Term 4 Newsletter, 2021

Welcome to the Term 4 Newsletter for 2021

ET Australia Secondary College’s Mission


ET Australia Secondary College (ETASC) is an independent Years 7 to 12 high school that equips students with the literacy and numeracy skills to be successful in employment and/or further study by delivering the mainstream curriculum in a safe and supportive learning environment.

Principal’s News


Welcome to Term 4 2021 from the Principal

The latest reopening plan for NSW was announced on Monday the 27th of September. The NSW Premier announced Greater Sydney’s lockdown is set to end for fully vaccinated residents on the 11th of October. The Premier says this is when 70% of the NSW adult population is expected to have received two doses of a COVID vaccine.

The return to school plan for NSW announced previously was updated on Wednesday the 29th of September. Now the planned return to school will begin on the 18th of October, a week earlier than the 25th of October. At ET Australia Secondary College this now means from the 18th of October our current Year 11 Students, who will return to school as Year 12 Students will come back to face-to-face lessons. Years 7 to 10 will then return from the 1st of November. Until then students will be learning at home.

We are very keen to have all staff and students fully vaccinated to be able to return to school and resume face-to-face lessons. We want all our students to be able to come back to face-to-face lessons at school as soon as the Government allows this.

In 2021, ET Australia Secondary College has reached its notional enrolment maximum of 215 students. We have added extra student places again this year due to ongoing demand from parents and students who want a place at ETASC. We want our school to remain a small school. A small school model has many benefits. A key feature of our school is our safe and nurturing environment, and we believe keeping the school small is a factor in us achieving and maintaining our great school atmosphere. For 2022, we have limited vacancies for new enrolments in all year groups, so please recommend our College to prospective students who will most benefit from attending ETASC.

Our academic focus on literacy and numeracy skills, our school philosophy that is designed to create a safe and nurturing environment, and our focus on fostering each student’s work ethic appear to be a successful combination.

Our Year 10 and Year 11 students are progressing towards the time where post-school plans and career ideas need to be formulated. To assist every student, we have conducted Career Pathway Plans with our Year 10 and Year 11 students and their parents/carers. The individualised Pathway Plans create detailed career proposals with specific employment and further study arrangements for each student. This ensures that the positive momentum achieved by students this year continues next year and onto further studies, work, and/or vocational training.

If anyone ever has suggestions about how to improve on our success, we are open to opportunities and suggestions.

I hope that every student enrolled at ETASC fully utilises the opportunities available to them in our school and in the education pathways that are presented.

Tony Mylan
ET Australia Secondary College Principal

Term 4 Update and COVID-19


Even with Greater Sydney’s lockdown set to end for fully vaccinated residents on the 11th of October, the majority of our students will recommence Term 4 learning from home.

ETASC will continue to be open for families that need us, although parents/carers are encouraged to keep their children at home, particularly until they are fully vaccinated. Term 4 will commence for ETASC students on Wednesday the 6th of October with students accessing their schoolwork via our Multi-Modal Teaching and Learning Platform learning at home.

The Multi-Modal Teaching and Learning manual can be found by clicking on the following LINK.

Classes will be delivered at the college for students who need to attend school. No student will be turned away if they attend. Students who attend school are required to adhere to the following health requirements as advised by the NSW Government https://www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19 :

  • All staff will need to be fully vaccinated.
  • Staff and students are required to wear face masks when on the premises which can only be removed when eating/drinking or alone in an enclosed space. Masks can also be removed in outdoor areas but will need to be worn while walking through the Imperial Centre.
  • Staff and students who are experiencing any COVID 19 symptoms, even minor symptoms, such as sniffles or a runny nose will be required to get a COVID test and self-isolate until a negative result is received. We ask that unwell students are not sent to school and take advantage of the online learning opportunities until they’re well enough to return to school.
  • Personal hygiene will continue to be a focus with students encouraged to wash their hands and use hand sanitiser whenever possible. The sharing of resources, food and drinks will continue to be banned and students will be asked to avoid all physical contact.

ETASC is strictly following the advice from NSW Health and the Association of Independent Schools (AIS) to ensure we keep our community safe during this difficult time. We ask that all students and parents/carers follow the guidelines provided to ensure the highly contagious COVID 19 Delta variant does not impact our school community.

If you have any questions or are directly affected by COVID 19, please as always, contact us. ETASC staff are here to support our community.

Excursions and Events


Due to NSW Heath Department advice regarding the COVID 19 pandemic, many of our excursions and events for Term 4 have been cancelled or modified to ensure ETASC can comply with our COVID Safe Plan.

If the Health Department restrictions are lifted, some events will proceed, and parents/carers will be emailed with details of each event. Where permission is required, we ask you REPLY to the email with your permission, as instructed. This will ensure your response goes to the staff member who is responsible for that event.

Students without parental/carer’s consent provided cannot be included in the event. Phone calls, handwritten notes and texts will no longer be accepted, unless a prior agreement has been made with the Assistant Principal. Some events will be limited due to transport or other considerations, so getting in early will be important, once you are notified that bookings are open.

Whole School News


Last Day of Term 4

The last day of Term 4 for students in Year 7, Year 8 and Year 9 will be on the 15th of December 2021.

Students will spend the morning cleaning up the classrooms.

All students will be dismissed at 11:55am.

Key Dates for Term 1 2022

  • Year 7 and Year 8 students will commence classes on Tuesday 1st February 2022.
  • Year 9 and Year 10 students will commence classes on Wednesday 2nd February 2022.
  • Year 11 and Year 12 students will commence classes on Tuesday 1st February 2022.
  • The last day of Term 1 2022 will be Friday 8th April 2022. This will be a half-day for students in Years 7 to 10.

Year 7 to 10 Curriculum – Term 4 Friday Fun Days

Staff, students, parents/carers have all agreed that learning at home can be challenging. In Term 4, to balance work and play, ETASC is introducing Fun Day Friday for all Years 7 to 10 students. Fun Day Fridays will occur until students return to school for face to face lessons and while the current public health orders are in place.

Fun Day Fridays are being implemented to provide students with time away from their screens, to catch up on work and to enjoy more recreation time to help with their well-being.

No new work or online lessons will be posted on Fridays. Students can use the time to complete any tasks that are outstanding. If students are up to date with their work, we encourage them to get away from their screens for the day and do something active or relaxing.

Students at school will engage in fun activities in the morning or have a chance to complete any outstanding tasks before being dismissed for the day at 11:55am.

Fun Day Fridays will be in place until students start returning to school, at which point we will return to a full day of class as per the timetable.

Return to School Plan 

On Friday the 27th of August 2021, the Premier announced the return to school roadmap for students in NSW. Students will return to face-to-face learning either through a ‘staggered return’ or ‘full return’, depending on NSW Health conditions in our area. There have been additional intermediate restriction levels created to support the health and safety requirements of returning students and staff to the school.

Full return (Level 3)

Areas across NSW that are removed from stay-at-home rules will return to school under Level 3 settings. This is a full return for all students to schools, with reduced mingling and on-site activities. Students in a high school would still be wearing masks and adhering to social distancing expectations and operational procedures designed to minimise mingling.

Staged return (Level 3 plus)

Where stay-at-home rules are still in place, but high community vaccination and low transmission conditions are met, students will return to school in a staged way. This is a staggered return for prioritised cohorts, with no mingling or on-site activities.

Local Government Areas of concern

Identified Local Government Areas (LGAs) and suburbs of concern operating under Level 4 plus restrictions will continue learning from home until advised otherwise by NSW Health. These suburbs have also been targeted with priority vaccinations for all Year 12 students in these LGAs.

Order of return

On the 29th of September, the NSW Government announced a change to the return to school plan. Students will return to face-to-face learning with NSW Health-approved COVID-safe settings on school sites in the following order:

From 18 October 2021 – Year 12

From 1 November 2021 – Years 7, 8, 9 and 10.

The return to school roadmap is subject to change depending on new information expected through the Public Health Order and additional advice from NSW Health. You can stay up to date with the most recent advice on NSW Government Schools at Advice for family’s page.

ET Australia Secondary College will keep you up to date if/when our plan changes based on Government advice.

Vaccinations for school staff

To ensure a COVID-safe return to school, all ETASC staff on-site to support the staged return of students will be required to be fully vaccinated. Any contractors, volunteers or people on site who require a Working With Children Check will also be required to have 2 doses of vaccination before returning to our school.

Our staff have been encouraged to make use of the various routes for priority vaccination available to them and to book appointments for whatever vaccine is available as soon as possible.

All ETASC staff will be required to be fully vaccinated by the 8th of November.

The NSW Education Department’s COVID-19 webpage is constantly being updated and outlines the restrictions in Govt schools as well as other useful information and resources to keep you up to date and supported.

Student Vaccination Requirements

ETASC has not received any indication from the NSW Department of Education, NSW Health or the Association of Independent Schools NSW of any requirements for students to be vaccinated before they’re permitted to return to school. If we receive information advising of any requirements from these government departments or associations, we will inform parents/carers immediately.

Years 7 to 9 Celebration Assembly

The ETASC Years 7 to 9 Celebration Assembly will be held in the school hall on Tuesday the 14th of December 2021. The assembly will provide ETASC with the opportunity to present students with a range of achievement awards for 2021.

ETASC’s COVID 19 Safety plan prevents parents/carers from attending the assembly, but we will make a recording of the event available to students, parents/carers for a short period via ETASC’s private YouTube channel.

An email will be sent out to parents/carers closer to the date with more details.

Year 7 to 10 Assessment week

Years 9 and 10 will have their final Assessment week during Week 7 this term. For Year 10 students this will be the last assessment towards their RoSA and students must complete all assessments by this time so that the marks can be entered into NESA.

Years 7 and 8 will be advised of their assessment tasks and due dates by their teachers at the beginning of Term 4.

Regular Pattern of School Attendance Required by Students

A reminder to parents/carers that for their child to continue their enrolment here at the college, students need to maintain a consistent pattern of attendance.

The New South Wales Education Standards Authority (NESA) requires all students to have a minimum attendance percentage of 85% throughout the year.

This means the college expects every student to attend school every day unless they are too sick to attend. In the event of absence caused by illness, the college requires an explanation of the absence within 24 hours of the student’s absence. Notification can be provided via text message, email, or phone call. In the event of three or more consecutive days off, the college can request a medical certificate to support the provided reasons. If you have other reasons for a student being absent for the day (family emergency for example) please provide the college office with an explanation so we can account for the student’s absence.

For more information on school attendance please refer to the College Handbook relevant to you:

Reporting Student Absence

It is a government requirement for parents/carers to notify and provide a reason for their child’s absence from school on every occasion. To ensure notifications are always received and recorded by the appropriate staff members, a generic email address has been introduced for absentee notifications. We request this email address is used from now on rather than emailing individual staff members. This will ensure the notification is received by reception regardless of who is working on the day. Methods for notifying the school of absences from now on are:

When your child is absent from school and we have not been notified, an SMS message will be sent to your mobile informing you of their absence which you can reply to.

Request for Student Leave

The Department of Education’s requirement for school attendance also affects opportunities for families to take holidays during school terms. Some schools are withdrawing the option of families taking students out of school for holidays.

ETASC is flexible but the Minister of Education requires us to ensure all student leave during term time be approved by the college Principal in advance. A Student Leave Request form is available from reception and needs to be completed 4 weeks before the planned absence from school.

Please contact the college office on 02 4323 1233 if you have any further queries about holidays during school terms.

ET Australia Secondary College – A Non-Smoking High School

ETASC is a non-smoking secondary college for ALL students and staff – this includes the use of vape pens and e-cigarettes.

Students who are caught smoking cigarettes, using and/or possessing vape pens or e-cigarettes during school hours will have their cigarettes, vape pens or e-cigarettes confiscated and destroyed. Parents/carers will be contacted to inform them of this behaviour.

Advice from NSW Health clearly outlines that it is illegal to sell cigarettes, e-cigarettes and vape pens, or accessories to, or buy these products on the behalf of a person under 18 years of age.

Please visit https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/tobacco/Pages/e-cigarettes.aspx for more information from NSW Health.

Any student smoking cigarettes, using and/or possessing vape pens or e-cigarettes during school hours will be in breach of school rules and this will be treated the same way as any other breach of school rules. Repeat offenders will be placed on a school contract that will stipulate the behaviour required to maintain their enrolment at the college. The school contract with the student will include the provision of access to quit smoking programs and access to the college psychologist to develop strategies to use instead of smoking during the school day. Breaching the school contract will result in the student’s expulsion from the college.

Our School Support and Wellbeing Dog – “Buddy”

We are excited to announce that we are launching the Dogs Connect program at ET Australia. This is a program across ET Australia’s School and Adult Training College which will see the introduction of a well-being dog in our community. Our school support and well-being dog will become a much loved and important member of our community.

The Dogs Connect program will support us in implementing this very gradually, thoroughly, and considerately. At this early stage, we encourage anyone who would like to know more about this program to look at the website – https://dogsconnect.net.au.

We have named our well-being dog Buddy. She will be visiting ET Australia over the next few months and will be gradually introduced to our staff and students. We have a team of staff who will lead this program. We look forward to sharing more information about Buddy’s progress over the next few months.

We want to assure the community that this program will not involve anyone who does not wish to be involved. We know that this work will have a positive impact on many of our staff and students, and we look forward to seeing connections with Buddy build on a variety of different levels.

Enrolments

2022

The college is currently accepting enrolments for Year 7, Year 11 and Year 12 students, for 2022.

If you or anyone you know are interested in a place for Year 7 in 2022 you are urged to act now.

Thank you to those parents/carers and students who are recommending our school to prospective students who will value and enjoy what ETASC provides.

School Fees

A reminder to parents/carers that paying school fees is compulsory at ETASC as the contributions made provide opportunities for students to participate in a variety of different learning experiences.

It is a requirement of a student’s enrolment that school fees are paid by parents/carers and failure to pay fees will result in the student’s enrolment being withdrawn.

Scholarships are available to families who are suffering financial hardship and we encourage all parents/carers to apply for scholarships if they are struggling to pay school fees. Information regarding school fees, payment plans, and scholarships are available on the college website.

For more information on school fees please refer to the College Handbook relevant to you:

Opal Cards

The Department of Transport issues OPAL Cards and schools are no longer involved in the issue and re-issue of this free service for school children. Parents/carers are now responsible to follow up with errors or lost and stolen cards. Students are advised not to put OPAL cards near phones or other cards.

For more information on OPAL Cards please refer to the College Handbook relevant to you:

Contacting Students in Class Time

Please do not phone your child during class time, they will be tempted to answer which is very disruptive to the class. Their phone should be off and out of sight. Parents/carers who need to contact their child during school hours are asked to do so by calling the college office on 4323 1233 or wait until break times.

Banned items – Reminder

Students are prohibited from bringing certain items to school:

  • Chewing gum
  • Aerosol cans – deodorant etc.
  • Knives
  • Liquid paper
  • Permanent markers
  • Laser devices
  • Metal or opaque drink bottles
  • Cigarettes
  • e-cigarettes or vape pens
  • Cigarette lighters or matches

If students bring these items to school, they will be confiscated.

If students continue to bring these items to school appropriate action will be taken in accordance with the consequences for breaches of the expected behaviour outlined at enrolment and in the  Years 7 to 10 College Handbook and Years 11 and 12 College Handbook.

Medication Taken at School

Alterations have been made to our administration of the student medication process.

In conjunction with our First Aid and Medications Policy, parents/carers are now required to complete an Authorisation for Administration of Student Medication form for any medication you would like your child to take at school.

Parents/carers will also be required to provide the medication in its original packaging which has the Doctor’s instructions on the label.

Please contact the school office if you would like any further information or require a form to be sent home.

For more information on medication taken at school please refer to the College Handbook relevant to you:

Learning Enrichment Opportunities

ETASC offers free tutoring for all students. 

For students who are identified as needing extra assistance with: 

  • Reading
    ETASC offers two reading programs: QuickSmart and MacqLit 
  • Mathematics
    ETASC offers QuickSmart and consolidation of classwork and after school tutoring. 
  • Writing
    ETASC offers English tutoring and consolidation of classwork. 

School Lockers

Lockers are provided at no cost for students to store their school bags to improve security, and work, health and safety. Students are asked to clean out their lockers at the end of every term. Items left in lockers at the end of each term will be discarded. If you value the contents of your locker, please take it with you.

Students are encouraged to keep lockers locked at all times, even when empty. We are keen to prevent unauthorised access to your locker and/or to have other people placing objects in lockers that do not belong there.

Bottled Water – Drink Bottles

Students may want to spend $5.00 to purchase a reusable drink bottle available during breaks from staff in the student kitchen.

The drink bottles come in 2 different colours – pink and blue and staff will be able to print the students’ names on the bottle to save confusion.

ETASC is conscious of the amount of waste plastic produced in the world and have determined that providing students with a reusable drink bottle is a good solution to ensure that students can remain hydrated during the school day.

Years 9 & 10 News


Changes to 2021 Key Curriculum Dates – Year 10 Students

The NSW Educational Standard Authority (NESA) has advised of changes to the due dates for Year 10 grades which are used to form a student’s RoSA. These dates have been pushed back to the 26th of November 2021.

This has allowed ETASC to modify the Year 10 end of year arrangements accordingly.

  • Week 6 – Week commencing the 1st of November – Students return to school
  • Week 7 – Week commencing the 15th of November – Assessment Week for Year 10 students
  • Week 8 – Week commencing the 22nd of November – Assessment catch up week – completion of all required tasks
  • Week 9 – Week commencing the 29th of November – Future Me Week
  • Week 9 – Week commencing the 3rd of December – Year 10 Celebration Assembly – This is the Year 10 students last day of required school attendance for 2021
  • Week 10 – Week commencing the 6th of December – Optional Year 10 Work Experience commences

2022 Enrolments for Year 11

Current ETASC Year 10 students who are interested in continuing into Year 11 at ETASC in 2022 will need to follow the application process outlined in the ETASC Year 11 and Year 12 College handbook.

If you would like an enrolment form, please email ETASC@etaustralia.com to receive a digital copy or inquire at reception and we will provide you with a paper copy.

Places are limited so we strongly encourage students who are interested in continuing into Year 11 in 2021 to submit an application ASAP.

Year 10 Student Assessment Handbook

The Year 10 Student Assessment Handbook is available on the school website and is an important document for Year 10 students to read to be informed about their Record of School Achievement (RoSA) requirements.

Within the handbook, there is information on how to successfully complete Year 10, the grading scale for each subject, what an ‘N’ Determination Award (N Award) is and how to avoid one, study skills and who to talk to if you need help.

We encourage all Year 10 students and parents/carers to read this document thoroughly to ensure they are informed of the expectations for Year 10.

Click here to read the handbook.

Optional Year 10 Work Experience

Year 10 work experience is currently scheduled to take place for Year 10 students from the 6th of December 2021. We encourage all students to try and find their own placements for this time but also recognise the difficulty of this task given the current public health orders in place. As a result, Year 10 work experience will not be compulsory for Year 10 students as it has been in previous years and students who are unable to find placement during this time will not be required to attend school. Students who are able to find work experience will need to speak to the school’s Student Development Coordinator – Jasmyn du Plessis to fill in the required paperwork to ensure the student is covered for public liability and workers compensation insurance while on placement.

Year 10 Graduation Assembly

The ETASC Year 10 Celebration Assembly will be held in the school hall on Friday the 3rd of December 2021. The assembly is being held to present academic achievement awards for Year 10.

ETASC’s COVID 19 Safety plan prevents parents/carers from attending the assembly, but we will make a recording of the event and this will be available to students, parents/carers for a short period of time via ETASC’s private YouTube channel.

The 3rd of December is also the Year 10 students last day of required attendance for 2021.

An email will be sent out to parents/carers closer to the date with more details.

Year 10 Students Online Account

Year 10 students will be sent an email about activating their Students Online account. Students Online are your source for information about your study from Year 10 to the HSC. An email to students from Kimberley Wheeler the Curriculum Coordinator will be sent in the first week back with instructions on how to activate the account.

Year 10 HSC Numeracy and Literacy Minimum Standards

For Year 10 students still needing to complete their HSC Numeracy and Literacy Minimum Standards, time will be allocated once we are back to face to face teaching. In the event, this option becomes unlikely to occur we will contact you directly with options for your child to help facilitate this test.

Nominating for a Record of School Achievement RoSA

An email will be sent asking parents/ carers to nominate their child for a RoSA. Students who leave school prior to completing the HSC are usually eligible to receive a Record of School Achievement (RoSA) credential if they have completed all the mandatory requirements. If your child is not leaving the school system, they will not need to be nominated for their RoSA. More information will be available in the email.

Years 11 & 12 News


Curriculum Update

Term 3 has been a challenging term as many students adjusted to learning at home. All the Stage 6 teachers have been impressed by the overall engagement of students in lessons and the work they have produced this term. Some students have created useful routines and practices to help them continue to achieve in this new situation. The mental health of some students has been affected and they have needed to prioritise getting support. Learning at home will continue into Term 4. If there is anything the teachers at ETASC can do to help support your child, please contact us. I want to see all students supported and able to continue their learning in these different circumstances.

At the end of Term 3, students completed their final assessment tasks for Year 11. During the exams, students learnt the importance of managing their time and reading the question carefully. The value of summary notes, revision and completing practice questions became obvious. We hope that students will continue to develop these skills as they progress into Year 12.

Term 4 is the start of Year 12. There will be one class, with students studying the subjects they have selected. When students are not in class, they will be able to use the time to study and complete work under the supervision of a teacher. It is important that students use this time productively. The three top tips for improving achievement in the HSC which can be done during this time is to;

  1. Write summary notes for the subject.
  2. Memorise the syllabus.
  3.  Complete practice HSC questions.

At the start of Term 4, students will be given their textbooks and codes to access electronic versions. They will also continue to have access to Google Classroom, Edrolo and Education Perfect to assist them in their learning.

ETASC is very good at providing support and assistance to students. This support is not automatically provided for the HSC exams and assessments. There is an application process that all students in NSW must follow to ensure uniformity across the state. If your child needs special provisions for the HSC, please speak to Elissa Cosentino Elissa.Cosentino@etaustralia.com, as she will be submitting applications in Term 4.

We look forward to the day when we can all return to school.

Year 11 Student Assessment Handbook

The Year 11 Student Assessment Handbook is an important document for Year 11 students to read to be informed about the Preliminary HSC course requirements.

Within the handbook, there is information on how to successfully complete Year 11, the grading scale for each subject, what an ‘N’ Determination Award (N Award) is and how to avoid one, study skills and who to talk to if you need help.

We encourage all Year 11 students and parents/carers to read this document thoroughly to ensure they are informed of the expectations for Year 11.

Click here to read the handbook.

Megan SilcockTerm 4 Newsletter, 2021