From the Principal

MRS NICOLA TAYLOR
PRINCIPAL

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Thank you to those families who were able to join us either in person or remotely for the 2021 Whole School Information Evening last night. In the space of twelve months, we have created a means for allowing our families to be connected with events at the College either in person or via technology which we want to keep building on. I trust the information presented during both Sessions was helpful and relevant. I look forward to providing regular updates on the Strategic Planning process as the year progresses.

Events of this week remind us that our children are growing up in a complex and challenging world. Arrogance, pride, entitlement and disregard for the dignity of others has been highlighted in events and press reports at both a national and local level.

Our own school was impacted. When the CEO of Facebook did not like a decision made by the Government of Australia, his response was to order sites to be shut down, wiping out with a keystroke the content, communication and connection of those who joined Facebook in trust and good faith. Health departments, charities and the PLC Armidale page amongst others were rendered inoperable. After considerable effort and agitation, our page was restored accompanied by an apology from Facebook. 

I was reminded of an article published in 2019 by the New York Times entitled “It’s Time to Break Up Facebook” by the social media platform’s co-founder Chris Hughes. The article provides insight into a strategy of unchecked personal power, influence and domination. 

As we were wrestling to have our news, our stories and our content returned, a report broke of a petition which had gone viral through social media. One girl, a past student of a reputable Sydney School, reflected on her education and found it too little too late to provide detail and instruction around consent in relationships.

Sydney Morning Herald journalist Natassia Crysanthos, a past PLC Sydney student, wrote in last weekend’s paper about the issue of consent amongst high school students in Sydney generating much comment about how pervasive the problem is.  However, the issue is not restricted to location or type of school, with B&S balls and ‘gathos’ creating situations regionally where girls may be subject to violation where silence was taken as consent.

Our girls are growing up in a hyper-sexualised culture with alarming statistics on children’s exposure to pornography and the effect this has, largely on boys, in ‘normalising’ the expectations they may have of girl. The constant exposure to explicit images, language and sexual themes through film, music and social media, dulls the awareness of the damaging effect this exposure has on developing minds, bodies and souls.

As author and educator Dannielle Miller who spoke at PLC Armidale several years ago remarks “We can’t lock our girls in towers but we can educate them and give them the skills to critique culture.” The education Dannielle speaks of is not restricted to the classroom and is most effective when the home and school would be in partnership. 

At PLC Armidale, respect is one of our core values. Deepening an understanding of respectful relationships is a focus through pastoral care and Christian Studies.  Sex education is not restricted to the mandatory components of the Science or PDHPE curriculum. In the critical middle adolescent development years, rich discussion takes place in the Christian Studies classroom and beyond, as girls are encouraged to ask questions and explore love and relationships. Our Christian faith framework provides a context for teaching the girls about God’s design for sex along with the dignity and worth of womanhood. 

Our all-girls context provides a safe and supportive environment for the girls to be themselves, to be nurtured and educated in different ways and through various means which are age and stage related. The girls can ask questions and seek responses which satisfy, and they can be part of a school culture which values and celebrates the contribution of girls and women academically through leadership, sport and the creative arts. 

The PLCAdvantage. 

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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  EVENT DATE 
 Boarders' Weekend  26/02 to 1/03/2021
 Inverell Show
 27/02/2021
 IPSHA Swimming Carnival  02/03/2021
 'Wicked' - School Musical Information Evening  03/03/2021
 Quota International Womens Breakfast  05/03/2021
 Armidale Show  06/03/2021
 Walcha Show  13/03/2021

 

Scholarship Exam  Community Open Day

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For more information or to find out how to apply for a PLC Armidale Scholarship, please email enrolments@plcarmidale.nsw.edu.au


Senior School News 

MR MITCHELL CLENDINNING
HEAD OF SENIOR SCHOOL

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It seems impossible that we are halfway through Term 1. I hope your daughter is feeling settled into her academic classes, pastoral care group and co-curricular activities. 
As a first-time attendee of the Guyra Show last weekend, I certainly am starting to feel like a regional citizen again. 

I have been particularly impressed with the way Year 7, our boarders and new students have embraced many aspects of the life of the college. There is, and always has been, a strong correlation between engagement with co-curricular activities, academic achievement and wellbeing. There are new activities starting up most weeks and I encourage you to have a discussion with your daughter about trying something new, whether in the domain of creative arts, music or sport.

Assessment Tasks

It is about this time of the term that assessment task notifications are being issued, and we are encouraging the girls to plan ahead, develop a schedule with checklists and to seek help when they are feeling unsure. All notifications can be accessed through Canvas and provide guidance to students in terms of what is required and how to prepare for them. It can be tempting for students to think that only assessments ‘matter’ or ‘count’, when in fact it is every lesson that builds deeper knowledge and skills. In that way, especially in Years 7-11, assessment tasks should be considered as opportunities to receive individualised feedback in order to grow.

Week 9 – Camp Week

Please note the following camps and dates that are coming up in Week 9.

- Year 7/8 to Dubbo: 23 – 25 March
- Year 9 to Sydney: 22 – 26 March
- Year 10 to Canberra: 23 – 26 March
- Year 11 to Coffs Harbour: 23 – 26 March
- Year 12 Mock Exams: 23 – 26 March

More detailed information about each camp will be sent to parents shortly. 

Who to Contact? Communication Channels in the Senior School

It was wonderful to see a number of parents at the Whole School Information Evening (even if only virtually). In case you missed clarification on the communication process in Senior School, please note the protocol below:

Parents should contact the Senior School via Senior School reception phone or an email to hoss@plcarmidale.nsw.edu.au
From there, enquiries will be directed to the following people:

- If the enquiry relates to a class/subject specific issue, it is forwarded to Mrs Kate Clynch (Humanities) or Mr Jonathon Shumack (STEAM).

- If it is a Pastoral Care enquiry, it is forwarded to the Year Patron and Year Specialist for each Year Group.

- If it is an enquiry regarding Co-Curricular, it is forwarded to Mr Peter Le Surf for Sport, Mr Matthew Minter for Music or Mrs Jo Wysel for Drama/Dance.

- If it is regarding a Senior School policy of a serious nature or a complaint it goes to the Head of Senior School in the first instance.

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Junior School News

MRS FIONA WAKE
HEAD OF JUNIOR SCHOOL

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The girls are setting personal and academic goals, interacting with familiar peers positively and exploring new content and embracing the challenges this presents. Progressive Achievement Testing (PAT) has been administered, testing the students’ knowledge, skills and understanding in Mathematics, Reading, Spelling and Vocabulary. The results are a snapshot of where students are sitting at this point in their learning journey and this assessment is a valuable tool to inform our teaching and establish individual learning needs. 

Our five feathered friends are laying eggs, embracing the smorgasboard of fruit scraps and grain they are dealt each day and becoming a lot more friendly as they are becoming more familiar with our faces. Please remember to check out the Global Trolley of goods grown by our little Pre-K students and the eggs that accompany these each day.

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Congratulations to the girls who competed in the recent PSSA swimming carnival. The girls showed wonderful sportsmanship, team spirit and determination in the pool, establishing themselves as swimmers outside of our PLC Armidale Community. The team will head to Sydney to compete in the IPSHA carnival and we wish them all the best and look forward to hearing their results.

The importance of sport and team should never be understated. After hearing of the success of our swimming team, I did my own research on the benefits of sport and teamwork on academic performance. I will note a few important findings from many sources including Childfund Australia 2018;

- Research shows that participation in light to moderate physical activity – especially in the morning – can significantly and positively impact a student’s ability to access knowledge and experience, and apply organisational, inhibitory and memory skills.

- Team-based sports can be particularly beneficial in overcoming divides as they instil a shared sense of identity, fellowship and purpose between participants. 

- Sport and physical activity in schools can produce gender diverse role models that empower young women and girls who continue to be under-represented in school sports and physical education. 

- Integrating sport in education can also help to reduce levels of anxiety, stress and depression. Physically active students commonly have higher levels of confidence, self-esteem and self-worth.      

 

 

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Sport News

MR PETER LE SURF
DIRECTOR OF SPORT

sport lrSummer sports are heading towards finals and we are getting organised for the winter sports season with sign-up sheets starting to go on the board and more information coming out in the following weeks.

In the PLC Armidale Futsal competition on Tuesday and Wednesday night’s, PLC 1 secured a win to take them to the top of the points table. They played PLC 2 who came out strongly and scored 2 quick goals to lead by 2-0 at half time. In the second half, PLC 1 displayed some accurate passing and managed to win 6-2. They have been sharing top spot with ASC however ASC could only manage a draw.
PLC 2 and PLC 3 are sitting in the middle of the tables at present. Well done girls.

Our touch football girls continue to do well in the local competition. They had some tough competition against the Armidale representative side, however our girls played a great game and were only narrowly defeated in the last few minutes of the game.

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PLC Armidale will have teams travelling to Sydney in coming weeks to compete in the IGSSA Swimming Carnival and the Tildesley Tennis Competition.

I would like to wish all our travelling players the best of luck and safe travels.

Junior School Sport

In Junior School, we are starting to call for nominations for winter sports.

In 2021 we will have netball, hockey, Miniroos soccer and basketball on offer to the junior school girls. Sign-up sheets have been placed on the noticeboards and more information will be coming out in coming weeks.

Our youngest indoor hockey players are showing constant improvement each week. The future is looking very bright for hockey in years to come.

Our PLC Armidale representative Junior School swim team will be travelling to Sydney for the IPSHA swimming carnival soon. I would like to wish all our young swimmers the very best for this carnival.

In keeping with our Whole School approach to co-curricular, as Director of Sport, I will be looking after all sports in the Junior School, as well as Senior School for 2021.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact me directly plesurf@plcarmidale.nsw.edu.au and I will try and answer your questions.

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Performing Arts News

MRS JO WYSEL

DRAMA

Speech and Drama

Mrs Patterson and I are delighted with the number of girls who have chosen to engage in Speech and Drama this year. We even have the help of our very own Izzy Taylor (2020 Graduate) who is teaching some of our Junior School girls this semester.

The Eisteddfod for Speech and Drama will be running this year and this week Izzy, Mrs Patterson and I will be confirming Eisteddfod sections that your daughters would like to be involved in. There is a small fee for each section students choose to compete in. Please speak with your daughter about the section/s she would like to be involved in. The Eisteddfod is an excellent time to gain experience in performing and to prepare for their AMEB exam. If you would like more information please contact Mrs Patterson or Mrs Wysel.

Drama

In elective Drama, Stage 5 have been refreshing their skills in improvisation, while Year 11 is exploring Surrealism and Absurdism as a style of theatre. Our HSC students are working well on their individual projects and are engaging in experiential study about Simon McBurney and his Theatre du Complicité.

Co-curricular activities in Drama: We are considering running a Theatresports co-curricular activity soon. If you have ideas about how we can make this come to fruition, or if you have Theatresports skills yourself that you’d like to share with us, please email jwysel@plcarmidale.nsw.edu.au. 

Dance

For the first time, PLC Armidale has a Dance elective class run by Mrs Wysel. With the success of Dance Ensembles, our PE dances and of course Matilda, Dance is growing at PLC Armidale.  We have our very Aisha Kliendienst (2019 graduate) tutoring Dance Ensemble on Wednesdays during lunchtimes, and will be commencing in Junior School soon. We also have the privilege of having very accomplished dancer and teacher, Chanel Leaudais, teaching a Dance Company Ensemble for elective dance students, as well as offering dance classes for boarders. Watch this space as Dance at PLC Armidale continues to grow!

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'Wicked' Information Evening - Wednesday 3 March at 6:30pm in the Astra Arts Centre.
For students and parents from Year 7 - Year 12.

Information Evening for the PLC Armidale School Musical, 2021.

Please register if you would like to attend HERE.

 

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Boarding News


MS JENNIFER LEAHY
ACTING HEAD OF BOARDING

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Over the past few weeks the girls in the boarding house have enjoyed many activities.

We have created some amazing designs onto canvas bags, some colourful bracelets and anklets, card games and building cubby houses in their dorms. 

The Year 10 girls also organised a beautiful evening to celebrate Valentines day, with red, white and pink decorations, dress code and pink cupcakes for dessert.

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Pathways News


MISS AMY CHIU
PATHWAYS ADMINISTRATOR

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This week, we have Sunny Dong (Year 11) sharing her experience in the past couple of weeks. Sunny came to PLC in 2017 and spent a period of time in the Pathways program before joining mainstream courses. It has been encouraging to see Sunny travelling smoothly into the last two years of her high school journey.

Please enjoy. 

One of the highlights of the past two weeks is the celebration of the Chinese New Year!


Screen Shot 2021-02-24 at 12.28.07 pm11 February 2021, or 30 December lunar calendar, is the New Year’s Eve and we usually have reunion dinner with family and friends and watch TV shows called New Year’s Gala. This year, we also watched the show with all the International girls. We borrowed Mr Spencer’s house and loved it immediately. Amy prepared a special dinner with hot pot and Chinese dishes for us. We also contributed fruits and drinks to share. It was such a great feeling sitting together at Mr. Spencer’s huge dining table enjoying the Asian flavour. We all stayed up late for New year’s Gala and got red packets from our parents. Despite not being able to go home, the event is especially meaningful because we were able to enjoy the traditional event in Armidale.

We had Valentine’s Day dinner on Monday 15th of February outside the dining hall. Year 10 girls did a great job organising the dinner. They put pink tablecloths on each table with flowers. The dress code was pink, pure or white dresses. We used colour pens to play a decorate game and the winner got a prize for that. The kitchen even made a special pink dessert to celebrate Valentine's Day with us.

We have swimming lessons every Friday. It’s a good chance for us to learn swimming and different kinds of survival skills. Everyone is trying hard to learn these skills and it was fun. 

Sunny Dong

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Community and General College News

Cattle Team

Our Cattle Team has been busy competing and preparing for regional shows and the girls have had some fantastic results from both the Glen Innes and Guyra respectively. Our Cattle Team runs Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays and is open to any girl is welcome to any girl from Year 6.

Recent results are below;

Glen Innes Show
YOUNG JUDGES:- Macey Wake: 2nd place (Open age group 12-25 years)
LED STEER CLASSES:- Double L Strawberry: Champion Crossbred Steer & Overall Grand Champion Steer of show. (Lucy Crowley)
- Ginga Ninga: 2nd place Purebred steer. (Macey Wake)

STUD CATTLE CLASSES:
B.A.L Simmental Stud:
- B.A.L. Royal Timing: 1st place Friday night Heifer Show. Junior Champion & Grand Champion Simmental exhibit 
(Led by Libby Cook)

Lagoona Red Poll Stud: 
- Lagoona Naughty & Nice: 1st & Junior Champion Red Poll Heifer. (Libby Cook) 
- Lagoona Equilibrium: 1st Junior Bull Under 12 months (Lucy Crowley) 
The Cottage Herefords: - The Cottage Dominette: 2nd Junior Heifer 12-16 months (Lucy Crowley) 
- The Cottage Cherry Ripe: 3rd Junior Heifer 16-18 months (Lucy Crowley)
GPS Red Poll Stud: 
- GPS Monty Carlo: 1st Junior Heifer 18-20 months (Georgia Whibley) 
- GPS Nutella: 1st Junior Heifer 20-24 months (Elyse Wake) 

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Guyra Show

YOUNG JUDGES:
- Georgia Whibley 1st & Grand Champion Judge (Open age group 12-25 years) 
- Libby Cook 2nd & Runner-up Judge. 

PARADERS CLASSES:
Under 12 Age group:2nd - Elyse Wake 
3rd - Macey Wake12 - 16 years Age group:Lilly McCosker in Paraders 2nd - Libby Cook

LED STEER CLASSES:
- Double L Strawberry: Grand Champion Steer of show. (Libby Cook) - Ginga Ninga: 4th place Led steer. (Macey Wake) 

STUD CATTLE CLASSES:
B.A.L Simmental Stud: 
- B.A.L. Royal Timing: Junior Champion Female & Reserve Champion Simmental exhibit (Led by Libby Cook) 
Lagoona Red Poll Stud: 
- Lagoona Naughty & Nice: 1st & Junior Champion Red Poll Heifer. (Libby Cook) 
- Lagoona Equilibrium: 1st Junior Bull Under 12 months (Georgia Whibley)
The Cottage Herefords: - The Cottage Dominette: 2nd Junior Heifer 12-16 months (Lucy Crowley) 

GPS Red Poll Stud: 
- GPS Monty Carlo: 1st Junior Heifer 18-20 months (Georgia Whibley) 
- GPS Nutella: 1st Junior Heifer 20-24 months (Elyse Wake) 

Young Judges WinnersTeam Photo