Gippsland Grammar news: March 5, 2021

Mar 5, 2021 | Bairnsdale News, Community News, Garnsey News, Principal's News, St Anne's News

Over the past few weeks, we have enjoyed numerous sporting competitions such as SEISA and ICCES and, of course, the Victorian Rowing Championships held last weekend. With the loss of many of these activities last year, I found myself, reflecting on how wonderful it is to see our students playing sport and competing with other schools. In the book Health and Education Interdependence, Professor Richard Midford, Dr Georgie Nutton, Dr Brendon Hyndman and Professor Sven Silburn highlight the lifelong connections between health and educational performance that often get overlooked.

“Until recently, children’s bodies and minds were often divided as separate entities in relation to thinking,” says author and editor Dr Brendon Hyndman of Charles Sturt University. “However, there is more and more research endorsing the link between physical activity and a range of benefits to cognitive, psychological, academic and educational outcomes.”

The research consistently supports a positive relationship between physical activity and mental performance, including benefits to emotional wellbeing and children’s behaviour.

“Physical activity is an area of health most of us are familiar with and the research showcases how increasing our movement habits can improve brain cell growth, functioning and overall mental performance,” Dr Hyndman writes. “There is emerging evidence over the past two decades that links movement with improvements in children’s academic outcomes, in memory, in problem solving, in planning and in self-regulation.

An important aspect of a child’s primary years is connectedness to school, gained through a sense that teachers not only care about their academic performance, but also value their development as complete, well-adjusted individuals”, Dr Hyndman said. “Yet positive learning strategies can be prioritised beyond timetabled classes and curricular demands.”

The authors refer to a study of 620 Australian primary school children who received teaching from specialist PE teachers, in which the students demonstrated noticeable improvements in literacy and numeracy. Another investigated studies that connected children’s participation in physical education with learning domains over a 20-year period. 

The book provides key insights into the learning considerations associated with how both parents and teachers can positively impact health outcomes, even how parenting behaviours influence the expression of genes.

Despite the many physical activity options available to children, studies reveal that many children are not active enough, and high portions of children are exceeding the recommended levels of screen time. In Australia, less than one in five children are meeting the recommended national physical activity guidelines (report grade of D-), with a similarly dire result for exceeding the recommended guidelines for screen time.

We now know that research continues to find, habits and behaviours formed early in life will continue to track into later stages of the lifespan. What this means is that we can all benefit from the mental boosts that physical activity can bring, right into adulthood.

May you and your family have a wonderful long weekend.
Leisa Harper

You may have seen Year 11 student Milla Bennett on WIN News list week after she recently broke a Victorian slalom record at Mulwala. This weekend the young water ski sensation will be back on the water participating in the world-famous Moomba Masters. Good luck Milla!

There has been a sense of excitement in our St Anne’s Campus Early Learning Centres this week, as we finally welcomed families back into the building for our ‘Stay and Play’ evenings. For some parents, this is the first time they have seen inside our beautiful learning environments and meet the educators who are caring for their child this year. I’m not sure who has been looking forward to this more; the children, parents or educators!

Each class had its own ‘Stay and Play’ evening, which allowed us to be COVID-safe, with our large playground and classrooms to spread out in. The children have been excited about their ‘night kinder’ for weeks and couldn’t wait to have their special grown-up all to themselves for an evening. There were lots of ‘come and see how I play in the sandpit’ and ‘let’s do a painting together’ happening.  Parents were also able to meet their child’s friends and begin to form relationships with other School families.

The evening was very well attended and a fantastic opportunity to develop Community and connections. We hope to be able to commence having regular ‘parent/carer helpers’ next term when restrictions allow so our ELC families can continue to be a part of their child’s education and experience firsthand the opportunities and care an education at Gippsland Grammar provides.

Our Bairnsdale families still have their ‘Stay and Play’ evening ahead, so please mark this into your diaries:
Transition ‘Stay and Play’ Thursday 18 March 5-6pm
Reception ‘Stay and Play’ Tuesday 23 March 5-6pm

I know that the children will be very excited to show you around their ‘special place’ and we are looking forward to seeing you all there.

ELC families enjoy the ‘Stay and Play’ evenings. (From top) Kelli and Spencer Mitchener; Rio, Thazin and Alex Chandra; Satthya and Dheeran Silvalingham; and Sophie, Elizabeth and Luke Keen.

BAIRNSDALE NEWS, by Head of Campus Virgina Evans
The Foundation students had their first full week at school this week. We have seen some tired little faces and yet they are still full of steam at recess and lunchtime; obviously enjoying the many new friendships across the campus (pictured below). Foundation teacher Mrs Libby Crowe is very proud of the way they have all settled in so well, demonstrating independence and resilience in managing their busy days.

Here is some feedback from the students when we asked them to reflect on their first week at school:
‘Playing and learning together is fun.’
‘I like to learn and to play.’
‘I like to make new friends; we have fun together.’
‘At school we share.’
‘I like playing with my buddy.’

Once again, I relished the opportunity to be with our students on Wednesday at the Divisional Swimming Carnival held at the Bairnsdale outdoor pool. Another successful day was had with most swimmers making it through to the regional level. As the day was quite chilly many of our swimmers felt the cold yet were kindly supported by their peers with towels and jackets waiting for them at the end of the pool. Without parents able to be there, it was really pleasing to see our students looking after each other without prompting. Another reason to be proud of our students out of the pool (pictured below).

Our Green Team have got off to a great start this year being very active in the orchard and in presenting today’s Fellowship. They have combined well as a group and shared their thoughts on Clean Up Australia Day. As a whole campus we headed off after Fellowship to clean up our Community, hitting the ovals, the park, the hill and along the river.

Mrs Libby Crowe and her husband Dan kindly hosted a BBQ dinner last night for our staff to celebrate a great start to 2021 and to just enjoy being together in a relaxed social environment. Of course, it was our therapy dog Wilson who welcomed us at the gate of his home with his big smile and wagging tail. We are most grateful for the generosity of Dan and Libby.

Taylor Dennett travelled to Canberra last weekend to compete in the calf judging at the Royal Canberra Show (pictured below). She returned home with many ribbons reflecting a successful weekend. Taylor needed to identify the better calves and explain to the judges the reason she chose them. Taylor also paraded a calf raised by the students at Murrumburrah High School.

ST ANNE’S NEWS by acting Head of Campus Sheryn Ray
I would like to thank all students, staff, and families for their support this week while Mr Van Berkel took some well-earned long service leave. It was very exciting to send our Year 5 and 6 students off to Melbourne events and to participate locally in Clean Up Australia Day.  What we have missed during COVID-19 is the ability to travel and participate in Community events. Here is a recap of our journey this week, and I appreciate all those staff/volunteers who made these experiences happen for our students.

There was much anticipation this week as our Year 5 students travelled to the Melbourne Zoo by train and, of course, Zoo didn’t disappoint. The students went on an organised educational tour before exploring the wildlife from Australia and around the world. Thanks to Mrs Dawson and Mrs Roberts for organising such a wonderful experience for our students.

Our Year 6 students also had the privilege of going to Melbourne this week for an overnight Melbourne Camp (pictured below). A highlight was being able to participate in Parcour, which is an activity that sees the students move quickly over, under and around obstacles such as walls and railings, and leaping across open spaces. They also went to the Old Melbourne Gaol, the Victoria Market, IMAX and Melbourne Museum. Thanks to Miss McNaughton and Mrs Jago for providing this Melbourne Experience for our students.

Leadership Fellowship
Year 6 leaders, Green Team and SRC were inducted at Fellowship last week. For those teachers who have been at Gippsland Grammar for many years, it was a special treat being able to listen to our former St Anne’s students Taryn and Fergus Grubb and Ben Crozier speak so passionately about the opportunities they have been offered at Gippsland Grammar. Fergus was a Sports Captain at St Anne’s and is now our Vice School Captain. His twin sister Taryn was a St Anne’s Wellington Binks House Captain and is now a Prefect. And Ben was a St Anne’s Campus Captain and is now a Prefect. Pictured below are our Japanese Captains Max Knibbs and Darcee Young.

The Parents and Friends (P&F) are organising an Easter Raffle and asking for donations (i.e. chocolate, colouring books, Easter baskets etc.) Tickets will be sent home soon, and the raffle will be drawn at the Easter Picnic on the St Anne’s school grounds on Friday March 26 2021, 5.30-7pm.

Today we watched a pre-recorded Fellowship from the Green Team.  Parents can access the link via the St Anne’s VOS page.  Each member of the Green Team introduced themselves and spoke about what they wanted to achieve this year. The focus of the Fellowship was on our involvement in Clean Up Australia Day, which all students from Foundation to Year 5 participated in to clean our School, our School’s perimeter, the Port of Sale and Lake Guthridge. Thank you to Mrs Condron for sending such a positive message to our students.

On Tuesday, 27 swimmers participated in the Sale & District Swimming Carnival. The swimmers were keen and achieved excellent results bringing home the first place swimming shield.  Aliesha Turnbull, Ellie Brown, Cooper Beckman, Kody Said and Matthew Canfield, were all age champions, congratulations!  The whole swim team now progress to the Wellington District Carnival on Tuesday.  Thanks Mrs Langshaw and Mrs O’Toole, for the encouragement, coaching and support of our team. Pictured below are our age champions Matthew Canfield, Aleisha Turnbull, Ellie Brown , Cooper Beckman and Kody Said.

Our parent/teacher interviews for students from Year 1 to Year 6 are being held via Zoom on Tuesday March 9 and Thursday March 11. The purpose of these interviews is to discuss your child’s progress and examine ways in which their future learning may be assisted.  We regard this as a significant occasion where a valuable exchange of information can take place from both a parent and teacher perspective. Interviews will be held using Zoom, and families will need to log onto VOS to gain access to our teacher’s Zoom links. This will be available next week. We have added important information about our parent/teacher interviews on VOS.

GARNSEY NEWS by Acting Head of Campus Kate Ray
During this week’s Assembly we presented badges to our Co-Curricular Captains. These are students who are passionate about their area and are also willing to support and lead others in the School who share their interests. These students are nominated for these roles by the staff member in charge of the co-curricular activity. Without students who can also lead in these areas, the success of these activities could be impacted. Fortunately, each year there are students who are willing and capable to fill these roles.

This year our Co-Curricular Captains are:

Athletics Captain

Ruby Luckie

Ben Lang

Boarding Captain

Josh Mekken

Ella Cheney

Chapel Captain

Mitchell Harvey

Chess Captain

Matthew Roberts

Rhian Shee

Cross Country Captain

Ruby Luckie

Kai MacDonald

Dance Captain

Grace MacLachlan

Hannah Fairweather

Debating Captain

Jack Burton

Irene Li

Drama Captain

Rose Mackie

Cooper Barr

Equestrian Captain

Ella O’Doherty

Joanna Board

Music Captain

Emily Jackson

Enola Jefferis

Shooting Captain

Katie Kerby

Pip Treasure

Swimming Captain

Hannah Ng

Hannah Shepherd

We are fortunate at Gippsland Grammar to have students that travel from such a variety of places each day to our Garnsey Campus. I would love someone to calculate how many hours some of our students would spend travelling to school by bus each year.

To help our bus travel to happen in a safe way, we need our bus captains to assist our younger students to be safe bus travellers. The drivers of our buses get to know their students so well over their years of travelling that we ask them to make their recommendations each year on who they feel would be the most suitable Bus Captain for their bus run. We thank the following students for their willingness to take on this role on their bus for 2021.

Bus Captains


Lakes Bus – Eden McMillan Pip Treasure

Morwell Bus

Sienna Privitera

Metung Bus

Peggy McDonald Poppy Wharfe

Paynesville Bus

Bethany Hickey

Mia Mackintosh

Yarram Bus

Hamish McLeod

Rory McLeod

Yinnar Bus

Ella Hall

Wy Yung Bus

Lara Hall

Tristen Wyld

We are thrilled to be able to share with you all that the Gippsland Grammar Rowing Team has been awarded joint 2nd in the State Rowing Championship, which is a wonderful accomplishment for all our rowers. Thanks especially to our Head of Rowing Mr Nick Bartlett, who not only coached the students to this victory but he also even participated at the last moment (due to another rower not being well) in the Open’s team, which finished in first place.

We will be able to include a full report in following weeks – including an update from the rowers who are competing in the Nationals being held in Tasmania this year.

Looking for a School?

Request a Gippsland Grammar Information Pack