If education is to prepare students to meet the demands of our unpredictable world, we must support learning to take place beyond the traditional setting of a classroom.

Students better engage and retain new information when the subject matter can be experienced through activity, rather than theory alone. It helps students to build knowledge, develop character and broaden their sense of place.

Being an active participant in the learning process consolidates students’ understanding of new knowledge by bringing their understanding of a subject to life through experience.

Excursions, co-curricular activities, competitions, camps and work experience are all examples of how learning is enrichened through experience. Students not only broaden their knowledge of curriculum-based concepts, they develop essential life skills, including teamwork and confidence, to equip them for the real world.

With the world a much more uncertain place than in recent years, generosity of spirit to help those less fortunate than ourselves has never been more important than now. I am so proud of the efforts of Senior School staff and students to support those in need this year.

From care packages for those impacted by Cyclone Seroja to the Year 12 students that cut or shaved their hair, the SRC’s promotion of Blue Tree Project, the inaugural PCOutYonder program and the more than $12,000 raised for the Anglicare School Sleep Out.

These projects are evidence of our values in action, bringing comfort and support to those in need as well as a sense of perspective, comradery and accomplishment for those who give.

Student voice matters in the Senior School and acknowledging students’ perspectives on their experiences has helped shape our understanding of what is important to them.

Led largely by the SRC and Year 12 Council of Student Executive, students have engaged in numerous opportunities to have their say about school life this year, identifying some key areas in which we will continue to progress – student wellbeing, inclusivity of all students, the ongoing conversation to support mental health, raising awareness regarding respectful relationships and protective behaviours, as well as consultation on key student policies.

We have experienced so many diverse and rich offerings so far this year.