From the Principal

MRS NICOLA TAYLOR
PRINCIPAL

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As mentioned in the last edition of the Lion’s Roar, this term sees a commencement of a review of the PLC Armidale 2020 Strategic Direction. In support of its member schools, AIS NSW has developed Perspectives: Your school in focus, a suite of surveys designed to capture feedback and data to inform the strategic planning process of Independent Schools in NSW. 

We were honoured to be selected amongst the first group of such schools to be offered this service. In addition, AIS NSW Consultants Dr Frances Whalan and Ms Joanne Geary who have been working with the staff of PLC Armidale for the past two years, will assist in the interpretation and application of the data.   

The data collected initially through the surveys then later through convened focus group discussions, will assist us in considering ways in which we are better able to meet the needs of the whole school community. This will serve as a useful resource to draw upon when planning for continued growth and development of the College.

On Monday, families will receive an email with information regarding the online survey which will be available for completion between 17 August and 30 August. The survey explores five important domains which characterise PLC Armidale. These are: School Environment, Teaching and Learning, Student Wellbeing, Leadership and Community.  

Along with the feedback from families, separate surveys will be completed by staff, members of College Council and students from Years 5 to 12.  Participation in the survey is entirely voluntary, though the greater the response received, the more representative and valid the data becomes. Updates on the Strategic Planning process will be provided via the Lion’s Roar. 

Last week the judging of the UNESAP ‘Let’s Hang It’ art exhibition took place. PLC Armidale had an impressive seven entries selected for the finals of the judging process. Congratulations to Georgia Butler (Year 11) winner in the Senior (10-12) Section for her impressive work entitled ‘Rigor Samsa’. Congratulations also to Zoe Webb (Year 7) runner up in the Junior (7-9) Section for her portrait of ‘Cotton Tail the Rabbit’. NERAM are to be commended for their ability to create a successful ‘virtual exhibition’ featuring the submitted works and winning entries which can be accessed via this link.

Congratulations also to Chiyo Brown (Year 9) and Jennifer Sung (Year 6) who have also been selected to take part in the prestigious Australian Honours Ensemble Program to be held at the Queensland Conservatorium in October. We trust that the current travel restrictions will have lifted by then to allow all of our talented musicians the opportunity to learn and perform with others. 

This weekend, in addition to our hockey and netball teams, we have a team of 16 girls taking part in the local Rugby Union competition along with two teams participating in the Soccer Competition organised by UNE. Another strong showing of PLC Armidale in support of our local community.

Just a reminder all of our COVID-19 updates including links to government information, tips for managing anxiety, and other important FACT sheets are placed on the Current Families section of our website.

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Dates for the Diary

 EVENT  ORIGINAL EVENT DATE 
 Trial HSC Exams   10/08 to 21/08/2020
 Stage 4 Wellbeing Flourish Day  19/08/2020 
 In House Speech and Drama (Junior School)   19/08/2020
 Stage 6 (2021) Subject Information Presentation   20/08/2020
 IGSSA Athletics (TBC)  20/08 to 21/08/2020

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Senior School News 

MRS ANNA CALDWELL
HEAD OF SENIOR SCHOOL

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With this term now well underway, we are enjoying hearing about the experiences and successes of our students who have participated in various events and local sporting endeavours. Since the soccer field moved to the middle of the oval, it is fabulous to see so many girls out playing soccer and being active before school, during recess and lunch and after school too.

Our adventurous students who are keen on taking on challenges have started training for the Hawkesbury Canoe Classic and our Year 12 girls are preparing for their Trial Examinations, which will be held in weeks 4 and 5. Whilst our Year 12 students are preparing for these Trial Exams and our Year 11 students are busy writing manifestos and speeches as they nominate for Prefect and Leadership Positions. It really is all systems go!

Uniform 
Please remember that all students are to travel to and from school wearing their blazer. The track jackets are only to be worn over the top of their jumper and blazer. 

Pockets 
Year 12 students need to submit their Pocket application forms to the school office by the end of Week 7 this term, to enable them to be presented with their Pockets during their Valedictory Assembly.

Stage 4 Wellbeing Day Wednesday 19th August
Years 7 & 8 will participate in their 3rd Flourish Wellbeing Day on Wednesday 19th August. 

Students are asked to not have any peripatetic lessons on this day, so they can engage fully with the activities. 

Around the world with Stage 4: Food Technology
Semester Two, Year 7 Food Tech have been exploring Foods of the World. Students have enjoyed exploring different cuisines in the theory classes and then have applied this knowledge practically in the TTC. Today they made rice paper rolls which reflected the Japanese culture.

Year 8 Food Tech: 'This is your Life’: Adolescent Food and Nutrition. Our task this week, Year 8 Food Tech students worked collaborative in making healthy snacks. These healthy snacks consisted of hummus, beetroot dip, tzatiki, home made crackers, scones and jam, and Thai chicken balls. They shared this experienced and enjoyed the food. 

Hawkesbury Canoe Classic 2020
Training for the 2020 Classic started last weekend at Malpas Dam. Training this year is being held from 8am - 12pm on Sunday mornings. Please contact Mrs Caldwell for further information.Group Photos in Week 6Group Photos will be held in Week 6 on Tuesday 25th August. 

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Junior School News

MRS FIONA WAKE
HEAD OF JUNIOR SCHOOL

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This week has seen the girls assemble for their Semester 2 SRC badge presentations and participate in an SRC meeting coordinated by Mrs Kennedy where the girls shared wonderful ideas on how to improve the Junior School, the space they love so dearly and take pride and ownership of. They have BIG plans, it is our job to make it happen… a task I will not see fail as their passion for projects and their voices have provided for opportunity to be proactive in a time of social restriction.

 Their list is BIG, however reasonable… an upgrading of the Year 3-6 swings as they say they have grown and the swings have not allowed for this, a water fountain feature to dress up a sterile grass area, nude food days to respect the environment by reducing the burden of rubbish, an upgrade to the hen house (the feathered girls will like this), an outdoor theatre where the girls can practise their Drama skills and a outdoor Library with a selection of books that can be borrowed and enjoyed in a quiet space or with a friend. 

As always, it is you, our trusty parents who support the College time and time again in our initiatives and for this we are very thankful. I shall put pen to paper and devise a plan to see some of their wish list come to life, no doubt it will require us all to get on board.

Congratulations
Kindergarten: Lamar Marjrashi and Lydia Yuan
Year 1: Mina Moghaddar and Poppy O’Brien
Year 2: Maria Moghaddar and Annabella Wysel
Year 3: Jiya Aila and Anne Ugwumba
Year 4: Willow Gully and Elsie Spencer
Year 5: Ava Notley and Grace Robertson

Social Distancing Protocols 
Thank you for your understanding in minimising your on-campus presence during this time. It is against our nature to close out our families and it certainly takes some joy out of what we do – connecting with you. During this time however, it is our preference that Pre-K students are signed in each day upon arrival by their parent/s. At the end of day our staff will see to ensuring your daughter is collected from the front gate, escorted to you. If your Pre-K daughter is leaving early she can be collected from the classroom.

If you are collecting your daughter from the Foyer, the outside seating should be considered if waiting for the bell to sound and the students to be dismissed.  

If your daughter is attending the Homework Centre, please collect her from the front entrance to Buchan Cottage, Rosemary Richards will collect your daughter for you upon your arrival. A signing station will be set up for you to sign her out, please use the disinfected pens and place the used pen in the container provided. Please ensure pick up takes place by 5:25pm as the Centre will close at 5:30pm. If you are late, your daughter will be escorted to the Boarding House where she can be collected. 

If your daughter is feeling unwell in any way, please do not send her to school. Temperature checks upon arrival will continue. Thank you for respecting these measures put in place to ensure the safety of all in the best way possible within our context. 

Have a fabulous fortnight!

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Sport News

MR PETER LE SURF
DIRECTOR OF SPORT

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Welcome to Winter Sport at PLC Armidale!

The Winter season of sports are currently up and running and we are hoping that we can get through this season without interruption.

In order to do this we must adhere to the Covid protocols at all sporting venues. This includes:

  • Signing the attendance register or scanning the QR code at some venues
  • Following all directions regarding entering and exiting venues
  • Limiting the number of spectators at the sporting grounds

PLC Armidale has had a tremendous start to the season. We have 8 netball teams and 7 hockey teams playing in the local competitions. All but one of these teams got the season off to a great start, recording a win in the first week and some mixed results in week two.

Starting this week we will have 2 football (soccer) teams playing in the Town Competition and at least 2 Rugby 7’s teams starting in a week's time.

On the Tennis court, we have also had some great results. Last Sunday, playing in the local Armidale JDS Tournament we had:

  • Lauren Williams - Winner U16
  • Daisy Sheedy - Runner-up U14
  • Sophie Bailey - Winner U12

I would like to wish all our sporting teams every success for the remainder of the season.

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Boarding News

MRS ALISON SPENCER
HEAD OF BOARDING

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It has been lovely to see the boarders get back into a busy schedule of sport this term. There have been many sore muscles as the girls return to their games, but the physical and mental benefits are very apparent and it’s been exciting to see the girls pull together in their teams.

Boarding is in the midst of looking at alternative ways of doing things as we adjust to the new normal of COVID-19 restrictions. One of our latest inclusions is a special supper once a fortnight for each year group. This brings the girls together and is an excellent opportunity for each year group to have some fun cooking their own supper and spending time bonding together. This week we had Year 7 and Year 9 making waffles and Year 10 and 11 making banoffee pies! The girls thoroughly enjoyed making their own waffle creations, be it simple or more extravagant with ice cream, toppings and sprinkles. The banoffee pies were a little more technical, however executed with perfection! It was so great to see every girl in the year group involved in some way or another. Hot suppers on these cold winter’s nights have been a warmly welcomed treat and a much enjoyed addition to the boarding week. We are all looking forward to more delicious creations to come!

Thank you to Pollyanna and Georgie who have organised a craft group for the Year 7’s this term. They have loved sitting together and having a chat while they get creative. Some lovely keyrings with polymer clay beads are well underway.

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Pathways News

MR CHRIS SPENCER
DIRECTOR OF PATHWAYS

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Back to school is fun! This term, all of our Pathways girls choose one elective to start moving into the mainstream class experience. Some girls have chosen subjects that are challenging and different from their learning experiences in the past in order to broaden their horizons.

Wendy, who came as a shy and quiet student, picked Drama as her elective in order to build confidence. She is enjoying her drama lessons and the exercises they have to do in class and after school, and loves the interactions she has with her classmates. We invited Mrs Wysel to Hot Seat on Friday to talk through how Drama can not only be a subject for school, but also helps people grow resilience, build confidence and gain people skills. It was really inspiring to learn from Mrs Wysel's experiences as a dancer and actor and encouraging to see how drama class is already transforming Wendy after just two weeks of learning.

In another Hot Seat session, we had Camilla and Sophie share their experiences during the holidays as a homestay host and a homestay guest. It was interesting to hear the similarities and differences of a girl from a big city in China as a single child, and a girl from a regional town in Australia with three other siblings. 

With International borders yet to open, we have three new Pathways students joining the program through our Segue online course. With the help of Mr Estreich, we set up the technology to provide the classroom experience as similar as possible to if they were here with the other students. It was great to see the girls settling into a new way of learning and we look forward to having more interactions with them throughout the term.

Over the weekend, the Hilton Boarding House was filled with the delicious smell of pastry! Despite the fact that most of the girls are busy with school work, they managed to find time to make some really tasty "puffs" with limited equipment. It was also great to see them sharing the "puffs" with other boarders and staff, creating a lovely sense of community.

 

Sophie and CamillaSegue Online LearningPuffs

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Community News

PLC Armidale P & F Association News

The PLC Armidale P & F Association would like to extend a huge thank you to everyone who attended last week’s P & F meeting held via Zoom. We were very surprised by the number of people who attended and everyone agreed that even when things go back to normal, we will offer this to families. We continue to work on ways to be more inclusive and having a way that people can link into meetings remotely is one way to assist with this.

The P & F encouraging Year groups to organising catch ups over Zoom or similar platforms and look forward to hearing some feedback on the creative ways people are coming together in these challenging times.

As you can imagine, there will be some changes to events that the P & F is normally involved in for at least this term. We will keep you posted on each of these as updated information is available.

If you have any questions, please feel free to get in touch with us via the email pandf@plcarmidale.nsw.edu.au or your Liaison parent as they are also there as a point of contact for you.

Stay safe and we hope to be able to see families back at event soon.

 


Perspectives Survey

 

Perspectives: Your school in focus survey

 

Our school is using the Perspectives: Your school in focus suite of surveys developed by AISNSW to support our school improvement endeavours. The information gathered will assist in furthering the growth and development of our school community. We will use the survey results to help inform and direct future school planning and improvement strategies.

These surveys have been specifically designed to assist schools in gaining an understanding of stakeholders’ perceptions of five important areas: School Environment, Teaching and Learning, Student Wellbeing, Leadership and Community. All staff, students, parents/carers, leaders and board members will be invited to participate.

The surveys will be available from 17 August to 30 August and are conducted online, taking approximately 15 - 20 minutes to complete.

Your input and contribution are important to the success of our continuous school improvement process as we aspire to improve the learning experience for everyone at our school.

For any enquiries about the surveys please contact the College for more details.


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