October 22, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians,

An annual tradition that we have at CGGS is the final school bell for our Year 12 students as they congregate in the quadrangle near the clock tower with others watching on. It is significant because as a ‘bell-less’ school, we only ring the bell twice each year – one for the commencement of the Year 7 Welcome Ceremony and the other for our final Year 12 class.

Continuing to modify our practices in 2020, in early August, as we were entering into the second phase of lockdown, we rang the bell for the Year 12 students as they stood in the quadrangle, unsure if we were able to celebrate this tradition in October. Fortunately, we will be able to repeat it early next week!

Our Class of 2020 have led the school with great enthusiasm and dedication, not easy in such a disrupted year. They have shown their strength of character, ability to adapt and tackle hard things. We are very thankful for their legacy, including as role models for younger year levels. I am also very grateful for the staff who have supported and assisted them in re-designing opportunities.

With courses, enhancement programs and trial exams completed, as well as a number of oral and performance exams already done, our Year 12 students and teachers are now focused on the final examination assessments and final celebrations.

Tonight, our pre-recorded Years 10-12 Presentation Evening will showcase the talents and contributions of our students and their achievements as we reflect on 2020. Next week we look forward to our adapted Leavers’ Service and Valedictory Dinner (we have partnered with Ten Minutes by Tractor, a fine dining restaurant on the Mornington Peninsula for a dining at home experience) connected by technology.

Many staff have worked incredibly hard over months to re-design these important milestone events and I am very grateful to Mrs Poyser and her Senior School Team for their work in this area. In particular I would like to mention Victoria Hargreaves for her oversight of all aspects of each event and Kim Perkins for endless hours of preparing pre-recorded segments and producing final programs, including live feeds and links.  These will certainly be events to remember!

In 2020, our students have been led with great energy, enthusiasm and compassion by three incredible young women, Felicia Spiridonos, Laurya Dang-Nguyen and Loren Palma. It is during challenging times that you see the integrity and strength of leadership. Like their theme GLOW, they have really radiated hope and optimism this year as they redesigned ideas and initiatives and supported others. We could not have asked for more.

As our Class of 2020 prepare for their final examinations, over 23% of the cohort have already received early offers into a number of different universities. This is testament to their hard work as well as commitment to other interests and co-curricular activities including service learning. We wish them well for these final weeks.

Feedback from Parents
In reviewing our remote learning and re-designed programs, we are also looking to the future to see what elements we should continue or continue to refine that enable greater learning opportunities for our students. I invite you to participate in a short survey to share your thoughts and ideas.

In addition, throughout this term we will be working with small focus groups of parents from each year level to gain greater insights into your daughter’s experience during remote learning and opportunities for the future. These focus groups will be facilitated by Mrs Glenda Bushell, our former Head of Junior School via zoom and it is our plan to work with a group of 6-8 parents in each year level from Early Learning 3 through to Year 12. If you are interested in participating in a focus group you will also have the opportunity to indicate this on the survey or email Mrs Bushell directly on

I am so excited about welcoming our Years 8, 9 and 10 students back to school next week. Another significant milestone this year!

Warm regards
Debbie Dunwoody