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What's Happening at Hawker College?
September 2020

In This Issue:


Dear parents and carers

This is a bumper issue so I will keep it brief! I am pleased with how our students are progressing, and most seem calm and happy.

We met with Year 12 students to discuss Formal and Graduation arrangements last week, and students have formed a Formal Committee to help us plan these events. As previously stated, we will try very hard to ensure both are special and memorable. We will keep you updated as plans progress.

I will be working in the Education Directorate over the next two weeks, Our Deputy Principal Lyndall Henman will be acting Principal in my absence. 

We are also preparing for School Review which happens every five years and supports our improvement agenda. This is scheduled to occur early next term.

Please enjoy the lovely spring weather and the upcoming break for students.

Andy Mison


Friday 11 September 2020
Last day exams 

Monday 14 September 2020
AST Trial - Year 11

Friday 18 September 2020
Reports emailed home

Friday 25 September 2020
Last day of term

Wednesday 14 October 2020
First Aid Course

Thursday 29 October 2020
WINGS 2020

Message from the Deputy Principal
Semester 2 is busily ticking along. Year 12 students undertaking a T package have recently completed the AST (ACT Scaling Test). They are to be complimented on their attitude and behaviour throughout the two days; which was reinforced by the external supervising staff. Year 11 students will commence their AST preparation program with their first trial exam on Monday September 14.

Students have been doing exams this week, and Term 4 Units commence on Monday.

Despite some restrictions in place, we are endeavouring to continue to provide opportunities for students to learn beyond the classroom. Some of these activities and events have been highlighted in this newsletter.

Donna Sullivan, School Leader for Faculty 1 (Technology and the Visual Arts), is currently on leave. Veronica Thwaites-Brown is fulfilling her position during this time. We warmly welcome Ali McEwen (Dance), Joe Mikus (Design and Graphics) and Carrie Daniels (English and History) who have joined our staff to cover classes as a result of these changes.

The ACT Training Awards showcase the commitment and outstanding achievements of those involved in the ACT vocational education and training (VET) sector. Two of our students, Blake Frantz and Nathan Woodward, have been shortlisted in the Australian School Based Apprenticeship (ASBA) of the Year category. The presentation ceremony, a virtual event this year, is on September 10.  We are incredibly proud of Nathan and Blake and wish them the best.
To ensure we can provide the best possible care and support for all our students, could you please provide any relevant medical information to the Front Office, if you haven’t already done so.

As this is the final newsletter this semester, I would like to wish all students, parents and carers a safe and happy spring break. We look forward to seeing students after the holidays on Monday October 12, rested and motivated for the final term of the year.

Lyndall Henman

Message from the Minister for Education 

In the ACT there are 88 public schools, over 49,000 public school students and around 3,800 educators. But of course, I understand that for each of us as parents, the most important school is the school our children go to. That’s why I want to make sure that every public school is a great school.

The ACT Government is upgrading and expanding public schools to make sure that learning environments are accessible and sustainable. The government is committed to ensuring that every public school has the infrastructure to support high-quality education and that’s why the government has been investing more than $115 million to upgrade public schools right across the Territory.

Here at Hawker College the government has provided greater thermal comfort for students and staff in a number of classrooms through new cooling systems. Draught proofing of doors to improve thermal comfort and major roof repairs have also been completed as part of the ACT Government’s $35 million fast track stimulus program to support local businesses and keep Canberrans employed.

Every child and family has a place in ACT public schools regardless of their background or life circumstances. That’s why this investment into public school infrastructure goes beyond just the basic things that allow learning and teaching to take place. The ACT Government invests in public schools to make sure that every student has what they need to be included, and to learn and develop their interests, passions and life skills.

The ACT Government has upgraded heating and cooling systems, reducing polluting emissions and making temperatures comfortable and conducive to learning in over 40 older public schools across Canberra.

The government also provided 4,000 Chromebooks to schools at the beginning of this school year and a further 3,000 Chromebooks and 500 iPads were purchased for use during the COVID-19 pandemic to assist with remote learning.

Schools have seen upgraded classrooms, toilets, libraries, canteens and bike shelters, as well as gardens, landscaping and playground areas in schools to make sure that these spaces are positive and accommodating.

As Canberra grows, the government is making sure that schools grow with it. Every child has the right to access education and the ACT Government is making sure that this right is equally ensured for every young person.

Yvette Berry MLA

Wear it Purple day

Above: The Hawker Band donned their purple best to play during lunch.
On Friday 28 August Hawker College celebrated Wear It Purple Day. The event promotes diversity and seeks to foster supportive, safe and inclusive environments for young people within our LGBTIQA+ community. Hosted by Hawker’s own Rainbow Fusion, festivities this year included a themed pancake breakfast and a performance by the Hawker Band during lunch.

Pictured: Rainbow Fusion members sell purple cupcakes in the Arts Hub, raising funds for the Wear It Purple foundation.
The college also held a fundraiser for the Wear It Purple foundation, with the Patisserie class creating a delicious array of purple cupcakes. A big thanks to Mandy Gray and Druen Braun in Student Services for arranging merchandise. Also, thanks to Amanda Street in Hospitality and all the staff and students who supported the event.
Megan Cartwright & Ben Foster – Safe and Supportive Schools Contact Officers

Sports Development

On Thursday 3rd September the Hawker College Sports Development Program attended the BFirm Activity Centre in Narrabundah to try their hand at some Ninja Warrior skills whilst focusing on teamwork, trust and collaboration.

All of the students had a fantastic day and demonstrated some outstanding athletic ability on some very challenging obstacles.

Hawker College will definitely be a force to be reckoned with during the schools competition in Term 4.

Jenna Baxter
Sports Coordinator

Competition "What Matters?"

Congratulations to Ben Jones in year 12, whose poem ‘Beard’ was shortlisted in the Whitlam Institute’s national writing competition, ‘What Matters?’.
Find Full Poem HERE


Year 11 Tell Hard Truths

Our Year 11 English classes have hung up their microphones and signed off on their sonnets and are now alive with the buzz of Investigative Journalism.

Our next unit focuses on writing an opinion piece on an issue of interest. 2020 has provided us with a feast of issues. Bless. Students will be learning about the entire writing process from deciding and refining a topic, researching to finally producing an informative, investigative and persuasive article. This provides authentic learning and the opportunity to develop real life writing and critical thinking skills which are transferable to many professions. 
On Friday last week, Year 11 English students were visited by Megan Doherty, a journalist from the Canberra Times.

Photo credit: The Canberra Times Megan Doherty's Profile 

Megan spoke on a number of topics, including her award-winning experience covering the 2003 Canberra fires, ethical considerations in professional journalism, and the changing nature of print and online media.

She also provided some hands-on tips to the students about investigating issues and interviewing people, which the students can apply directly to their upcoming investigative journalism assignments. The students asked many insightful questions and valued the access to a professional in their current field of study. 

Liz Ahern and Keah Woodgate,
English teachers

Teaching our students in China 

As you no doubt remember, all Canberran students undertook remote learning for several weeks during first semester.

This posed challenges for teachers as well as
students as we adapted to new learning platforms, conducted lessons via videoconferencing and
innovated in a variety of ways to make learning as interesting and meaningful as possible in the online environment.
What you may not be aware of is the fact that for two of our year 12 students, this was not limited to a few weeks but has continued all year.

Two of our year 12 International Private (IPS) students were unable to make it back to Canberra before our international borders closed on February 1, and they remain in China.

Their Hawker College teachers have been teaching these students remotely since February. Without access in China to the Google Suite or numerous other online platforms that we utilise here, our main line of communication has been via email.

This has meant adapting teaching programs, resources, group work and online activities to cater for distance learning in a more traditional format. Interestingly, however, one platform which is not blocked in China is Zoom, so this has been utilised as a way to communicate face to face with the students, teach some intensive lessons and to supervise the students in exams.

Despite the many complexities, we have been able to support these students to meet the demands of most of their BSSS courses. Their work is being moderated in the usual way, ensuring they are neither disadvantaged nor advantaged by studying off-site.

Of course, remote learning has few of the social benefits of studying on campus. The students miss the daily interactions with their classmates and teachers but nonetheless are pleased to be able to complete their studies this year.

Kathryn Sutherland
ESL teacher/ Executive teacher, Faculty 4

EQUS Quantum Art Competition 2020 

Hawker College has had one of its Year 11 students and two of its Year 12 Physics students enter the EQUS Quantum Art Competition! We are even more proud to announce they have both made the top ten!

You can see their work on the Equs Twitter page @ARC_EQUS or using the hashtag #EQUSquantumartcomp! Entires are being judged by likes, so help us support our students!

Here is Toby Davis’s entry from Year 11 Physics. Toby, who has never painted before, was inspired to create this representation of the quantum world:

Also, Jessica Hill and Amy Treloar from Year 12 Physics, submitted a music video along with their ‘pretentious blurb’, attached below! 


We wish them the best of luck in the contest!

Ryan Elwell
WINGS Coordinator

Physics Olympiad
Hawker College was proud to administer the Physics Olympiad to FOUR of its year 11 Physics students last week! The students volunteered their own time to sit the exam, which is comprised of both multiple choice and short answer questions. The students will receive certificates for participating, and top performers may be invited to ANU for a summer experience.
SEAACT Engineering Science Fair

Hawker College Engineering is preparing to enter 3 groups to the SEAACT Science Fair on 11 September, 2020.

Students have worked both inside and outside of the classroom to prepare their projects, which include a water driven generator, a low cost projector, and a device for checking the water content and relative health of trees at a glance!

These projects will be entered to the competition and judged against a specific set of criteria provided by SEAACT. Winners will be notified in October.

F1 Challenge - Venturi Racing needs advertisers!
Three Year 11 Hawker College students have teamed up with a student from Melba Copland Secondary School  to participate in the F1 Challenge, sponsored and run by the REA.

The students have completed preliminary designs and are currently seeking sponsors to help fund their work!

They are specifically interested in resin printing, but will welcome any advertisers who wish to help them meet their goals. For more information on how you can help fund the Venturi Racing Team, contact the Team’s Business Manager, Fynn Jammer or the Team Lead Engineer, Darcy Gooday via 
WINGS 2020

Hawker College’s Women in STEM initiative is preparing to be held on October 29th at the college.

We have Geoscience Australia presenting one of three modules for the day, and we are hoping for commitments from ANU and UC this week.

We are also very lucky to have a midday presentation from Fizzics Education’s traveling demonstration team!

The Fizzics group will present an hour long demonstration of big, loud and fiery fun to our attending students! If you are interested in attending or helping out, please contact for more information.

Photo credit: Wings 2021

Student Accidents/ Incidents reporting

Hawker College would like to provide our families/carers with an update on our current Student Accident/Incident reporting practices. 

The ACT Education Directorate does not provide any insurance cover for injury, disease or illness to students resulting from school activities or school-organised excursions.

Claims for compensation are met where there is a legal liability to do so. Liability is not automatic and depends on the circumstances in which any injury, disease or illness was sustained.

As there is no automatic insurance cover for personal injury if your child is injured at school or during a school organised activity/excursion you should therefore consider whether taking out personal insurance cover for your child is warranted.

This insurance might cover contingencies including medical/hospital expenses, ambulance transport outside the ACT, and cancellation of transport/accommodation or loss of/damage to luggage.

The ACT Ambulance Service provides free ambulance transport for students who are injured or suddenly become ill at school or during an approved school organised activity within the ACT.

Legal Aid Support in ACT Colleges  

The provision of legal support is an important offering for vulnerable youth. Young people can face difficulties in accessing legal services when required due to distance, service availability, the disinclination of parents, the intimidating and formal atmosphere of many legal services and/or a lack of knowledge about the law.

Schools provide an important opportunity to engage and educate young people about the law, and an avenue to provide direct legal support to vulnerable young people.

The ACT Education Direction together with Legal Aid ACT are pleased to offer the following free services to our College students and their families across the ACT:

College Drop-in Centre
Legal Liaison Officer’s will provide a drop-in service at each college once per fortnight, to improve access to legal assistance for students through the introduction of a free and confidential service. The drop-in centre for students will not require bookings.

Individual Appointments
This will allow College students and/or their parents or carers to make an appointment with a Legal Liaison Officer at their school. For information about these services, and the booking process please visit the Education Directorate website.


SAS On boarding Message for School Communities
On Monday 14 September, our school will progress into the third stage of implementation of the new School Administration System (SAS); the Enrolment module.

So far, the program has helped to bring digital roll marking, parent /carer SMS communication and wellbeing processes across all ACT Public Schools. This is a major step for our school and the Directorate as we move away from the MAZE system as our source of student and financial information.

The Directorate’s SAS team will be working very closely with us to ensure that the correct support processes are in place to ensure that the transition is a success.

As we transition into the new modules of the system over this period, information will be provided to the school community about new features that enhance or change current school processes. This update is particularly exciting for the administration of our school as previous releases have been focused on teacher use. 

We expect this to be a smooth transition and appreciate your support and understanding during this time. As always you can contact the school office if you have any questions or concerns that may arise. 
Support for Canberrans to Connect During COVID-19 

In a year that has tested all aspects of Canberra’s wellbeing, we have been reminded of our responsibilities to each other and the power of community.

The Community Services Directorate has developed the Wellbeing Calls Service and Connect in Canberra website to keep the community informed and connected through COVID-19.

The Wellbeing Calls Service is provided by the Australian Red Cross and is available to all ACT residents who would like to register for a free phone call to feel more connected and less isolated.

You can call the service on 02 6234 7630 between 8am and 4pm weekdays or register for a call by completing the CSD SmartForm found on the Community Services website.

On the Connect in Canberra website, you can access a range of support services including emergency food relief and visit sections on Supporting Our Neighbours (including a Know Your Neighbour card), Online Safety, Health and Wellbeing, Activities Hub, Kids Corner, What’s On and a Community Activities Pack.
Stranger safety 
This is reminder to help our children understand the importance of stranger safety and the need to report any unusual incidents or approaches to staff immediately.

If you become aware of an incident, or notice anyone acting suspiciously around a school or child, contact police immediately on 131 444 or in the case of an emergency call 000.

If you witness incidents or if you have any information that could assist Police, contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000. Information can be provided anonymously.
Please support us to keep our children safe by having conversations about moving safely around the community and what to do if they ever feel unsafe. You may wish to visit the AFP website section on Child Safety  for tips. In addition, the Safety4Kids is a non-government website that has useful information and links. The Constable Kenny website also has a number of tips for parents.
The school and the Education Directorate will continue to work with ACT Policing on this issue.

Ph: 620 53313

eSafety Live Family webinar

The Education Directorate, through its partnership with the Office of the eSafety Commissioner and the Australian Federal Police, will be hosting a live webinar for families on Wednesday 16 September 2020 from 7.00pm to 8.15pm.

This webinar is suitable for adults and will provide an overview of the role and function of the Office of the eSafety Commissioner and the AFP.

It will cover prevention tips and resources, difficult conversations, how to help your child be a responsible digital citizen and how to report inappropriate and harmful content.

Participants will be able to ask questions throughout the webinar through a secure link. Register for the best experience and full functionality.
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Address: Murranji St, Hawker ACT 2614
Phone:(02) 6142 0355

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