Year 12 Formal

The 15th of July marked the 2021 Year 12 Fitzroy High School and Collingwood College Formal. After the original event date was pushed and another lockdown seemed all but imminent, it was such a relief to squeeze in this celebratory night. Hosted at the San Remo Ballroom by the Collingwood College Formal Committee, the night was a huge success. When everyone wasn’t busy tucking into the venue’s three-course meals or bottomless soft drinks, it was straight to the dance floor. A combination of music was supplied by Collingwood student Olive, and a live DJing performance by Fitzroy’s Zac Manias and Zeke Joyce-Robertson. Votes were cast for novelty prizes including best dancer (Marley Ford-Dekleyn), best-dressed (Freya Van Dyke-Goodman), and best dressed couple (Ying Ooi & Matthew Federico), with an awards ceremony that involved beautiful sashes and silver tiaras. We were lucky enough to have a professional photographer capturing all of the night’s best moments, and were thoroughly entertained by our teachers’ somewhat uncoordinated but nevertheless epic dance moves. 

To all of the teachers, staff, students, and helpers; thank you for all your hard work putting this night together. It was such a great way to celebrate our final year of high school and is a night I’m sure all of us will remember for years to come. 

Freya Van Dyke-Goodman 12X

Solar Panels at FHS

Powering for the future and the bigger picture at Fitzroy High School
Recent visitors to Fitzroy High School (FHS) may have noticed an addition to the roof of the Science-Technology building. A few weeks ago a large bank of solar panels were constructed in this location. The installation of solar panels at FHS will make a large contribution to reducing the carbon footprint at the Falconer Street Campus and the overall aim of promoting Education for Sustainability (EfS) in every aspect of the life of the school.

Solar Panels and the Victorian State Government
At a recent meeting of the School Council the Principal, Linda Mitchell, the President, Ralph Saubern and all members of the Council expressed their gratitude to the Victorian State Government for providing the program ‘Greener Government Schools’ which the school was a successful applicant to have panels located on campus. The school will pay back their share of the project cost – $60,000 over the next five years and will share in the ongoing cost savings
created by the solar generated energy. The installation of solar panels at Fitzroy High School (FHS) will make a small but significantly ‘inter-connected’ contribute to the Victorian Government’s Renewable Energy Target (VRET).
The placement of solar panels at the school links the whole FHS community with other changes that are taking place nationwide. The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) was established in 2012 and has successfully promoted innovation in clean energy technologies. Australia has one of the highest uptakes of rooftop solar globally, with 2.6 million homes and businesses already using solar power. This rate is predicted to rise to one in two homes within a decade. In Victoria, half a million home systems generate renewable energy, almost a third of the state’s residential electricity demand. Victorian State Government subsidies and interest-free loans have encouraged uptake and solar feed-in tariffs (money paid to solar system owners for exporting excess power back into the grid) have also provided an incentive.
It will be a magnificent outcome if, in the future all of Victoria’s schools sourced electricity from 100 per cent renewable sources, which is an aim of the State Government, and that FHS was one link in this connecting and sustainable sequence.

Solar Panels and Education for Sustainability at FHS
The School Council hopes that the installation of the solar panels demonstrates an unreserved commitment to Education for Sustainability (EfS), to the whole FHS community, but in particular to the students – their future very much depending on these links in a vast sustainable chain. FHS has a history of challenging students to be active citizens, raising awareness or taking personal action in terms of their own impact on the planet.

Since November 2018 the Alicia Flynn (Melbourne University Graduate School of Education) report has enhanced and guided the schools EfS program; it identifies:

  • ‘ecological education’ as synonymous with FHS education, not a minor program or add-on and
  • the ‘Four Commitments’, place i.e. the school site and surrounding human and biophysical environments; eco-ed subjects and ecopedagogy i.e teaching with the head and heart.

As examples of the last commitment, sustainable governance and eco-praxis i.e. the ‘hidden curriculum’, the school’s holistic approach has been to integrate EfS into the work of School Council, parents, the wider community as well as the teachers and students. This has prompted many projects such as:

  • undertaking a native garden and grounds enhancement program (FHS won an Environmental Award from the City of Yarra for this program) – involving parents in creating environmental learning areas;
  • constructing a community/school compost bin – involving a community organisation;
  • building a school weather station – involving the science industry.

Understanding and continuously improving the relationship between students, teachers and the school’s physical infrastructure is also fundamental to providing support for their health and wellbeing and the school’s sustainability program. The solar panels which were added to the school in 2021 will provide a very tangible link in achieving these goals. With the help of the Victorian Government we have been able to do this together. These new solar panels at FHS will be part of, ‘the hunger to know, too understand, to advance…to brighten the future…to look to the core ingredients we’ve relied on before…imagination, curiosity, respect and investment…investing in our future’. (The Hon. Anthony Albanese, National Press Club Address, June 2020).

The Solar Power Systems at FHS
The school does have an existing system consists of 32 panels which is located on the north- facing roof of the FHS Gymnasium See Figure 1 (Source: Aerial base, Google 2020) below.
The most suitable roof for the location of the new solar panel system was that of the Science/Technology building. See Figure 2 (Source: Aerial base, Google 2020) below.

136 new panels installed during term 2. The system is made up of 132 panels and has a generating capacity of 61.2kW.



In addition to the panels, an inverter and smart logger are installed on the eastern wall of the building to feed the generated electricity to the school network and to provide an interface for use by the school and energy providers to monitor system performance and usage data in real time.

The solar panels are intended to link energy efficiency and sustainability program activities with the school curriculum. Subjects such as Science, Maths, Technology Studies and Integrated Studies are amongst a range of curriculum areas which will use the solar panels, their technology the data they generate and their links to the wider world as a basis of unit studies.
The Falconer Street Campus solar system provides a tangible link with the new Fitzroy Gasworks (Senior Campus) where the architects and the Victorian School Building Authority have included a bank of solar panels on the Level 6 Rooftop Court.
(see: https://www.schoolbuildings.vic.gov.au/schools/Pages/FitzroyGasworksSeniorCampus.aspx)

The Solar Power Systems and the work of the Buildings and Environments
Subcommittee of FHS Council
The submission to the Greener Government Schools Building Program that successfully achieved the addition of the solar power system at the Falconer Road Campus was the work of the school’s leadership team and members of the Buildings and Environments Subcommittee (B&ES) of FHS Council.
The work of the B&ES involves reviewing, commenting upon and making recommendations to the School Council regarding:

  • finance – i.e. the status of the Building Fund;
  • EfS and general matters relating to Environmental Education and Eco Pedagogy;
  • a coherent plan for the school’s grounds and buildings – to include all related matters such as bicycle parking, car parking, composting, drains/drainage, fences, eating areas, edges, industrial bins, compost bins, gardens and biota, kitchen garden, lighting, notice/information boards, paths, seating, service boxes, shade and shade structures, signage, specialist buildings, surfaces, recreation areas, recycling, rubbish bins, under-utilized spaces, walls; weather station etc;
  • matters concerning neighbours and the community living within the immediate school precinct;
  • the ‘Operations Report’ presented to the Subcommittee at each of its meetings;
  • other matters as they relate to the Subcommittee implementing the school’s strategic direction, programs and initiatives.

At the moment the B&ES is a very small Subcommittee. We are in need of new members. If there are any parents, carers or community members of FHS who are interested in the work of this Subcommittee and would like to make a contribution you would be most welcome. The meetings of the Subcommittee usually take place, late Thursday afternoon, at least ten days before the School Council meetings which usually take place on the last Wednesday of the month.
To find out more about the B&ES and volunteering opportunities, contact Roger Smith, Convenor of the Buildings and Environments Subcommittee, by email at rogersmith1546@gmail.com

Roger Smith
Convenor
Buildings and Environments Subcommittee of FHS Council

Community Talks Sex – Online panel

Community Talks Sex is a parent led sex education program, hosting researchers and stakeholders from multiple institutions to discuss the various things that impact our kids as they navigate intimacy, relationships, sex and sexuality.

Our online panel tonight features Jenny Walsh, long time sex educator and researcher, Andreas Waling, researcher at Latrobe into men, bodies, sexualities and intimacies and technology, she will be reporting tonight on sexual health information seeking, Miranda Millen whose work explores the ways that the representation of sex workers in film and media impacts public opinion, misconceptions, and sex worker rights.

Please book online here: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/community-talks-sex-tickets-163330988383

Jenny Walsh teaches families and professionals how to teach and talk about growing up, sex and relationships, consent, safety and pleasure, with humour and compassion. 

She has created some of Australia’s most popular sex and relationships curriculum-based teaching resources for the Australian Government including The Practical Guide to Love, Sex and Relationships for Years 7-10, addressing porn, sexual and gender diversity, and sexual consent. Her primary school program for the Victorian Department of Education Catching On Early is taught throughout the state. Recently she co-wrote The Foundation (Prep) to Year 10 Diocesan Scope and Sequence for Relationships and Sexuality Education (RSE) resource, called Fullness of Life for All with the Catholic Education Office Ballarat (CEOB) in response to the Victorian Government child safety reforms. 

She is also a mum, has tried out all her theories on her 18 and 21-year-old sons – and they are still talking to her. 

Dr Andrea Waling is an Australian Research Council DECRA Fellow (2020-2023) at the Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society (ARCSHS), La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia. Waling is leading M-SEX (www.m-sex.com), an ARC-funded program of research exploring men, bodies, sexualities, and intimacies. She is a co-investigator on TechSex (www.tech-sex.com) which explores the use of technologies in the sexual and intimate lives of Australians. Alongside this, Dr Waling has conducted research exploring young people’s experiences of relationships and sexuality education, knowledge around sexual health and well-being, and sexual health information seeking. She is a co-investigator on a project funded by the Department of Health exploring effective ways to improve young people’s sexual health knowledge and literacy. She recently published her first sole-authored monograph in 2020, ‘White Masculinity in Contemporary Australia: The Good Ol’ Aussie Bloke” with Routledge Press. She is now writing her second sole-authored book, ‘Unwrapped: Exploring the Cultural Phenomenon of the Dick Pic’ as part of Professor John Mercer and Clarissa Smith’s Masculinity, Sex and Popular Culture series. 

Miranda Millen is a sex worker, artist, and researcher. Her work explores the ways that the representation of sex workers in film and media impacts public opinion, misconceptions, and sex worker rights. While interning for Fiona Patten MP, Miranda researched sex education in Victorian schools, advocating and moving in parliament for more consistent and expansive sex education for young people. Miranda uses her lived experience in the sex industry to shine a light on the taboos around sex and issues surrounding sexual literacy.

Kind regards
Carmen Lahiff-Jenkins

VCAL Community Project

Our Intermediate VCAL class started a community project in collaboration with Rushall Park residents at the start of Term 3. Students are running a series of resident interviews, with a view to creating a ‘life story’ book and producing a short film to support the United Nations’ Decade of Healthy Ageing. Unfortunately Victoria’s current restrictions meant that we were unable to meet face to face with residents this week, so with permission from Rushall Park management, students wrote messages to residents and drew pictures on roads within the facility. Feedback from residents who subsequently came to view student work has been extremely positive, and the activity helped to strengthen connections between students and residents. Additionally, our students experienced the power of altruism, empathy and social connection, which is core to the VCAL program. 

The new Gaga Pit!

Gaga is a fast paced, high energy sport played in an octagonal pit. The more players the better! Dubbed a kinder gentler version of dodge ball, the game is played with a soft foam ball, and combines the skills of dodging, striking, running, and jumping, while trying to hit opponents with a ball below the knees. Players need to keep moving to avoid getting hit by the ball. Fun and easy, everyone gets a serious workout.

PINCHAPOO – FINAL CALL OUT!

Thanks to everyone who has donated so far.

The only good thing about lockdown number 5 is that we now have an opportunity to collect more toiletries and pinch more poo for our Pinchapoo collection. Unfortunately we had to cancel our visit to Pinchapoo which was really sad for us. But, now we have more time to collect more toiletries.

These hard times mean that many people are doing it tough. Pinchapoo supports people in crisis by providing basic toiletries such as toothbrushes, toothpaste, deodorant, fash washers, soaps, pads and tampons, shavers, shaving cream, hair tyes, skin care, baby care, shampoo and conditioner.  We want all products to be sealed.

Pinchapoo urgently needs toothbrushes and toothpaste for kids as well as roll on deodorant and face washers. 

We need your help. Donate now.

Senior Program Night

Our Senior Program Night will be running virtually this year.

Tuesday the 3rd of August at 6:30 PM – 7: 30 PM

It will run in an online format using the Microsoft Teams platform.  In order to attend this session and for it to run efficiently please use the link below to register to attend and submit any questions you may have so the speakers can address them.
https://teams.microsoft.com/registration/N7Ns2Ycaz0S2mzzsM0pMHw,q2JfJX2pfkGt3mfzGTK_FA,OO4CBMIQak67kdrak-Uykw,jFTk16t8TEacjx7Pl0hMHg,uOXXmAMJVEa49oMBEkcxcQ,NssPajpxek6vnKXA5enhUw?mode=read&tenantId=d96cb337-1a87-44cf-b69b-3cec334a4c1f

This is a great chance to hear about the senior campus, what pathway options are available to the students and what subjects are on offer in 2022. The Senior Program Guide is now on the school website for families to look over before the event on Tuesday night. We apologise for any inconvenience and the late notice.  If you have any questions please get in touch with us.

Talking the Talk.

Yarra City council is hosting a live Zoom session for parents about human sexuality, respectful relationships and body safety:
Live online via Zoom
Tuesday 10th August 8pm – 9.30pm
Please see attached flyer for more information and bookings.

Tram Time

A lovely group of year 9 students happily helping each other make teddies in the tram.

Fantastic week!

Penny

Senior Secondary Certificate Reform

Victoria is transforming the delivery of senior secondary education with the introduction of a single senior secondary certificate that will offer greater access to quality vocational and applied learning pathways for all students. The senior secondary education reforms aim to provide access to education and training that is relevant, engaging and that delivers in-demand skills for the future world of work, ensuring that students can access education that leads to employment.

Next year students will still be able to enrol in either the Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL) or the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE). The following year, in 2023, VCAL students will be enrolled in the new VCE Vocational Specialisation or the new foundation pathways certificate which will be introduced to replace Foundation VCAL.

The VCE Vocational Specialisation will be recognised internationally, be valued by employers and will build on the strengths of VCAL including providing:

  • flexible timetables that allow students to study at school, TAFE and work
  • opportunities to experience real-life workplaces
  • subjects that will build students skills and prepare them for life after school
  • greater access to high quality VET learning, either in school, a neighbouring school or a local TAFE

The new certificates are part of a suite of 38 reforms recommended in the Review into Vocational and Applied Learning Pathways in Senior Secondary Schooling (the Firth Review) to lift the quality and perception of vocational education and help more students access high-quality applied learning programs.

Course selection in 2022

We are supporting all students in their course selections for 2022 and are providing the following advice and information to students considering a VCAL pathway.

If students are studying VCAL in 2022 they will transfer into the VCE Vocational Specialisation with credit for completed VCAL subjects in 2023. In 2023, students will continue to study Senior VCAL subjects in the new certificate as part of the implementation process. At the end of 2023, these students will be awarded the VCE Vocational Specialisation if they meet the requirements. 

Students who are studying Foundation VCAL over multiple years, including in 2022, will transfer into a new foundation pathways certificate in 2023 with credit for completed subjects. These students will study the new foundation subjects and graduate with the foundation pathways certificate. 

This approach provides assurance and clarity to current Year 10 students some of whom will be among the first cohort to receive a VCE Vocational Specialisation certificate in 2023.

* Note: Students can also move between certificates

To learn more about Victoria’s senior secondary certificate reform, you can email the Senior Secondary Reform team. The Year 10 and Senior Programs team will be able to discuss these changes with students and parents next term, as more information from VCAA comes to light.

The following diagram sets out the senior secondary pathways for students commencing the VCE or VCAL in 2022.