Melton Mail - Issue 7
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Welcome to the 2017 School Year
2017 has got off to a flying start at Melton Secondary College with students and staff returning to school with energy and enthusiasm. Greeting students over the first week, many have told me that the holidays were nice, but it is really good to be back, surely a great sign of how much our students want to learn and how strongly they feel connected to their school.
It is great to see our students settling quickly into school routines and following the expectations we share for successful learning. Our Year 7 students have done especially well and look enthusiastic and well prepared for their first year as secondary school students. It was terrific to see so many Year 7 parents at the first day assembly. Young people and their studies benefit enormously from parents and carers taking a regular and caring interest in their progress. There will be another chance for parents and carers to join in at the Year 7 Family BBQ. This will be an opportunity to meet Home Group teachers and other key staff and if you have a Year 7 child starting this year, I really encourage you to attend. The Year 7 Family BBQ will be held at the College from 4.45 – 6.30 pm on Thursday 23 February.
College Five STARR Values
One of the main reasons why students have settled so well into their program this year has been our strong emphasis on the College Five STARR Values. At the end of last year the Student Voice and Leadership Team worked with the College Leadership Team to develop a complimentary set of Values in Action that show clearly how each of our values supports student learning. Having developed the Values in Action together, students and staff are building greater consistency in following behaviors that will support learning.
Last year Melton Secondary College began its School Review by conducting an inquiry into how we can become a flourishing school community. The aim of the review is to help us to identify the ways that we can make our school community more able to achieve the vision of Academic Excellence for every student. At the end of Term One the review team will spend four days at the college talking to students, parents and staff. They will then write up a report which will form the basis for a new School Strategic Plan. Further details about the School Review days will be published once they are finalised.
Every student at Melton Secondary College is a star in his or her own way and every student is capable of achieving outstanding things. Some young people have had challenges that seem insurmountable and manage to turn these into success. One of our wonderful Year 12 students, Ben Akok has had plenty of challenges and is a wonderful example of how young people can struggle with adversity and grow stronger. Last week Ben was the subject of a news story on ABC TV’s 7.30 Report. As parents and teachers, there are many times when we feel proud in what students can achieve. But Ben Akok’s story should make us all proud not just for his individual achievements but for the great story it tells about our school and our community. Students certainly appreciated this at our first whole school assembly this week when, after seeing the Ben's 7.30 Report story they responded with huge and hearty applause.
Since the story was broadcast, I have received lots of wonderfully positive comments and emails. Below are just some of them:
"I just wanted to email and congratulate you on the story on 7:30 about your student, Benjamin. It was a beautiful story about a clearly remarkable young man. He couldn't be the way he was without parents (or a parent) who instill in him a strong belief in the value of education, so his parent/s are to be really commended on their excellent job...There's a lot of depressing, upsetting and anger-inducing news in the media at the moment (as a Muslim, I feel it acutely!) and the story about Benjamin was a lovely antidote. You should all be so proud of the story, and how it reflects on Benjamin, his family, and your school. Keep up the great work, and I wish Benjamin every success. I can't wait to see what lies in his future! "
"I am not sure if I am contacting the correct people, however after watching the 7:30 tonight on the ABC I felt I must contact you.
As a 75 year old Australian male I was incredibly moved by the story of Benjamin. What an inspiration to all young Australian people Benjamin is, adapting to a new country, working incrediblely hard with his medical problems, to achieve academic levels and respect of his fellow students is an inspiration to all students, and in particular to youths from the Sudan.
Please pass on to Benjamin my respect for his efforts, and I wish him every success in his new country, an inspiration for all young people that wish to succeed"
"Dear Principal, teachers and students
I was really encouraged and uplifted by the story on 7.30 Report on your election of Benjamin Akok as school captain.
What a fine young man … and what a great school you have created, with the student body valuing, as they obviously do, the qualities Benjamin represents.
We need more schools like yours.
Well done … and thanks for a good news story!"
If you have not seen Ben Akok’s 7.30 Report story you can see it by following this link: http://www.abc.net.au/7.30/content/2017/s4614153.htm
Work Experience - Year 10 2017
All Year 10 students in 2017 will be completing work experience for 1 week in Term 3:
(28 August – 1 September).
Work experience is the short term placement of secondary school students with employers to provide insights into the industry and the workplace in which they are located. It provides students with the valuable opportunity to:
- develop employability skills
- explore possible career options
- understand employer expectations, and
- increase their self-understanding, maturity, independence and self-confidence.
While undertaking work experience, students will observe different aspects of work within their chosen industry and may assist with tasks allocated by their supervisor, but should not undertake activities which require extensive training or expertise.
Their employer is also asked to provide feedback on the student’s performance while at the workplace.
Further details regarding the Work Experience program will be provided at a Parent Information Night to be held on 28th February, 2017 (5.30pm – 6.30pm).
If you can support your student with a work experience opportunity with family or friends, please provide the details to Mrs Galea in the Careers Room on 9743 3322.
Outdoor Education Sailing Excursion to Geelong Eastern Beach
On the 12th and 13th of May the VCE Outdoor Education class ventured to Geelong Eastern Beach to participate in 2 days of sailing with the Victorian Sailing School. Due to the weather conditions the students were challenged to say the least. They braved some tough winds to learn some new and challenging skills, and all came out winners.
On day one we went out in 35-knot winds in 2 larger sailing boats (Dolphins), with assistance from 2 experienced sailors. At 35 knots, these sorts of winds require significant knowledge and skills with working the boat and reading the weather conditions, so it made sense to go out with the instructors in larger, safer boats. We all came home that day dry and happy to go out for day 2.
Day 2 brought with it lighter, 25 knot winds and smaller sailing boats (Envy 4.3 Dinghies). This time the students were left to their own devise to manage the smaller 3-crew boats with guidance from the 2 instructors in their neighbouring speedboats. The students did me proud to go out in these winds and quickly, developed skills necessary to make turns and navigate their boat through a course. We lasted the session with only one boat going for a swim. The students session with only one boat going for a swim. The students came in with smiles on their faces, some more wet than others.
This Outdoor Education class had fun, participating in a thrilling activity, designed to develop their skills and confidence in an outdoor activity thereby improving their relationship and bond with the outdoors. I believe all students walked away from these two days with a strong sense of achievement and learnt with perseverance new skills can be developed where most would not have these opportunities.
A great class, a great excursion in great conditions!
Head of VET Sport and Recreation
INDIGENOUS = SUCCESS
Thursday 19th May marked the first AIME session at Federation University for our Indigenous students. 12 current students in years 9, 10 and 11 joined Mr Reynolds, ex-student and college vice captain Alyssa-Kate Hanson and I to participate in discussion and activities based on Indigenous culture, identity and goal setting. The students enthusiastically contributed their ideas and shared personal insight to what it meant to be Indigenous. It was a fantastic introductory session for the commencement of the program and set a warm welcome for following sessions. The AIME mentors and coordinators were extremely encouraging and supporting and will be attending our Koori Homework Club at the college each Thursday afternoon from 3:15pm to maintain their rapport and support for our students.
The Wellbeing Team would like to congratulate Tyson and Jandamara Atkinson and Amielia Wall for being recognized for their outstanding contributions to culture!
After one AIME (Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience) excursion to RMIT, Tyson was selected to be a Victorian representative at the Sydney GAME ON project where we worked collaboratively to design a smart phone application. His story has been documented and will be aired on Saturday 30th April at 9:00am and Tuesday 3rd May at 8:30pm on ABC3.
Jandamara has also been selected as MSC’s AIME Ambassador and will be working with AIME mentors to further develop his leadership skills for VCE and promoting the AIME program to our junior students at MSC. Jandamara has also been nominated for a YAC grant with Melton City Council and so we wish him luck for being a winning recipient!
After participating at an AIME excursion, Amielia’s artistic flare was soon noticed and she was selected to be flown to Sydney for a COLLABORTAION project where Amielia was able to contribute ideas for artwork to be printed onto the infamous AIME hoodies.
CONGRATULATIONS to Tyson, Jandamara and Ameilia!
StartUP: TopArts and Ai Wei Wei – Andy Warhol
Year 12 Studio Arts excursion
Beginning our day by taking a stroll down one of the city’s ‘hidden’ laneways; students were exposed to an explosion of street art graffiti styles and concepts in the ever-changing alternative art space of Hosier Lane.
Crossing the road to the NGV Australia, students were escorted to a lecture theatre where they were given a private insight into the themes and ideas, working methods, materials, techniques and sources of inspiration of a range of exhibiting artists who completed their VCE studies last year and were selected to take part in the StArt Up: Top Arts 2016 exhibition. Prior to viewing the exhibition, students had the opportunity to look closely and gain inspiration from the outstanding folios developed by the exhibiting students, giving the Year 12 an insight into the quality and quantity of work required by students undertaking Studio Arts to produce a cohesive folio of finished artworks.
The last stop on our jam-packed itinerary was the NGV International’s summer blockbuster show Andy Warhol | Ai Weiwei. The exhibition showcased more than 300 works by the renowned artists in a variety of art forms including painting, printmaking, sculpture, film and photography. Highlights for this exhibition included the opportunity to view Warhol’s famous ‘Campbell Soup Can’ series in person, as well as the chance to be immersed within Ai’s ‘Bird and Caonima’ balloon installation interacting with the floating red and gold metallic balloons. The excursion has left students feeling inspired and ready for the hard work ahead of them this term!