Curriculum Matters

After Celebration Evening, where we acknowledge the achievements of students who have taken on the challenges and opportunities afforded to them and excelled, it is timely to recognise the wealth of academic achievement that occurs all year round across our school.

Across Term 2 and 3 a variety of girls and boys from Years 3 – 12 took part in University of NSW International Competitions and Assessments for Schools (ICAS) competitions. In Years 7-9 most students are entered and in other year levels smaller groups of selected students are entered and these students compete against students from schools across Australia. Every year students from Tintern Schools achieve outstanding results, which reflect the talent of the students and quality learning that goes on here.

In this year’s Mathematics, English and Science competitions we had 17 students achieve High Distinctions, which are awarded only to the top 1% of participants. There were a staggering 120 Distinctions, which are awarded only to the top 10% across the nation. In fact, when the certificates were presented to the secondary students for the Mathematics competition earlier this term, we could barely fit them all on the stage!  

The standout performance was in our boys Junior School, where Grade 6 student Oscar De Jong won the medal for the top English student in the state for his year level. A fantastic achievement! This year over 980,000 entries were received in all ICAS competitions but only 514 students in Australia were awarded medals for their outstanding achievement. Congratulations to all of these high achievers! For further details, please see the article in this edition of Aspectus by our secondary Head of Mathematics, Mr Gary Collins.

Another opportunity that our secondary Mathematics Department entered students into this year was the Maths Talent Quest, run by the Mathematics Association of Victoria. Astonishingly for one school, two of our students topped the nation. Ashleigh Dowling of Year 7 and Gavin Choong of Year 9. Ms Julie Tillyer co-ordinated our entries in a competition that involves students undertaking an investigation or inquiry into mathematical questions they formulate themselves. In other Mathematics news, three Year 8 students, Ron Chen, Reilly Collins and Eddie Yu, were received Certificates of Merit for their outstanding individual achievements in the University of Melbourne School Mathematics Competition.

Whilst we are proud of our student’s achievements in such competitions, our school is not only about celebrating those who win or top a ranking. For us, every student who strives for their personal best and who meets, and sometimes exceeds, their best is indeed a winner worthy of celebration. This can only occur through the support of our excellent teachers and a student’s hard work, drive and a mindset that seeks every opportunity to grow and learn, especially through challenge, hardship and set-backs.

With our Year 12 students nearing the end of their secondary schooling, we wish them all the best as they seek to stretch themselves out beyond their best in their final exams. Similarly, our Year 10 and 11 students are nearing their semester examinations and another opportunity to test themselves, practise their study skills and look to produce their best in each subject. Our Year 9 students will also be sitting their first examinations in English, Science and Mathematics as they live out the Year 9 theme of Challenge right to the end of the year.

While our school is about so much more than academic high achievement, it is important to recognise the wonderful moment when talent is realised to its fullest extent by hard work, in every aspect of our well-rounded education.

by Jason McManus, Vice Principal – Curriculum, Reporting, Assessment and Innovation

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