Week 7 Term 4
Friday 20 November 2020
In this issue:
- Final week for the BGS Class of 2020
- End of Year 12 information - ATARs and subject results
- Dramatic Productions premiere
The Class of 2020
This has been the final week at Brisbane Grammar School for the Class of 2020. External exams concluded at the start of the week and students who had already completed their exams travelled to Wet‘n’Wild on Monday to celebrate the end of their time at BGS. On Tuesday, the boys spent the day at Northgate for an Interwing Carnival - re-living the event from their Middle School days. The style of events was different, but the sense of fun and inclusiveness was still the same. By 3.30pm all Year 12s were able to be at Northgate, and the event finished with a war cry in the grandstand and cohort photo.
On Wednesday, Year 12s and their parents attended Speech Day, which was live-streamed to many watching at home. On Thursday, the boys attended their Valedictory Assembly in the morning, ahead of a fabulous evening at the Brisbane Convention and Entertainment Centre for Valedictory Dinner. Along with a boarding dinner last Saturday night and a farewell to the Year 12 boarders on Wednesday evening, it has been a big week for Year 12 students and their parents.
As has been the case at BGS for as long as I can remember, these celebrations have been meaningful for students and they have carried themselves in a manner that honours their legacy. The 2020 seniors have maintained this standard and finished their time at the School setting an incredible example for younger students. I hope you enjoy the photos below. More photos of this week's activities can be viewed on the BGS Facebook.
The Class of 2020 has continued to enhance the sense of belonging and connectedness that underpins our aim for the BGS community. Their achievements, under challenging circumstances, make them a special group of young men. They taught me about the importance of connecting the cohort and the impact that this can have on the School. Under the leadership of Will Hay, Alex MacGibbon, Will Chapman and Stephen Baronio, they have connected in an incredibly positive way. They are a cohort that has been more centred than any other and this was what underpinned their success and influence.
I wish to thank the student leaders in the day and boarding school: Prefects, Form Seniors, House Family leaders and all committee members for their involvement this year. I also wish to acknowledge the incredible work and leadership displayed by Year 12 Teachers and Year 12 Form Tutors. Their connection to the senior students has proven valuable and important to the boys. Thank you also to Mr Berian Williams-Jones and Mr Nick Byron for their leadership of the boarding students. To Mr Nick Holland and Ms Sarah McDonald, a special thank you for the leadership of the entire cohort. I hope the closure to this journey will provide you with an opportunity to reflect on the achievements of the students this year and the impact both of you have had on their outcomes. There will be many that look back on 2020 and remember it because of the impact of the global pandemic. I will be one of these, but my memory will also include the seniors of 2020.
Thank you, Class of 2020, you were incredible.
Director of Boarding
Farewell Year 12 boarders
The past week has been filled with significant events to celebrate the journey of the Year 12 boarding cohort. It has been our pleasure to celebrate this significant milestone alongside boys who have been with us for just a few months and those for whom Harlin House has been a home for six years.
Given the difficult nature of the past year, and my own doubts that we would be able to gather in any format, we were delighted to be able to hold events for the boys. From a Leavers’ Dinner for Year 12 boarders and their families, to a celebratory ride on the Brisbane River, and our ‘Over the Bridge’ ceremony; all events were significant in enabling the boys to say farewell and to move to the next stage of their journey.
In their book Being a Bloke, Michael Knight and Peter Janetzki highlight the importance of authentic rites of passage. In different ways, all three events acted as a rite of passage for the departure of these young men to university and beyond.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank this outstanding cohort for all they have done for BGS Boarding under the careful guidance of Alex MacGibbon and Stephen Baronio, our Captain and Vice Captain respectively. They have been excellent role models within our community, where they have fostered wonderful relations across year levels.
We also farewell a most supportive group of parents whose support for Boarding has been a feature of their involvement. We thank each one of them for their contribution as many graduate from parents to friends of our community.
Director of Outdoor Education
The Year 6 cohort visited Moogerah this week, bringing energy and enthusiasm. The program allows students time to settle into the procedures at the Outdoor Education Centre for their first residential stay and then to engage positively in the activities.
Due to the pandemic, the boys did not stay in the dorms but were excited to roll out a sleeping mat in the tents usually reserved for expedition programs. Several boys took the opportunity to camp with their tent doors open and enjoy the shooting stars and the Milky Way in the clear night sky.
During the first afternoon, the boys engaged in an aquatic session on Lake Moogerah. The flat-water rafting activity helped to develop a strong set of base paddling and water safety skills, with fun and high-energy tasks. The low water in the lake has exposed some deep muddy sections that became a bit of a distraction on the long walk from the boat shed to the water’s edge. The boys learned how to paddle, complete rescues, flip the raft and were happy to float in their PFDs to cool off in the lake.
The evening was a highlight when Louise from Australian Bush Buddies displayed a turtle, bearded dragon, black headed python and crocodile for the animal education session. Although it was a challenging experience to handle a 14 kilogram python for some, the boys showed lots of interest and there were plenty of volunteers to handle the reptile for a photo.
Day two started with a morning run, breakfast and preparation for the bushwalk. The boys walked to an excellent viewpoint overlooking future Outdoor Education program locations and the Great Dividing Range. The local Ugarapul legend 'Butcha' is visible in the skyline of the range and the boys heard the Indigenous lore about the battle between two warriors. Traditionally, the boys are taken to the lake to cool down after the bushwalk, but the low water level forced us to use an inflatable water slide – a hit with the Year 6 boys!
Outdoor Education photos are now available via the School’s photo management system, Pixevety. The platform helps the School safely manage and share our photos. This user guide provides instructions on how to access, navigate, search and download photos. The system uses single sign on and must be accessed via MyGrammar > Useful Links > Pixevety. Once activated, you will be prompted to enter a login email and password, but please do not attempt to login this way. Instead, go back to MyGrammar and click on Pixevety again. You can then view the photos by clicking on the Year 10 folder in Pixevety.
Director of Student Wellbeing Programs
SchoolTV SPECIAL REPORT: Having the Alcohol Discussion
With the impending festive season and end of school celebrations, some teenagers may be feeling ready to party, wanting to put the disruptions, frustrations, and challenges of this past year behind them.
To ensure our young people stay safe during this time, parents and carers are encouraged to have the alcohol discussion with their sons – no matter how difficult or overwhelming it may be. It is important to outline the rules and boundaries around age-appropriate alcohol consumption and what the legal implications may be.
Young people are at greater risk of alcohol-related harm than adults because their brains continue to develop until their mid-twenties. The safest level of alcohol consumption for teenagers is no alcohol at all, but this may be difficult to enforce and may not prevent them from experimenting. However, parents and carers can influence sensible drinking habits and help minimise the risks.
In this Special Report, a series of discussion points are offered to help make the conversation about alcohol consumption a little easier.
You can access the Special Report here.
Director of Student Services
End of Year 12 Information
Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE)
From 9.00am on Saturday 19 December, final subject results for Year 12 students will be available in learning accounts on the Student Portal, accessed via the myQCE website here.
All documentation from the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA) is now online. As well as accessing results on 19 December, students will be able to download their senior education profile (SEP) via their learning account. Students’ SEPs include a Senior Statement, which lists all the learning in their account and a Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE) if they have met the QCE eligibility requirements.
These are official documents that contain a digital signature and a unique validation code to confirm they are authentic. Boys can download and print them direct from their learning account, which means they don't need to wait for them to arrive in the post. They can also email the electronic copies to potential employers or further studies providers.
The QCAA releases subject results and the QCE. They do not have a role in the release of the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR). Subject results are provided to the Queensland Tertiary Admission Centre (QTAC) and they calculate the ATAR.
Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR)
The ATAR will be released by QTAC on the same day as subject results (Saturday 19 December). Earlier this year, Senior Staff ran sessions with the Year 12 students to assist them in establishing their ATAR account. If a Year 12 student was not present at one of the sessions, they can register to receive their ATAR here. The page also includes valuable information and frequently asked questions about the ATAR.
Students can receive adjustment factors for a variety of reasons. Note that the student’s ATAR issued remains the same. Where an adjustment is applied to an ATAR, a separate selection rank is created and is used in place of the ATAR depending on individual institution policies. QTAC has an online resource available here which provides information on different forms of assistance that can provide adjustment factors.
Brisbane University Information Sessions
Most universities hold information sessions in December for students who have received their ATAR and would like to review their QTAC preferences and/or decide on their future direction. The following are a selection of these sessions in 2020:
- Australian Catholic University – Know Your Options online webinar from 6.00pm – 7.00pm on Wednesday 16 December 2020. The Brisbane Campus is also holding an event onsite from 11.00am – 1.00pm on Saturday 19 December. You must register your attendance for either event.
- Queensland University of Technology – Real Decisions is an online webinar from 12.00pm – 1.00pm on Saturday 19 December.
- University of Queensland – ATAR Advice Event online from 10.00am – 1.00pm on Sunday 20 December. You must register.
- Griffith University – Chat with us online Monday to Friday from 3.00pm – 5.00pm.
BGS Studies Directorate and Counselling availability
BGS Studies Directorate and Counselling staff will be available on Monday 21 December following the release of the ATAR. This service is not intended for students wishing to check results. Any student wanting to verify results must follow the process outlined here.
Staff availability of Monday 21 December is below.
9.00am to 12.00pm
- Mr Steve Uscinski 07 3834 5245
- Ms Dale Nicholas 07 3834 5740
- Ms Rochelle Lynch 07 3834 5262
12.00pm to 3.00pm
- Ms Jo Baxendell 07 3834 5303
- Dr Nathan Simmons 07 3834 5343
Middle School Presentation Afternoon will be held in Centenary Hall on Wednesday 25 November, starting at 11.00am. Parents are invited to join us for the event by accessing the live stream.
Preparing the annual report for this significant event provides me with the opportunity to reflect on the highlights of the year and to acknowledge members of our community who have positively contributed to various aspects of Middle School life. It also provides the chance to reflect on the aims and aspirations of middle schooling at BGS and to consider how our practices fulfil or might be enhanced to support this vision. Our Middle School Statement clearly articulates our aspirations as:
- To know, support and develop each boy as an individual within a safe and positive environment.
- Provide our boys with access to a broad, liberal education allowing them to develop the attitudes, skills and a base of knowledge to nurture each boy’s intellect, imagination and ethical reasoning.
- Encourage our boys to value learning and the pursuit of individual best in all areas of school life.
- Foster a sense of belonging and connectedness among all members of the Middle School community – staff, parents and students.
- Develop thoughtful men of character who contribute positively to their community within and beyond BGS.
As we come together as a Middle School community next Wednesday, albeit through virtual channels, we will recognise how each part of the School – Academic, Cocurricular, Student Wellbeing, Public Purpose, and Outdoor Education, help fulfil these aspirations. I am indebted to our highly committed staff who have demonstrated great adaptability to ensure our Middle School boys continued to engage in rich and varied experiences throughout the year.
On Tuesday, we were entertained by our Year 5 musicians at the annual Music Immersion Concert. This concert is the culminating event of the Year 5 Music Immersion Program. Throughout Year 5, all boys learn a new musical instrument and come together to perform in this special concert. Congratulations to our Year 5 boys and our Music staff for orchestrating this memorable event.
At last week’s Middle School Assembly, we bid farewell to three staff members – Mr Delroy, Mr Kleinschmidt and Mrs Moy. We thank each of these staff members for their contributions to the Middle School and wider Brisbane Grammar School community and wish them all the best as they embark on their next adventures.
Last Friday, our young actors enjoyed the preview of this year’s Middle School Production – The Untold Tales. This was a unique piece of theatre where our cast of 36 were challenged to develop their skills in voice acting and character development. The boys clearly enjoyed the experience. The creativity and artistry demonstrated by our talented directors, Mr Jeffrey Lewis, Ms Bella MacDiarmid and Mrs Amy Irvine provided the boys with a unique opportunity to participate in a truly different type of theatrical production. Well done to both cast and crew!
Planning for 2021 is well underway. Parents will receive a letter during the holiday break with class placements for students entering Year 6 and Year 7. Students starting Year 8 will be advised of their class placement when they return to school in 2021.
Friday the 13th has long been considered a harbinger of bad luck. However, last Friday afternoon saw nothing but joy and excitement at the BGS Theatre. The atmosphere was buzzing – which may have been the effect of the party food – but it was most likely anticipation of the launch party for The Untold Tales!
It was thrilling to finally premiere this year’s Middle School Dramatic Production. In yet another COVID-19-related pivot, the enthusiastic cast recorded radio plays complemented by visual narratives. They enjoyed the fruits of their labour while eating popcorn and lounging on beanbags in a sea of confetti.
THE UNTOLD TALES
Years 5 and 6 – The Ungrateful Ones (Photostory)
Year 7 – The Wolf and the Seven Little Kids (TEAMS meeting)
Year 8 – The Story of a Boy Who Went Forth To Learn What Fear Was (Shadow Puppetry)
Thank you to all members of the BGS community who helped on this production – members of the BGS Drama Department, Ms Sarah McDonald, Mr Daniel Evans and Mr Maxim Varghese. Of course, as with any event, it wouldn’t have been possible without the mammoth efforts of the catering and cleaning staff.
The directorial team would also like to thank members of staff who came to show support (and sneak a slider or two). The students loved sharing their creations with Ms Campbell, Mr Thorne and their Heads of Year.
We look forward to sharing links to the final productions with you all soon.
Amy Irvine, Bella MacDiarmid, Jeffrey Lewis
WAR OF THE WORLDS: CYBORG EDITION | Podcast release
It’s the moment you have all been waiting for…
The BGS podcast of War of the Worlds: Cyborg Edition is a reimagining of one of the most famous radio dramas of all time and we are thrilled to finally share it with you. This script, by award-winning playwright Daniel Evans, was an original commission for the 2020 Junior Dramatic Production. Click here for the… “last known record of humankind”.
Please ensure you download this audio file before it expires in four days (Tuesday 24 November).
We are also very excited to share with you the professional micro-documentary of the making of War of the Worlds: Cyborg Edition. The short video can be viewed here.
We are incredibly proud of the efforts from the talented Years 9 and 10 cast, crew and creative team. We hope you enjoy this production as much as we enjoyed making it!
WOTW Creative Team
Belinda Lindsay – Director
Updates and notices
Please note the following updates and notices for the Music Department.
- 2021 Cocurricular Music Tuition enrolments are now open. Enrolment forms can be found on MyGrammar. Parents and boys are reminded that all continuing students have to enrol for 2021.
- We recommend that music students and their parents review the Cocurricular Music Handbook each year – the 2021 Handbook is now available on MyGrammar.
- Students with BGS loan instruments should be preparing to return their instruments either to the Music Office or to their instrumental teacher before the end of term. Continuing students are expected to source their own instrument for their second year of instrumental study. Exceptions may be made for very large or expensive instruments.
Lessons and Carols
Saturday 28 November, 7.00pm | St John’s Cathedral
With the recent relaxing of restrictions, we are delighted to release more tickets for this significant event in the School’s calendar. The first allocation of tickets sold out in 30 minutes, so get in fast. There a limit of two tickets per family. Reserve your tickets here.
Lessons and Carols – with the theme of Joy – will be a happy event at the end of a difficult year. Our Grammar Singers, Grammarphones, Chamber Choir and Grammar Voices are busy preparing a delightful selection of Christmas music and we look forward to sharing our music with you.
Head of Music
Congratulations to Years 8 to 11 boys who participated in the 2020 Rowathon fundraiser on Saturday 31 October. We received more than 240 pledges from the community, with an average donation of $81. Once all pledges are received, we expect the tally to top $20,000 – this is a significant effort by the community. Congratulations!
There were many standouts among the group through this process. Well done to the following boys who secured many sponsors. This is an outstanding effort by these gentlemen to seek out so much support.
- Tobias Dunglison (Year 9) – 28 sponsors
- Zach and Jake Smith (Years 10 and 11) – 15 sponsors
- James Swart (Year 10) – 10 sponsors
- Jonathan Parry (Year 10) – 9 sponsors
- John Morrissey (Year 9) – 9 sponsors
- Austen Harry (Year 9) – 7 sponsors
We also thank those families who made large individual donations. We will recognise these families in next week’s newsletter.
BGS Juniors Regatta
We are excited to welcome the 2021 Year 8 rowers to the Rowing Shed this Saturday for the BGS Juniors Regatta. The boys will compete against one another in a mini-regatta on the Brisbane River. The 2021 Years 8 and 9 boys will compete against Nudgee College at the below times.
- Year 9: 7.30am – 11.00am (normal Saturday training time)
- Year 8: 8.30am – 11.00am
Following the regatta, Year 8 boys will be presented with an award by the Year 9 and Opens boys at the Rowing Shed at about 10.45am.
Camps are an important part of the season. A successful crew depends on every member, including the cox and the coach. Without a full crew, it is difficult to have a successful session. These boat camps are particularly important to ensure the boys are fully prepared for GPS competition in Term 1 2021.
Please take some time to review the camp dates below for your personal calendars. Camp sign up is due by Sunday 22 November.
December Sculling Camp
- Type and Venue: Non-residential / BGS Rowing Shed
- Who: 2021 Years 9 and 10 (current Years 8 and 9)
- Dates: Monday 30 November to Friday 4 December
- Time: 6.00am – 12.00pm each day
December Sweep Camp
- Type and Venue: Residential / Maroochydore
- Who: 2021 Years 11 and 12 (current Years 10 and 11)
- Dates: Monday 30 November to Saturday 5 December
January Senior Camp
- Type and Venue: Residential / Noosa
- Who: 2021 Years 10, 11 and 12 (current Years 9, 10 and 11)
- Dates: Saturday 16 January to Thursday 21 January
January Junior Camp
- Type and Venue: Non-residential / BGS Rowing Shed
- Who: Year 9 2021 (current Year 8)
- Dates: Monday 18 January to Thursday 21 January
- Time: 6.00am – 12.00pm each day
Director of Rowing
- P&F Auxiliary | Connect - Care - Contribute
- Volunteer Roster
- 2020 Calendar
- Upcoming Events
- BGS150 History Book
The P&F Auxiliary is a subcommittee of the P&F Association that facilitates fundraising and fosters parent fellowship and the sense of strong community at Brisbane Grammar School. All profits are returned to the School to enhance the experience for students and families.
The Tuckshop and Grammar Shop are currently operating cash-free, so please plan accordingly. Safety guidelines regarding social distancing and hand sanitising will continue in both locations.
The Tuckshop and Grammar Shop have been farewelling some of our long-standing volunteers as they come in for their final service of the year, prior to the graduation of their Year 12 sons. We are very thankful to these amazing parents who have given their time so generously to feed and clothe BGS students over a number of years. You will be missed, and we wish you and your sons every success in the future.
Any parents who wish to enjoy the camaraderie of the Tuckshop or Grammar Shop would be very welcome to join our friendly team. There are a range of days and times for parents who want to be involved and we would love to hear from you. For more details see the P&F Volunteers information on MyGrammar.
Open school days before school, during breaks and at lunchtime.
The Tuckshop provides a selection of hot food, fresh salads, wraps, rolls and drinks. Please recharge your MSA cards here.
Open school days from 7.30am to 11.00am.
The last day of trade for 2020 will be Friday 27 November. The Grammar Shop will open from 7.30am - 8.30am and will then close for stock take.
January 2021 hours
- Tuesday 19 January 7.30am - 12.30pm
- Wednesday 20 January 7.30am - 12.30pm
- Thursday 21 January 7.30am - 12.30pm
- Friday 22 January CLOSED for international and interstate student uniform fittings
- Monday 25 January 7.30am - 11.00am
- Tuesday 26 January CLOSED (Australia Day)
- Wednesday 27 January onwards – normal trading hours resume
Note that the week before school commences is always very busy in the Grammar Shop, so to avoid a long wait we advise planning a visit before the end of this term if possible.
BOOK LIST Reminder
Further to the email sent to all families on 6 November, BGS 2021 Booklist orders should be placed by midnight on Sunday 22 November 2020 to guarantee delivery before 15 January 2021.
For those who haven’t yet placed their orders, please order directly from Sequel Books at 2020 Booklist order link.
Preloved uniforms and textbooks
The BGS P&F Auxiliary has an exciting new initiative – the Grammar Shop will trial the sale of preloved uniforms from Term 1 2021. This initiative benefits the whole community by:
- providing an opportunity to reduce, reuse and recycle;
- providing donating families with a means of assisting others; and
- assisting purchasing families in saving money.
If you have any BGS uniform items that you no longer use, please consider donating them to the Grammar Shop. We will accept preloved items in very good to excellent condition. This means:
- recently washed
- no tears or holes
- no stains or discolouring
- no missing buttons or other fasteners
Due to hygiene reasons, we are unable to accept hats, caps, socks, togs or zoot suits.
The Grammar Shop also accepts used textbooks in very good to excellent used condition. This means no torn pages or other damages, as well as minimal notes and highlighting.
Complying items will be gratefully accepted at the Grammar Shop during opening hours. Bags of preloved items must not be left outside the door.
How your donation will be used
The P&F is registered with the Australian Charities and Not for Profits Commission. Proceeds from sales will go towards enhancing BGS for current and future students, usually in the form of significant school projects (e.g. Boarding renovations and the construction of the STEAM Precinct).
Some preloved uniform items may be given to bursary and boarding students, to the BGS Health Centre or the BGS Laundry for use as spares. The P&F Auxiliary will determine where items and proceeds are directed in collaboration with the BGS Headmaster on a needs-basis.
Buying preloved items
The preloved uniform area is self-service, so customers will search for appropriate items and sizes themselves. Each item will be unique in condition, and we cannot provide a refund or warranty for any defect that should have been noticeable on careful examination. Below are the priced for preloved items:
- Belts, wing shirts, ties – $10
- Shirts, shorts, singlets – $20
- Jumpers, trousers, rugby jerseys, bags – $30
- Used blazers – $170
- Used textbooks – 40% off full item price
Alternatives to donating
If you would prefer to sell your second-hand uniform items, or if their condition doesn’t meet our criteria, the following options are available.
Facebook pages: join the following groups, post a description, photos and pricing for your items and then arrange collection/delivery/payment with any interested parties.
- BGS uniform and school item swap and trade (more than 900 members)
- BGS and BGGS Uniforms (more than 570 members)
Sustainable School Shop is Australia’s top website for second-hand school items. It is free to register and search for item by school before contacting the seller directly. To sell items, you can advertise either a single-item for $1.50, or multiple items with an annual subscription (currently $21.95). This platform is easier to search than Facebook.
Selling blazers via the Grammar Shop: The Grammar Shop will sell used blazers in very good to excellent condition on consignment. You will receive $102 when your blazer is sold. Please visit MyGrammar > P&F Auxiliary > Uniforms > second-hand blazers for more information.
End of year presents
BGS memorabilia makes a great gift idea for the end of year. We have two styles of cufflinks, photo frames, cut-glass beer steins and beautiful framed and unframed prints of BGS landmarks. See our selection on MyGrammar.
Senior school uniforms
Year 8 students should plan to come to the Grammar Shop this term to purchase their Senior School uniform of a blue shirt, trousers, trouser socks and tie. It is not necessary to make an appointment, just come on in either before school or at morning tea. Back-ordered shirts and trousers have now arrived in store. Items that were set aside may be collected during opening hours.
Payment and social distancing
Grammar Shop staff would very much appreciate parents arranging payment for their sons prior to their arrival where possible. Students can pay using their students ID cards (log into My Student Account to top up the balance), using funds on their account with the Grammar Shop or by credit or debit card.
Grammar Shop staff need to maintain social distancing parameters of 1.5m, but students are welcome to try on uniforms themselves, or parents may wish to come to the shop to fit their son/s if they prefer. Please call us on 07 3834 5347 to discuss your needs and we will do our best to help.
Tuckshop +61 7 3834 5229
Grammar Shop +61 7 3834 5347
Roster Secretary Wendy Smith - email@example.com
Grammar Shop hours
Weekdays 7.30am – 11.00am
Weekdays 7.00am – 2.00pm
Due to social distancing, we can only have three volunteers for breakfast and six volunteers for morning tea and lunch.
Light Dark Blue: 150 Years of Learning and Leadership at Brisbane Grammar School is available for purchase. The beautiful 500-page hardcover book updates the BGS story with previously untold anecdotes, rare photographs and illustrations. With a limited print run, it is sure to become a sought after collector’s item. Standard edition and limited editions are available.
Click here to view all BGS150 merchandise – limited stocks remain.