From the Principal - October 2021

From the Principal - October 2021

From the Principal – October 2021

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Understanding character traits such as empathy, compassion, and cooperation can be quite abstract, but students don’t need direct instruction to understand these terms when they experience teamwork.

Ponytail Chop

Since 2018, our Seniors have embraced as a team, the challenge to chop off their ponytails, to support the construction of wigs for children suffering from cancer or alopecia. One wig requires 20 ponytails!

The Hair Chop is a project organized from start to finish by Year 12 students. In addition to organizing our continuing partnership with Sustainable Salons who grade and sort the hair before sending it to charitable organizations including Variety and the Australia Alopecia Areata Foundation, attaining the complimentary services of a hairdresser from HairArt, they set up a fundraising page to fund further support for young people suffering with cancer. Since its inception the Ponytail Chop has been seen as a ‘real’ service in living out the School’s motto, Non Nobis Solum, (not for ourselves alone).

You can contribute to the combined efforts of our Year 12s by accessing the following link to their fundraising page:  Ponytail Project – St Hilda’s Seniors 2021

OGA and Spring edition of our SPIRIT magazine.

The long-term influence of our senior students is often reflected in student leadership applications and interviews. The actions and attitudes of those who go before them is not only observed, but admired, with younger students determining to emulate their predecessors. In TC groups this week we had an opportunity to thank our 2021 Seniors who have done much to build cooperation and identity as each House group has enjoyed the friendly rivalry of competition and celebrated our spiritual life in our House Chapel Services.

Our Spring edition of the School’s Spirit magazine is now available in soft copy – CLICK HERE

In this edition we feature 1997 St Hilda’s graduate Dr Annabelle Stabler, Orthopaedic Surgeon, whose presentation at the Ladies Auxiliary High Tea this year encouraged much thought and conversation. Our 2016 Student Leadership team are also featured. This group of very accomplished young women led the Senior cohort when our current Year 12 students were in Year 7. Courtney Withers, School Captain (2016), will be our guest speaker, at our Seniors Graduation in November, as has become tradition. I am looking forward to sharing this evening with our 2021 Seniors and their families.

Our Old Girls’ Association will be celebrating its 100th year anniversary in 2022. I have been delighted with the opportunity to meet with many of our alumni this year and to welcome back recently graduating Old Girls who have volunteered their services for our Mentoring Program with Year 11 students. To date, most interest has been shown in careers in medicine. Students I have spoken to have shared with me that the mentoring conversations have been both informative and enlightening; there is nothing like hearing about someone else’s experience and journey to help you consolidate your own view on pursuing a particular course.  Old Girls’ Association Reunion Weekend, Brunch on the Green, Saturday 6 November – Bookings Now Open 

Junior School Outdoor Education

A number of our Junior School year groups are engaging in their outdoor education experiences this term. Whilst the opportunity to travel to Canberra has eluded us once again in 2021, due to travel restrictions, Mrs Shuttlewood has, in her inevitable way, been able to relocate camps to sites in South-East Queensland. Our hope is that with the easing of COVID restrictions, all prospective campers will have the opportunity to experience the camaraderie of team building exercises and return with an increased sense of confidence from problem solving and learning ‘to be’ with others. Well done to the Year 6 campers who managed the wet conditions this week!


Congratulations are also extended to our String Orchestras whose recorded performances were well received at this year’s ‘virtual Gold Coast Eisteddfod’. In the Secondary School String Orchestra B Grade our Senior String Ensemble was placed 2nd. Our Junior String Ensemble also impressed adjudicator Christoph Blickling, also gaining 2nd place, in the Primary School String Orchestra or Ensemble B Grade competition.

The great camaraderie which develops between students of all ages and the relationships they enjoy with their teachers is the great strength of our music program. This Friday evening, I am looking forward to sharing a night of celebration with our musicians and sportswomen at the Co-curricular Awards Evening.

QGSSSA and Interhouse Athletics, Rowing, Touch, Badminton, O badges and the introduction of AFL

Assemblies often provide us with an opportunity to acknowledge excellence in achievement and in this past week we have certainly had much to celebrate. At the secondary assembly, State Rowing Championships, All Schools Touch achievements, Senior Badminton results, as well as the recognition of Age Champions and Runners-Up from our Inter-house Carnival, and those dedicated athletes who placed top 3 in their QGSSSA Athletics events were warmly acknowledged by their peers. Open badges were presented to students who gained places in our top teams; this was a fitting way to recognize the dedicated teamwork which has enabled so many of our students to flourish this year and maintain their good health as well as perspective and enjoyment of life.

AFL is now being offered as a trial sport by Andrews Cup and QGSSSA. This week a media release launched the partnership between AFL Queensland and QGSSSA; two skill development sessions and a four-week trial competition mark the introduction of this team sport. There is no doubt that a great deal of excitement has been generated with the anticipated involvement of the Brisbane Lions and the Gold Coast SUNS.

Soap Box Competition

Assembly in Week 4 will see a return to the stage of our Soap Box competition finalists. Speeches began on Wednesday with appreciative audiences in attendance in the JR cafeteria. Each year this competition enables students to highlight the issues that are important to them and to express their views with honest facts, and with dignity in their presentation. These are skills which will serve girls well in life. I look forward to learning which issues are currently resonating with students.

Our appreciation of the organization of Mrs Catherine Syms who facilitates this competition each year must be identified. So too, the opportunities of our clubs which enable students in junior and secondary years to develop their public speaking skills and attend forums where issues of importance can be raised and examined in a supportive environment.

Grounds and Facilities

As we look forward to events that will test and showcase the achievements of our community this term it is appropriate to end this newsletter with an invitation to ask you to take the time to enjoy our beautiful campus next time you are on site. Many visitors comment on the beauty of our grounds, how clean our campus is, and the calmness and joy of our students. These qualities are not to be taken for granted. They only exist when we work together.

I bring to your attention our policies which outline the expectations for all who learn, work and support each other at St Hilda’s School.

Wendy Lauman

Love, Compassion, Forgiveness, Hope, Grace