Principals Report

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ASPIRE NEWS-August Edition 11
Colin Burke

Looking Ahead To 2022

We are already a fair way into planning for 2022 and a significant aspect of that planning involves the recruitment of leaders, teachers and support staff.

I am very pleased to announce that a number of appointments have already been made to leadership positions:

Assistant Principals

I am excited to announce that Kyle Schutz and Sonia Loudon have been substantively appointed as Assistant Principals to the school. Kyle and Sonia are well known as established leaders within the school and have contributed massively to the development of the school so far. They join Angela Lane, myself and Lexia Collins as the Executive Team of the College.

Leading Teachers and Learning Specialists

We have also appointed four new members to the leadership team. The successful candidates are:

Learning Specialist – Literacy and PLCs: Rachelle Cole

Learning Specialist – Numeracy and PLCs: Alex Mangione

Leading Teacher – Junior School and SWPBS: James Devlin

Leading Teacher – Middle School/Careers and Pathways: Rory Henderson

Rachelle and Alex are very well known to our Elevation community for their outstanding work in the English and Maths teams in our foundation years.

James Devlin comes to us from Whittlesea Secondary College, where he has been a House Leader for a number of years, and leader within their SWPBS structure.

Rory Henderson comes to us from Mill Park Secondary College. Rory has worked as a Year 12 and VCAL Coordinator, VCAL and Biology teacher. Prior to this he worked in schools in disadvantaged areas of the UK.

We are very excited to expand our leadership team and staff for 2022 with these great education professionals.

Review Report Received – Directions For New Strategic Plan Identified

During Term 2 our school underwent an external School Review, which all schools undertake every four years and new schools undertake in their 2nd year of operation. The review identified many strong practices from a whole school and teacher level and the positive responses from our community in our first 18 months of operation.

The review identified some key directions for the next four years of the school, which will form the basis of our next strategic plan. The plan will be developed by the leadership team at the school and should be finalised by the end of term 3.

The three broad goals are:

Improve Learning Growth for all students

Improve student engagement in learning

Improve health and wellbeing of all students

Master Planning and Building Planning Continues For Stage 2 Construction

The past few weeks have seen a lot of progress towards the completion of the master plan for stage 2 development and refinement of classroom design. The design process is nearly finalised and the project will be put out to tender shortly. The expected timeline is that a builder will be appointed in December for works to start in January 2022.

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MP Ros Spence with Colin Burke

I will provide more detail, including some of the master planning documents once they are finalised and the tender process is concluded.

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Architects Design

Student Learning Conferences

Thanks to the families who participated in our Student Learning Conferences this last week. We obviously prefer to do these face to face, however we do our best in the current circumstances. I hope that parents and cares have found the Student Learning Conference format insightful and helpful in identifying next steps of support.  

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Assistant Principals Report

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Angela Lane

Every Minute Matters

Early in the year I wrote about how attendance is one of the key major indicators for success at school and later in adulthood. Studies have strongly shown that young people who attend school more frequently have better outcomes after school – they earn more money, have better job prospects, are less likely to misuse drugs and alcohol and are generally healthier.

There is no doubt that COVID lockdowns have made things more difficult for families. As parents/carers you are running your house, looking after your family and trying to make sure your child is online for classes as well.

But it is more important than ever that every student is attending every minute of their classes.

Students are building habits that they will take into adulthood through attending school regularly. They come to school to learn more than numeracy and literacy – they are learning all sorts of skills like working in teams, meeting deadlines, strengthening work habits that will help them when they are an adult.

COVID is changing how we interact on a business level and tertiary level education – with more communication than ever being about managing emails, online meetings, working remotely, working with more flexible hours, and online professional development/learning.

So How Can You Support Attendance During Learning From Home?

Being on time means being early: my father always said that it was better to be an hour early, than one minute late. When a class starts at 9am it means that all students should be logged on by 8:59am at the latest. Being on time shows commitment, respect and allows for a greater connection with the online classroom space. Come in part way through an instruction

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Great attendance is helped by taking actual breaks: The brain is more ready to learn once it has had a real break. If your child has spent the past 90 minutes in front of a screen, make sure they get outside for at least 15 minutes. Make sure they spend their recess and lunch breaks off screens. They will be happier, healthier and more ready to learn when it is time to go back to the desk.

Routine, routine, routine. The learning from home timetable is designed to help home create routine. Most classes are put in the first session of the day to encourage students to get up at the same time each day. To know what they have ahead. Routine gives predictability, predictability gives calmness, calmness leads to healthier and happier students.

Check in on what they are doing. Attendance is not just about showing up. It is also about engagement. Attendance is not about being in the online classroom space, but playing computer games on another tab. Make sure you check in with your child regularly. Get them to explain what task they are working on and what they have learnt so far.

As always, if you have concerns about your child please call the College on 8339 8000. We will support you.

Don’t let this lockdown become a reason for non-attendance. Every minute matters.

How Can You Check What Your attendance Is?

The first way to check is via Compass. Clicking on the ‘Profile’ and then the ‘Attendance Tab’.

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When you scroll down you can see each subject. The important place to look is at the last three columns:

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Junior School / Engagement and Wellbeing

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Kimberly Calder
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Kyle Schutz

Careers and Pathways Work

Year 8 students have been busy in Personal Development sessions investigating potential careers and pathway options, learning about the differences between traineeships, apprenticeships, TAFE, university etc. They have created a career profile on: which has given students ‘suggested occupations’ based on their answers for a number of questions asked. I should point out that the list is not designed to limit discussions, rather think about a range of fields students may not even know exist.

I would strongly encourage families to start a conversation around this topic, and especially when we can’t get outside much, use some of the time to do some research into in demand fields, such as childcare, construction, allied health etc. Although further work will continue at school, open discussions with family at this early stage makes choosing subjects and pathways in later years so much easier.

To assist your child in their career development, myfuture provides resources to explore career pathways, and tools to develop self-knowledge to help with career decision-making. Here is the link to a recording of the ‘Introduction to myfuture’:


On Monday 16th of August, all students viewed our Term 3 virtual assembly during their Personal Development lesson. During the assembly, the student representative council and teachers discussed important school topics, some of those included:

Celebrating National Principals Day
Bullying Survey data
Cultural Exchange – Hindu, Raksha Bandham: A day for brothers and sisters
Important dates coming up: Year 7 La Trobe University excursion, R U OK day and our HeadSpace incursion
Tips on how to look after your wellbeing during lockdown
Student Learning Conferences
Lockdown 5.0 Attendance Challenge winners: 8A and 7G
Shout out from Peter Hitchener
That feeling when Peter Hitchener shows up at your assembly, and he knows your behavioural expectations!

Thank you to all of the members of our SRC and students who created clips to be included in our assembly, and of course to Peter Hitchener!

How To Demonstrate Our School Values During Lockdown

At Elevation Secondary College we live and work by four values, they are: Achievement, Acceptance, Responsibility and Community. It’s important that during lockdown we continue to live by our values.

The SRC have put together some tips on how we can continue to demonstrate our four values during these difficult times:

Some ways that we can demonstrate our Value of Community during lockdown are:

  • Checking in on friends and family by texting or calling them
  • Helping our family with housework

To demonstrate Achievement, we can:

  • Keep using our school diaries to keep on top of homework and upcoming CATs
  • Ensure we are on time to our Google Meets

Some ways we can demonstrate Responsibility are:

  • Attending all Google Meets
  • Completing all of the tasks that are assigned to you

To demonstrate Acceptance we can:

  • Accept our current situation and that we cannot be at school
  • Use the Google Meets chat respectfully

Lockdown fatigue

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Let’s face it, lockdown is not pleasant at all. Families in Hume have experienced even more days in lockdown than the rest of Melbourne. This is obviously going to take a toll on everyone, which will be felt in a number of different ways.

You’ve probably heard of things we can all do to keep our lives as close to normal as possible including: keeping a routine, sleeping a bit more than usual, exercising at least 60 minutes a day and connecting on the phone/video calls with friends and family.

Most of us are currently experiencing something called ‘lockdown fatigue’, caused by uncertainty and constant changing of goalposts. A way to reduce lockdown fatigue is to focus on certainty. The recent lockdown extension, although frustrating, at least gave us some certainty for the next few weeks.

Book in a phone call with someone you haven’t spoken to in a while.
Schedule a movie with the family.
Grab out the scrabble board that’s been sitting in the cupboard for two years.
Put some plans in place that lockdown restrictions can’t change.

It will give you the feeling of more control in your life when so much has been temporarily taken away. As always, please reach out to us or the many services available before things feel like they are too much to handle.

Useful Tips and Links to Help Manage Lockdown

Parent Zone newsletter:

Curriculum and Student Learning

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Matthew Williamson
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Sonia Loudon

Learning From Home

In the midst of lockdown, it has been disheartening at times to cancel and reschedule so many enrichment activities. Fortunately, we have been able to pivot quickly and enter online extension activities and competitions to ensure students have access to excellent opportunities, even when they are learning from home.

Australian Maths Competition

Students sat the Australian Maths Competition online this year. The Australian Mathematics Competition (AMC) has been held annually since 1978 and is now one of the largest of its type in the world. Students in NSW and Victoria were able to enter a special competition for remote learning and we eagerly await our students’ results……..

Chinese Speaking Competition

Many Year 7 and 8 students have also been selected for the Chinese Reading Awards (朗读比赛)

This competition is a general reading competition open to non-background students in Years 7, 8 & 9 who are learning Chinese in an Australian school. The Finalists will be required to read a short, unseen passage at the competition and this year, they will record this for an online competition.

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Congratulations to the following students for their selection in the school finals:

Year 7:

Ashim, Rishi, Zeyla, Sukhleen, Gurkirat, Morientes, Lucas, Yahya, Kaan, Natalia, Nadeen, Daniel AP, Harkirat, George M, Dominic S, Derin, Aarav D,

Year 8:

Shannon, Ria, Thejashree, Santa, Issac, Monet, Damla, Manpreet, Akshat, Lara, Terry, Kiana, Hannah, Indiana, Rukmini and Kristina

We wish you the best of luck.

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Ms Luo and Zeyla in another Chinese competition run earlier this year

Community Notices

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Whats On For Young People

Headspace Craigieburn have come up with a few free activities that young people can join to help them relax with others and have some fun during lockdown. Download the following PDF for more information:

Sustainable Schools

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The College is conscious of the need to provide an efficient process for families to be able to buy and sell their second- hand textbooks, uniforms and other student resources.

That is why we are delighted to be able to provide parents with the ability to buy and sell their second-hand items via the Sustainable Schools website:

So far the results have been very good and we encourage families to take advantage of this method of buying and selling second-hand items.

Our School is Becoming ResourceSmart

This year our school is taking action to become more environmentally sustainable through a Victorian Government initiative called ResourceSmart Schools.

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ResourceSmart Schools is a program that helps our school embed sustainability in everything we do. We are aiming to reduce our resource use (like electricity, waste water) plus support indigenous plants and animals. This will also help us to save money. We also want to involve students, families and other members of our school and local community.

We are working with Ms. Kelsey Smith from CERES Community Environment Park on the actions of the Core and Waste Modules.

This year, we are aiming to create a strong foundation for our sustainability program, continue to build on our sustainability achievements, monitor our resource use by using a free website called ResourceSmart Online, get our community involved, participate in exciting events, supporting our students, including sustainability in our curriculum.  

We can’t wait to… share our achievements with you, reduce our school’s impact, help make the Earth a better place for all, contribute to a sustainable future for all.

Read more about ResourceSmart Schools at

Important Dates

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Diary Dates for Parents


Tuesday 7th September (Periods 1 and 2) – Year 7 & 8 Online HeadSpace Incursion

Curriculum Days 2021 – Student Free 

Friday 19th November

Public Holidays 2021

Tuesday 2nd November – Melbourne Cup Day


8th September – Year 7

15th September – Year 8

Term Dates 2021

Term 3 Commences 12th July – Last Day 17th September   *** Early Finish 2:30pm ***

Term 4 Commences 4th October – Last Day 17th December   *** Early Finish 12:30pm ***