Volume 2 - 24 Feb 2017



Stronger HSC Standards: Minimum standard

From 2020, all Year 12 students in NSW must reach the minimum standard of literacy and numeracy to receive an HSC.

Students in Year 9 in 2017 will be the first students expected to meet the standard.

The standard is mapped against the Australian Core Skills Framework (ACSF) Level 3, a nationally agreed standard of functional literacy and numeracy.

The minimum standard is part of a broader NSW Government strategy to support students to succeed in life and work. The minimum standard complements a new cross-sectoral, state-wide strategy to boost literacy and numeracy. Students at risk of not demonstrating the standard will be identified early and supported to improve their reading, writing and numeracy skills.

Students can demonstrate they meet the standard by passing the online reading, writing and numeracy tests, which will be available for students to sit in:

  • Year 10
  • Year 11
  • Year 12
  • for up to five years after beginning their first HSC courses.

Students can access a demonstration test to find out the level of skills required for these tests.

Students will have the first opportunity to prove they meet the standard by achieving Band 8 results or above in Year 9 NAPLAN reading, writing and numeracy tests. Students who achieve Band 8 will not need to sit the online tests later in years 10, 11 and 12.

No student will be ineligible to sit for the HSC on the basis of their Year 9 NAPLAN results.

Why have a minimum standard?

The best indicators of success (employment, higher salaries and good health) rely on a student’s literacy and numeracy skills.

Without targeted intervention and support to reach the standard, some students risk missing out on skills necessary for everyday life. These skills allow students to:

  • compare prices and understand percentages
  • understand interest rates and lending offers
  • work out quantities and measurements
  • manage personal budgets
  • understand and write routine workplace instructions
  • navigate websites
  • take meeting notes and complete official documents.

Currently, the HSC does not directly measure students’ literacy and numeracy skills nor require a minimum standard to be met.

The minimum standard will prompt an early focus on literacy and numeracy, and help students meet progressive milestones.  Advanced students will also benefit from an increased focus on literacy and numeracy by developing more sophisticated skills. For example, Western Australia recently introduced a minimum standard, which has helped lift the proportion of students in the top two NAPLAN bands.

Helping students achieve the standard

Schools will have access via Schools Online to information about Years 10-12 students who have or have not met the minimum standard in reading, writing and numeracy. This will help schools boost support for students at risk of not meeting the standard.

Support materials, including (NSW Education Standards Authority) NESA resources, will emphasise early identification of students in primary and high school at risk of not meeting the standard. Teachers will have access to strategies and materials to help their students meet the standard.

Schools can deliver short courses, topics or additional tutoring in numeracy skills. Some students may continue studying mathematics as the best way to improve their numeracy skills.

The NSW Literacy and Numeracy Strategy is a plan to ensure NSW students have the essential literacy and numeracy skills they need for success in learning and in life.

Literacy and numeracy skills will be described clearly, taught explicitly, assessed meaningfully and reported regularly in all schools across NSW providing early identification and support for students most at risk of not meeting the minimum standard.

Find out more about the NSW Literacy and Numeracy Strategy.


Students who don’t meet the standard

All students should complete high school with a functional level of literacy and numeracy for everyday life and employment.

Students who don’t demonstrate the standard will have five years after beginning their first HSC courses to meet the minimum standard and receive an HSC. They will receive a Record of School Achievement on leaving school.

While maths will not be mandatory for Year 11 and 12, studying Mathematics General 1 is an option for students who need to improve their numeracy skills in order to meet the minimum standard.


Disability provisions will be available for the new tests in line with existing provisions for the HSC. Some students, including those studying Life Skills courses in English and Mathematics, will be exempt from meeting the minimum standard. An exemptions policy will be developed in consultation with key stakeholder groups and be released later in 2017.



Updating the HSC Curriculum 

NESA has determined that the HSC needed updated to provide more opportunities for students to master relevant knowledge and skills.

The HSC is not the only education system being redesigned. High-performing school systems (such as Shanghai, Ontario, Singapore and Hong Kong) are also redesigning their curriculum to allow students to develop mastery of knowledge and skills in a subject.

When will the new syllabuses begin?

Year 11 students of 2018 will begin their senior secondary studies with the new syllabuses in English, Mathematics, Science and History. Year 12 students in 2019 will be the first to complete HSC examinations using these revised syllabuses.

Draft syllabuses undergoing consultation were finalised at the end of 2016.

This means schools and teachers will have 2017 to familiarise themselves with the new content and plan lessons before implementation in 2018.

What’s involved in rolling out the new syllabuses?

Introducing new syllabuses in English, Mathematics, Science and History for Years 11 and 12 students will require careful planning for everyone involved in secondary school education.

The 70,000+ students who complete the HSC every year must study English so changes to the English syllabus content and assessment alone will have a big impact.

What will the new syllabuses focus on?

The principles applying to English, Mathematics, Science and History will apply in renewing the remaining syllabuses.

These include:

  • A focus on ‘depth’ of content studied rather than ‘breadth’ of topics covered.
  • Online syllabuses, rather than static, paper copies as online can be more easily updated.
  • Interactive e-syllabus linking new courses to teaching and assessment resources, such as sample teaching units and assessment tasks.



New HSC assessment guidelines (from HSC 2019)

New, rigorous guidelines for effective school-based HSC assessment will be introduced across all courses from 2018 (Year 11 students) and 2019 (Year 12 students).

The school-based assessment guidelines will be tougher to prevent plagiarism and cheating and help reduce student stress caused by over-assessment.

Reducing stress

To reduce excessive stress and allow more time for teaching and learning, school-based assessment tasks will be capped at three per course in Year 11 and four per course in Year 12 (including the HSC trial examination).

Research, including from Hong Kong, shows fewer and more targeted assessment tasks are more effective in giving feedback to teachers about their students’ strengths and weaknesses. As a result, Hong Kong has restructured its school-based assessment tasks.

Reducing plagiarism and cheating

Redesigned HSC examination questions will help reduce formulaic, pre-prepared responses and cheating. 

Stricter guidelines will assure the authorship of take-home assessments and projects.

Why change assessment?

The final HSC examinations form 50% of a student’s final HSC marks.

In its consultation, NESA found that teachers, parents and students reported that Year 11 and Year 12 students experienced assessment fatigue.

Some schools are using school assessments as a way to motivate students, or to ensure they attempt work. This means students can have up to six assessment tasks per course in each year. For example, a student with five 2 Unit courses can have 25–30 assessment tasks over three terms – roughly one a week on average.

In reality, assessment tasks are clustered at similar points of the school year. From the student perspective, every assessment task counts, whether it is worth 5% or 25%. The assessments are not always single tasks, such as one essay, and often comprise subtasks that require a substantial amount of work to complete.

Students often feel compelled to choose to do “what’s due next”, or “what’s worth more”. Some assessment tasks replicate previous HSC examination questions, either in the form of an essay, or mimicking the examination. This limits the variety of tasks used to assess student knowledge and skills.

Fewer assessment tasks will allow schools to spend more time teaching the knowledge and skills in a course, and shift the focus from superficial learning just for the examination.

Will HSC examination questions change?

The final HSC examinations held every year will continue. They will also continue to form 50% of a student’s final HSC marks.

However, HSC examination questions will change to help reduce cheating and plagiarism.

Some HSC examination questions are very similar every year. Teaching and learning can become formulaic in reflecting this.

HSC examination questions will be less predictable so students must apply their knowledge and skills in their answers.

Students repeatedly practise their essay writing skills (particularly in English and History), resulting in pre prepared and memorised essays. Some schools set the previous HSC essay questions for homework tasks, or under examination conditions for the HSC trial examination.

Memorising key facts and skills, such as times tables and quotations, is important, however memorising entire essays to adapt and reproduce in an examination is a narrow demonstration of a student’s application of knowledge and skills.

Marking mathematics

Similarly to English, Mathematics courses will be on a common scale to allow comparison of students doing easier or harder courses.

Placing mathematics courses on a common scale will act as a disincentive for capable students who deliberately choose easier courses for a perceived ATAR advantage.

The common scale will allow better recognition of student efforts and encourage them to take a mathematics course that better suits their ability.



 If we were to examine, say, what each Year 7 student completed in 2016, you can quickly see why the girls have been experiencing great stress and anxiety. For instance, in 2016, each Year 7 student studied ten subjects, each with two summative tasks per semester. That is 20 tasks spread over 10 weeks. In reality, they were spread in the last 6 weeks of each term so it was not unusual to see Year 7 girls grappling at handing in or sitting for about 4 tasks per week. The result?

  • Great stress.
  • Focus only on tests and tasks.
  • Little focus on learning and progress.
  • Fixation on marks rather than meeting the standards set in the course outcomes.

To reduce this excessive stress, and in the spirit for preparing for the new HSC from 2019, and allow more time for teaching and learning, summative assessment tasks (tests, assignments, oral presentations, projects) will be capped at one task per course per Semester. This will effectively halve the formal, summative tasks for each girl from Years 7 to 10. We will be returning our focus back on learning in the classroom which is of greater value when trying to progress.

This will inevitably mean a change in the way we report to parents. The current practice of publishing a minimum, maximum, mean and student mark on each report will cease.

On each subject report, your daughter will still be awarded a grade (from A to E) and you will be informed how many students were awarded each grade. In this way, you will very quickly establish where she is in relation to her cohort. There will continue to be a separate report for Scientia stream students. Students who elect to extend themselves and complete additional Scientia tasks will also have a report on their progress.


About the Common Grade Scale

The Common Grade Scale shown below is used to report student achievement in both primary and junior secondary years in all NSW schools.

The Common Grade Scale describes performance at each of five grade levels.


The student has an extensive knowledge and understanding of the content and can readily apply this knowledge. In addition, the student has achieved a very high level of competence in the processes and skills and can apply these skills to new situations.


The student has a thorough knowledge and understanding of the content and a high level of competence in the processes and skills. In addition, the student is able to apply this knowledge and these skills to most situations.


The student has a sound knowledge and understanding of the main areas of content and has achieved an adequate level of competence in the processes and skills.


The student has a basic knowledge and understanding of the content and has achieved a limited level of competence in the processes and skills.


The student has an elementary knowledge and understanding in few areas of the content and has achieved very limited competence in some of the processes and skills.


Subject-specific Course Performance Descriptors have been developed for teachers to use in assigning grades in Stage 5.



The following principles provide the criteria for judging the quality of assessment materials and practices.

  • Emphasises the interactions between learning and manageable assessment strategies that promote learning

In practice, this means:

  • teachers reflect on the purposes of assessment and on their assessment strategies
  • assessment activities or tasks allow for demonstration of learning outcomes
  • assessment is embedded in learning activities or tasks and informs the planning of future learning activities or tasks
  • teachers use assessment to identify what a student can already do
  • Clearly expresses for the student and teacher the goals of the learning activity or task

In practice, this means:

  • students understand the learning goals and the criteria that will be applied to judge the quality of their achievement
  • students receive feedback that helps them make further progress
  • Reflects a view of learning in which assessment helps students learn better, rather than just achieve a better mark

In practice, this means:

  • teachers use tasks that assess, and therefore encourage, deeper learning
  • feedback is given in a way that motivates the learner and helps students to understand that mistakes are a part of learning and can lead to improvement
  • assessment is an integral component of the teaching-learning process rather than being a separate activity or task
  • Provides ways for students to use feedback from assessment

In practice, this means:

  • feedback is directed to the achievement of standards and away from comparisons with peers
  • feedback is clear and constructive about strengths and weaknesses
  • feedback is individualised and linked to opportunities for improvement
  • Helps students take responsibility for their own learning

In practice, this means:

  • assessment includes strategies for self-assessment and peer assessment emphasising the next steps needed for further learning
  • Is inclusive of all learners

In practice, this means:

  • assessment against standards provides opportunities for all learners to achieve their best;
  • assessment activities or tasks are free of bias.



Please keep the following in our prayers:

  • Mrs Parsons and her family following the loss of her mother, Dianne Thurtell;
  • Miss Napoli and her family following the loss of her paternal grandfather, Mr Napoli.

May perpetual light shine upon them.



Our mantra:

“Girls can do anything.
Bethany girls can do everything!*
(*except divide by zero)”
Vicki Lavorato

Study Skills at Bethany College


Parents and girls in Years 8 and 9 – keep Thursday June 15 free. Prue Salter is coming to present some valuable tips and information that will support the girls with their study skills. The evening will run from 7.00 to 8.30pm in Yallunga and it is expected that all Year 8 and 9 girls attend with at least one parent or carer.



Recently I was asked what I thought the top 5 habits were for students in their last year of school. I came up with this list below, then realised wouldn’t it be great if all students had these habits firmly entrenched before they even reached the senior years of school!

So your challenge for this year, no matter what your year level, is to ensure these habits become embedded as part of YOUR practice for learning to help you become an effective learner at school and in your career and personal life.

Want to develop great habits for learning? Here’s what you need to do:

  1. ENGAGE:Don’t just be a bystander, instead be an active participant in your own learning, taking responsibility for what you need to do to achieve your academic best.

This means:

  • You involve yourself in all of your lessons, staying on task, participating in discussions and trying to absorb as much as you can during your classes (and that means less to learn later).
  • You complete all of the set work for your subjects (your teacher gives you this for a reason) and you try and keep up to date in this work.
  • You seek help on anything you don’t understand or can’t do. This might be from a teacher, a friend, online sources, additional books or study guides. You also do this nice and early, you don’t let the problems pile up.


  1. ORGANISE:Being organised means that you can find things when you need them, you don’t forget about work to be done and you don’t have last minute panics. Much less stressful.

This means:

  • You have a good system for managing all of the paper for school, you file away completed work and sort and organise all of the papers you are given.
  • You do the same with your digital resources: well named folders and logical filing structures. You do a back-up on a regular basis.
  • When you are given an assessment task you make a plan for when you will do the work for this task and you adjust the plan along the way as things change.


  1. THINK AHEAD:Part of ‘stepping up’ is that you don’t just wait for someone to tell you to do something. You think ahead and work strategically.

This means:

  • If you know there will be exams (and there are always exams) then don’t wait until exam time to get your act together. Make your study notes as you go. Every time you finish a topic make study notes for that topic and file it away at home.
  • Make your study notes as you go. Don’t fall too far behind. Yes I know I have already said this, but it is so important I am saying it twice. Keep improving and condensing your notes throughout the year.
  • In fact it needs to be said three times. Keep up to date in your study notes. Worst case scenario – catch up every school holidays.


  1. STRIVE FOR EXCELLENCE:You want to be able to differentiate yourself from all of the other students, so think what you can do to make your work stand out from the crowd.

This means:

  • You take the time to be thorough when working on essays and assignments. This means lots of planning and brainstorming to start and then multiple drafts over a period of time for editing and proofing (it’s good to give the subconscious time to process and evaluate between drafts).
  • You look for additional source material, you read widely and you do more than what is asked of you. But you ensure that in specific tasks you are focused on answering the question and providing depth to your response.
  • You make the most of any feedback you are given (either along the way or after the task) to make adjustments to your approach to your work to improve your outcomes.


  1. STUDY SMART:Many students are incredibly ineffective in the way they study. They just stare into their books hoping what they need to learn will magically jump into their heads. If you aren’t doing it yet, then it is time to study smart.

This means:

  • You test yourself over and over on the material you need to be able to recall in exams. You don’t just read it and hope you will be able to remember it.
  • You then check for understanding, are you able to apply the information you have in your head to different types of questions? To do this you do as many practice questions and past examination papers as you can. You get hold of as many different questions as possible to do as practise.
  • You do these past papers under examination conditions! This means that you stick to the time limits and don’t look at notes or answers until the end. This gives you a reality check about your performance and helps you rehearse for the time pressure of exams. You use these practise papers as a tool to help you pinpoint areas of weakness that you then address.


You can learn more about how to be a more effective student at www.studyskillshandbook.com.au by logging in with the details below and working through some of the units:

Username: bethanyhurstville

Password: 65success


Dr Prue Salter  –  Enhanced Learning Educational Services




Robert Gough

Year 9 Coordinator


From the Assistant Principal

Important Dates

  • Tuesday 28/2: Year 12 photos
  • Wednesday 1/3: Ash Wednesday
  • Tuesday 7/3: Bethany Open Day- students not assisting on the day are dismissed at the start of lunch
  • Friday 10/3: Bethany Day
  • Friday 7/4: Last Day of Term 1
  • Monday 24/4: Staff Development Day
  • Wednesday 26/4: Students return for Term 2

Students will be required to wear their full Winter Uniform as outlined below from Monday 15 May (Week 4, Term 2- after Mother’s day)


A reminder of the Winter uniform requirements are below:

Winter College Uniform: 7-9

  • Long sleeve College blouse
  • College tunic worn at mid knee length
  • College knee high socks (not ankle) or opaque navy pantyhose
  • College cardigan

The College Blazer is the compulsory outer garment to be worn to and from school.


Senior Winter Uniform: 10-12

  • College blouse
  • College skirt worn at mid knee length
  • Knee high socks (not ankle) or opaque navy pantyhose
  • College Blazer which must be worn as compulsory outer garment to and from school.

Year 12 may wear College jersey at school on Thursdays only


Sport Uniform: Years 7-10

  • College tracksuit -long pants and jacket with long pants (shorts may be worn underneath for sport if students wish)
  • College sport T shirt
  • College ankle socks
  • Well supported lace up sport shoes (Not canvas: Vans/Converse etc)
  • College Sports cap
  • Optional polar fleece


The College Sport Jacket is the outer garment to be worn to and from school


Winter Sport Uniform: 11 -12

Year 11 & 12- Uniform should be retained where possible to wear at carnivals and representing the college at sporting events

All Year 11 and 12 must wear Senior Winter Uniform to and from school.

Students representing the college on Thursdays, or those undertaking practical lessons must bring sport uniform to school and change.


For extra warmth in winter students may wear:

  • College scarf only
  • College vest
  • Any other layering (spencers etc..) must be worn under the school uniform and not be visible

General Uniform reminders

  • College Badge should be worn with the uniform
  • Plain leather flat lace up shoes
  • Make up should not be worn to school
  • Hair should be tied back and a natural, uniform colour
  • Nails should be natural looking and kept to an appropriate length to allow students to conduct school work unimpeded and prevent a student harming themselves or others. Only clear nail polish may be worn. No French tips will be permitted.
  • No visible facial piercing or tattoos will be accepted.
  • Jewellery-the only jewellery that is permitted is
    • One set of small studs worn in the lowest part of the ear lobe – no other piercings
    • one watch
    • one gold or silver chain with a cross or crucifix
  • College Bag- The bag is designed to be worn high on the student’s backs, it is therefore advised that straps are done up to avoid unnecessary stress on the students.

Students who are unable to remove piercings or nails/polish will work outside the classroom until they can comply with the uniform code.



Jacinta Russo

Assistant Principal


PDHPE Department News



PDHPE & Sport Policy Reminder

The Bethany College Sports Uniform :

a) Official College PE shirt and shorts

b) Official College Tracksuit (Terms 2 & 3)

c)   Sports shoes must be done up at all times. The selected shoes must provide adequate support and grip for all sporting activities, which means they must be either an athletic runner or a cross trainer shoe, and white ankle socks.

d)   College Sports cap

Please note: The school jumper is not to be worn with the PE uniform.

Due to WHS regulations we insist that all laces on shoes be tied up firmly to support the foot during practical lessons.

There are several shoe types that have been identified as not safe for physical activity, and hence will not be accepted as part of the uniform. These shoes are canvas shoes (i.e. Dunlop Volley, converse chux & Rabens) and High Tops.


SLR Surf Camp – Ocean Beach Holiday Park

First day, we arrived at school at 8:30am from there the year 11 and year 12 SLR classes packed their bags into the vans, and went along on our journey up to Ocean Beach Holiday Park at Umina Beach. After two hours of endless singing, and waiting for Miss Soles to catch up to Mr Guthrie’s van, we finally arrived at our destination, driving through the caravan park to familiarise ourselves with our surroundings. After we parked the vans, we all setup our tents not knowing that during the next couple of days they’d be completely flooded. After setting up, we made our way down to the beach to cool off from the scorching sun. Later that evening we put our cooking skills to use, making meals from sausages, eggs, chicken, steak and corn. After eating our ‘gourmet’ dinner, we headed back to our tents for some late night entertainment by Faith, Priscilla and Kylie. It was lights out after 10pm, a waiting for the next day of fun filled activities ahead.

On Tuesday, we were woken at 6:30 by Mr Guthrie.  After breakfast we went on a walk to Ettalong Lookout in the pouring rain to take in the view across to Palm Beach. After about 30 minutes we went back to the campsite to get ready for our first surfing lesson at 9 o’clock. We arrived at our surfing lesson, got our wetsuits and surfboards and headed down to Umina beach. The instructors taught us the basics of standing up on the boards and then we headed off into the water. The surfing lesson consisted of lots of boards flying everywhere and people falling off every wave they attempted to ride. Some people had some luck and got up on the first day of the lesson, others had some trouble. After the lesson we were all so hungry so we headed for some lunch. After lunch we went on a 2km walk to a sand bank where you could walk out 200m of water, but unfortunately the weather wasn’t on our side so only a few of us went out. When we got back we went on the jumping pillow and went in the pool. We were in the pool for about 2 hours and everyone was playing ‘marco polo’. Everyone was getting involved and we finished our pool time on the slide. After everyone got out of the pool, we had dinner and went into our tents and hoped for the best that we didn’t get wet from the terrible weather that was coming during the night.

The last day of camp was very eventful. First we packed our bags before we had breakfast. We all cooked our meals and then got ready for surfing. We all got into our wetsuits grabbed our boards and headed out to the waves. We got dunked a lot but by the end of it most people could stand up and ride the waves. After we surfed for 2 hours we went back to the holiday park to pack up our tents and have lunch. Everyone packed their tents and we all met at the kitchen hut to have our final lunch together before we left and drove home. A special mention goes to Ms Soles as she got over taken by a Learner driver. Overall the camp was fun and a good experience. Thanks Mr Guthrie and Ms Soles.


Bethany College Swimming Carnival Results

House points for carnival:

4th Place – Oodgeroo

3rd Place – Franklin

2nd Place – Kellerman

1st Place – Melba


Age Champions:

12 yrs Age Champion – Violet Gruppelaar

13 yrs Age Champion – Lucy Flanagan

14 yrs Age Champion – Ashley Campbell

15 yrs Age Champion – Kiera Warn

16 yrs Age Champion – Mallory Hull

17 yrs Age Champion – Bridget Cole

Invitational 50m Champion – Kiera Warn

School Swimming Champion – Kiera Warn


Thank you to staff, students and Carnival Coordinator Ms Lauren Brennan for another outstanding swimming carnival!


CGSSSA Softball Monday 13th February

What a great day out at CGSSSA Softball in Manly on Monday 13th February. 

The Junior team were victorious on the day being crowned CGSSSA Champions, beating St Ursula’s, Mount St Joseph’s, Domremy and Santa Sabina along the way, being the only team to remain undefeated and winning the trophy on points. The seniors came second in their pool and made it to the semi finals but lost 7-6 to Marist Woolwich.

Both the teams showed great skill, commitment and sportsmanship on the day and should be congratulated on their fine efforts. 

Thankyou to Mr Martin and Miss Andrews for coaching us on the day.

Moya Denford –  Year 10


State Cup Oztag

Junior NSW Oztag State titles occurred from 10-12th February at Coffs Harbour. There were several girls from Bethany involved. The under 13 girls from St. George won their age group and were declared State champions.Those involved in that team were Chloe Jackson, Zara Buckingham, Lily Peranara, Caitlin Hollis and Keira Fisher.

The 14’s girls from St. George made the finals as well but were beaten. Eva Koustopoulos was in this team. I’m sure there were other girls in the other year groups that represented St. George.

Representative Sport

Representative Sport has commenced with some really good results in weeks 1 and 2. The Touch Football and AFL teams have won all their games, with the Volleyball Teams having mixed results. Keep up the good work girls!


Upcoming Events:

21st February CGSSSA Cricket 27th February SCC Swimming

1st March CGSSSA Touch Football




Wes Gurthrie

PDHPE Coordinator

What’s Been Happening in Religious Education

The season of Lent will begin next week with Ash Wednesday.  This is an important time within our Church calendar as it is when we have an opportunity for reflection and preparation for the upcoming events of Holy Week.  The highest point within our Church year are the events of the Easter Triduum.  Without the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus, we would not have the opportunity of salvation and the chance one day, to meet God face to face.  

As a school, we will be participating in Ash Wednesday liturgies during periods 1 and 2 and all of our students will have an opportunity to reflect upon the implications that the season of penance, preparation and reflection has on our lives.

During the liturgy, ashes are distributed.   These ashes are made by burning the blessed palms that were distributed the previous year on Palm Sunday.  At my own parish, we have been asked to return the palms that we took home on Palm Sunday last year so that they can be used during this liturgy.   

In the early Church, people who had sinned would wear sackcloth and would cover themselves with ashes. This was a very public sign that they were sinners and were seeking reentry into the Church.  This was the beginning of their public penance. In placing the ashes on our own foreheads, we too are reminded of our own sinfulness and the need to repent.

There are now only two days within the Church calendar that we are required to fast and abstain from eating meat; Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.  Catholics who are over the age of 18 and below the age of 60 are required to fast. This means that they can eat only one complete meal and two smaller ones during the day with no food in between.  For those who are over the age, you are required to refrain from eating meat or any food made with meat.

Lent is a time where we have an opportunity to not only give something up, but also a time to take something up.  It is a time to look at our spiritual life to see where we can make improvements in our relationship with God by perhaps taking an extra five minutes in prayer, or perhaps attending mass during the week, or receiving the sacrament of reconciliation more often. These actions give us an opportunity to examine our relationship with God and to make it stronger as we prepare ourselves for the Easter event.

If you are interested in taking something up, I have included some links to a Lenten calendar for either your phones or tablets.  These are generally very good resources that allow you a few minutes everyday to contemplate, to reflect and to grow in your relationship with God.

Download the Lent calendar: iphone app

Download the Lent calendar ipad app

Download the Lent calendar android phone app

Download the Lent calendar android tablet app



Diane Kennaugh

Leader of Religion and Mission

UTS Scholarship

My name is Brooke Cibalevski and am a graduating student of the Class of 2016, the Diamonds.

I completed the HSC, finishing with an ATAR of 93.20 and was accepted into the Bachelor of Information Technology Scholarship Program at the University of Technology Sydney. It is a relatively new, innovative program which focusses on the required technologies and skills for the future, today; as well as inspiring females to enter male dominated industries. It was only through a lunch time talk with a student of UTS I found out about this wonderful program and a burst of spontaneousness that made me think “what’s the worst that can happen, they’ll say no” and I hit that apply button. The process included filling out a questionnaire that not only involved academic efforts but talents, employment and extra circular activities (something I highly recommend every student involve themselves in). From here I was contacted that I had been accepted into the interview round where I travelled to UTS and was interviewed by an IT lecturer as well as the Head of Marketing and IT, representing the sponsor Woolworths.

It was about a month later, that I had received a conditional offer to the course, meaning I still had to achieve an ATAR of 90 or above to secure my position, this acted as a motivating drive to continue through the hardships of the HSC. On the 16th of December at 8:30am, the dreaded day finally came and every Year 12 student received their ATAR’s and I received mine of 93.20; at 11:30am that day I was contacted by the UTS FEIT (Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology) that I have been offered a position in the course, I was beyond shocked that a normal person like myself was able to attain what once seemed impossible and immediately accepted!

My message out there to all the Bethany Girls as well as Girls in general that if you put my mind to something you certainly can achieve, believe, work hard and nothing can stop you. Don’t let the fact that such industries such as Engineering and Information Technology are predominantly male, if you have a passion follow it, break down barriers because if it’s any girl to do that it’s a Bethany Girl! Even if you don’t think you can, apply and try anyway! I certainly didn’t think I would be in the position I am. If anyone has questions regarding the scholarship program at UTS, feel free to contact me, I am more than happy to answer any questions! Sending the best wishes to the Class of 2017!


Brooke Cibalevski

Careers News

It has been a busy start to the year with students starting to take advantage of the resources on offer in the new Careers Room opposite the library.  I look forward to meeting as many of the girls as possible in the coming months and encourage them to drop into the Careers Room during any of the following lunchtimes to discuss careers, courses and other post school options:

Week A – Monday, Wednesday and Friday lunchtimes

Week B – Monday, Tuesday and Friday lunchtimes

I have also started emailing Year 12 students a ‘Careers Newsletter’ which includes information that will be of particular interest to them as they will need to start making decisions about the pathway they will take next year. Encourage your daughters to share this newsletter with you and take some time to read and discuss the options together.


Open Universities Australia

Study a university degree online and at your own pace.



Meet University of Melbourne in Albury

26 April . 6.00pm to 8.30pm

Albury Entertainment Centre, 525 Swift Street, Albury.

Contact: Lois Carlton at lcarlton@unimelb.edu.au



US Application Information Workshop 

 2 March. 5.30pm and 7.30pm

Cranbrook High School

School 5 Victoria Road, Bellevue Hill, Sydney

Presentation for students and their families about the UC College Application Process.

RSVP deb@uscollegeconnect.com For students in years 10-12 


UTS Insearch Information Session

28 February. 5.00pm to 7.00pm

Level 5, 187 Thomas Street, Haymarket

Diploma pathway into UTS Degrees if you did not get the desired ATAR.



Bond High School Mooting Competition Open

Years 11 and 12 who are interested in Law. Experience the courtroom environment and legal practice.

Contact highschoolmooting@bond.edu.au  or phone 1800 074 074.


University of the Arts London

Study degrees, short courses or abroad programs. Their staff come to Australia to interview prospective students. For your school visit email: ual@bcic.co.uk



The Doctor – Transcending history and space with Dr Karl

 7June.  5.45 to 7.00pm 

York Theatre, Seymour Centre

Free Public Lecture at the University of Sydney

Dr Karl once again unearths the scientific truths: from the theories of movie audiences emitting chemicals to immortal jellyfish, why coffee is now good for you and how hot tea cools you down. Join Dr Karl as he tells the tale of his latest mission.



Stranger Things – The Uncanny world of animal pregnancy. JD Stewart Lecture with Dr Camilla Whittington on the amazing world of genes.

16August. 5.45 to 7.00pm 

Eastern Ave Auditorium

Free Public Lecture at the University of Sydney

Discover how cutting-edge techniques are used to identify the pregnancy genes that cause live birth rather than egg-laying. Explore how Dr Whittington’s work relates to pregnancy in lizards, mammals and fish, including the world’s only male-pregnant animals–the seahorses.



Bright Lights – The science of light at the nanoscale. Nano Technology – Can we fit a whole lab on a chip? With Prof Ben Eggleton & Dr Andrea Redondo 

26April. 5.45 to 7.00pm WESTMEAD

Free Public Lecture at the University of Sydney

It’s possible with nanophotonics, the science of light at the nanoscale. Be dazzled by how nanophotonics is addressing the production of point-of-care medical diagnostic devices, reducing the carbon footprint of big data and making our future bright. 


International Science School 2-15 July

Applications close 17 March

Join 140 other top young scientists from years 11 and 12, from around Australia and across the world, for an amazing, all expenses paid two weeks of science at the University of Sydney. Featuring talks by leading researchers, tours of scientific labs, hands-on experiments and activities, and a packed social program. More info: 


Kickstart HSC Science Workshops 

Parts of the biology, chemistry and physics syllabus require equipment or expertise in areas that many schools may not be able to provide. Kickstart workshops give HSC students a chance to do experiments and demonstrations of key syllabus points that are difficult to do in the classroom.

P 9114 0825. Email to: science.alliance@sydney.edu.au
Visit: http://sydney.edu.au/science/outreach/high-school/kickstart


Kickstart HSC Science in Armidale and Dubbo, May 2017 

Armidale . 9 and 10 May

Dubbo. 30 and 31 May

Kickstart workshops give HSC students a chance to do experiments and demonstrations of key syllabus points that are difficult to do in the classroom. Biology and Physics workshops.
P 9114 0825. Email to: science.alliance@sydney.edu.au
Visit: http://sydney.edu.au/science/outreach/high-school/kickstart/on-the-road.shtml




Students who need another chance for their HSC and an alternate pathway into University. TAFE NSW St Leonards Campus are accepting late enrolments for HSC and Tertiary Preparation (TPC) courses. For more information, contact Colin Frederick on 9942 0743 or at colin.frederick@tafensw.edu.au. Also on Facebook . Search “HSC Courses – TAFE NSW” or “TPC Courses – TAFE NSW” 


Study online with TAFE

Select your TAFE course to study at your own pace in your own home.



Build a Career with REECE School based Apprenticeship Program(ASbA)

Offering exciting employment, training for year 10s or 11s continuing through to year 12 combining  HSC with part time work. See position locally at:



HTN Apprentice Chef and Butcher Opportunities

Apprentice butcher or chef apprenticeships available now.



HTN Aspire

Do a 4 week training program to obtain a chef apprenticeship.




Bedford College February Intake for Business, Child Care, and Social Work Diplomas.

There are four intakes throughout the year in February, April, July, and October and enrolments accepted all year round. For enquiries, call on 1300 174 174, or visit the website at www.bedford.edu.au


Coco Republic Design School Online Courses

From 16 to 18 weeks on Interior Design Essentials, Styling Essentials and Colour for Interiors.



Interior Decoration Masterclass – 2 day creative workshop at Sydney Design School 

19 and 20 April. 9.30am to 4.00pm 

Sydney Design School 2/40 Oxley Street, St Leonards, Sydney

You’ll learn from practising Interior Designers and build your own interior scheme for a space in your home. Get a taste of this exciting industry and be inspired.



College for Law Education and Training Online in Law, Business Management, and Government Studies.

Nationally recognised qualifications.



Aviation Australia Cabin Crew Career Session, Qantas Centre of Service Excellence, 

22 March . 6.30pm to 8.30pm

70-80 Euston Rd Alexandria 

Discover how you can travel for a living at an Aviation Australia Cabin Crew Career Session. Find out how to excel in a career as a flight attendant, speak to industry experts and learn about the world class training aids on offer. For more information, contact our Airline Training Consultant, Laura McQuilkin on 07 3860 0993 or visit 



Whitehouse Institute of Design School Workshops

2 Short Street, Surry Hills

Held on Whitehouse or at your school in drawing for fashion, interior drawing, textiles and design for all high school students. Email: enquiry@whitehouse-design.edu.au or phone: 02 9267 8799



APM College of Business and Communication Course Guide

Business, Marketing, Event Management and Project Management.



JMC Academy Sydney Mocktail Film Award Submissions 2017 

Closes 5 March

For talented, young and aspiring high school filmmakers. Submit a short film for The Mocktail Awards. The nominated films will be screened at the prestigious Martini Awards held at Hoyts Broadway in April. For more information and to submit your work click here http://bit.ly/2kI37hU


JMC Academy Sydney Campus Tour 

Career opportunities in the growing areas of Animation, Film and TV, Music, Songwriting, Game Design, Entertainment Management, Audio Engineering and Digital Design or if you want a private tour of their Ultimo campus, email Student Recruitment Advisers at: Sydney@jmc.edu.au


Work Experience in Game Development, Animation and Visual Effects 

The AIE Work Experience Program is a great way for secondary school students in years 10 to 12 to learn about the interactive entertainment and digital industries. The week will open the door to the range of career possibilities in the industry and allow students to get hands-on with the tools of the trade. Register at:



3D Animation Workshop 

18 February

4 March

This workshop will give you a beginner’s understanding of the software ZBrush where you’ll have the opportunity to build a character from your own digital clay. 3D Design takes on many forms: modelling, rigging, texturing and more. Walk away with a good understanding of what it’s like to start the process of building your own designs from scratch Register: http://www.ait.nsw.edu.au/free-day-courses-sydney/

AIT Intro to Film workshop 

18 February

4 March

A fun introduction to screen editing. Learn the basics of Premiere Pro and create your own photo montage, music video and green screen sequence. Learn about transitions, effects and other skills you can apply to your own projects. Use video footage and music tracks supplied – or bring your own to customise your creative work. Register: http://www.ait.nsw.edu.au/free-day-courses-sydney/

AIT Intro to Creative Drawing 

18 February

4 March

Creative Drawing is a core unit for many programs here at AIT. It gives you an experience in basic traditional drawing techniques that can be applied to any digital formats. This one-day teaser course will give you the opportunity to try your hand at creative character design. Register: http://www.ait.nsw.edu.au/free-day-courses-sydney/

AIT Digital Design

18 February

Learn how to create your own business card and personalised stationary with this exciting design workshop. Using Illustrator, explore the impact of bold typography and stylish layout to produce a professionally crafted package. You’ll come away from this workshop with a business card that you can incorporate into all your materials required for getting your work ready. Register: ait.nsw.edu.au

Your Portfolio Crash Course 

22 February 4.00pm to 6.15pm

Level 2, 7 Kelly Street, Ultimo

You know a portfolio is important in digital media, but what goes into it and how do you get started? This Portfolio Crash Course will help you if graduating from High School or changing careers to understand what the key elements of building your portfolio.



Complimentary workshops at William Angliss Institute Sydney in school holidays 

Surry Hill campus

A specialised training centre running workshops in Cookery, Patisserie, Coffee and Hospitality

It offers a unique opportunity for students to try some hands on experience in these fields during school holidays. For more information, contact Stacey staceyn@angliss.edu.au or call 0291255111


Endeavour College of Natural Health

Bachelor of Complementary Medicine online.




2017 Western Sydney Careers Expo

22 to 25 June

The Dome and Hall 2, Sydney Showground, Sydney Olympic Park.

Universities, TAFE, gap year and employment opportunities. $10 per person.



Young People at Work

NSW Government website. Learn how to get a job, workers’ rights, how to work, leaving a job.



Be Work Ready

See what employers want in a new worker.



Discover Your Career in Tourism and Hospitality



How to survive year 12


and also:



How to prepare for year 12

Top students reveal how they achieved great results:


Like them on Facebook for video updates: 



Crash Course Chemistry

Videos on all Yr. 11 and 12 Chemistry topics.



National NAIDOC Poster Competition

Closes 6 March

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander do an artwork on the theme “Our Languages Matter”. Win $5,000 and have your poster in NAIDOC promotions.



Young Endeavour

Applications to sail open.

16s and over  develop sailing, leadership and teamwork skills.



Bradman Scholarship Applications Close

Closes 28February

Are you a commencing uni student and can demonstrate cricket skill, academic, personal and community involvement. $5000 per year.



National Indigenous Youth Parliament 2017

Closes 3 March

Indigenous youth, 16 and over can learn about democracy and contribute discussions for future of Australia.



Volunteer 2018 Commonwealth Games – Gold Coast       

Registrations open



WEP Australia Student Exchange Scholarships – Student Exchange Programs to 25 Countries 

WEP Australia is a not-for-profit student exchange organisation offering partial scholarships for students wishing to spend a semester or year overseas in 2018. Students can choose from 25 countries around the world. The majority of their destinations do not have language per-requisites. Request a free information pack: https://wep.org.au/ 1300884733, info@wep.org.au


Defence Force Recruiting Information Sessions 

Adventure, travel, great pay and diverse career opportunities  are a few of the benefits on offer when you join the Navy, Army or Air Force. If you would like to find out more, come along to one of their upcoming information sessions.

Email cptnsw@dfr.com.au and quote reference number 0270231158 for more information.

For a Defence event near you visit: https://www.facebook.com/DefenceJobsAustralia/events


Au Pair in America – GAP Year opportunity 

Spend a year in the US caring for children, sightseeing, making friends and having fun. Au Pairs all attend an orientation and flights and insurance are included. For more info – https://www.aifs.com.au/aupair-america/


Challenges Abroad Australia International Volunteering

Overseas internship opportunities in education, business and/or health.



AFS Overseas Student Exchange Online Information Sessions

Find a location nearest to you for the correct session.



Camp Leaders Australia Applications Now Open

Applications Summer season in the USA.



STEM Subjects – Why are they in Demand?

The future of the Australian economy depends on a workforce that is skilled in using new applications and applying innovations. Young people with STEM skills are highly prized by employers and this trend is predicted to continue as there is a shortage of qualified recruits.





Elizabeth Vrahnos

Vocational Learning Coordinator

Team Dance News


Congratulations to the following students from Years  9, 10, 11 & 12 who have been selected to be part of the 2017 Team Dance student choreographic Team.

Sydney Catholic Colleges Dance Competition

Junior Jazz Meaghan Grove ( Year 10 ) & Danielle South ( Year 10 )  
Intermediate Jazz Alexis Maalouf  ( Year 10 )
Senior Jazz Isabella Genlik  ( Year 10 ) & Emilia Kovacevic  ( Year 10 )
Tap Ameliah Crowe ( Year 12 ) & Abigail Bryant  ( Year 12 )
Assistant Tap choreographer Georgia Scott ( Year 9 )
Hip Hop Chloe- Brooke Plazanin  ( Year 12 ) & Roselyn Pasia ( Year 11 )
Folk Roselyn Pasia ( Year 11 )



Danielle Bennie

Teacher in Charge Dance

JJAMM Retreat

Student leaders Lucia Maalouf, College Captain, and Emma Bennett, College Vice Captain embarked on a five-day journey last week (Saturday 11th February- Wednesday 15th February), referred to as JJAMM.The focus of this conference was on Julian Tenison Woods, Joseph and Mary MacKillop, and encompassed the essence of the Josephite charism, which is strongly interlinked with the religious history of Bethany College.

The girls were among student representatives from 25 Josephite schools all around Australia, and parts of New Zealand. These leaders spent five days networking, and stepping out of their comfort zones. Lucia and Emma were given the opportunity to engage in a series of workshops, which allowed them to flourish intellectually and spiritually. Students from Bethany were exposed to like minded individuals, who collaborated to construct a vision and purpose for their own schools, in 2017.

The conference included an array of activities that challenged the girls physically and mentally. One particular activity that proved most challenging was the walk across the Harbour Bridge in extreme heat. Other activities such as weeding, sought to demonstrate servant leadership. Further to this, students engaged in group work activities, which harnessed both their musical and artistic talents. All activities aimed to replicate the style of team leadership students would have to foster when arriving back at school, and working with their respective SRC teams.

But, it wasn’t all work and no play. There was plenty of time for reflection and relaxation, in the form of card games, outdoor activities and a luxurious pool. By introducing participants to two distinct locations over the course of the week, students were able to experience Sydney’s city, as well as the countryside. The change of scenery between Mary MacKillop Place in North Sydney and St Joseph’s Spirituality and Education Centre in Kincumber meant our surroundings changed from the fast paced city centre, to the serene and tranquil grounds of St Joseph’s. Both locations hold much significance in the Josephite story, MacKillop Place being the location of Mary MacKillop’s tomb, and  St Joseph’s being one of the boys orphanages run by MacKillop herself.

This retreat proved a rich opportunity for students to compare and contrast the strategies used by other leaders, and also provided a sense of community for our girls, to recognise that Josephite schools all around Australia and New Zealand possess similar customs and traditions.

Lucia and Emma are to be commended on their hard work throughout the conference. They were a true credit to the Bethany community, and were recognised for their professionalism on numerous occasions. In the busyness of their HSC year, they were able to walk away from Kincumber with a clear vision for their leadership goals in 2017. Both Bethany girls are now proud friends of student leaders from all over Australia and New Zealand.

A special thank you to organisers,  Sister Jan and Karen Oxley. Their ongoing support, and vision to educate and guide school leaders is a true asset to the memory that “we are but travellers here” (Saint Mary MacKillop).

Miss Kahlie Taouk

2017 School Fees

School Fees for 2017 were emailed to all families on 1st February. If you have not received your fee statement, please do not hesitate to contact the accounts department during  College business hours on  8566-0711.
Term 1 fees are due by 28 February 2017. Your prompt payment is much appreciated.

Project Compassion

As we move into the Lenten period, Bethany College will be fundraising for the Caritas Project Compassion appeal. The theme for Project Compassion 2017 is “Love your neighbour”. There will be collection boxes in homeroom each morning should girls wish to donate to this worthy cause. Each year’s contributions will be added up and displayed on the rolling screens throughout the Lenten period so it’s a good chance for each year group to band together and assist in raising money for their countries which will help them in a number of ways. For instance, just $35 can provide a counselling session to help parents in Vietnam who need to support children living with a disability.

Each year group has been allocated a country to raise money for.  They are as follows:

7- Phillipines

8-Timor Leste

9- Australia

10- Vietnam

11- Fiji

12- Phillipines 

You shall love your neighbour as yourself –  Matt 22:39


Niamh McIntyre – Year 12 Social Justice Prefect

Pedagogy Report

With our focus on the recently released HSC reforms and NAPLAN Band 8 minimum standards, embedding a school wide approach to literacy is at the forefront of 2017 school improvement. On Wednesday, the Bethany College Literacy Working Party met for the first time this year to discuss the implementation of faculty action plans designed to ensure that our students are exposed to a range and variety of metacognitive reading and writing strategies. Below is a list of these approaches, excluding the Mathematics faculty as their attention will be upon improving numeracy;

ENGLISH: Grammar and Punctuation/Thinking Note Keys

HSIE: RAFT and Converting Text to Diagram



RE: Three Level Reading Guide

SCIENCE: Think Box/Vocabulary Charts



VA: Vocabulary/Thinking Note Keys/Three Level Reading Guide

Whilst Bethany is committed to addressing literacy across its Key Learning Areas, it is widely accepted that the greatest effect is to be had in the home.  Beginning at a pre-schooling phase and continuing into the primary years, children who regularly read and have parents read to them (and with them) demonstrate greater ability in the literate domains. Professor Gordon Stanley (Honorary Professor, Faculty of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney and former President of the Board of Studies NSW), presented on this very concept in October 2016, and believes the home to have a continuing significant impact on the literacy rates of students in their adolescent years. Parents are advised to ensure their teenagers are wide reading appropriate texts that will improve grammar, punctuation and vocabulary (and general academic literacy) rather than allowing their teenagers to be glued to social media, for example. Having said this, other uses of technology can have beneficial effects, such as websites like http://www.pearsonschool.com/index.cfm?locator=PS2xI6 containing engaging games to assist in vocabulary development.

The Year 7 students are currently participating in their Laptop Bootcamp, an instructional workshop where students are taken step by step through the key IT platforms required at the college. These include Sentral, Google Drive and GMail and the Papercut web app for printing. The girls have been provided with a digital and hardcopy version of the manual and therefore should refer to this as a first point of reference whilst still familiarising themselves with the new technologies.

A reminder that next Wednesday 1st March, all Bethany College staff will be participating in an extended professional learning workshop on interpreting the Common Grade Scale, ways to encourage ‘stretch’ of both the core curriculum and Scientia extension, as well as addressing consistent teacher judgement when assessing students through both formative and summative assessment. This afternoon will assist staff in their work towards reducing summative assessment across the college.


Katherine Maish

Leader of Pedagogy