I am thrilled to share with you some exciting data from our students regarding how they see Fairhills High School. The results demonstrate that the improvements we have and are implementing are supporting our students to reach their full potential. Our 2023 results are well above similar and network schools but also above all government schools across the Victoria.
This accomplishment is a testament of the dedicated and passionate staff at Fairhills High School. I want to thank them for being a part of the continuous improvement culture we are creating at Fairhills High School. We are all in it together.
*The data is compared to 2022 state percentages. 2023 similar, network and state schools data will be available shortly. These percentages do not change substantially from year to year.
Specific questions with 80%+ school-wide positive responses:
Effective teaching time
My teachers are well prepared
Effective classroom behaviour
My teachers expect students to pay attention
My teachers set clear rules for classroom behaviour
My teachers expect me to do my best
Attitudes to attendance
I always try to attend school
My parents/carers expect me to complete Year 12
Advocate at school
There is a teacher or another adult at this school who believes I can be successful
Why have our results improved so much?
The data has demonstrated that students are feeling more connected to our school. Collectively students are telling us they feel like they belong. Connectedness is fundamental for high student growth. Initiatives like our sub-school structures and the THRIVE program have allowed for personalised attention and targeted support for students, ensuring each individual receives the guidance and develops life skills required for success.
In addition, the implementation of learning intentions, success criteria and schedules has provided clarity and direction, enabling students to understand what they are learning and how to achieve success and has resulted in a dramatic increase in our stimulated and differentiated learning data.
Our clear high expectations of school-wide behaviour have created a consistent and positive learning environment for all students. By utilising our non-negotiable processes to address any behavioural concerns promptly, we have developed a respectful and focused atmosphere within the classroom learning environment.
Furthermore, our consistent and multi-pronged approach to bullying prevention has also enhanced. By promoting a culture of respect and empathy as well as well as having a zero tolerance to bullying and/or harassment we have cultivated an environment where students feel safe and supported.
While we are thrilled with these accomplishments, we understand that our journey toward continuous improvement is a never-ending one. These include:
Implementation of our LEARN model (how we teach), ensuring all students are consistently supported and inspired at their point of need.
Continue to explicitly teach positive learning behaviours by utilising our school-wide positive behaviours matrix.
In 2024, the new STEAM/Senior Learning Centre (SLC) and Music Learning Hub will provide students with state-of-the art environments to further promote collaboration, creativity, and innovation.
As a school community, we celebrate these achievements. Together, we nurture the growth and success of every student, creating and maintaining a positive and enriching educational experience for all.
Thank you for your ongoing support and partnership in our collective quest for excellence.
As I write this article, 51 year 8 students have headed to The Ranch on the Mornington Peninsula for their annual camp. This years’ camp program focused on building confidence, providing students with the unique opportunity to step, leap and jump out of one’s comfort zone, try new activities, and interact with peers in a different environment. Students participated in horse riding, archery, mountain boarding, giant swing, coupled with a night walk and bonfire and smores on the final night.
It has been a great pleasure to witness this transformative experience first hand for our students. We are extremely proud of you all!
Also, a very big thank you to Ms Power our year 8 team leader for her superb organisation and the support of our supervising staff, Mr Burrows, Mr Hayles, Klaus, and Mr Van Schie.
Back at school students celebrated national Science week with organised quizzes and competitions during house group. Thank you to our STEAM leader Emma Peng for raising the awareness of the importance of science discovery in our society and every day life.
On a final note we also acknowledge National Day of Action against Bulling and the importance to raise awareness of bullying and its impact on individuals and communities. Thank you to Mariani our mental health practitioner in preparing materials to be delivered in Thrive and House group sessions. Students are encouraged to be upstanders and report any bullying to their Thrive/Connect teachers and team leaders. Alternatively, students can report anonymously through the Stymie app at https://stymie.com.au/
We’re all a piece in the puzzle, and together, we’re united against bullying.
Silvana La Leggia
Middle School Leader
Year 8 Camp
It was a beautiful day to kick off the year 8 camp. This years focus is building confidence by stepping, leaping and jumping out of their comfort zone. The pictures say it all.
The last few weeks have been very busy with current Year 10 and Year 11 students, families and staff, dedicating a great deal of time to the consideration of pathways and subject selections. It was wonderful to have a supportive environment and see students and families engaging at both the 2024 Year 11 parent information night and also the 2024 Year 12 parent information night a couple of weeks ago. Additionally, our current Year 10 students went to the Exhibition Centre to visit the “Melbourne Careers Expo” and they were treated to a smorgasbord of pathways information. They also visited Swinburne University to further their thoughts about their futures. Subject selection interviews for our Year 10s took place on Thursday 10 August. At the interviews, students finalized choices and ensured their subject selections aligned with their interests.
Year 12 Amazing Race
On Friday 11 August our Year 12 students took part in an ‘Amazing Race’ excursion. Students worked in teams on a Tertiary Campus (both University and TAFE) discovery tour – organised as an amazing race.
Each team were given a booklet of Tertiary providers along with photo destinations.
Each destination earned the team points. Teams provided photographic evidence that they arrived at each destination.
The goal of the day was for year 12’s to :
develop a knowledge of where Tertiary providers are situated.
getting a feel for each destination
learn to journey plan and use public transport
problem solving and team work
build a sense of team spirit as a cohort
Year 10 ‘Man Cave’ Incursion
On Friday 4 August ‘Man Cave’ came to Fairhills to facilitate and present an interactive, fun and engaging full-day workshop to our Year 10 boys. The workshop explored topics around gender stereotypes, the social and emotional impact of those stereotypes and how to build positive identity and coping strategies. This workshop aligns with the ‘Respectful Relationships’ curriculum, as outlined by the Department of Education and Training.
On the day, ‘Man Cave’ facilitated a space where boys consider their own unique version of healthy masculinity by understanding how gender norms have shaped their perspectives to this point, before being given the choice to grow beyond that. Exploration of personal identity, their unique strengths, how to care for themselves and what their values are, all add up to them understanding how they can reach their full potential.
The day was a great success and our Year 10 boys were a credit to our school. Feedback from the presenters was extremely positive and they thoroughly enjoyed working with our students. Special thanks to our Wellbeing Team for organising this incursion for our students.
Thank you to families for partnering with the school and supporting the learning journey of your child by attending the learning Conferences on Monday 14 August either online or in person. This was an opportune time to hear from teachers and for students to reflect on their participation and engagement in class. A new semester can provide time to set new goals and create schedules that further support their learning.
Senior School Assistant Principal
Our VCE Art students were thrilled to visit the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art and immerse themselves in the current exhibition featuring First Nations artists. The experience was enlightening as they learned about the rich cultural heritage and artistic expressions of these talented individuals. Eager to explore further, they headed to the NGV Ian Potter Centre, where the Melbourne Now exhibition awaited. The interactive artworks captivated their senses, allowing them to engage with art on a whole new level. It was an unforgettable journey into the contemporary art scene, leaving students inspired and appreciative of the diverse artistic landscape in Australia.
Last month, VCE Physics students had a wonderful incursion experience, Mission Gravity. Immersed in a VR interface, students explored the relationship between colour and temperature of blackbodies and collected data to investigate Physical Science. They followed a newborn star in the universe until the end of its life. It was a very engaging activity for students to explore Astrophysics.
Year 12 Amazing Race around the Campus.
The year 12 students competed in the ‘Amazing Race around the campuses’, both in the CBD and the eastern suburbs.
Working in teams’ students organised their own personalised discovery tour of TAFE’s and University locations.
Teams recorded their adventures using their mobile phones. Clue booklets also asked them to identify possible courses that could be studied at each venue. Each answer and photo earned the team points. At the mid-day check in required students to solve a problem and take a risk to earn points for their team.
By the end of the day the year 12’s:
Had developed a knowledge of where Tertiary providers are situated.
Had a feel for each destination.
Became competent using journey plan and public transport.
Improved their problem solving and teamwork.
All the while having fun!
Congratulations to Team ‘Steal your Ankles’ – winners on the day.
Up-coming Careers events
Empowering Women in Trades – Years 9&10 – 31 August
This in school event is designed to provide female students with the knowledge and understanding of opportunities available in the Trade sector for them. One of our successful Alumni is returning to share her journey.
This event is to encourage girls to think outside the square.
See compass for details
Australian Defence Force open day – Puckapunyal 1 September
A group of selected students will be traveling to Puckapunyal to experience open day for the ADF – Army.
Year 12 VTAC applications and planning for 2024 – Interviews.
All year 12 students will be interviewed by the end of term 3 to confirm their pathway and start important planning for 2024.
Students will be provided with individual assistance with their TAFE and University applications, (both direct and VTAC applications).
Students seeking to find employment will be assisted in making sure they have the relevant tools ready, (resumes, cover letters & Interview skills)
Planning for Year 11 / 12 2024 VET
Any student wishing to undertake a VET in school program as part of their VCE / VCE VM program must submit a VET Application form. Students currently enrolled in VET year 1 must re apply for year 2.
VET applications are now open but will not be processed until both the application form and resource fee are handed into the office.
Parents/carers are provided with log in details. For any questions or trouble logging in please contact the office. Using Compass allows parents/carers to have access to up-to-date information and the following features:
Monitor attendance, and enter an explanation for absence or lateness
Communicate with teachers
Update contact details
View their child’s timetable and the school calendar
Monitor homework and assessment tasks
Download and view semester reports
Book parent-teacher-student interviews each semester
Pay and provide consent for events and school contributions
Compass Events / Payment Centre / Course Confirmation
Please check Events regularly as these need to be consented/paid by the due date for your child to attend. Any students without consent/payment after this date will be removed from the event and will not be able to attend.
Also check out the Payment Centre and Course Confirmation sections.
Phone the absence hotline on 9758 5022. Leave a message after the prompt. The absence hotline is operational 24hrs a day, 7 days a week for your convenience.
Students arriving to school late should report to the General Office to receive a late pass.
If a student is required to leave school early for any reason they should bring a note from their parent/guardian and record this on Compass. All students are required to sign out from the General Office. If they need to call home, they should come to the office. Students should not use their mobiles.
If your child has COVID, please ring or email the school so we can record their absence accordingly.
Students who are family close contacts, must wear a mask whilst indoors and onsite and test regularly. If you require RAT tests, please contact the General Office.
Asthma / Diabetes / Anaphylaxis / Epilepsy
ASTHMA, DIABETES, ANAPHYLAXIS, EPILEPSY or an ALLERGY management plans are required to be updated and submitted to the school every 12 months. Please ensure you have provided this to the office in the best interest of your child.
If you require any assistance, do not hesitate to contact the office on 03 9758 5022.
Parent Carpark – pick up and drop off
If you drop/pick up your children please ensure you:
use the Parent Car Park – not the staff/guest car park, except for those with a disability parking permit
pull into a parent parking spot to let your child out/pick them up
when exiting turn left onto Scoresby road (as per the sign)
The purchase of School Uniforms are now through Dandy Schoolwear in Dandenong.
On behalf of our basketball teams heading to the Queensland Australian School Championships late November/early December, we would like to extend our heartfelt gratitude to iD Signs for their generous Silver Sponsorship!
“Your support not only helps us financially but also motivates us to strive for excellence on and off the court. Thank you ID Signs www.idsigns.com.au
Each year in August since 1945, the Children’s Book Council of Australia has brought children and books together across Australia through Children’s Book Week. During this time schools and public libraries celebrate books and Australian children’s authors and illustrators. This year’s theme is Read, Grow, Inspire.
This year, there were 120 new Notable Australian Books chosen for judging from the categories of books for Older Readers, Younger Readers, Picture Books, Early Childhood and Non-Fiction. Already there have been 30 of these titles shortlisted with the winners in each category to be announced on Friday 18 August. We have a selection of these titles available for viewing in our School Library so come by next week and see which were the winning titles.
At the start of the week, our School Leaders embarked on their Student Voice Excursion. This took place at Eastland Guest Services, where their conference rooms were generously donated for our use.
The School Leaders spent the morning preparing for Diversity Week, which is set to take place from 21 August. They dedicated their time to planning various activities that will highlight the rich diversity within our school community. Each group was assigned a specific day and tasked with brainstorming creative ways to draw awareness to this important theme. The aim of Diversity Week is to foster understanding, acceptance, and appreciation for the unique backgrounds and cultures that make up our student body.
In the afternoon, students enhanced their teamwork skills by engaging in an exciting challenge at an Escape Room. This activity served as a platform for them to collaborate, communicate, and problem-solve together.
Following their triumph in the Escape Room, the team proceeded to indulge in some friendly bowling competition at Holey Moley.
After 3 years of no visits, this July/August we welcomed our third visit from a Japanese group. Ten students and their leader (affectionately known as Cherry sensei) were hosted by Fairhills for two weeks.
Cherry sensei has had a long association with Fairhills, and she was so happy to introduce her students to what we have to offer, and Australian life. Likewise, our students enjoyed trying out their Japanese, and caring for their host or buddy students. They did an awesome job!
Along the way, the group participated in a number of excursions. The first was to Mornington Peninsula. Despite it being cold, they indulged in the Aussie tradition of fish and chips on the beach, and the associated seagull invasion.
We took advantage of a student free day on Curriculum Day to all go to Queen Victoria Market and the city. Hot jam donuts were a must for everyone, and Hosier Lane provided some awesome photo opportunities.
A cultural demonstration and activity day at Wattleview Primary School, one of our feeder schools was a highlight for the students there. They learnt how to do origami, calligraphy, and play traditional Japanese games.
We all had the honour of attending a Mayoral Reception. The students met the Mayor of Knox, and gave speeches in English. They even demonstrated their musical skills.
The last day ‘at school’ was spent visiting Phillip Island. On the way we saw a mob of kangaroos, and even the accompanying Aussies took lots of photos. The Koala Sanctuary didn’t disappoint, with lots of koala sightings. Then it was more fish and chips at San Remo, before the Penguin Parade.
We would like to thank the host families and school buddies who cared for our visitors so well. Also thank you to Ruth Probin our skilled EAL teacher for helping the students prepare their speeches for the Mayoral Reception, and as always Edmund Chow our International Student Coordinator for helping out in so many ways.
In our 50th Anniversary year we also celebrate our long standing association with KSKK, and look forward to a future where once again our students can travel to Japan and experience its wonderful culture and language.
Integrated Learning Area Coordinator – Languages
National Day of Action Against Bullying & Violence
Friday 18 August is The National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence- with this year’s theme being “Growing Connections”. This is a campaign that schools all over Australia participate in as a way of taking positive action against bullying and violence.
As a school we will be participating in a number of bullying prevention activities throughout the month of August that have been organised by Mariani, our Mental Health Practitioner. These will include in-class activities on growing connections and how this can work to prevent bullying and a whole school lunchtime activity to facilitate all members of the school community to take a pledge in preventing bullying and violence.
We have workshops being delivered to our Year 8’s and 9‘s by external group Project Rockit to elevate students’ confidence in taking positive action against (cyber)bullying as well as presentations for our Year 10’s by The Pat Cronin Foundation, addressing the impact and consequences of social violence.
We would like to encourage all students to become involved in the NDA activities this month- we all have the power to create positive and lasting change. It starts with every one of us.
Students and families are also reminded about STYMIE- the online anonymous reporting platform that we use as a school. Students can use this online tool to anonymously report if they are worried about someone at school experiencing harm. This will ensure the person you are worried about will be spoken to by a Year Level Leader of someone from Wellbeing and offered the support they might need. #say something www.stymie.com.au
International Youth Day
August is also the month where we celebrate International Youth Day. It’s the day to bring youth issues to the attention of the international community and to celebrate the amazing capabilities and potential of our young people to contribute to the global community. This day is a reminder for us in the Wellbeing Team of the privilege we have to do the work that we do to support the wellbeing of our students. We are grateful to be part of the journey of Fairhills High School students as they navigate the challenges of youth, and also to celebrate with them the fun that comes too.
The Man Cave & Mirror Program
As part of our whole school Respectful Relationships program, last week our Year 10’s had full day interactive programs on healthy relationships, gender stereotypes, healthy masculinity and emotional awareness. The boy’s program was delivered by the amazing facilitators from the Man Cave who delivered an inspiring day of connection and reflection. The girl’s program was delivered firstly by facilitators from the REACH foundation and then by Kaye, our Health Promotion Nurse. Feedback from students was that the day was hugely powerful and inspiring.
These full day programs will be rolled out to our Year 11 and Year 12 students in September.
R U OK? Day Poster Competition
Our next whole school wellbeing campaign is RUOK? Day on 12 September. The national RUOK? campaign is about encouraging people to have helpful conversations- not just on this one day, but every day. A helpful conversation can make a world of difference to another person and might be the conversation that links them in with the support they really need. Stay tuned for more information about activities to come!
As part of our campaign this year, we are running a Poster Competition – see the attached flyer for details. There is a $100 voucher up for the prize, so all students are invited to get their creative hats on for this one. All queries to Mariani in the Wellbeing Team.
Peta Cartwright | Student Wellbeing Coordinator
Reminder: Bridge Builders Retreat
The Retreat is open to young women 13-15 years old and will run in the September school holidays. It is aimed to support, inspire and empower young women. Students who attended the information session in July were given expression of interest forms to have signed by a parent/carer. If parents or students are still interested in hearing more about the retreat please speak to someone in the Wellbeing Team.
What’s On: Term 3 Calendar Activity
Local and Online Services/Webinars for Families and Young People
eSafety’s express learning series provides parents and carers with practical tips and advice on common online safety concerns. The videos are 5 to 10 minutes long and cover four important topics, including:
Setting up parental controls
Digital technologies and mental health
Cyberbullying and online drama
Online sexual harassment and image-based abuse
Cyber Safety Project provides a whole community approach focused on developing future skills, lifelong habits and self-regulation when innovating and using digital technologies for work, life and play. To create safer communities our educational programs and proactive teaching strategies will engage the whole community with learning how to participate safely and responsibly in a digitally-engaged world. To learn more about family workshops and webinars for parents or carers, please visit https://cybersafetyproject.com.au/families/
Accessing support through Wellbeing: Students
The Wellbeing Team can support students to navigate challenges that may be impacting on their ability to engage in learning or general feelings of wellbeing. This can include: transitions and adjusting to change, family or relationship difficulties, grief and loss, mental health concerns, drug and alcohol concerns, and many other challenges that young people encounter.
An initial appointment with a member of the wellbeing team will be an assessment of need with the student or family which will help to decide the best support option for the student. Support options available through the Wellbeing Team are:
Individual short term counselling, psychoeducation and skills development
referrals to external support agencies.
students may also be encouraged to access self-help strategies or resources.
Referrals to see someone from the team are made through year level leaders. Parents, students or teachers with concerns are encouraged to speak to their year level leader. Students or parents can also make an appointment directly with someone from the Wellbeing Team by attending the Wellbeing Centre, calling the school office or contacting us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Year level leaders who are made aware of concerns by a teacher will always endeavour to make contact with parents before referring a student to the Wellbeing team.
All counselling sessions with students are confidential and information is only shared if a student is deemed to be at risk of harm.
If you or anyone you know needs immediate support, please contact kidshelpline or lifeline on the numbers at the bottom of this page.
What’s on in Wellbeing?
The Wellbeing Centre is open at recess and lunchtime for students who need a quiet, safe place to regulate or access support. The centre is also used for lunchtime group programs which are advertised through compass or on notice boards.
Q-Squad, our LBGTQIA+ group runs every Thursday lunchtime.
More groups to come!
Accessing Support: Families
Most families, at some stage, need a little extra support to manage the normal challenges of life as well as the more difficult situations that arise. If you are experiencing hardship, stress or circumstances that are impacting on the wellbeing of your family life or your ability to cope, the Wellbeing Team can help to connect you with community services that can provide support. Please contact the Wellbeing Team via the school phone number or via email at email@example.com
Clothing Support: Thread Together
We recently partnered with Thread Together to provide free and brand clothing for students in need. Thread Together collects brand new unsold clothing from all around the country, saving it from landfill. Thread Together believe that people in need deserve the dignity and choice of new clothing, without judgement. If your children need any help with clothing, please contact the Wellbeing team for further assistance.
With the support of volunteers from local churches- Knox Baptist and Hillsong Church we are able to provide a breakfast club 5 days a week for our students, including a Pancake Breakfast every Thursday morning. All students are welcome.
Food Support for families in need
Each fortnight on a Tuesday after school from 2:48pm – 3:08pm we have food support available for families who may be in need, for whatever reason. We have a selection of frozen meals and pantry items that families can collect from the former school canteen area without question or judgement. We know that access to food can be a real challenge for some families and we feel strongly about supporting the basic needs of our students and families. Watch out for compass posts each fortnight.
External Food Support Options
The following community agencies provide food support for families in need.
Key milestones achieved by the FHS alumni program in Semester 1!
This infographic shows the impact of the Ourschool alumni program at Fairhills High School Knoxfield across terms one and two, this year.
However, these key pieces of data only show some of the progress we’re achieving in our alumni program. The program is also building relationships and communications, and other types of meaningful engagement with alumni that benefits students and helps strengthen the wider school community!
Fairhills is 50!
2023 is the year Fairhills High School celebrates 50 years of history-making – a significant achievement for any school or organisation.
Our 50th anniversary will be a memory to hold for all current and former students, staff, parents, and the community. As an amazing school, we want to share our experiences of the last 50 years and look back to see how the school has changed from 1973 to now and see just how far it has come.
Celebrations will include a formal, evening dinner at an off-campus venue on Friday 6 October, followed by on-campus celebrations 11am-4pm on Sunday 8 October.
We invite you to celebrate 50 incredible years of education, memories, and milestones at our 50th School Birthday Dinner! Join us for a night of nostalgia, laughter, and reconnecting with old friends and classmates.
Indulge in a delicious 3 course dinner, reminisce with a special slideshow presentation highlighting unforgettable moments from the past, and dance the night away to the classic tunes that defined our school years.
Don’t miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime event that will bring together generations of the school community to celebrate Fairhills’ legacy. Purchase your tickets now and be a part of this unforgettable evening that honours our rich history and bright future.
Karralyka Function Centre – Mines Road, Ringwood Victoria 3135