best Wishes
Anthony Stockwell

Hello, my name is Rebecca Richards and I am the Acting Junior School Principal.

Junior School has had a terrific start to the year and a smooth transition for all of our teachers and students. Our staggered commencement dates ensured everyone was set up for a successful start. The Years 1 to 4 commenced on Thursday and our Foundation students followed on Friday. In total, we welcomed our 9 grades of new foundation students who are settling in and adjusting to school life, as are many of their parents. Wednesdays are our assessment days for our Foundation students for the next 5 weeks, teachers are establishing the individual academic needs of all their students.

Junior School 2020 Leaders

Our Junior School Leadership program has commenced. Our Year 4 cohort are the heads of the Junior School. For this reason, we offer leadership positions to students who are positive role models and are willing to step out of their comfort zone. Student leadership in education instils quality life skills such as relationship building, and effective communication and interpersonal skills.

Our student leadership selection process began late last year with the selection of two Junior School Captains. This involved interested students writing and presenting a speech to their teachers and peers, who then voted for whom they considered most suited to the role. Shortlisted students were interviewed by our Junior School Principal and Assistant Principals who made the final selection. Since then we’ve selected House Captains, Sport Captains, Art Captains, STEAM Captains, and Student Representative Council members.

The selection of student leaders is undertaken in conjunction with the Year 4 Curiosity unit Tomorrow’s Leaders. Throughout Term 1, they have explored the qualities of an effective leader, types of governments and the democratic voting system. We were also visited by the Mayor of the City of Whittlesea, Cr Emilia Lisa Sterjova, who discussed her personal leadership journey.

Our College Values play an integral role in the selection process. All our leaders must be motivated to actively model and represent our College values of Relationships, Respect, Responsibility and Resilience. To apply, interested students wrote a letter to the relevant staff leader outlining their suitability for the role. The selection process was fair and anonymous, in keeping with what we have learned about democracy during Curiosity. Hundreds of applications were submitted, which is a testament to the strength of our student leadership program, our motto Learners Today, Leaders Tomorrow was definitely reflected throughout this process.

Curriculum Update

All Year Levels have sent out their first newsletter for 2020. Hopefully, you have found some time to have a read of what is happening in your child’s class this term and gain an understanding of the exciting learning that will take place. It is also a great chance to sit down and read this with your child as their home learning, so they are aware of what’s happening in their classroom and around the College.

The students have had a wonderful start to the year and were able to develop relationships with both their teachers and peers during the Start Up Program. This provided time for students to connect with one another and develop their classroom expectations and set up their learning processes.

The students have been engaged in their Curiosity units and various learning experiences have already taken place. Some of the exciting things include:

– Foundation students have been investigating the Learning Essences while adjusting to daily life at Hazel Glen

– Our Year 1 students attended the Taskworks Incursion

– Year 2 students have been on a Community Walk

– Year 3 students have been investigating all things living and non-living and are working towards planting garden beds

– Year 4 students had the Mayor of Whittlesea attend the College as a special guest to talk about Democracy

Last Wednesday evening our Junior School Instructional Leaders ran the first Classroom Helpers course for the year. It was a great opportunity to come together as a community and share some strategies to incorporate when helping out in the classroom. The course covers tips for not only working in the classroom, but useful ideas that can be used when working with your children at home. There will be another Classroom Helper course later in the year and this will be a day session.

Rebecca Richards

Acting Junior School Principal

Junior School News

Welcome Back
It’s been a great start to 2020 in Middle School. Students have settled in well to their classes and are developing positive relationships with their teachers and peers. Many students have had their first experiences in different learning areas including Food Technology, Creative and Digital Technology, Languages and Visual Communication. Several Year 8 classes have already had the opportunity to develop their technology skills and knowledge with a two-day workshop at Whittlesea Tech School. When walking through Middle School classrooms, there is a real sense of calmness, with students engaged in their learning and interacting positively with one another.

It’s fantastic to see so many students wearing their College uniform with pride. Students are reminded to check their timetables to ensure that they only wear their sports uniform on the day that they have PE classes. It’s also important to remember that all students are required to wear a hat when they have PE classes during Term 1 and 4.

Mobile Phones
This year, there has been new state legislation in regards to the use of mobile phones in schools. Middle School students have adapted well to this, and are continuing to follow the College policy, keeping their phones in their lockers during school hours of 8.33am to 3.00pm. Feedback from students has been positive, with many reporting that they feel less distracted by technology and more connected to what is going on around them.

Year 5 Camp
Our Year 5 students are looking forward to their upcoming camp to Arrabri Lodge in Week 6. They will participate in many activities including hut building, archery, giant swing and team games. It’s also a great opportunity for all students to develop positive relationships with one another and their teachers.
We look forward to hearing about their amazing experiences when they return.

Upcoming Events

Thursday 5th March: College Colour run
Friday 6th March: Curriculum day
Monday 9th March: Labour day
Tuesday 10th March: Friday 13th March – Year 5 Arrabri Camp
Thursday 19th March: Year 7-12 Swimming Carnival
Thursday 26th March: Parent Teacher Interviews.

Kim Donnelly
Acting Middle School Principal

Middle School News

Senior School newsletter Week 4 Term 1 2020

Term 1 has started well with Senior School students adapting to the new buildings and classes well. The new Senior School jumper looks fantastic and students are priding themselves as leaders of the College. Students are adapting well to the new state legislation in regards to the mobile phone policy and we have seen positive results with increased engagement and concentration. Students, themselves are reporting feeling further connected to one another and building social connections that are improving their mental health and wellbeing.

Our inaugural Year 12 VCE students are off to a flying start with the first School Assessed Coursework assessments in the coming weeks. VET students are reportedly enjoying the variety of courses offered and the opportunity to experience subjects leading to their pathways.

The 2020 VCAL cohort has made a fantastic start so far. Our Intermediate students are extremely excited to run their first offsite activity, whilst the Senior group is navigating the complexities of running a student-driven activity that involves multiple entities. The start of the year sees students taking the initiative to sort work placements, contact employers and investigate their chosen industries. Students are enjoying the vast opportunities that their VET subjects are providing them with and are beginning to experience work in their chosen fields.

Year 12 Camp 2020

Following the return of year 12s from school, students on Monday the 3rd of February departed Hazel Glen college to their final school camp.  During our short stay at the PGL Camp at Campaspe Downs, Year 12 students participated in a variety of activities to help them prepare for their final year of schooling. These activities included the Flying Fox and other team-building activities such as raft building. Students who attended had the opportunity to hear a motivational speech from our guest speaker Luke Atkins, who represented Australia twice in the yearly Tough Mudder event.

A major part of the study camp was the focus on preparing students to start year 12 on the right foot. Some of the things that were highlighted during this experience were the importance of mental health and the strategies that would help us manage the stresses of VCE. We also participated in a VCE English lecture that enhanced the development of skills and techniques required for a successful year as well as being taught study tips and techniques such as how to prepare a study calendar and use a variety or revision and note taking strategies. This camp provided us with the right foundations to tackle year 12. My biggest take away would be Luke’s quote “Don’t be afraid of failure, let the fear of failure also get you over the line.” – Report by Steven Chea

 Year 9 Focus Camp

Year 9 Focus Camp was a wonderful experience for the Year 9 students to get to know each other and build positive relationships with their peers. It was a great learning opportunity for us to grow in a situation outside of our comfort zone.

We participated in various activities that tested physical and mental endurance which prompted us to build meaningful relationships in a situation other than school. One of our favourite activities was ‘Challenge Valley’ when we had to go through various team-building exercises. The best part was the mud pit where we got to swing from a rope into a pool of mud. We found the ‘tunnel’ experience challenging as it was dark and relied on good communication skills. We also participated in ‘The Amazing Race’ where we were faced with both intellectual and physical challenges.

The weather was hot but we demonstrated resilience and persevered as a team, together with our teachers and our year level. We are now more likely to try new things, take on new challenges and socialise with a wider range of people. Focus Camp was an incredibly positive and rewarding experience. We are looking forward to more experiences and opportunities in Year 9. – Report by Immogen, Angelique, Erin

Key dates

Monday 24th February: Year 12 English SAC

Friday 6th March: Curriculum day

Thursday 5th March: College Colour run

Monday 9th March: Labour day

Thursday 19th March: Year 7-12 Swimming Carnival

Thursday 26th March: Parent Teacher Interviews.

Neil Baillie

Senior School Principal

Senior School News