Senior School


Senior School

The past fortnight has been another busy one for the Camberwell Girls Senior School. Many weeks of hard work culminated in a wonderful series of performances at the House Music Festival on Friday 20 May. We had a full house of students, staff and family members and all performances were warmly received. The Heidi Lewis Memorial trophy, which is awarded to the winner of the staged song from a musical was Schofield House with their fabulously energetic and humorous rendition of Sister Act’s “Take me to Heaven”. The Darbyshire Family Cup is awarded to the overall winners of the House Music competition and in 2016 this was awarded to Taylor House. The Taylor House Choir performed “Best Day of My Life” with exuberance, Shuyi Wu’s harp solo, the creative a cappella vocal ensemble of Lollipop arranged by Jessica Ngan and their instrumental ensemble of the Les Miserables medley made for an outstanding all round House extravaganza.

We congratulate all Houses on their enormous effort and the achievement of putting together such professional performances. We also thank the many music and supporting staff for assisting the girls throughout their preparations. Mr Trevor Henley, past Director of Music from Camberwell Grammar School, was in awe of the girls, the depth of talent and the passion and energy shown throughout all performances.

On Thursday 18 May we held an Interactive Evening for current Year 6 Ormiston girls and their families. We had over 90 visitors to the Senior School’s new Anne Feehan Building and feedback was very positive, guests commenting on the warm welcome they received and how interesting the interactive sessions were. Families were welcomed by Mrs Dunwoody and heard of her vision for the future of the girls coming into the Senior School. The girls and families also participated in Maths activities, a Chemistry experiment, a Robotics session as well as visiting the TV studio. I always appreciate the opportunity to look at our School during these events, when viewing our School through the eyes of our families, reminding myself of the wonderful resources, and expert teachers that we have in the amazing community that is Camberwell Girls.

In this week’s CamNews Mrs Dunwoody has spoken of the significance of Reconciliation Week. To mark the commencement of the week students were invited to come in Free Dress. Their donation to participate will be used to support the Cathy Freeman Foundation.


Careers Night 2016

The Woodstock building and Robinson Hall were bustling on Wednesday 25th May when the Camberwell Girls Careers Night took place. This annual event is the result of a combined effort between the Careers Centre and the Alumnae Office. Designed for students in Years 9 & 10 (and optional for Years 11 & 12), the night is about career exploration and is part of the career education program run for the senior students at the School. The Careers Night aims to allow representatives from tertiary institutions to showcase their courses across a broad range of career areas, provide students with an insight into a day in the life of a…… lawyer, journalist, engineer and finally, to encourage parents to have career conversations with their daughters.

Attending 3 different career talks over the course of the night, students were able to hear the most up to date information from nearly 50 guest speakers across 26 different career areas. It was a great night and there was a terrific buzz as students and parents moved from one session to the next. Conversations were definitely going on! It was wonderful to catch up with some of our not so old ‘old girls’ such as Dr Eliza Hawkes, Medical Oncologist (Class of 1995) who spoke at the biomedicine/medicine session; Jacqueline Chan, Product Marketer (Class of 2009) who talked about her extensive experiences in marketing; and Jessica Bird (Class of 2006) who shared her knowledge about work in the design field. We are also grateful for our parent community and their involvement this year, with thanks to Mr Karl Linke (Physiotherapy), Mrs Katrina Vannin (Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences) and Mr and Mrs Torre (Games & Animation) who spoke about their work.

The night was intended to ‘whet the appetite’ and students are now encouraged to do further research. They can participate in some of the ‘Experience Days’ offered by the various institutions (held during school breaks) and attend Open Days (held in August). A great way to start their career journey!

A warm thank you to Mrs Trish Dolan for her organisation of the night, Mrs Karen Bartram for her assistance in this process and to the speakers for dedicating their time for the night.


Year 8 Camp

Camp week is typically looked forward to by all the girls and staff as a week away from school, yet this time the Year 8 girls were slightly apprehensive due to the unfavourable weather forecasts.

Year 8 Camp was at Kangaroobie, a working dairy farm on the Ocean Road in Princetown. The high winds and storms meant that the much anticipated camp out in tents did not take place. All camp activities focused heavily on team work and perseverance, as the activities involved determination to overcome any challenges. Canoeing, low ropes and the obstacle course all meant that we relied on each other. The hike to a beach included crossing a swollen river, climbing many hills and much bush bashing. In the obstacle course, it was proved that working together and supporting each other was far more efficient than attempting it individually. Despite the fact the conditions were not in our favour, the entire Year 8 cohort worked together smoothly and agreed this camp might have been challenging but it was an enjoyable and rewarding experience.

The Year 8 girls would like to thank the Kangaroobie staff, Rev Helen Creed, Year 8 Coordinator and Mr Shane Maycock, Director of Education Outdoors, as well as all the other staff who attended the camp for their good humour, encouragement and planning in such adverse conditions.


The Duke of Edinburgh Award

The Award program was first introduced in the United Kingdom in 1956 as The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. The aim was to motivate teenagers to become involved in a balanced program of voluntary self-development activities to take them through the potentially difficult period between adolescence and adulthood.

Today the basic principles of The Award remain the same, but the activities and delivery continue to evolve and adapt to suit the changing demands of modern society and the varying needs of young people. The Award is now a major international program, with over 120 countries participating. It is used by Schools and other organisations working with young people throughout the world.

Camberwell Girls Grammar School Students continue to participate in the award with great success at all levels.

We congratulate the following girls upon recently receiving their respective awards. The award is recognition for all their handwork, dedication and service to their endeavours and their community:

Zoe Sakell, Year 11 Silver Duke of Edinburgh Award

Catherine Chen, Year 11 Silver Duke of Edinburgh Award

Natasha Lathouras, Year 11 Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Award

Natasha Huang, Year 10 Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Award


Genetics Program, Oxford University

At the end of April we mentioned that Veda Surapaneni, Year 10, had been successful in receiving an award in the BHP Billiton Science and Engineering awards competition.

Veda has now shared with us that due to her love of Science, she went looking for an additional challenge and applied to two further science programs, one at Stanford University and the other at Oxford University. Veda has been offered a place in the Oxford program and in August this year, she will be attending a genetics program in Oxford, England. Congratulations Veda and we look forward to hearing more about your adventures.


Monash Scholars Program

The Monash Scholars Program is a highly respected program for high achieving secondary school students. The University offers places to students with high potential, providing them with unique access to opportunities for personal and academic development.

The program begins in Year 10 and continues through until the completion of Year 12. As part of the program students will be invited to a number of events and workshops, totalling around 20 hours per year, mostly outside of school time. Successful students will have an opportunity for personal and academic development and gain additional skills and confidence to assist in making the right choices for their future studies and careers.

We have invited all Year 10 students to consider this amazing opportunity, whilst drawing their attention to the student criteria as outlined in the email sent to all Year 10 students.

We look forward to reading the many applications of girls aspiring to be involved in this prestigious program.


Big Science Competition

On Monday 23 May, all Years 7 to 10 students challenged themselves in the Big Science Competition. This 50 minute international competition tests students’ critical thinking and problem-solving skills as well as their science knowledge.

The Big Science Competition is organised by Australian Science Innovations, a non-profit organisation committed to providing high quality science extension programs that inspire, challenge and raise the aspirations of students in science.

Each student who took part will receive a certificate as well as detailed feedback on their performance in the competition. They also go into a draw to win hundreds of iTunes, Google Play and movie vouchers.

Our School will receive a comprehensive report for each year level showing how each student performed on each question, the percentage of students in the cohort who answered correctly, and a comparison with the national results. For more information visit the Australian Science Innovations website here.

We thank Mrs Karin Lemanis for organizing this new opportunity for our girls.


20/40 Program “Gifted and Talented” Conference

On Friday 20 May, four students were given the opportunity to partake in a Gifted and Talented conference at Camberwell Grammar School. The conference explored many big questions such as Who am I? What can I hope for? What is my self? What do I believe?

The first presentation we heard talked about the foundations of knowledge. It made us question, What is knowledge? The two major views that we heard about were empiricism and rationalism.

Julie Arliss explored the connection between body and the “self”. From an Empiricism point of view, the self is considered as a total of all perceptions and sensation from birth, you will never find the self if you go looking for it. The act of looking for the self therefore requires a self doing, the looking, this is one way that proves our existence. Some people also believe that language constructs a person, from the first words of “me, myself and I”.

We have learnt about the different foundations of knowledge such as empiricism and rationalism and also connected with the concept of existence. We would love to further discuss these questions and obtain an answer to these now considered to be intractable problems.

Our teachers and students are certainly asking and exploring some big questions. We look forward to reading more about their discussions in future editions.


Parent Education Session

Let’s Chat About It hosted by Lynette Etheridge is in Barbara Sutton Hall on Tuesday 21st June. A flier for the event is attached. Bookings are essential for this event, please RSVP, but this will be strictly an Adults Only presentation, limited to only 80 places.


2017 USA Science/History Study Tour 

An information session will be held for parents and students on Wednesday 13 July at 7.00pm, Robinson Hall Senior School. More information can be found here or please contact Mrs Lemanis:


Wishing you all a fabulous weekend,


Cathy Poyser
Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School

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