|16 Jun 2023|
As you start to walk on the way, the way appears - Rumi
I have just returned from the Junior School playground, where a Kindergarten student taught me how to kick a soccer ball AND run after it. In the midst of this I was offered peppermint tea (a handful of grass), and invited to be part of a fireworks display (autumn leaves being gathered and thrown up into the sky). Surrounded by historical architecture, I made my way back to the Senior School reflecting on how fortunate I am to be part of such a wholesome learning environment.
Later I found myself enthralled in the fast-paced game of senior girl’s netball and tried to restrain myself from calling out ‘Go NEGS’ on one too many occasions.
The NW Equestrian Expo at Coonabarabran on the first weekend of June was another celebration of learning, which epitomised the NEGS spirit.
To quote one of our parents:
‘Coaching, passion, mentor, patience, care, fun, hard work, good manners, team, proud’
It is for this reason I have booked my accommodation for 2024. All NEGS families are welcome at Coona, even if you pop out for the day to see the students in action.
Our recent staff day saw staff members leading sub committees on Respectful Relationships, School Values and Gratitude. The committees will soon be seeking input from students, staff and families. The day concluded with a friendly game of lawn bowls at the Armidale City Bowling Club. Clearly, a few staff members had played before and a few of us would benefit from further practice!
This week NEGS welcomed Susan Middlebrook – Principal of TARA Anglican Girls School. She gave valuable insights on key areas of the school’s Strategic Plan; on mentoring and professional development of staff, what we need to do to further refine our language of learning and on achieving our/NEGS’ hopes and dreams. Thank you Susan.
Have you ever wanted to visit New Caledonia?
We are looking for 1 more student to join in with our French students who are going to New Caledonia in November 2023.
Cost will be $3,750.00.
Students must be a minimum age of 14 years and 9 months at the date of departure.
See Ms van G for more details.
As the school term comes to a close, it's time to reflect on all that we have achieved. We have worked hard, pushed ourselves, and achieved great things. We have made new friends, learned new skills, and grown as people. But the work is not done yet. As we move into the 3-week break, it is important to remember that we still have a responsibility to ourselves and to our school community. We must continue to stay focused and work hard to the very last day, even when we are not in the classroom. I encourage you to stay connected with friends, be responsible citizens and to think about how our actions can affect those around us. Positive relationships require constant attention, and it is very easy to ignore this when getting tired and run down. Please work hard to be considerate in the way you speak with those around you and choose kindness and gratitude every time.
Recharging over the break is important for a number of reasons. Firstly, it allows us to come back to the start of the term feeling refreshed and energised, ready to tackle the challenges ahead. Secondly, it gives us the opportunity to take a step back and reflect on our progress so far, enabling us to identify areas for improvement and set new goals for the coming term. Finally, it helps us to maintain a healthy work/life balance, ensuring that we don’t become overwhelmed by the demands of the term ahead. Taking time to recharge over the break is essential for ensuring that we hit the ground running when the term begins.
As our year 12s enter their last term, I would encourage them to think about their legacy to the school. How would they like to be remembered, and take some time to reflect on their time here at NEGS and how it has helped shape the person that they have become. Our year 11’s should be reflecting on what they have experienced and how that may shape the contribution that they can make to NEGS as they step into that leadership space.
It has been great to see the new vests and hoodies arrive, they will be a welcome addition to our winter sports uniform. These items are only to be worn when representing the school and, as is the case with all our uniform pieces, should not be worn outside of the school context.
Finally, I wish all those participating in events over the break, the best of luck and success. I also extend a hope to all of a happy holiday and safe return.
Mr Jamie Moore
When it comes to Academics in schools, I sometimes think of cars. Not necessarily the most intuitive of connections I know, but the substance is there. Hear me out.
I test drove the 2023 ‘Car of the Year’ a short while ago, and it was certainly a fine truck. I was somewhat puzzled though when I popped the hood. A dominating, assertive grille and hood design, flash LED headlights and lots of trimming, but under the enormous hood was…not much.
As I hear it said, the 4 cylinder diesel powerhouse is really rather good, but to my simple mind, the square metres of space around it were telling.
I am no mechanic, and frankly, I know next to nothing about cars, but what I can assert is that I expect the ‘bling’ to have a solid engine behind it. I suspect the V6 platforms might fill the space better, but even then, I am left wondering about the space between what’s on show, and what’s driving the truck.
Academics can be considered in the same way. What’s on show are the headline results, but there is a lot of ‘machinery’ that sits behind them. My team and I have been working hard on the machinery of our systems and processes, and I must say that I am really rather chuffed by the efforts of the staff, particularly in the learning support space.
The staff have spent the past 6 months working through a Professional Development Program that aimed to inform a research-based Teaching & Learning Framework. We have covered topics ranging from basic questions around what learning is, to classroom practice matters such as differentiation and feedback, to questions around competencies above and beyond syllabus requirements given that we are an Independent School and can offer more.
We can offer more, and our Teaching & Learning Framework will reflect this ‘more.’ Not necessarily the flashy LED headlights, sunroof or 10 speaker sound system, but a punchy, reliable work-horse of an engine that will deliver day in, day out, to progress our students towards their preferred pathway.
I look forward to presenting further details about our proposed framework to our school community next term, and am very much looking forward to engaging with a process of community consultation as we refine our model in line with Learning Sciences research and best practice in Independent Schools.
Mr Ryan Caldwell
Director of Teaching and Learning
Coona this year was so much fun! The warm and dry weather certainly made a difference to the relaxed atmosphere, but all credit goes out to our beautiful girls and their families. Everyone worked together so well as a team, and by the end, our NEGS area during presentations was full of so many schools. It was a delight to hear our girls cheer and celebrate with their friends regardless of the colour of their jumper. They were celebrating wins with everyone. Talk about future leaders! These girls showed tremendous sportsmanship which really helped to lift everyone around them. Team meetings, presentations and the feel around the campfire was just buzzing with pride and excitement.
NEGS was super excited to celebrate some major wins from our own students, including winning a very hotly contested Teams of Four Championship. The Team consisting of Eden Lochhead, Allie Palmer, Sienna Robinson and Bea Morton rode their socks off to outclass three strong Calrossy teams. Well done girls. You all looked amazing.
A big congratulations also to Jessica Taylor on winning Age Champion, Sienna Robsinson and Allie Palmer also winning their Age Champion and Reserve respectively. Woohoo
It was wonderful to see riders winning major awards from all different schools with no one school dominating. The excitement from fellow students when an unexpected rider won and Age Champion or Reserve was fabulous.
A great big thanks goes out to Rebecca Moxham and her team of coordinators. Once again, you delivered a tremendous event which holds so delicately the balance of competition and comradery. Coona really is an event never to be missed on the competition calendar!
Thank you to all the wonderful families who helped out all week. Special thanks to Tricia Gerigk for the initial ground work then Bena Oliver and Janet Meyn for organising the catering. The food was fabulous. We can't, of course, go past Linc Brown and his band of (singing all too cheerily for a 6am start) merry men who cooked us a sensational breakfast every morning. Giles Morton you were the unseen hero, picking up bread rolls freshly made from the bakery every morning at 5:30am. Thank You!
Finally, thank you to coaches Justine, Ella, Annyka, Rachelle and our bonus Coona coach, Nora. It is so hard to describe what it feels like to closely work with these girls all year, right up to the last few weeks of preparation, then still stand right beside them through all of the wins, the frustrations, and seeing them achieve their personal goals at Coona. It's like being a parent to 48 girls. You feel with each and every one of them. It can be full of heartbreaks, but it's all worth it for that big smile looking straight at you when a student comes out of the ring knowing they rode well. That smile and the feeling that comes from that smile, is what us coaches chase. We love it.
So thank you coaches and students for all those beautiful smiles!
Can't wait till next year!!!
Champions School Team of Four Riders - This is a ring event where 4 riders ride alongside each other completing a workout staying as a team:
Show Jumping Champions:
Show Riding Champions:
Monday Dressage Champions:
3rd place Team:
Combined Training Winners:
Mrs Annyka Overton
To celebrate the end of term following on from Eisteddfod performances, and to mark some great work for the halfway point in the year, we will be hosting a Twighlight Concert on Monday 19 June, 2023.
We invite you all to attend this wonderful evening which will showcase some of the wonderful talent held by our students.
After a rewarding school camp experience and term filled with opportunities for self discovery, as well as personal and academic growth, it becomes evident that the way we communicate plays a vital role in shaping the experiences and outcomes of our students.
The time spent at camp not only provided opportunities for growth and adventure but also highlighted the importance of intentional and positive communication in our lives. As I reflect on the profound impact of words, both spoken and unspoken, let’s explore how changing the language we use can contribute to creating a culture of excellence within our educational and home environments. Together, let's harness the power of our words to uplift, inspire, and nurture the incredible potential of our students.
The journey of education is filled with countless opportunities for growth, discovery, and challenges. As we focus on creating nurturing learning environments for our students, we often find ourselves seeking ways to ensure school life is grounded in a positive school culture where students feel supported, valued, and encouraged to reach their full potential. The solution might lie in a simple yet powerful concept – changing the words we use.
The quote, "Life can become much easier, simply by changing the words that we use," holds significant meaning in the realm of education. The language we employ, both in our interactions with students and within the school community, has a profound impact on their wellbeing, engagement, and overall experience.
Positive and Encouraging Communication:
Positive communication lies at the heart of building a thriving school community. By intentionally choosing words that uplift, encourage, and affirm our students, we create an atmosphere of support, motivation, and inspiration. Celebrating their efforts, highlighting their strengths, and acknowledging their progress fosters a sense of self-belief and empowers them to reach their full potential. When we emphasise the positive, we inspire a culture of growth and optimism within our schools.
Empathy and Understanding:
In the diverse and dynamic environment of schools, conflicts and misunderstandings are bound to arise. By embracing empathy and understanding in our language, we can bridge gaps and foster stronger connections. Listening attentively, acknowledging students' feelings, and expressing our own emotions with respect, cultivates an environment of compassion and mutual understanding. This encourages open dialogue, strengthens relationships, and creates a safe space for students to express themselves authentically.
Growth Mindset and Resilience:
The language we use can shape students' mindsets and their approach to challenges. By reframing problems as opportunities for growth and learning, we empower them to develop a growth mindset and embrace resilience. Encouraging words such as "let's try a different approach" or "what can we learn from this?" shifts the focus from failure to progress. By instilling the belief that setbacks are temporary and that effort leads to improvement, we equip students with the mindset and tools they need to overcome obstacles and thrive academically and personally.
It is crucial to extend the power of positive language to ourselves as parents and educators. Often, we face immense pressure, coupled with that unrelenting voice inside our heads. By practising self-compassion, we can transform this internal dialogue and foster a kind and nurturing relationship with ourselves. Celebrating our achievements, acknowledging our efforts, and recognising that we are continuously growing and learning, empowers us to provide the best support and guidance to our students and children.
In conclusion, let us reflect on the impact of our words in our children’s lives. By consciously choosing language that uplifts, inspires and empowers, we can create a collaborative environment built on mutual respect amongst staff, students and parents. Let's embark on this journey of intentional communication together, unlocking the true potential of our words and nurturing the incredible minds within our community.
As we head into a well-deserved break, take a moment to recharge and reflect on the incredible journey we have embarked on this term. It is a time to savour accomplishments, cherish memories, and embrace the joy of simply being present. Enjoy this much-needed respite, and let us also eagerly anticipate the adventures and opportunities that await us in the upcoming term. Together, armed with the power of positive communication, and a shared commitment, we look forward to continuing our collective mission of nurturing and inspiring the young students entrusted to our care.
May this break be filled with rest, rejuvenation and a deep sense of gratitude.
Mrs Heidi Dent
It has been a successful term of winter sport, with our sporting teams having success on the field/court in their town competitions and many students making it into community representative teams. We are so proud of our students' achievements, seeing them striving for their goals and reaching excellence.
Our Junior and Senior netball and hockey teams played well in the Dick Hodgson Shield last week against TAS. In the rain that finally arrived, the hockey teams both came away with a draw, Juniors 4-4 and Seniors 2-2. Both netball teams unfortunately came away with a loss, Juniors 9-46 and Seniors 31-46, but both teams put in a tremendous effort the entire game.
We are now looking forward to our IGSA hockey, netball and athletics carnivals and the IPSHA athletics carnival coming up next term. These opportunities allow our students to compete against other schools in Sydney and be challenged in their sporting endeavours. The students and parents involved in these competitions are asked to please ensure that all expressions of interest have been returned as permission notes will be sent out next week, locking in all competitors and organisation.
NEGS also has the wonderful opportunity next Wednesday, 21 June, as Jo Brigden-Jones will connect with Years 7 - 10 students as part of Olympics Unleashed. The students will learn from her Olympic journey how to build resilience, the importance of setting goals, and how to find what they are passionate about. Students will hear firsthand about how she overcame challenges to compete in her chosen sport at the very highest level, and how some lessons she’s learned in sport can help students to be the best they can be – whether that’s in school, at home, on the sporting field or with friends. We hope our students will be inspired by this visit to pursue their sporting dreams.
Enjoy the rest over the coming break and we look forward to hitting the fields and courts again next term.
Mrs Liane Nixon
It brings great joy to see our EC crew return with big smiles after a fantastic week of eventing. Their enthusiasm and positive energy are truly contagious, and we are grateful for the wonderful experiences they have had.
As we approach the end of Term 2, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to all the parents who supported the NSW COVID health guidelines by taking your daughters back home to recover. We understand and appreciate the challenges and expenses that families faced in relation to this decision. Your cooperation and commitment to stopping the spread of COVID-19 in our boarding houses made a significant difference.
By adhering to the guidelines, you have not only protected the health and wellbeing of your daughters, but also that of the entire boarding community. We firmly believe that the collective efforts of our school community have contributed to maintaining a safe and healthy environment for all.
Last Sunday, Mrs Middleton and the Saumarez team organised a delightful cooking festivity centred around sausage roll making. It was a fun and interactive activity that brought the students together. The kitchen was filled with laughter and the delicious aroma of freshly baked treats. The students' culinary skills were put to the test as they crafted their own unique sausage roll creations. It was a fantastic opportunity for them to showcase their creativity and enjoy the fruits of their labour.
In addition to the cooking festivity, our boarding houses recently participated in an organic pottery afternoon. Each house brought forth their creative ideas and the results were truly inspiring. The students embraced their artistic sides, moulding clay into beautiful and imaginative forms. The pottery afternoon not only allowed them to express themselves but also fostered a sense of camaraderie and teamwork among the residents of each boarding house.
We would like to extend our appreciation to Mrs Middleton and the Saumarez team for organising these engaging and memorable activities. Their dedication and enthusiasm contribute greatly to the vibrant atmosphere within our boarding community.
SSTS travel needs to be in ASAP and our boarding Houses open at 3pm, Monday 17th July.
On behalf of the entire boarding school staff, we extend our deepest gratitude for your ongoing support and cooperation. We value your partnership in creating a nurturing and secure environment for our students. I would also like to thank our boarding staff, Mrs Middleton, Mrs Murphy, Mrs Cassidy, Ms Everingham, Ms Leaney, Ms McCarthy, Mrs Emma Le-M, Ms Alice, Ms Hayley and Ms Paige for the endless dedication to NEGS boarding by bringing laughter, support and growth to our boarding community.
Wishing you all a restful and enjoyable break during the upcoming holiday period. We look forward to welcoming the students back for Term 3.
We're looking for a Community Relations and Events Officer to join our team. This position is a great opportunity to join the Marketing team of a highly regarded Independent school, based in the beautiful New England Region.
The roles key responsibilities include:
Applications Close on Sunday 25 June 2023. Apply here or share the link - https://www.seek.com.au/job/67956646?type=standout...
We still have places available in Pre-K, Junior school and Senior School. We appreciate any advocacy you are able to do on behalf of the school to your network, friends and family.
The next Open Morning will be on 28 July 2023 - please share the event information available here
It's that time of year again where we are seeking sponsors for our Equestrian Centre Horse Trials and the new Livestock Truck.
If you are interested in sponsorship please get in touch directly with Annyka on 0428 772 817.
We have some great special events coming up including:
If you are interested in sponsorship, please get in touch directly with Lyn on 02 6774 8700.
There are still lots of events coming up for the remainder of June - you can see all events in NEGS Community here
Twilight Concert - Monday 19 June, 5pm - 6pm
Olympics Unleashed - Wednesday 21 June, 11am
Junior School Disco - Wednesday 21 June, 5.30pm - 6.30pm
Brooke McClymont and Adam Eckersley - Thursday 21 September, 6.30pm - 10pm - BOOK your tickets here
Ms Lyn O'Neill
How quickly the term has flown!
On behalf of the P and F, we would like to sincerely thank you for all the events and activities support you have provided us.
The canteen at the Athletics Carnival was a highlight - with lots of compliments about the quality of the food for everyone to enjoy.
We also supported the raffle and auction at the Father-Daughter dinner which was a fantastic night, alongside running the bar.
Our Junior School families are gathering this afternoon and again next week at the Junior School Disco (remember to bring $5 for entry).
There is lots to look forward to next term and into the remainder of the year with the NEGS in the Arena Concert, featuring artists Brooke McClymont and Adam Eckersley - don't forget to book your tickets! We have added a Family ticket option (2 adults and 2 children), please see the booking page for more information.
Please help us promote this special event with your friends, family, and networks as it's their only concert in ARMIDALE this year.
You may remember the successful Twilight Fair last year - we'll be running this event again and are seeking helpers to volunteer their time for set up, during and after the event. Please get in touch if you can help.
Finally, we wish all families a safe holiday.
Ms Fiona Mccarthur
Parents and Friends President