|19 May 2023|
|Written by Tianna Kelly|
Thank you to those families who were able to join us for coffee, dinner and catch-up while we were in Dubbo at the Boarding Schools Expo. The expo provided an excellent opportunity to showcase NEGS and meet prospective families, amongst other leading boarding schools from Sydney, regional NSW and ACT.
Last Friday, we held our whole school Mother’s Day Chapel service and afternoon tea. Seeing so many Mothers, Grandmothers, Aunts, and friends attend and celebrate significant women in our lives was a delight. Thank you to the students who further lifted our spirits by singing. Special mention to Charlotte Johnstone for her rendition of ‘Hallelujah’, with organ accompaniment by Katherine Edwards (Year 11), the Year 7 choir, a ‘goosebump’ moment for all.
This week marks the Australian Boarding Schools Association (ABSA) National Boarding Week.
Thank you to our Head of Boarding, Mrs Meaghan Laverty, and the boarding staff. You play an integral role in our school community and make such a difference for our boarders. You are appreciated.
This year, NEGS will again participate in the Mission Australia 2023 Youth Survey.
The focus areas for the survey include:
I encourage all 15 to 19-year-olds to participate in the survey and ensure their voices are heard. Student's voice is integral in supporting schools, organisations and governments to develop policies and programs for young people.
Please find more detailed information for parents and a parent consent form below.
Consent forms can be returned to me via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The survey closes on 11 August 2023.
Ms Liz van Genderen
Following up on the core value of Responsibility, I would like to look at the role it plays in the running of the school:
Responsibility is essential to any school, as it helps ensure that processes are adhered to and that the school runs smoothly. When all members of an organisation are held accountable for their actions, it helps to create a culture of trust and respect. This, in turn, encourages team members to take ownership of their roles and responsibilities, leading to increased workflow and improved efficiency. Additionally, consistently following processes helps reduce errors and delays, resulting in a better overall experience for all stakeholders. Finally, responsibility helps to create a culture of accountability, which is essential for long-term success. At NEGS, we have many processes in place to allow the effective management of the school, students, staff, and the wider community. Still, these are deemed ineffective if responsibilities are unfulfilled.
We have a busy end of term coming up with Athletics, North West Equestrian Expo and Boarders weekend. If you add to that several sporting commitments in Hockey, Rugby and Netball, we have missed many academic school days. Can I take this opportunity to reinforce the school’s expectation that leave should only be for the duration of the event.
Regarding notifying the school of an impending absence, boarders are to ensure your leave request has been processed through Orah and Engage. If a student requests to miss a school day, an application for leave needs to be submitted and approval from the Deputy Principal. Pis needed for approval. I thank you in advance for adhering to this process.
Our uniform reminder for this week is around jewellery, this from page 8 of the student diary:
Facial and body piercing is not acceptable. Students may have pierced ears (with only one earring in each ear lobe) and wear: a gold/silver ball earring of 3mm for Years 7 – 10 or a gold/silver sleeper (not to exceed 10mm diameter); a pearl earring of 3-5mm for Years 11 and 12. The only other piece of jewellery allowed with any school uniform is a watch; no other piercings or jewellery items are allowed. (Exceptions apply to medical alerts). Any student who has their ears pierced twice, or in a place on the ear (other than the earlobe), a nose piercing etc. is not permitted to wear either an earring/s or a clear earring/s. Boarders will be permitted to wear clear earring/s at night, after Prep, to ensure that the pierced hole/s do/does not close over. Students are not permitted to wear band-aids or tape over piercings.
Finally, in the first 4 weeks of Term 2, I have had the opportunity to take students to Hockey and Rugby trials in Sydney, Cross Country in Mittagong, the Careers expo in Tamworth and Rugby in Inverell. Seeing how our students have acquitted themselves on these stages has been a pleasure. They have represented the school admirably and worn the uniform proudly. I was approached by a staff member of another school, who taught at NEGS in the late 80’s and 90’s, and he stated that he loved how our uniform still sets us apart from other schools and how much he enjoyed his time here. Sometimes it’s ‘the little things’ that have the greatest impact!
Mr Jamie Moore
The Marketing and Enrolments team has had lots of activity and parent tours around campus as we continue to secure more students for 2024. Our events calendar and marketing activity are ramping up, and we’re excited to launch our new website in the coming months. This will give NEGS an opportunity to showcase the NEGS difference with a fresh, new look and a much easier website for parents, students and the wider community to navigate our offerings.
Here is what is coming up in the next few months:
Open Morning - Thursday, 25 May
Following a welcome from Principal, Ms Liz van Genderen, our students will lead the school tours, giving them an opportunity to put into practice their leadership skills and build their social and professional confidence.
We encourage current NEGS families with younger children to attend our Open Morning to begin the enrolment process by exploring our campus and seeing all that NEGS has to offer.
Early Years Explorer Day - Thursday, 1 June
Parents considering NEGS for their little ones are invited to explore our beautiful school grounds and meet our incredible teachers who run our Pre-K and Kindergarten Programs.
Please help us spread the word to your friends, family and networks.
Girls' Night In - Thursday 12 and Friday 13 October
NEGS will be holding another 'Girls Night In' for girls who would like to experience what it's like to be a NEGS boarder.
Students will be able to participate in all activities, including the colour run, the following day.
Step Up Day - Tuesday, 28 November
Each year, all Junior School students 'step up' for a day into the grade they will transition to the following year. This is an exciting day where students meet their new teacher and see which friends will join them on their school adventure.
This is part of our commitment to ensuring that our Junior School students feel safe, secure and confident to move into their new environment.
Katlyn Wilkinson and Margot Davis
Enrolments and Marketing Team
As we have welcomed our students back from the Term One school holidays, we have been thrilled to see the excitement and energy they have brought with them. For many students and staff, our playground comes to mind when describing student interactions.
The playground is where students can be active, socialise, and have fun. It is an important part of our school community, and we believe that play is crucial to a child's physical, emotional, and social development. Studies have shown that play is essential to a child's learning and can improve academic performance, problem-solving skills, and creativity.
Encouraging our students to use the playground to explore their interests, develop their skills, and build relationships with their peers is key to their success. The playground is not just a place to play but to learn, grow, and thrive.
This term has reflected exactly that, a playground filled with energy and excitement. In the upcoming term, you will see some additions in our space, with thanks to the P and F for their contribution to the creation of nesting pods for our ‘forest space’. A place where many of our students spend time engaged in creative, imaginative play. We are looking forward to continuing to build upon this.
At NEGS, we refer to our community and the importance this holds. Recently, a kookaburra has also taken up residence in our playground, meeting the staff in the morning before our students arrive. You may wonder what significance this holds and why I am referring to this? As we set new goals for the terms ahead, I thought I would take a moment to reflect on the symbolism of the kookaburra and how it can inspire us in our daily lives.
The kookaburra is an iconic bird native to Australia, known for its distinctive call that sounds like laughter. In Aboriginal culture, the kookaburra represents strength and courage and the importance of family and community.
We can take inspiration from the kookaburra's symbolism by embodying these values in our lives. We can strive to be strong and courageous when facing challenges, and work together as a community to support and uplift one another.
Like the kookaburra's call, we can bring joy and positivity to our surroundings by spreading kindness and laughter wherever we go.
‘With the kookaburra's strength, courage, and community spirit, we can achieve great things and create a positive experience for all.’
Stage One has welcomed Ms Furner to their classroom this term. Lisa is an educational professional with 22 years of experience teaching K-6, curriculum development, educational therapy and leadership. She has worked as a classroom teacher on Stage One for many years of her career, giving her valuable experience in developing effective teaching and assessment strategies to ensure the best possible outcomes for her students.
Lisa has recently provided Multisensory Structured Learning and education consultation through her practice, The Sunroom Support Services. Lisa’s previous roles include Curriculum Coordinator at Al Faisal College, Assistant Principal at Glendale East Public School, and Coordinator at Green Valley.
‘My name is Lisa Furner, and I am excited to introduce myself as the newest addition to the teaching team at NEGS. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to join such a wonderful community and group of learners.
As a teacher, I aim to create a positive and engaging learning environment where students feel supported and encouraged to achieve their full potential. I believe learning should be fun and meaningful, and I am passionate about finding ways to make my lessons exciting and relevant to my students. I am fortunate to have had a long education career in various roles and settings.
I love reading and spending time with my family in my free time. I also enjoy travelling and have been privileged to visit many different countries and experience diverse cultures.
I am excited to get to know you all and work together to make this school year a success.’
Finally, as we move towards the second half of this term, I remind all parents to check and respond to school communication consistently. There are many events on our calendar for the students and our community. These are opportunities to come together and celebrate their successes.
Mrs Heidi Dent
Junior School Co-Ordinator/Year 6 Teacher
Welcome to the latest edition of our newsletter! It's been an action-packed couple of weeks here at our boarding school, filled with exciting activities and meaningful events.
Let's start with Friday night activities in weeks 3 and 4, which brought loads of laughter and fun. We started the evening with a thrilling game of tunnel ball, where everyone showed their agility and teamwork skills. This was followed by an intense game of dodgeball that had everyone on their toes. It was a fantastic way to end the week and bond with friends.
We observed ‘Do It For Dolly’ day, which focused on the importance of kindness and raising awareness about the issue of bullying. The day began with a special breakfast for the girls, featuring delicious pancakes. To show our support, everyone wore blue ribbons and armbands. During morning tea, we enjoyed blue cupcakes that satisfied our taste buds and reminded us of the cause we were standing up for.
We celebrated Mother's Day with a school Chapel Service on Friday in the spirit of appreciation. It was heartwarming to see our mums from the boarding community come all the way to join us. After the service, we had a lovely afternoon tea where we could express our gratitude to our mothers. On Sunday, Ms Leaney and her team set up a beautiful table adorned with flowers and treats as a special gesture for our boarding mums. It was a wonderful way to honour them on this special day.
Meanwhile, Ms Everingham has been reminding us about the importance of being good friends. She has placed Mr. Men posters throughout the boarding area to serve as a constant reminder to be kind and supportive of one another. Let's remember these messages as we go about our daily lives and strive to create a warm and inclusive community.
In addition, we had the pleasure of welcoming new students into our boarding community. This is always an opportunity for our boarders to shine by making the newcomers feel included and supported. Let's continue to extend our friendship and help them settle into their new environment.
It is National Boarding Week. The theme focuses on the definition of patchwork ‘a thing composed of many elements' - 'Every child in boarding is the combination of their experience in boarding, the people and friends they meet, the staff that care for them and the opportunity they are given’.(ABSA) Thank you to our boarders, families and wonderful staff.
That's all for this edition of our newsletter. It's been a whirlwind of activities, events, and heartfelt moments.
Mrs Meg Laverty
Head of Boarding
We can't believe it has finally happened, but it's true. NEGS has been able to procure ourselves a superb 6-horse truck to be used for both the Equestrian Centre and the Livestock Precinct.
This will greatly impact our ability to take more girls out to local events, shows, excursions and clinics. This wonderful truck boasts 6 huge high horse bays, a large living/tack area at the front with a fridge, two bunk beds and ample room for storage.
Its solar panel also powers two batteries to run lights and USB points throughout the truck.
Due to the generous support of a previous parent, we have managed to secure a three-year loan to finance this purchase. The fun part now is running events and fundraising to fully finalise the purchase and help with running costs and improvements.
We will, in time, fully wrap the truck with NEGS and sponsor’s logos etc and include 240v power.
To help support the ongoing repayments of the truck, the P and F are running an online raffle and noisy auction at this year's father-daughter dinner.
Follow the link below to jump onboard the NEGS truck and support our students in getting out amongst it.
BUY RAFFLE TICKETS, SHARE THE LINK WITH YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS
We had a few girls do really well in the Armidale Dressage, with Eden Lochhead winning her Novice 2.1. We also had a few girls attend the Armidale Combine training: with Abbie Kelly getting 1st in her class. We are now preparing for Coona as we have quite a few girls entered in the dressage on Monday.
A team of 15 girls travelled 2 hours to compete in the annual Gunnedah Show for the events, including showjumping, hacking and dressage. Over the course of the three days, the team accumulated a series of results to which they should be very proud. For the Showjumping:
The show, large in size and even larger in the number of classes, was great practice for our girls in preparation for the North West Equestrian Expo or 'Coona' that is rapidly approaching. The support and encouragement the girls demonstrated, not only to our own team but also to other participants, was admirable and noticeable to others.
Along with the equestrian side of the show, the girls took the opportunity to enjoy and have fun before the hectic weeks that make up Term 2. Carnival food, arcade games and a BMX show were only some of the things the girls enjoyed, with some girls feeling sick after riding some of the more daring rides.
We couldn't have had such a successful and fun-filled weekend without the help from our parents and coaches, preparing food, a place to sleep and gave us pep talks before our rides. We are eternally grateful for your efforts.
A special thank you also to Katherine Moffit (Year 8), who took a collection of photos from our favourite moments of the weekend. We love them so much! She is on her way to becoming a professional photographer!
Last weekend, the eventing girls competed at Quirindi International Eventing. It was a great weekend, with Sienna Robinson winning the 60cm eventing and Bianca Turner coming 1st in the Junior 80cm eventing. We are training hard to prepare for the Coona Expo in a few weeks.
It has been a busy few weeks for the polocrosse girls. Anna Benson, Rosie Ross, Bridget McKemey, Tori Carter, Emily Wamsley and coach, Ella Elks, played at the Guyra Carnival. All the girls had a great time, with a few wins and prizes to go around. The next carnival was Walcha. After this was the Albury Junior Classic and silver stirrup. Hallie Thomson and Anna Benson did 3 days of junior coaching, provided to them by coaches worldwide. Both girls had great weekends in the club comp. Emily Wamsley played in the silver stirrup as a rising star. Bridget McKemey and Hallie Thomson played the shell cup series at Warwick. Bridget's team came out runners-up in the A grade mixed, Emily Wamsley played in the NSW under 21 girls in the Barastoc competition at Warwick, and her team received runners-up. Last weekend was Muswellbrook, where Emily and Bridget's Team won the C grade women's. Tori Carter and Anna Benson had a great weekend playing in the junior comp with some tough competition all weekend.
Wow! What a fabulous way to start off Term 2. The NEGS show team ventured to Gunnedah, and what an awesome time we had. I was very impressed to see so many of our girls getting involved and helping in all aspects of the NEGS team, from supporting fellow showies to helping those in the showjumping rings and everything in between. We had some exciting results over the course of the three days as a result of all the hard work and effort that each of the girls has been putting into their horses and riding (all thanks to our wonderful coach - Justine).
There were too many ribbons to name individually; however, it was a privilege to receive supreme rider of the show myself, along with watching: Sienna Robinson ride to champion hunter hack aboard GT Fredistar and Champion Hunter pony along with supreme breed, aboard NEGS Old Girl, Monty Maguire’s pony, Bellingara Sailor. Saskia Jeffery-Bilich won champion thoroughbred, and Reese Callow champion riding pony. New NEGS show team members, Arabella and Georgiana Blanchard, were both successful in their given classes and slotted very nicely into the team. Beatrix Morton, Arabella Blanchard and I also competed with much success at last weekend's Narrabri show. Our Coona show team practices are well underway, squads and lessons have ramped up in preparation, and both teams of four and pairs selections have begun. I look forward to watching the girls progress and prepare for such an exciting event over the coming weeks.
Uralla Campdrafting and Sporting Club put on a junior draft, and all the girls and I went and had a blast as a whole team. Maree took the horses and girls to this event and took time out of her day to come up and bring the horses into Uralla and back to NEGS. The girls that competed were Callie Jarrett, Caitlin Emerton, Matilda Meyn, Millie Packham and myself. Some of the girl's parents competed in the maidan. Millie was lucky enough to bring home first in the juvenile, and the David Strelitz Memorial Trophy.
One of our girls' mums, Tara (Caitlin’s mum), came out with a win in the Maiden. I took out 5th in the Maiden, all the girls tried their hardest and came out with smiles. I'm so thankful for Maree taking the girls out for a day to compete together as a team.
We have now begun training for Coona Expo. I look forward to seeing our girls' achievements throughout the week. Good Luck, girls, wishing you all the very best.
NEGS Group Ride 23 March 2023 - Junior School
Mrs Annyka Overton
Equestrian Centre Co-Ordinator
The term continues to be busy, with many activities on the go. Our winter sports programs are all now in full swing, and it is wonderful to see most of our sports being able to field full teams. Please remember that you must seek leave from Mrs Nixon not to attend training sessions or games. Once an email seeking leave has been received, it will then be communicated to the relevant coaches to ensure that we can participate fully at the games, should this leave be approved. This does not include students who are absent due to representative sporting commitments, as we understand that these are not flexible.
Our hockey has changed, with our Division 3 team moving into the Under 15’s competition. This has proved successful, with the team becoming more competitive against students of their own age. Thank you to the students who have put their hands up each week to fill in for students who are unable to play. Your commitment to the sport is to be commended as it has ensured that our matches have been played and our school continues to be present at all venues.
Netball has also gone through changes, with us now having 3 teams. The merging of teams was necessary to ensure we have enough players each week, and to allow for the growth and development of students in their divisions. The teams have been playing extremely well each week, with many of our teams coming home with a win.
Rugby commenced last Friday, and the students had a successful start to the season. We have 3 teams playing under the Armidale Junior Rugby Union Football Club banner this year, alongside students from PLC and O’Connor. The U16s play in Inverell today, Friday, 19 May, while our other teams are on a bye or, unfortunately, without enough players.
Many other sporting activities are also occurring, with our Rifle Club underway in a couple of weeks, gym sessions on offer each Monday and Thursday, and soccer students competing in the open and junior competitions in collaboration with PLC students. It is so wonderful to have so many opportunities on offer.
IGSA Cross Country
Congratulations to Emily Simpson, Mackenzie Ellem, Caitlin Emerton and Saskia Jeffery-Bilich, on their efforts at the IGSA Cross Country Carnival. This event was held at Frensham, Mittagong, on Friday, 12 May. These students competed against students from all Sydney Independent Schools, bringing tough competition. With over 150 students competing in each age race, these girls certainly made our school proud.
We are so looking forward to our whole school Athletics Carnival. This year it will be held on our newly finished school oval on Friday 26 May, commencing at 9am. We will commence with a whole school steeplechase, followed by running and field events for all students aged/turning 8-18 years. Pre-K - Year 2 will also join us to enjoy some athletic games on the netball court in the morning. The 3000m, 1500m and high jump have been completed during the weeks leading up to our big event. A program of events will come out very soon, and we look forward to seeing everyone rugged up and enjoying the day. Don’t forget to bring our amazing P&F will be selling their famous '12-hour slow-cooked pulled pork and Southern American slaw rolls', along with a variety of baked goods.
Mrs Liane Nixon
Sport and Co-Curricular Activities Co-Ordinator/ JS PE Teacher
NEGS Father-Daughter Dinner, for students from Year 5 to Year 12.
We invite NEGS fathers, daughters and significant father figures to this special evening.
Friday 26 May in the Dining Hall from 5.45 pm.
Please RSVP by Friday, 19 May. (we have extended the RSVP to Monday morning at 9am, however, we do need to give numbers to catering)
A raffle and auction will be held at the dinner to raise funds for the EC/Agriculture Truck that the school is purchasing. The raffle is open to everyone. Thank you to everyone who has supported and generously donated prizes.
Father Daughter Raffle
1st Prize - Beautiful Stitch and Co hand-crafted leather overnight bag with NEGS logo filled with a luxury pamper hamper
2nd Prize - Rally Car Experience, 8-lap rally driving experience
3rd Prize - Bombay Gin Gift Set
4th Prize - Samshield Cap and Sock set
5th Prize - RG Cap and Sock set
6th Prize - Brown and Co Livestock wooden coaster set
Plus a couple more prizes on the night.
A noisy auction will also be run on the evening. See below for the amazing opportunities you have to win.
LIVE AUCTION ITEM 1
Burtons Saddlery Equine Health Pack Value $930.00
LIVE AUCTION ITEM 2
Horse ride with the Principal of NEGS Value Priceless (and maybe never to be repeated)
LIVE AUCTION ITEM 3
Entertainers Pack Value $1,000.00
LIVE AUCTION ITEM 4
EC Pack Value $1,000.00
LIVE AUCTION ITEM 5
Animal Identification Pack Value $1,000.00
LIVE AUCTION ITEM 6
Barrow of Beverages Value $1,200.00
The P and F are running the canteen at the Athletics Carnival on May 26, and we will be offering our 'infamous' 12-hour slow-cooked pulled pork and Southern American slaw rolls, along with various baked goods.
We ask you to assist in baking goods for the day. Either deliver to the school the afternoon before or bring on the day. If your baked goods can be frozen, they can be delivered to the main school reception in the weeks leading up to the carnival. Ideally, individually wrapped and labelled with ingredients.
We ask for volunteers to help in the Canteen on the day. The canteen will be run from the Sports Multi-Purpose Centre. Please sign up via the link below if you can spare an hour.
Your help is greatly appreciated, please sign up for a shift in the canteen.
Other Term 2 Events
We are also excited about some key events we are holding later in the year, and please make sure you have these dates marked in your diary.
The P and F are thrilled to host the Brooke McClymont and Adam Eckersley Concert in the Arena on Thursday, 21 September. This is a family-friendly event, and already tickets are selling fast.
BUY TICKETS HERE
A special cocktail evening is planned to celebrate this milestone on Friday, 15 September. We hope current parents, past parents, alumni and friends of NEGS will join us to celebrate this special occasion and pay homage to all those who have played a part in shaping it to be the leading Equestrian Centre that our children enjoy today. We are looking for a small number of parents who are happy to join the organising committee for this event. If you have a small amount of time, don't hesitate to contact me, Fiona McCarthur, email@example.com or Lyn O'Neill, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Following the success of our 2022 fair, we look forward to holding this twilight event in November. There will be plenty of opportunities for you to get involved.
In the immediate, we are asking for donations of items that could be used either at the EC Celebration, specifically auction items or items that can be used in our Fair raffle.
Items such as:
- holiday houses, airline tickets, restaurant vouchers
- accommodation, hotels
- beauty, homeware, electrical goods
- movie, theatre, concert tickets, gift cards
- horse and agricultural products
- other experiences
If you or a business you know can help, please reach out.
If you are happy to approach some businesses on behalf of NEGS, we will send you an official letter that you can present to them. Businesses will be acknowledged and thanked within our community.
Lastly, your business or one you know might be happy to be a NEGS Sponsor for our events. We would love to discuss this further and have a Sponsorship Framework we are happy to forward.
If you can assist or would like to find out more, please get in touch with any of the people listed below:
Rasha Shammas email@example.com
Jo Watson firstname.lastname@example.org
Tricia Gerigk email@example.com
Lyn O'Neill firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for your continued support, and I look forward to catching up during Term 2.
NEGS P and F President
Click here for this week's Careers Newsletter
Ms Jessica Walker
Thank you for sharing!