MAC News 10 2020
Dear MAC Community
Welcome! It is hard to believe in some ways that we are already in Term 4. In other ways, it feels like we should be deep into 2021.
Term 4 focus
I am delighted to welcome the staff, Entry and Graduate students back to the school. After many months of silence and empty classrooms it is wonderful to see the return to some normality and the beautiful daily hum of school life. I am looking forward to welcoming back the rest of our students next week.
This term, there is a strong focus on health and wellbeing and supporting students as they transition back to school and adapt to the new ‘COVID normal’. In addition, we are rolling out a literacy and numeracy intervention program to support those students who have struggled with remote learning and require some additional support to catch up. We will also be focusing on the transition of Grade 6 students to MAC for 2021, as well as supporting our Graduates 2020 as they leave us and move onto further study and work. There will of course be opportunities for the Graduates to celebrate their final year, starting with the Graduates Assembly, which was held on Tuesday. Despite some technical challenges we were able to bring together live streamed and pre rerecorded content to capture the journey, great achievements and spirit of this cohort. Congratulations to the all involved and congratulations to the Class of 2020. This assembly was a taste of what the end of year awards ceremony will be like as we continue to use technology to celebrate and come together as a school and community.
Thank you to all staff who assisted with the trial exams that ran during the holidays and well done to our VCE students for their fantastic effort in these exams. Our VCE students have completed two rounds of trial exams and have one more round coming. Their attention to this has been noticed and I am sure it will put them in good stead to tackle their formal exams in November.
Congratulations and new appointments
I am delighted to announce the ongoing appointment of the following English and Humanities staff: Maddison Whyte, Alexandra O’Brien and Phoebe Lorenz. We will welcome Erin Murphy who will join us next year into a fixed term English Humanities role . Erin has a wealth of experience in Literacy invention and well as VCE experience. She is also a musician and plays classical saxophone!
This term we also welcome Elaine Wong who has been appointed to the Mental Health Practitioner’s position.
Welcome to Zenash Lulu who will be providing in class support as well as tutoring to our pre VCE and VCE students. Zinash has a Masters in Education and comes with a wealth of experience.
Anna Hill and Tereza Candioto will be working with our students in literacy and numeracy intervention program. They have been working as Learning Support Officers with us for a little over a year now and they bring a wealth of experience in literacy and numeracy instructional strategies. Anna has previously taught English and Humanities and Tereza is a qualified civil engineer who has worked most of her time designed interior parts for aircraft.
This term we also have three preservice teachers joining us this term. Welcome to Toby Lukin who will be working with Jonathon Sherlock, Elena Reid who is working with Julie Stephens, Lachlan Maccracken who is working with Preeti Maharaj.
In addition to the tertiary offers I mentioned in the last newsletter [link], I am pleased to announce that Brigitte Di Pietro has been offered a place in a Certificate IV in Fine Arts at NCAT. Well done, Brigitte, this year’s the hard work has paid off. We look forward to hearing about it once you get started.
Flemington Education Plan Launched
The Victorian Government has launched an education plan for Flemington schools to deliver education excellence over the next decade.
Minister for Education James Merlino and Member for Essendon Danny Pearson attended a virtual event to launch the Flemington Education Plan, which involved Ascot Vale Special School, Debney Meadows Primary School, Flemington Primary School and Mount Alexander College.
The plan includes $2.1 million in additional funding to speed up planning to deliver upgrade works at Ascot Vale Special School, Flemington Primary School and Mount Alexander College.
The funding is part of the Government’s ongoing response to support long-term economic recovery in Victoria.
The education plan sees the four schools come together to foster education excellence for students by promoting a safe and supportive environment for students, emphasising excellent teaching, quality facilities and student-focused learning through a collaborative approach.
This plan will meet the needs of this growing and diverse community in Melbourne’s inner north-west, and will connect the knowledge, passion and expertise of local communities.
In 2021 the school will see yet again a growth in enrolments and the school will have approximately 600 students. The DET will be placing two double story portables on the school grounds to meet the growth along with future growth in 2022. We are currently working with the Victorian Schools Building Authority in negotiating the suitable location of these portables.
A major focus for the school over recent times and during this term is the health and wellbeing of our staff and students. The staff have been participating in a series of workshops with Jarrod Bateup to assist them with looking after their own wellbeing. The feedback from the staff has been positive and we prepared a thank you gift for every staff member in their first week back to recognise the hard work they have done.
In recognition of the disruptions to learning caused by coronavirus (COVID-19) and the differing levels of impact at the school and individual student level, the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority (VCAA) have introduced a new Consideration of Educational Disadvantage process when calculating VCE scores. This process require us to provide VCAA with information on students and school circumstances to help calculate their study scores. This includes information about the circumstances and impact of the disruption on students, as well as additional data, such as estimated assessment scores. To ensure the fairness of final results, the VCAA will consider all available information, including the General Achievement Test (GAT) and appropriate comparisons of performance across all assessments and schools. Read More…
Thank you to the team who have been working with the students to prepare these applications.
We have been fortunate to have some external support with student wellbeing.
Foundation House, a specialist refugee trauma agency supporting survivors of torture and other traumatic events, are conducting wellbeing workshops for our VCAL and VCE students. https://foundationhouse.org.au/
VICSEG New Futures are providing wellbeing workshops for Year 10 students from diverse backgrounds and will be offering $500 scholarships to 10 students. VICSEG New Futures is a not for profit, community organisation incorporating the Victorian Cooperative on Children’s Services for Ethnic Groups (VICSEG Programs for Families, Children & Young People) and New Futures Training. https://www.vicsegnewfutures.org.au/
Once again, thank you for working with us through this very difficult year and I look forward to reconnecting with all the students in the next few weeks.
Ms Dani Angelico, Principal
Inside this issue
International students celebrate the Moon Festival
Understandably, it is challenging especially our international students are studying at home and away from their overseas families. It is difficult but we learnt how to care for one and another and cherish the little moments we have in everyday life. I am thankful we have so many responsible and supportive families and host families helping our students to go through the hardest lockdown smoothly and safely.
Leaving the school? We want your uniform
Before you finish up at MAC and embark on the next exciting stage of your life, please consider donating your uniform items to the Second-Hand Uniform Shop. We will then sell them on, at second-hand prices, to MAC students. Donated items must be in a bag, washed and in good condition. We would love to receive:
- summer dresses
- winter skirts
- polo shirts
- PE gear
Items can be brought to the General Office in a bag before school closes for the year on Thursday 17 December. There will be a tub outside the General Office during school hours for the uniform donations.
Clare Mendes, on behalf of the Second-Hand Uniform Shop & MAC Parents & Friends
Mental Health Practitioner
Our school is excited to be part of the Mental Health Practitioners initiative. This initiative supports our school to recruit a mental health practitioner. We have been allocated funding for a practitioner for two days a week and our Mental Health Practitioner commenced Monday 5 October. Students and parents are advised to contact Carmel Nielsen Student Wellbeing Coordinator if they would like to discuss their suitability to engage with the service. Please note, referral and consent documentation will be required prior to service commencement. We are excited to have a new staff member Elaine Wong at Mount Alexander College who will make a positive contribution to supporting student wellbeing. For more information on the Mental Health Practitioners initiative see the Department website.https://www.education.
Student Wellbeing Team, Mount Alexander College
Book Week – Curious Creatures, Wild Minds
- book swap
- open mic
- dress up parade
- writing competition announcements
- book recommendation wall
- no-device lunchtime
- student book club
- book displays
- art displays.
Like to perform your writing?
Want to submit to the 2020 MAC Writing Competition?
Theme: Curious Creature, Wild Minds
Junior Category (Year 7-9): 1000 words maximum
Senior Category (Year 10-12): 2000 words maximum
Meg Dunley, Resource Centre and Communications and Marketing Manager
News from the Resource Centre
Do you love to read? Do you love chatting about the books you have been reading? Join the student book club. They meet over Zoom every Thursday during lunch time.
Email Bilhah if you would like to join: firstname.lastname@example.org
Search for your books through the library catalogue. Login with your school details to reserve and review books in the Library Catalogue – also found in the School Favourites in Compass: library.mountalexandercollege.vic.edu.au/
You can also download the AccessIt Mobile App and reserve books through your phone. It’s available for Apple and Android. You only need your student code to log in and reserve – no password needed.
Bring your library books back!
Finished with your library books and class books? It’s time to start bringing them back so that others can read them.
Bring them to the Resource Centre and put them straight into the Book Returns box at the circulation desk.
The library’s on Instagram! Tag @library_at_mac with the books you are reading and book reviews to be featured.
Meg Dunley, Resource Centre and Communications and Marketing Manager
Transgender youth: bridging the gap
Tommy Meldrum, Year 11