Four weeks into the school year and I’m happy to report that students across all year levels have settled into the College’s program and their studies. The College is extremely proud of our Year 12 students from 2014, the results and outcomes they achieved are outstanding and varied. Our Dux for 2014 Bryce Robertson achieved an outstanding score of 93.70 and is set to study Science at the University of Melbourne this year. Other students have taken up courses in Biomedicine, Acting, Business, Education, Criminology and Psychology to name a few. Our Year 7 students are making a successful transition from primary to secondary school and their participation in the Camp this week has already had a significant impact on the Year 7 students and their transition into College life. At the other end of the student spectrum, our Year 12 students will receive their first Progress Report, on Xuno, next week. The Year 12 Progress Report was first introduced as an additional source of information to both students and parents/guardians. The report aims to inform students and parents as early as possible about student’s performance, attitude and work ethic. It is important that the student and their parents/guardians read this report together and discuss the information provided about on their performance. If appointments with specific subject teachers are required as a result of the information contained in the report then please contact Ms Watson or Mrs Jones.

Last week the College held interviews to select our Years Nine and Ten Beacon Leaders for 2015. Mrs Dehne from Echuca College and Mrs Sweeney from the Echuca Moama Beacon Foundation interviewed over 20 students who nominated for the nine positions. I would like to congratulate from Year 9, Recce Campbell, Trent Campbell, Jess Davidson, Angela Favaloro, Tom Harris and from Year Ten, Stephanie Chong, Kelly Gould, Luke Judd and Tyler Thompson. I would also like to congratulate all the students who nominated.

Our mobile phone policy has been very successful over the last two years and I would thank all staff, students and parents for their continued support. For our new families’ information, the College introduced this policy to avoid unnecessary disruption to students study from phones being used in class. The policy outlines the processes to follow if, the phone is heard, seen or used; it is confiscated by the teacher until the end of the day. Continued misuse will result in parent interviews and other disciplinary action. Our slogan is – ‘Heard, seen, used ….gone!’

Each year the College is asked about insurance in relation to student injury. Parents need to be aware that the Department Education and Training (DET) does not provide personal accident insurance for students. Parents and guardians are responsible for paying the cost of medical treatment for injured students, including any transport costs. These costs may be recoverable where an injury is caused by the negligence (carelessness) of the Department, a school council or their employees or volunteers.   Of course parents are free to investigate private insurance if they wish to do so. If needed, the College has information available at the General Office regarding private school health insurance.

As summer gets hotter, it seems ridiculous that we have to remind students about the perils of skin cancer and the need to wear hats while in the yard. So far this term, not all students have come prepared with a hat and clearly don’t appreciate the risk they run by not having a hat. In Australia last year there were 38,000 new cases of skin cancer-related illnesses recorded and 1000 Australians died from skin cancer related illnesses. These are appalling figures considering the publicity given to skin cancer through various campaigns and the work carried out in the Australian community by a range of agencies, including the education system. Again I ask for parental support in encouraging our young people to ‘cover up’ and to wear their hats when in the yard.