For those of you that had one, I hope you had a good break before the start of Term 4. I would like to bring your attention to a couple of initiatives that are happening this term.
Let’s Build A School Trivia Night
"Let's Build a School" is a not-for-profit organisation that promotes social and economic justice by improving access to education in rural Cambodia. One school supported by this organisation is the Rik Reay Primary School which has about 350 students from Kindergarten to Year 6. "Let's Build a School" has been supporting the Rik Reay Primary School since 2014 and run three privately funded classes: English, computing and library/arts.Through "Let's Build a School", SCEGGS too has supported and donated to the school and have been part of the remarkable change over the past five years. "Let's Build A School" is organising a trivia night on Saturday 26 October in the Great Hall from 6:30 – 10:00pm. Tickets are $40/$25 concession and to purchase please email email@example.com. For more information please go to www.letsbuildaschool.com.au.
“Mr Lee-Lindsay needs new undies”
For those new to our community I would like to introduce you to our socks and undies drive. There are a number of welfare organisations that are always asking for NEW socks and undies for their clientele. This is a serious issue amongst the homeless in terms of hygiene and good foot care. This is a whole school activity and because we want to get a variety of sizes this is how we would like the different year groups to donate:
(Kindergarten, Year 1, Year 2) – Girls Socks and/or Undies for 3 to 7 year olds.
(Years 3 and 4) – Boys Socks and/or Undies for 3 to 7 year olds.
(Years 5 and 6) - Socks and/or Undies for 8 to 12 year olds.
Year 7 – men’s medium undies and/or socks
Year 8 – women’s medium undies and/or socks
Year 9 - men’s large undies and/or socks
Year 10 – women’s large undies or socks
Year 11 – men’s or women’s small undies or socks
Students can start bringing in donations from this week and there will be a basket outside the chapel for collection, like what we do for Harvest Festival (only we will not decorate the chapel with the items!) I will distribute our collection to local organisations in the last week of Term 4. Thank you in anticipation.
Rev. Garry Lee-Lindsay
Navigating the ups and downs of modern life is a challenge for us all, the girls at SCEGGS included. Every girl, throughout her school journey, will experience a raft of challenges and will manage them in various ways. Living with two teenage children of my own and witnessing the trials and tribulations of their daily lives, I am aware of many of the pressures that make being a 21st century teenager so fraught with angst.
Your daughter will inevitably have her own worries about homework, exams, relationships with friends and others. Very often it is these struggles with relationships that we teachers witness and have to deal with constructively. Our girls want to be different, to be individuals but at the same time fit in and be accepted by their peer group. Peer-related stress can be one of the main sources of stress for our girls. They often face pressure from peers, parents and things they learn online to behave in a certain way or to feel accepted and valued by those around them. Research has shown that nothing is a more significant determinant of our psychological well-being than the healthy nature of our closest social bonds.
At SCEGGS, we regularly observe the impact of a friendship breakdown on our girls’ emotional wellbeing, self-esteem and achievement at school. Having a conflict with a friend or not being invited to a party are a couple of examples of the daily challenges our girls encounter. They are affected deeply by these experiences as they place a great emphasis on interpersonal connectedness.
Girls may receive unrealistic messages about how friendship looks and feels. Films and television shows oscillate between two extremes: mean girls (think Clueless) and best friends forever (Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants). We adults may not always be the perfect role models, either. The result is a steady stream of “friendship myths” – the idea that one has to find a “best friend” and keep her forever or that a good friendship is one where you never fight and are always happy, or the idea that the more friends you have, the cooler you are.
Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter all play an important role in our everyday lives, but they can also be a major source of stress for teenagers. They can even be a place where bullying happens. The first detailed study of how social media affects the mental health of young people, carried out by researchers from Imperial College and University College London, shows that social media does damage the mental health of teenage girls. It suggests that the harm is caused indirectly — through cyberbullying, sleep loss and reduced physical activity — rather than directly by affecting brain development. It also found that the psychological distress girls experience is twice as impactful than in boys.
Adolescence is hard work on the body and mind. During the teenage years, hormones are on the rise and so too the levels of anxiety and depression. Hormonal fluctuations affect each of our girls differently. I am sure the parents of any teenager would tell you that over-emotional adolescents can negatively impact a family dynamic from time to time. Rapid growth spurts, the onset of periods and acne can all contribute to a girl feeling overwhelmed and out of control. It’s no wonder that by mid-adolescence girls are more than twice as likely to be diagnosed with a mood disorder than their male counterparts.
Research has also shown that many girls feel ashamed of their body, with imagery of “idealised” bodies on social media driving their insecurity. Some of the girls I speak with have told me they sometimes feel enormous pressure to behave and look a certain way. It’s disturbing that so many young girls think their appearance is their most important attribute. Others aspire to some level of perfection. Concerns about body shape can spiral out of control into eating disorders or mental health problems without the right support.
So how can we support our daughters through these difficult times? How can we strike the correct balance between allowing them space to feel and experience stress during a difficult time, and yet to resist the temptation to swoop in and deny them the opportunity to resolve an issue in their own way?
Turn up the positivity and turn down the drama
Some girls seem to be readily drawn into friendship dramas and get caught up in other peoples’ business. Listening without judgement to your daughter when she describes a bad day or a difficult time with friends can be the hardest thing to do, especially when you know she is really hurting. Controlling that "mum face" (or equivalent!) is key in getting them to share the right information with you. Staying calm and encouraging them to maintain some perspective in a crisis is paramount. As a teacher and a parent, I have found value in role-playing a difficult conversation with a friend. It may help them to step into someone else’s shoes and understand a situation from another point of view.
A good sleep can be a cure for most things
Sleep is absolutely vital for our physical and mental wellbeing. I am sure we have all had nights where worries and stress keep us awake in the small hours. If your daughter experiences poor or inadequate sleep, this can impact mood and has consequences for handling relationship difficulties. Encourage your daughter to talk about or write down their worries before bedtime and do something relaxing in the hours before lights out to help her mind settle. Social media should be avoided for as long as possible prior to lights out.
Promoting a healthy body image
Our tweens and teenagers are bombarded with images in the media and the 24/7 availability of social media can put additional pressure on young people. Remind your daughter that she is much more than just her body and help her understand and celebrate all the amazing and unique qualities that she has. Conversing with your daughter about realistic and healthy bodies versus heavily edited and airbrushed images that show the curated highlights of people’s lives, may help your daughter to understand that some of the images they see on social media are not a true representation of how most people live their lives. Eating together as a family each night can be a great way to connect. Improving communication during family meals gives teenagers an opportunity to talk about their day and for parents to help them build their self-esteem, resulting in overall improved body image. Do not ignore warning signs such as a sudden fussiness around food or rapid weight loss. If you are at all concerned that body image worries are an issue for your daughter, seek professional help from your GP.
21st century mobile phone users
A mobile phone can be a helpful tool for your teenager to achieve independence. Keeping mobile phone use out of the bedroom will be a helpful way to monitor how much time your daughter is spending on her phone. Less time on screens is going to mean less time absorbing inappropriate content, advertising messages, inane celebrity gossip, bullying and sexualisation. Negotiate and put a screen curfew in place and be bold enough to stick to it. Phone use disrupts sleep. Messages from friends “ping in” until late at night and the blue light from the screen is proven to impact sleep. You may have noticed that there always seems to be someone within your daughter’s circle of friends who is still awake and posting past 11pm!
One of the most important protective factors that buffers against stressful and challenging times is social support from close relationships. Close relationships with parents, siblings and peers in adolescence are a critical part of our girls’ development. We must do all that we can to ensure they become a healthy opportunity for our young people to develop. Supportive relationships are associated with widespread benefits for physical and mental health throughout one’s life. When it comes to parenting, research suggests that authoritative rather than authoritarian parenting, which balances warmth and love with clear expectations and support, encourages a young person’s growing autonomy and independence. Authoritative parenting is the leading driver of positive outcomes for children and teenagers.
Science Teacher and Year 11 Coordinator
Group photographs taken last term may be ordered online at www.advancedlife.com.au using our school's unique 9 digit Online Order Code, available on the home page of the SCEGGS Portal. Ordering Envelopes for cash orders are available from Student Services in Reception or the Primary Office.
The following girls attended gymnastics camp on Thursday 10 October. They had great fun with some preparing for the upcoming IPSHA and IGSSA Competition in Week 3.
|Georgia Scott||Diya Shankar|
|Victoria Poniros||Jessica Grace|
|Nina Genc||Giselle Wharton|
|Isla Roberts||Katerina Giannikouris|
|Olivia Roberts||Isobel Murray|
|Olga Giannikouris||Emma Talbot|
All co-curricular Sport commences this weekend. Please ensure your daughter is at her venue 30 mins prior to the start of her game for warm up. It is important the girls wear SCEGGS uniform only and have a full water bottle. Draws and venue details are available on Cognito (parent portal).
Primary PDHPE and Sport Co-ordinator
Congratulations to Sienna Green who has been selected in the Australian All Schools Water Polo Team. Sienna will tour with the team in December. We wish her well with her training in the lead up to this tour.
SCEGGS will be sending buses to Frensham for our Saturday Water Polo fixtures on October 26. Please indicate numbers with Ms Axford in the Sports Department.
Well done to Alia Levi and Laura Roderick who competed at the NSW All Schools Athletics Championships. Alia placed 3rd in the 14 years shot put whilst Laura Roderick placed 6th in the final of the 16 years 800m. These are both excellent results.
Congratulations to Ilana Patkar, Madison Liew, Cassandra Davies, Sally Webster and Laura Davies for their performances at the Australia Nationals Clubs Carnival held over Friday 20 – Wednesday 25 September at the Gold Coast Sports and Leisure Centre, Queensland. This event brought gymnasts from all around Australia to compete.
|Ilana Patkar (Level 5 Senior):||23rd in Freehand, 25th in Rope, 5th in Ball, 21st in Ribbon and 17/42 overall|
|Madison Liew (Level 5 Senior):||11th in Freehand, 7th in Rope, 18th in Ball, 37th in Ribbon and 20/42 overall|
|Cassandra Davies (Level 6 Junior):||18th in Freehand, 21st in Rope, 11th in Ball, 20th in Clubs and 18/21 overall|
|Sally Webster (Level 7 Junior):||12th in Freehand, 10th in Rope, 4th in Hoop, 8th in Clubs and 10/14 overall|
|Laura Davies (Level 8 Junior):||12th in Freehand, 6th in Rope, 12th in Ball, 7th in Clubs and 9/20 overall|
Laura also placed 6th overall in the Level 8 combined Junior and Senior team division.
Congratulations to Georgina Dandolo and Amelia Whelan who competed in the U’14 International Grand Prix Fencing Tournament during the holidays. The girls competed against various other competitors from Oceania and Asia.
In the foil event the girls won gold in the team event. Amelia won the gold medal in the individual event whilst Georgia placed 5th. Well done!
Director of Sport
Manly Jazz Festival
Congratulations to Uma Volkmer (Year 11) who performed as part of the Women in Jazz Orchestra in the Manly Jazz Festival. The festival took place over the recent long weekend from 5 – 7 October. This was a wonderful experience for Uma and for any student who are interested in Jazz or would like to have a weekend of wonderful music. Well done Uma!
Songs for a Day Concert (Old Girls Union)
It was lovely to have Dr Aristea Mellos return to SCEGGS on Sunday 13 October presenting a portrait recital, featuring a collection of her art songs that she has composed, using the poems of CP Cavafy, Frank O’Hara, Emily Kendal Frey and more. The concert was held in support of the Old Girls Union Scholarship Fund. Guest artists, soprano Helen Zhibing Huang (Deutsche Oper Berlin) and pianist Ada Arumeh Kim Lowery (New York) were featured as part of the performance. We look forward to hearing more of Dr Mellos’ works in the future.
Congratulations to the following Voice students from Kylie Bailey’s studio who achieved the following AMEB grades:
Scarlett Pearce – 3rd Grade
Indie Parks – 1st Grade
Well done girls and thank you to Ms Bailey for her preparation of the students.
Aachen Cathedral Girls’ Choir
Come along this Saturday evening to St James Church (King Street) 7pm to hear the SCEGGS choir perform in collaboration with the Pymble Chorale (Pymble Ladies College) and the visiting Aachen Cathedral Girls’ Choir. The students have collaborated on a program of choral items including the works of Australian composer Michael Atherton, Henry Purcell, Keith Hampton, Joe Twist, Richard Gill and more. Tickets are available at the door $20 for Adults, $15 for Concession and students are free.
Junior School’s participation in the Royal School of Church Music NSW
Cantare choristers have been invited to participate in this year’s Royal School of Church Music NSW. The students will meet music staff in the Primary Music room and walk to St Andrew’s Cathedral. Rehearsals with other schools will commence at 4pm with the choral festival service commencing at 6.15pm. Parents are most welcome to attend the service. A wonderful experience for our junior choristers to work in collaboration with other schools.
Upcoming performances and events in Term 4:
Aachen Cathedral Girls’ Choir Concert in collaboration with SCEGGS Darlinghurst Choir and Pymble Chorale (Pymble Ladies College)
Saturday 19 October at St James Church, King Street 7pm
Junior School’s participation in the Royal School of Church Music NSW
Tuesday 22 October St Andrew’s Cathedral – Service commencing at 6.15pm
String Concerts – Week 3 in Primary Music Room
Monday 28 October, Tuesday 29 October and Wednesday 30 October 3.20 – 4.15pm
Year 6 Musical
Friday 1 November, Great Hall 6:00pm
Flute and Oboe Concert – Monday 4 November
The students of Ms Kel Grennan, Ms Zoe Sitsky and members of the Flute Choir are performing in the Primary Music Room, 3.30 – 4.30pm.
Percussion Concert – 7 November
All percussion students of Ms Jayne Groves are performing in a concert in the Great Hall, 1.10 – 1.40pm.
Wednesday 14 November, Great Hall 5:00pm
Head of Music
SCEGGS is delighted to host our next SPAN event, Women in Marketing, PR and Communications with Nestle’s Head of Marketing, Michelle Katz as the keynote speaker.
Michelle has extensive Marketing and Communication experience across multiple marketing sectors and has spent the last eight years leading the development of integrated marketing and communication plans at Optus, Unilever and now Nestle. This networking opportunity is not to be missed if you are currently working or aspiring to work in this highly competitive industry.
Please join us for drinks and canapés alongside like-minded women.
Monday 11 November
6.00pm - 8.00pm
The Joan Freeman Terrace
Cost: Tickets are $20 each
Please click here to secure your ticket
RSVP by 6 November
Now that Term 4 is here, it is time for Class Parents to start asking their year group for volunteers for Class Parents 2020. It’s NOT a Festival on Forbes year so that usually makes it easier. Below is the Class Parent role description. Please note that we have included a line about Class Parents being willing to accommodate members of The Trust, as they reach out to parents during the Wilkinson House Capital Campaign. If you would like to volunteer as a 2020 Class Parent, please contact one of the parents for 2019 and they will forward your name to me. We usually like four parents per year group, although sometimes Kindy-Year 2 can manage with three, and Year 12 usually has six to eight.
Class Parent Role Description
Class Parents act as liaison between parents, the P&F, the Trust and the School. They:
• Help to welcome new parents to the School
• Provide a link for all the parents of the Year group by organising a couple of Year group activities, to support generally the sense of social cohesion and community, and by giving the Trust a platform to talk (very briefly!) about the Capital Campaign
• Can generate interest and engagement in the School’s plans for the new buildings and for Scholarships as part of the School’s current Capital Campaign
• Provide invaluable assistance to the P&F and the Trust in organising various whole School functions from time to time
• Can help other parents to know who to contact within the School and to understand the culture of SCEGGS Darlinghurst
• Can help the School in various other ways on occasion
My term as President of the P&F comes to an end in March 2020 at our AGM. It has been a fun-filled role, lots of hard work and a great opportunity to get to know SCEGGS parents and staff. We are looking for a new President to take on the role from March. I am happy to remain on the Committee while the new President learns the role, if that is of help, or to assist the new President in any way that is useful. If you have any interest please do not hesitate to call me on 0408 29 11 96 to discuss, or I am happy to meet at the Rusty Rabbit for a chat.
Our next parent forum is on 5 November, from 7pm in the Joan Freeman Lecture Theatre. The topic for discussion is “SCEGGS, Religion and Ethics” and guest speakers will include Jenny Allum, Garry Lee-Lindsay and Julie McCrossin. Please put it in your diary. Bookings for catering purposes would be appreciated at https://www.trybooking.com/BFWMM