Ashwood High School eNews

Issue 7 2022

Senior School Assistant Principal's Report

Dear Ashwood High School Community,

The community of Ashwood High School continues to adapt to the current educational landscape. We are delighted that the school is in full fight, and our staff and students can continue to learn and grow within the normalities of an onsite school environment now that COVID looks behind us.

Our students in Senior School have returned to Term 4 with a desire to improve their learning and develop socially after several months in the remote learning environment. This has been evident through the way students have displayed a rigour to establish a highly accomplished academic achievement through the forms of Years 11 and 12 Student Assessment Coursework (SACs) and Common Assessment tasks (CAT) at Year 10. Our staff and students should be commended on the way they have continued to develop rigor and expectation, displaying a strong emphasis on school pride and performance through work ethic and symbolic expectations. Our Principal, Dr Brett Moore, has emphasised the excitement evident in Morning Briefings upon the whole school continuing to grow and thrive.

The Senior students have remained optimistic about their work outcomes and the upcoming exam period for Years 7 to 11, which students will undertake in a number of weeks’ time. Our students continue to work extremely hard to develop their exam and study skills in preparation for Week 7 (14 November to 18 November) exams. This exam period will focus on developing study skills and improved memory skills to improve student’s long-term knowledge base and best prepare our students for future endeavours.

As the end of the year comes near, our class of 2022 Year 12 VCE and VCAL students prepare for the final chapter of their schooling life,  the exam process and final project submissions. Our students and teachers in Year 12 have continued to put in enormous efforts over the past few months to do everything possible to create a dynamic learning environment with key focuses towards the final events of exams and project submissions. The consistently changing landscape of the COVID-19 pandemic has made for many difficult obstacles on the way. It has been a credit to our staff and students for the way they have planned, prepared and persisted throughout the year. The whole school community is very proud and excited for them as they head into completing their final hurdle of schooling. I want to commend the Year 12 cohort on the way they have represented the school throughout the final Year 12 events of Year 12 Breakfast, the whole school Year 12 farewell assembly and the Year 12 Valedictory. I would like to thank Dr Brett Moore for his support of these events. A huge thank you to Ms Jessie Tian, the Year 12 Coordinator, for her organisation and skills in leading the preparation of all the Year 12 events throughout the last few weeks. I would like to congratulate the Year 12 cohort of 2022 and our 2022 School Captains, Sam and Liz, on how they have conducted themselves throughout the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and proudly display our school CHOIR values throughout the year. We wish the Year 12 cohort all the best in their exams and as they now venture into the world beyond schooling.

As the Senior School continues to grow and develop, we have been working on the introduction of the new VCE Vocational Major into the Year 11 and 12 curricula for 2023. The new vocational and applied learning program sits within the VCE program. Four new subjects have been added to the VCE that will make up the core of the program.  It takes what is called an ‘Applied Learning’ approach.  Applied learning involves students engaging in relevant and authentic learning experiences. It is a method of learning where theoretical information comes to life for students in a real-world context that relates directly to their own future, is within their own control and is within an environment where they feel safe and respected.  Students' knowledge grows and expands as they take action to learn, reflect on that action and plan how to do it better next time.

The VCE Vocational Major is the replacement for the Intermediate and Senior VCAL.  It is a two-year program over Years 11 and 12.  Only students who enrol in the full program can choose these new VCE VM studies.

The VCE Vocational Major will prepare students to move successfully into apprenticeships, traineeships, further education and training, and university through alternative entry programs or directly into the workforce.  The four main studies are assessed at a school level through authentic assessment activities.  There are no external examinations for the VCE VM studies and therefore, students do not receive a study score and are not eligible to receive an ATAR.

Students who have completed the satisfactory completion requirements of the VCE VM will receive a Victorian Certificate of Education with the words Vocational Major on it to recognise their achievements.

As the Assistant Principal of the Senior School, I wish all Ashwood High School community members and students all the best in the upcoming exam process held in Week 7 of this Term 4 (14 November to 18 November). I would also like to thank the parents and carers for their oncoming support of our students as we continue to grow, develop and thrive as a community throughout Terms 4.

Best regards

Tom O'Toole
Senior School Assistant Principal