Principal’s Message

It has been a very busy and successful school year seeing so many of our students continue to succeed and improve in their learning and academic achievement. Congratulations to all of our students for their efforts and contribution to their school and to their learning throughout this year.

Gymea is a school of wonderful kids, a great sense of community and involvement, of an enthusiastic and supportive staff who are always there willing to go the extra yards and support new initiatives developed by students and with whole school directions. A parent body with a growing drive for involvement in the school and their children’s learning. A community that provides many ways for the school to be a part of what they do and help us do what we do. 2016 has been a successful year for Gymea as we continue to see improvements and have some great stories of achievement in learning, sport, performing arts and in the power of student voice, active citizenship and leadership.

Through much planning and discussions, the work that our teachers have made this year are bringing about improvements to better support our students. Allow me to highlight just a few as they are worth celebrating and indicate the dedication and commitment our staff are making towards their school and our students.

This year we introduced a literacy criteria for assessments that enables all teachers to help hone those key aspects of writing that is required by all courses. The successful implementation of this strategy saw a small team of teachers define rubrics and support to enable all our teachers to engage in this strategy. They are developing a consistent way across the curriculum to provide quality feedback and guidance to students with writing in their course areas. For our students, writing is a necessary skill in life and a critical one for success at the time of their Higher School Certificate.

Our English faculty have embarked on a courageous journey in reprogramming their approach to teaching of English from years 7 to 12. With new syllabuses in English on the horizon, the timing is right and the work and time that English staff have committed this year has been massive but will see a stronger continuum of skills being taught from years 7 to 12. The school’s strategic direction on writing is very obvious within this and will give teachers, students and parents regular and informed advice on not only overall English performance but growth and areas for improvement with writing.

Staff-Working2 STaff-Working

In 2015 we conducted a curriculum evaluation that identified directions with our Accelerated Technology Program and with our Academic Selective Classes. Part of those future directions was to develop deeper understanding of gifted education with our teachers to help them with the work they do in those classes in differentiating learning. This year, 3 staff undertook a mini Certificate of Gifted Education at the University of New South Wales and delivered the equivalency through a school based professional learning program throughout the year. The deeper understanding of gifted and talented education provides our teachers with greater expertise to understand the needs of our students and the curriculum designs they can utilize.

Our HSC Success Program deepened the level of support this year that provided increased workshops for our year 12 students that focused on wellbeing, academic guidance, study skills through to university and business guidance for post school. This year our staff have developed a collaborative approach to enhancing HSC success through professional learning focused on research and strategies that assist in student performance and are working together, sharing ideas with successes across faculties that better engage and support students with their HSC learning. Our Higher School Certificate results have been on a constant rise over the last four years with a 25% increase of students performing in the top bands that qualify for university entrance. The 2016 Higher School Certificate results provided many great stories in course and with individual student achievements.

Students-in-Playground Prefetcs

Our student leadership teams are a fantastic example of student voice in the school as they undertook many initiatives to raise awareness and at times funds for organisations but more so, to capture the involvement of so many students and teachers across the school. Our prefects, environment group, media teams, sound crews, connect2learn student teams and the Student Leadership Assembly are to name a few.

Our connect2learn program continues to grow with student use of electronic devices blended into classrooms particularly in the junior years. We live a digital age that will continue to develop and we believe that we are continuing to move in the right directions with the use of contemporary digital devices to support student learning. At Gymea, lessons are not dominated by the technology, the technology is used to enhance learning experiences. We cannot replace pen and paper and have no desire to do so but we are ensuring our current generation of young learners have the ability to collaborate, communicate and create in a way that without digital technologies, we have been unable to do before. An introduction this year has been the school app, MyGymea that provides students with an app to guide their learning and organisation. The app is individualised with logins for each student and its introduction this year has been very successful. Our students have identified things they would like added to the app and next year we will see more functionality with this fantastic Gymea tool.

C2L-Kids

Our Design2learn project continues as we transform our learning spaces into much more vibrant and conducive places to teach and learn. We continue to gain attention from schools, universities and organisations because of the gains we have made. This year the University Of Wollongong conducted a research project looking at the ways modern rooms are used as compared to the traditional classrooms of the past. Their research is to help inform the Department of Education plan for its upgrade of high schools just like ours. The experiences and gains we have made in classrooms for our students over the last 4 years is now assisting directions for schools across the state.

Classrooms-1

A significant undertaking with the Design2Learn project over the last 2 years has been in the creation of our technology centre. This centre not only provides dual platform of Macintosh and PC computers for classes across the school but is designed so that it also provides the ability for students to increasingly collaborate with their projects and learning, undertake a variety of activities that move beyond the computer screen and allow for virtual modelling of networks. The centre is near completion and most of it is currently operational. It will be without a doubt the best computing facility found in any Department high school in NSW. This has been a real school community project, involving the contribution of staff and many students. Our thanks to the P&C for their support in this project including the purchase of a high quality 3D printer that our staff and students were equally excited about.

TechCentre-6 TechCentre-2

TechCentre3 Head-Start

Our performing Arts kicked started the year with the Create night where music, drama and dance have come together to exhibit and celebrate their talents. Our dance groups have performed so well in local, regional and state events as well as a number of school performances finishing the year off with a well choreographed performance night entitled ‘Out of the Box’. Drama has made a resurgence in student choice in electives next year and this year the year 10 drama elective class presented a theatre production “Living with Lady McBeth”. Our music students have enjoyed the many opportunities to perform at school and within our community at events such as the Kareela Primary school fair and the Gymea Fair. This year’s curriculum review looked at ways to further support music from improving facilities and resources through furthering opportunities to inspire student passion and involvement in music.

Dance

This year we ran another successful year of our Head Start to High School program, our unique after school transition program that helps students and parents with a supportive transition into high school. The program was attended by nearly all of our incoming families and allowed our students to experience learning at high school across all key learning areas and our parents with the opportunity to understand our school, what classrooms of 2017 will look like and begin the important partnership with the school. We welcome our incoming Year 7 students for 2017 and their families and trust that the program has them feel comfortable and informed so as to make a positive start with high school.

These are just some of the fantastic programs running at Gymea this year with many more to share. These programs are possible because of the enthusiasm of our kids and the connection they have with their school. It is the excitement we see in our students, in getting involved and growing from these experiences that makes it so worthwhile to teachers who dedicate so much energy and time to see our students enjoy and connect. We are truly very lucky in this school to have such wonderful teachers who go beyond their work in the classroom to support our students.

The opportunities at school, our growing reputation and the successes would not have occurred without the commitment of our teachers and support staff. My thanks to all of them for their personal commitment towards the programs that continue to evolve.

Special thanks to my executive team of Head Teachers and my deputy principals Angela Kay and Victoria Koukoutaris and their roles as relieving principal leading our school during my time on leave. Their leadership in support of student programs ensures that we will continue to be a school in the pursuit of meeting the needs of our current 21st century learners.

To our students, who continually make us proud and excite us with talents, interests and drive that they bring to their learning and to the activities that they have led across the school. Congratulations to all of our students on their achievements this year and taking ownership of their school.

A huge thank you to our parents and families, for your support and partnership in the education of your children. A partnership that we will continue to build and proudly celebrate together.

I wish each and every one of you a very happy, safe and restful holiday and look forward to an exciting and successful 2017.

Peter Marsh

Principal

News
Upcoming Events

May 2017

Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1
  • Camp - Morisset Year 9
  • Half Yearly Exams Year 11
  • Half Yearly Exams Year 11
  • History 8G Task 2:Source Based in-class task Year 8
  • History 8Y Task 2: Source Based in-class task Year 8
2
  • Camp - Morisset Year 9
  • Half Yearly Exams Year 11
  • Half Yearly Exams Year 11
  • Kirrawee Primary School Cross Country Yr 9PASS
  • Science - Task 2 - Skills Task Year 9
  • Science - Task 2 - Skills Task Year 9
3
  • Camp - Morisset Year 9
  • Half Yearly Exams Year 11
  • Half Yearly Exams Year 11
  • Forensic Archaeology - Task 2 - JFK Research Essay Year 10
  • Forensic Archaeology - Task 2 - JFK Research Essay Year 10
  • Open Boys Cricket at Wooloware High School
4
  • Half Yearly Exams Year 11
  • Half Yearly Exams Year 11
  • Model UN Round 1 Year 9
  • Debating
5
  • Half Yearly Exams Year 11
  • Half Yearly Exams Year 11
  • Food Technology- 9FT2 Task 1: Food for Special Occasions Practical Task and Portfolio Year 9
  • Technology-8THE4, 8THE5, 8THE6 Task 3: Designers Research Task Year 8
6
7
8
  • 8ART.2/8ART.4/8ART.6 Visual Arts Task 3:Body of Work (Sculpture)
  • Geography 8M Task 2:Class Task (Skills) Year 8
  • Geography 8E Task 2:Class Task (Skills) Year 8
  • PDHPE 7a Task 3: Movement Skills Year 7
  • 9 PASS - Task 1:Body Systems Examination Year 9
  • PDHPE 8e Task 2: Sports Benefits Brochure Year 8
  • PDHPE 7e Task 3: Movement Skills Year 7
  • Industrial Technology - Timber - 9ITW1 Task 2: Forest to Home - Practical Project Year 9
  • Industrial Technology - Timber - 9ITW2 Task 2: Forest to Home - Practical Project Year 9
  • Industrial Technology - Metal Task 2: Research Task Year 9
  • Industrial Technology - Metal Task 3: Exam Year 9
  • University of Sydney School Visit Year 12
  • Geography Fieldwork - The Royal National Park Year 11
  • Geography Fieldwork - Royal National Park Year 11
  • 15 Boys Soccer
9
  • NAPLAN Year 7 & 9
  • 8ART.2/8ART.4/8ART.6 Visual Arts Task 3:Body of Work (Sculpture)
  • NAPLAN Year 7 & 9
  • Dance Task 3: Task 3 Year 12
  • PDHPE 7g Task 3: Movement Skills Year 7
  • Industrial Technology - Metal Task 2: The Shovel - Practical Project and Folio Year 10
  • Industrial Technology - Metal Task 2: The Shovel - Practical Project and Folio Year 10
  • Food Technology - 9FT1 Task 1: Food for Special Occasions Practical Task and Portfolio Year 9
  • Open Boys Soccer vs Engadine
  • P&C Meeting Parents
10
  • NAPLAN Year 7 & 9
  • 9ART.1 Visual Arts Task 3:Body of Work
  • 8ART.2/8ART.4/8ART.6 Visual Arts Task 3:Body of Work (Sculpture)
  • History 10G/10Y Task 2:Source Based in-class task Year 10
  • NAPLAN Year 7 & 9
  • 9 PASS - Task 1:Body Systems Examination Year 9
  • Forensic Archaeology - Task 2 - Research Presentation Year 9
  • Food Technology-9FT3 Task 1: Food for Special Occasions Practical Task and Portfolio Year 9
  • Drama Rehearsals Year 10
11
  • NAPLAN Year 7 & 9
  • 8ART.2/8ART.4/8ART.6 Visual Arts Task 3:Body of Work (Sculpture)
  • NAPLAN Year 7 & 9
  • UTS School Visit Year 12
12
  • NAPLAN Catchup
  • 8ART.2/8ART.4/8ART.6 Visual Arts Task 3:Body of Work (Sculpture)
  • History 9M/9E/9A Task 2:Source Based in-class Task Year 9
  • NAPLAN Catchup
  • PDHPE 7m Task 3: Movement Skills Year 7
  • Construction and Landscaping Task 2: Oral Presentation Year 12
  • Design and Technology - 11DAT1 Task 2: Project Proposal; Management; Working Drawings & Scale Model Year 11
  • University of Wollongong School Visit Year 12
  • AIME Outreach Program (Yrs 9 & 10)
13
14
15
  • Zone Cross Country - Heathcote High School
  • Zone Cross Country - Heathcote High School
  • Geography 7G Task 2 - Class Task (Skills) Year 7
  • Geography 7Y Task 2 - Class Task (Skills) Year 7
  • Languages Task 1: Speaking Task 8E Year 8
  • PDHPE 8m Task 2: Sports Benefits Brochure Year 8
  • PDHPE 10g Task 3: Practical Task Year 10
  • Hospitality Cluster E - Practical Assessment Year 12
16
  • PDM Task 2 - Semester 1 Examination Year 10
  • History 7M Task 2 - Research Assignment - History Mystery Year 7
  • History 7E/7A Task 2 - Research Assignment - History Mystery Year 7
  • Languages Task 1: Speaking Task 8Y Year 8
  • Languages Task 1: Speaking Task 8M Year 8
  • PDHPE 9g Task 2: Self and Relationships Task Year 9
  • PDHPE 9m Task 2: Self and Relationships Task Year 9
  • PDHPE 9e Task 2: Self and Relationships Task Year 9
  • PDHPE 9y Task 3: Movement and Composition Task Year 9
  • PDHPE 10m Task 3: Practical Task Year 10
  • PDHPE 8g Task 3: Locomotion Test Year 8
  • Industrial Technology - Metal Task 3: Exam Year 10
  • Industrial Technology - Metal Task 3: Exam Year 10
  • Science - Task 2 - Zoo Assignment Year 7
  • Science - Task 2 - Zoo Assignment Year 7
  • Science - Task 2 - Zoo Assignment Year 7
  • 10FT1 Food Technology Half Yearly Exam Year 10
  • 10FT2 Food Technology Half Yearly Exam
17
  • English Task 2: Speaking Task 8G Year 8
  • Languages Task 1: Speaking Task 8G Year 8
  • PDHPE 8y Task 2: Sports Benefits Brochure Year 8
  • PDHPE 8e Task 3: Locomotion Test Year 8
  • PDHPE 9g Task 3: Movement and Composition Task Year 9
  • Technology-7THE1, 7THE2, 7THE3 Task 2: Inspired by Me- Porject and Portfolio Year 7
  • Technology - 7TIA4, 7TIA5, 7TIA6, 7TIA7 Task 2: Souvenir Shop - Project and Portfolio Year 7
  • Food Technology- 9FT2 Task 2: Half Year Exam Units 1 & 2 Year 9
  • Food Technology-9FT3 Task 2: Half Year Exam Units 1 & 2 Year 9
  • IST Task 2 - Research Task Year 10
  • 10FT3 Food Technology Half Yearly Exam
  • UNSW Engineering High School Day Year 12
18
  • PASS 10pass2 Task 1: Examination Year 10
  • PDHPE 8y Task 3: Locomotion Test Year 8
  • PASS 10pass1 Task 1: Examination Year 10
  • PDHPE 8g Task 2: Sports Benefits Brochure Year 8
  • PDHPE 7y Task 3: Movement Skills Year 7
  • Food Technology-10FT1 Task 2: Half Year Exam Units 1 & 2 Year 10
  • Hospitality Cluster E - Practical Assessment Year 12
19
  • 10ART.1 Visual Arts Task 2:Critical/Historical Study
  • 10ART.1 Visual Arts Task 3: Body of Work
  • English Extension 1 Task 1 Creative Year 11
  • PDHPE 10y Task 3: Practical Task Year 10
  • PDHPE 7e Task 2: Healthy Lifestyles Brochure Year 7
  • PDHPE 7a Task 2: Healthy Lifestyles Brochure Year 7
  • Technology-8THE4, 8THE5, 8THE6 Task 2: Carnivale- Project and Portfolio Year 8
  • Technology-8TIA1, 8TIA2, 8TIA3 Task 2: Toy Story- Project and Portfolio Year 8
  • Society and Culture Task 1 Personal Interest Project PART B: Progress Report Year 12
  • Food Technology - 9FT1 Task 2: Half Year Exam Units 1 & 2 Year 9
  • Year 10 History/Geography Exam
  • French Exam Year 8
  • French Exam Year 7
20
21
22
  • Semester 1 Exams Junior
  • Semester 1 Exams Junior
  • PDHPE 8m Task 3: Locomotion Test Year 8
  • Child Studies Task 2: Menu-Baby Showers Year 9
  • Industrial Technology - Timber 9ITW1 Task 3: Half Year Exam Year 9
  • PDHPE 10y Task 3: In Class Task Year 10
  • UNSW School Visit Year 12
  • Year 10 English Exam
  • Science Exam Year 7
  • English Exam Year 8
23
  • Semester 1 Exams Junior
  • Accelerated Computing Task 2 Design Project Year 8
  • Semester 1 Exams Junior
  • PDHPE 10m Task 3: In Class Task Year 10
  • PDHPE 9a Task 2: Self and Relationships Task Year 9
  • Digital Technologies Competition Year 7
  • Digital Technologies Competition Year 8
  • Biology - Task 3 - Practical Task Part A Year 12
  • Biology - Task 3 - Practical Task Part A Year 12
  • Hospitality Cluster E - Practical Assessment Year 12
  • History/Geography Exam Year 9
  • Science Exam Year 10
  • History/Geography Exam Year 8
24
  • Semester 1 Exams Junior
  • Semester 1 Exams Junior
  • PDHPE 9m Task 3: Movement and Composition Task Year 9
  • PDHPE 10e Task 3: Practical Task Year 10
  • PDHPE 10g Task 3: In Class Task Year 10
  • Sydney Writers Festival Student Day Excursion Year 11
  • Maths Exam Year 9
  • English Exam Year 7
25
  • Semester 1 Exams Junior
  • Semester 1 Exams Junior
  • PDHPE 7y Task 2: Healthy Lifestyles Brochure Year 7
  • PDHPE 9e Task 3: Movement and Composition Task Year 9
  • PDHPE 9a Task 3: Movement and Composition Task Year 9
  • Industrial Technology - Timber - 9ITW2 Task 3: Half Year Exam Year 9
  • PDHPE 9y Task 2: Self and Relationships Task Year 9
  • Drama Task 3: Elements of Production Year 11
  • Hospitality Cluster E - Practical Assessment Year 12
  • Maths Exam Year 8
  • Science Exam Year 9
  • Maths Exam Year 10
  • 15 Boys Soccer vs Georges River College
26
  • Semester 1 Exams Junior
  • Music Task 3: Part B - Composition Year 12
  • Semester 1 Exams Junior
  • PDHPE 7g Task 2: Healthy Lifestyles Brochure Year 7
  • Biology - Task 3 - Practical Task Part B Year 12
  • Biology - Task 3 - Practical Task Part B Year 12
  • History/Geography Exam Year 7
  • Science Exam Year 8
  • English Exam Year 9
  • Technology - Carnivale Task Year 8
  • Commemoration Service for Servicemen and Servicewomen Students
27
  • Music Performances at Oyster Bay Arts & Craft Festival
28
29
  • PDM Task 3 - Portfolio 1-4 Year 9
  • PDHPE 10e Task 3: In Class Task Year 10
  • English - Shakespeare (Hall Booking)
  • Maths Exam Year 7
  • Shakespeare Interactive Incursion Year 9
  • Google School Visit Yrs 9/10
30
  • PDHPE 7m Task 2: Healthy Lifestyles Brochure Year 7
  • 7MuG Music - Task 1 Class Test
  • Year 12 HSC Workshops Day Year 12
31
  • Mathematics Extension 2 Task 2:In Class Test Year 12
  • Technology-7THE1, 7THE2, 7THE3 Task 3: Half Year Exam Year 7
  • Technology - 7TIA4, 7TIA5, 7TIA6, 7TIA7 Task 3: Half Yearly Exam Year 7
  • IDT Task 4 - Cluster F Year 12
  • 9Mu Music - Task 3 Listening & Composition Year 9
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