In this week’s whole school assembly, we congratulated 2017 students who achieved great results in their chosen pathways, and congratulated current students in other areas of achievement in our school. I spoke about an Australian who has been recognised for their personal (and team) excellence, Professor Michelle Simmons our Australian of the Year. I talked about how Prof. Simmons thought at a young age about all the things that people didn’t really expect her to be able to do. When she surprised other people, she started thinking: ‘there must be other things that people don’t expect of me, let me find out what they are’. I asked our school community what you might be able to achieve, what difference you might be able to make in order to surprise me, surprise your teachers, and do the unexpected.
Other peoples expectations can be challenging, they can make us re-think our perspective. My expectation for us all this year can be summed up in one word: Excellence. I want you to achieve excellence for yourself at school. I talked about deciding what excellence means for you. It could mean that you are giving your best, and that you are working out what you can achieve. It could mean – getting an extra three percent in a test, creating an object that has that little bit more of your creativity in it, working at a friendship that is not going so well….. Achievement is different for all of us.
We celebrated Year 12 students who have all taken completely different pathways after leaving school. All needed to have their own understanding of excellence and the belief that they could achieve the unexpected. Your pathway is uniquely yours, and your idea of excellence is yours. I encourage you to start the year well, to support your peers and encourage them, and to keep excellence as your goal. Have an excellent year!
Dr Liz Criddle
Deputy Head – Teaching and Learning