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Principal's Newsletter, Week 6, Term 3, 2014

posted Sep 30, 2014, 5:14 AM by Joshua Lau
On Tuesday this week we watched our Year 12 Drama students perform their Group and Individual Performances for the HSC Examiners. Although a very stressful experience, each student performed to the highest standard. I was privileged to watch the group performances – they were sensational. Thank you to Ms St Louis who has been their inspirational Drama teacher this year and also special thanks to Mr Gerlach who has been a tireless supporter and to Alex Cui (10) who was the upmost professional ensuring the lighting was perfect for each performance. Last week we also saw our English Extension 2 projects submitted. Our Year 12 Visual Arts major works will be sent away next week and our Year 12 Music students will perform for their HSC examiners. Later in August / early September our French and Japanese students will sit their Speaking exams. We wish everyone the best in their creative endeavours.

Another wonderful announcement of superb competition results - We recently received our results from the ICAS science competition. We have record numbers of medalists this year – 9! Congratulations to Patrick Song (11), Dennis Ying (10), Elton Yang (8), Andrew Xu (8), Wen Jing Chen (7), Phillip Liang (8), Vincent Li (7), Justin Liu (7) and Charran Kethees (7). This is a very challenging competition that truly extends our students. 

We also received the news that our Year 12 team of Kajanan Parameshwaran, Dev Kuhasri and Sai Muralidaran have been invited to participate in the National Titration Competition. Congratulations Boys. Stephanie Wu and Brendan Ma, of year 11, participated in the Un Youth State Evatt Finals at Parliament House last week. It is with great pleasure that I report that this talented pair won the entire event. Congratulations to Stephanie and Brendan.

Last weekend our SRC representatives organised our participation in the 40 hour famine. They have done a fabulous job of gaining support and raising funds for World Vision. Over a number of weekends our Interact students have volunteered at the Ryde Eisteddfod. This is our second year helping this function run smoothly. Our Interact Community Liaison Officer Elaine Yan of Year 11 has organised our 100+ “Interactors” into shifts. Elaine will also look for other volunteering opportunities and later this year will organise Christmas Gift Wrapping and the Red Shield Appeal. Below is a letter I received commending our school on the initiative, confidence and dedication of our students.

Good morning I represent Ryde Eisteddfod, as the Media/Publicity officer. My day job is teaching! On Saturday, two of your delightful students joined the Eisteddfod team at the Dance, performing a range of roles and representing James Ruse in an exemplary manner. Anthony Mai of year 8 had probably never heard the terms Lyrical dance, Classical Solo, Demi-character etc, but with initiative and confidence he organised the music and competitors in the order of appearance, without fault. He was the face of the Eisteddfod, greeted competitors and their parents, and worked very well with the professionals and volunteers who make up the Eisteddfod. Elaine Yan, of Year 11, took on the role of Stage Manager, standing on stage and announcing the event, introducing the competitors, and explaining to the audience what type of dance the competitor would be performing. She had some tricky moments, as large events such as these are never problem-free, but she solved any problems with initiative and confidence. She worked alongside the adjudicators and dance professionals, and engaged confidently with Eisteddfod staff and nervous competitors. Both of these young people were a credit to their school, and the Eisteddfod is very grateful for their time, and the enthusiasm and friendliness they showed to everyone with whom they came into contact. Chair of the Eisteddfod, Edna Wilde OAM, asked me to pass on her thanks to you personally, for your support of students in donating their precious free time to a community cause. The Interact program is a wonderful model for students engaging with their community. I hope you enjoy the photos, and perhaps they may be useful for your newsletter or Year Book. With warm regards.

Every day I am reminded of how lucky we are at James Ruse and the honour it is to teach and nurture such students. As parents and teachers we should all be very proud. Thank you to the many parents that contributed to the success of our Chinese Food Fair on Tuesday. Ms Patricia Xu did a superb job of coordinating this event with the help of many ex- parents and current parents. It is so important that our students see the service their parents are willing to give for their education. The proceeds of this event will support our refurbishment of the science labs.

Year 12 are now moving into the most important phase of their HSC preparation. It is crucial that all students remain focused and work together to achieve their goals. Year 12 students are presently volunteering to lead and organise study groups for every subject. This has proven to be the path to success for our students over recent years. The value adding that occurs between the trials and HSC is enormous. Please encourage your son or daughter to join one of the study groups that are available.

Thank you to our Mothers’ Club and especially to President Karen Lim for organising the Term 3 Meeting this Thursday. It was wonderful to hear the inspiring strategies of Rowan Kunz. As Mothers’ Club elect their new members I wish to thank our outgoing executive members who have made such a wonderful commitment to our school.

Well done to the Mother’s Club for their effort in knitting 47 “JR Dolls”. Taught by Effie Lee, our former uniform shop coordinator and with the assistance of an ex-parent and grandparent, the mothers have produced these boy and girl dolls dressed in junior and senior uniforms to be sold as a fundraiser at the year 12 graduation lunch. All funds raised will go towards the refurbishment of our science labs.

Congratulations to our year 10 High Resolves students for their campaign “Project REFuGe” which aims to dispel the myths about asylum seekers and refugees and to raise awareness of children in detention. With their dedicated Facebook site, Twitter feed and their lunchtime activity featuring dolls caged in soccer nets caught the attention of the local media. You can read a wonderful article in the Parramatta Sun at this link:

The next Community of James Ruse meeting is next Tuesday night at 8pm in the Lecture Theatre. I would like to discuss with parents the structure of our School Executive (Head Teachers). Our new Head Teacher Welfare has been appointed and will begin next year. We still need to fill Mrs Flanagan's Head Teacher position. We are discussing options at present and one such option is to change the position to a Head Teacher of Creative and Performing Arts. This would combine the small faculties of Music, Drama and Visual Arts into one faculty.

Have a wonderful week

Megan Connors