Friday, 13 December 2019

Important Dates

Wednesday 29 January                         First Day Term 1            

From the Principal

Dear Parents/Guardians,

It only feels like a short time ago I was welcoming the CGS community to the 2019 school year.  I can hardly believe that we’re now at the end of the year and about to break for the summer holidays.

With our Junior and Senior Service of Thanksgiving and Presentation of Awards evenings held this week, I was reminded of how busy but also and rewarding 2019 has been.  I’m proud of each and every one of our students for the dedication and effort they’ve put into not only their studies but their commitment to their extra-curricular activities and building their peer relationships. 

Upon reflecting on 2019, my list of highlights was many and varied.  I found it difficult to reduce my list to just a few, but there were some standouts that I wanted to share with you.

Our House system grew to new levels of support and enthusiasm.  At the Junior and Senior Swimming and Athletics Carnivals, it was brilliant to see each of the Houses come together in their colours, creating House chants to sing and encourage their peers competing.  Early in the year, our Junior School Heads of House hosted House evenings for students and their families to attend after school, meeting and mingling with other families as well as sharing a themed dinner.

The number of camps increased in 2019, providing students with more opportunity to learn essential life skills. In the Junior School, our Year 6 students travelled to the nation’s capital, Canberra.  The students travelled to Canberra by coach and returned by plane, the first plane trip for some of our students.  Our Year 5 students travelled to Camp Gundiwindi in Silvan.  For the first time, we had to consider the threat of natural disasters with the Gippsland bushfires burning nearby.  I was so proud of the way in which our teachers took every precaution to ensure our students were never at risk and had a brilliant time.  I was also grateful to attend and act as the Trivia Quiz emcee.  Our Year 4 students participated in an overnight City Stay and our very excited Year 3 students were given the opportunity to stay on campus overnight - the first night away from their families for many students.

In our Senior School, our Year 7 students  started the year with a three night camp to Phillip Island whilst our Year 8’s travelled to the Otways to explore the National Park.  Finally, our Year 9 students were given the opportunity to apply to travel to Central Australia and participate in the Lilla community service.  The students met and worked with remote communities and got to experience firsthand, our unique Australian landscape whilst making memories I’m sure they will never forget. 

Our students excelled academically throughout 2019.  For the first time, NAPLAN was conducted online and despite some initial connectivity delays from the NAPLAN server, our students shone achieving above state mean results in all four year levels.  In both Junior and Senior assemblies, I enjoyed presenting awards to students who had been recognised as excelling in their studies.  Special mention to Georgia Schlfhout and Tanysha Hogan who were just two of 22 students selected nationally to travel to Sydney to participate in the ANSTO Big Ideas Forum. 

This year’s production of Matilda the Musical was a huge success and received rave reviews.  Our performers and overseeing staff put in countless hours of rehearsals both after school and on weekends and their hard work was evident in their polished performances over three nights.  The show was so much of a success that the cast was invited to perform at the Monash Children’s Hospital and took out first place in the Premier Division of the Schools on Stage competition at Bunjil Place.

We had some very special friends visit us from Kaichi Junior and Senior School.  They immersed themselves in our daily school routine learning about Australian slang, our array of animals and what makes Australia unique.  It was fantastic to see our students engage with our new international friends and I understand some of our students still keep in regular touch.  Although the visit was only short, we look forward to building on the concept of student exchange in the coming years and providing our students with an opportunity to study and learn overseas.

With 2019 coming to a close, I’m pleased to announce that we have put the final Junior School staffing pieces in place for 2020.  Mr Shane Bell has been appointed to the newly created position of Head of Upper Primary (Years 3 - 6).  The position will take on an active and comprehensive leadership role within the Junior School and lead teaching and learning in the upper primary team and working closely with the Heads of House.    

Shane’s appointment has left vacant the Head of Leaver House (Junior School) and the appointment of Mrs Leanne Evans to Principal of Clyde Grammar, has left vacant the Head of Booth House (Junior School).  I’m pleased to announce that Mrs Bronwyn Kyne has accepted the position of Head of Leaver House and Mrs Sarah Nolan, the Head of Booth House.  I wish all of the above staff, the very best of luck in their roles.

Joining Mrs Evans at Clyde Grammar next year will be Ms Laura Papettas, Mr Tim Medlyn and Mrs Adelle Batey, who returns from maternity leave.  Replacing these teachers are the following:

Miss Holly Waugh - Holly worked at the prestigious Anglican Church of Grammar School (Churchie) in Queensland as a Learning Assistant before following her passion and completing a Bachelor of (Early Childhood) Education. Holly relocated to Melbourne in 2017 and has been teaching in the Early Years since then. Holly is a devoted, enthusiastic and passionate teacher who focuses on the development of the whole child. She is thrilled to be joining our CGS staff and looks forward to relishing the opportunity to make a considerable and positive contribution to our school.

Miss Kayti Hore – We’re thrilled to have secured the services of Kayti,  many of our students and families will already know her through her 2019 coordinator’s role at TeamKids. Kayti holds a Bachelor of Health Sciences and will complete her Masters of Early Childhood and Primary Education soon. She prides herself on having a passion for student wellbeing and providing her students with a holistic education. She is motivated and eager to join our staff and begin her career at CGS.

Mrs Sharyn Keating - Sharyn holds a Bachelor of Education and is a passionate educator who has many years of experience in teaching in the local area. She is an innovative teacher who has a commitment to excellence in classroom pedagogy and ensuring the wellbeing of the students in her care. She strongly supports the development of cutting edge holistic education and is looking forward to joining CGS and forging strong relationships with students, parents and colleagues.

I have no doubt that in 2020 we will only continue to build on what has been an exciting 2019 and set the bar even higher again.   Our staff are already working hard behind the scenes putting in place plans for our second Kokoda trip, the Central Australia/Lilla Community Tour and the Junior School production just to name a few. 

To our class of 2019 who received their VCE results yesterday, congratulations and what an amazing achievement.  In 2019 we improved on last year’s median ATAR and maintained our highest ever record median study score of 30. 17% of our ATAR students received an ATAR score above 90 and 32% achieved a score above 80.  A separate letter has been emailed to the Casey Grammar community recognising the achievements of our students.

To our staff, a very special and sincere thank you.  You provide our students with exceptional opportunities to learn, grow and thrive and without you, CGS would not be the amazing school it is.  Take time over the summer to recharge your batteries in anticipation of returning in 2020 full of new ideas and enthusiasm.

To our CGS families and community, I wish you a safe and joyous holiday period spent with those dear to you.  I look forward to seeing everyone return in 2020. 

Take care and Merry Christmas.  

Mr Richard Baird MBA, B.Ed, ASAM, MACE, MACEL



From the Head of Junior School

Our final two weeks of 2019 have flown by amidst some wonderful events. Our Christmas Chapel highlighted the real meaning of Christmas through the singing of carols and the wonderful acting from our Year 5 students. Special thanks to Mrs Grant, Mrs Kyne and Mr McKenzie for their efforts putting our Chapel together.

Last Thursday night was a wonderful celebratory evening for our Year 6 students as we attended their Junior School Graduation. The students did themselves proud as they reflected on their seven years of education before heading off to their fabulous disco. I’d like to thank Mr Newham, Mrs Roffey and Mrs Badar for the hours of preparation they undertook to ensure the evening was a huge success.

This week our Year 6 cohort attended our Beach Program that had been postponed from earlier in the year. Our students thoroughly enjoy the two days they spent at Mornington Beach but oh how different the weather was! On Monday temperatures reached 38 degrees and the children couldn’t get into the water quickly enough, but when they fronted up the following day, the maximum temperature for the day was a disappointing 18 degrees. Despite the weather, our students enjoyed the program and were a credit to themselves and their teachers.

Our Junior School Service of Thanksgiving and Awards Celebration Evening was held on Monday. It was a wonderful celebration of the achievements of our Year 3-6 students in the areas of academic achievement, outstanding effort and endeavour, leadership, extracurricular activities and commitment to Casey Grammar. I’d like to congratulate all our award recipients and I’d like to thank Mrs Kyne for providing us with incredible musical items.

Finally, I’d like to wish all our students and their families a peaceful Christmas and a refreshing break. I will look forward to welcoming every student back to CGS on 29 January 2020 for what I’m sure will be another successful year of schooling. 

Mrs Melissa Roberton

Head of Junior School

Year 3-6 Awards and Celebration Evening


From the Head of Senior School

Over the past two weeks the students in Senior School have moved up into their new 2020 year levels and begun some of next year’s work through the Early Commencement program. It is very pleasing to see the way the students have transitioned into their new year level and the conscientious way they have completed the work in preparation for next year.

At the conclusion of the VCE examination period, we were thrilled to receive a letter of commendation for VCAA (Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority) acknowledging the smooth running of VCE exams. Congratulations to our Head of Teaching and Learning and VCE Coordinator Mrs Cathy Marchmont for achieving this accolade.

Congratulations to the Art Department and the students who had their work included in this year’s Art Show. The Art Gallery showcased the artistic talents of our students in a wide range of mediums. Congratulations to Charlie Popple whose painting was selected for the Principal’s Art Acquisition Award.

This week we abandoned the timetable and each faculty offered the students a range of fun end-of-year activities. The week saw students racing around the school in the Science Department’s Great Race, having fun with geometry pictures and Christmas boxes with the Maths Department, Debating with the English Department and filling parking spots with fabulous chalk drawings with the Art Dept. It has been wonderful watching the students engage in these different activities and learning a lot while having fun.

The Celebration and Awards night on Tuesday 10 December was a fabulous conclusion to the school year. Congratulations to all prize recipients and thank you to Casey Grammar School musicians who entertained us all with their beautiful music. The Celebration and Awards evening allowed us to reflect on and celebrate all that has been achieved this year while acknowledging excellence. I would like to acknowledge the work of Mr Stuart Collidge, Miss Natalie Burns and Mrs Natasha Prentice in ensuring the evening ran smoothly and was enjoyed by all who attended.

To our Senior School students and families, I wish you all a very happy Christmas and New Year. Enjoy this special time of the year when you can relax with family and friends. 

Mrs Fiona Williams

Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School

Senior School Awards and Celebration Evening

Term 4 SIS Sport

The final term of Casey’s SIS sport for 2020 proved to be another success for the school! Ranging from Junior teams (year 7 and 8) to Intermediate teams (Year 9 and 10), all squads showed great sportsmanship in every game that was played, representing Casey Grammar tremendously. Venturing out each Thursday or Friday, the teams played against other schools in the district, in an attempt to win the final pennant if they finished on top of the ladder. The teams that were entered into the competition, and their final placings are as follows:

Intermediate Boys Baseball: 5th

Intermediate Boys Basketball: 6th

Intermediate Girls Basketball: 2nd

Intermediate Girls Softball: 4th

Junior Boys Indoor Cricket: 4th

Junior Boys Soccer: 4th

Junior Girls Basketball: 2nd

Junior Girls Volleyball: 7th

A big congratulations to all student who competed this term! All showed great skill development as the rounds progressed, highlighting their dedication to improve and learn, and particularly working together as a team!

Casey Grammar is excited for what 2020 SIS Sport will bring to the school, with new teams and sports to be played across the year.

Amy Frangalas

AFL Trainee

From the Head of Careers

Casey VCE Pathways Early Commencement 2020

In preparation for 2020, our Year 11 and Year 12 Casey VCE Pathways program students participated in two incursions, which aimed to equip them with some useful tools and strategies to support their transition into 2020. The Casey VCE Pathways Program is a vocationally focussed VCE program that requires students to juggle VCE studies with VET study and work placement.

On Monday, 25 November 2019, Lisa and Lauren from Tripod delivered an engaging session that focused on identifying what makes a positive leader. Using a series of group activities, the session encouraged students to work collaboratively to complete tasks. One activity had students create an obstacle course using string, plastic cups and sticky tape. One member of each team was then blindfolded and directed through the course by someone else in the team.  It was a fun activity (with many laughs).

On Monday, 2 December 2019, Eryka Rhodes from MindfullyU delivered a session, which aimed to enhance self-awareness. Using a series of activities, the day encouraged students to better understand themselves and how they relate to those around them. It also provided tips on how to manage time to juggle the competing interests of the Casey VCE Pathways program.

Reminder: Important dates for Year 12 2019 students

For further information (including a comprehensive list of dates), please refer to the VTAC website.

ATAR results released to students

Thursday 12 December 2019 (7:00 am)

Change of Preference (1st round) closes

Saturday 14 December 2019 (4:00 pm)

December offer round

Wednesday 18 December 2019

January offer round

Wednesday 15 January 2020

An additional offer round has been introduced for the 2019/20 VTAC period. More specifically, first round course offers (for most courses) will be made on Wednesday, 18 December 2019. The majority of offers will be made in December and January, with subsequent offers throughout late January/February (weekly - until courses are filled).

I will be available throughout December and January to support students as required. Appointments should be made via the Front Office (please call 5991 0800).

My on-campus availability (outside of the normal school term), is as follows:

Thursday 12 December 2019

8:00am – 4:00pm

Friday 13 December 2019

8:00am – 4:00pm

Wednesday 18 December 2019

8:00am – 4:00pm

Thursday 19 December 2019

8:00am – 4:00pm

Wednesday 15 January 2020

8:00am – 4:00pm

Thursday 16 January 2020

8:00am – 4:00pm

Thursday 23 January 2020

8:00am – 4:00pm

Final note for 2019:

Please remember: Success looks different for everyone. Your school results are not your future; there are many more important determinants of success and happiness in life. Please take the time to define what success looks like for you as an individual and set goal/s to achieve this.

I want to thank the Casey Grammar School community for welcoming me to the team in 2019. I have enjoyed getting to know students and parents/guardians and look forward to working with you all in 2020 and beyond.

I wish you and your families a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. 

Mrs Sarah Blythman

Head of Careers and Student Pathways

From the Chaplain

As we close the year with our final School Chapel service, we reflect on the example of Jesus as he came and demonstrated the gift of giving without expectation and with no return. A life is more abundant when our baseline motive is to give, rather than to get. What greater gift than to demonstrate great love in order that others might receive life. This Christmas may you experience the love of God through Christ.

Over the year, our School has opened our hearts and expressed generosity through various causes and charities. And in the climax of the year, we all contributed to the Christmas donations to four local charities with abundant generosity. It truly reflects the respectful and caring nature of the community here at Casey Grammar.

To all our families, we wish you warm blessings this Christmas Season. We pray for safe journeys and relaxing breaks. We pray for those who are struggling, and those who are isolated from family. May you feel the embrace of the Christmas spirit in those around you.

As we say goodbye to 2019, let us remember the joys and the struggles. May they be the foundations that we stand upon as we move into the new year. May the joys empower us in things that speak life into our lives, and may the struggles be those things that build our strength of character, gift us with greater empathy and compel us to hold on to what is good, right and just as we seek to grow.

I would like to say a big thank you to all the families for your commitment and engagement with all school activities as we endeavour to mould our younger generations into their full potential.

Faith makes all things possible.  Hope makes all things work. Love makes all things beautiful.  May you have all three for this Christmas, and may the love of Christ be with you all.

Merry Christmas.

Mr Stuart McKenzie


Booklist Reminder

2020 Booklist Reminder

Parents and Guardians are reminded to log on to the Campion website (Casey Grammar 2020 Booklist) to order students 2020 text books.  Orders made before the close of business today (Friday 13 December) will be eligible for a lower delivery rate to your preferred address or have the option of collecting orders from CGS on Thursday 9 January.

Orders made after Friday 13 December will be delivered to your nominated address however at a slightly higher delivery fee.  Alternatively, orders can be collected from Campion’s retail store in Dandenong South. 

TeamKids School Holiday Care


City of Casey Youth School Holiday Program