From the Head of the School
Mrs Erica Thomas

From the Head of the School image

Year 12 Parent – Teacher evening last night was well attended and students were given specific feedback on how they could improve. I urge Year 12 to listen carefully to their teachers’ advice and try to implement this advice over the coming months – small improvements can have a large effect on a student’s overall result. Year 12 also heard from speakers from UNSW on Tuesday and many students commented on how inspirational as well as useful the presentation was at this time of the year. A number of parents asked about Open Days at universities – please click on this link to see when these are held

The secondary teaching staff in the second part of the term begin a trial of electronic textbooks – these texts can be accessed through an app or web browser and if successful we are looking to introduce these in 2016. A select group of staff are also evaluating Learning Management Systems that we hope will meet the needs of our students and families in the future. My Big Campus is the current LMS at Newcastle Grammar School and will not be a viable option for the School from next year as the company who produce it have announced the end of the product. In both cases, we are looking for opportunities to enhance learning and student engagement.

I encourage the community to visit the Nexus Art Exhibition at the Hill Campus in the Holland Building over the weekend. Nexus is a unit for adolescents with mental health problems and is attached to the John Hunter Hospital. The Exhibition aims to raise funds for this worthwhile cause and is a key part of our commitment as a School to our wider community. I thank Mrs Tonia Martin for her coordination of this event and the parents and friends of Newcastle Grammar School who have assisted her – Louise Ross, Laura Wilson, Lea Rugg, Louise Melbourne and Kerrie Coles.

From the Director of Learning & Teaching
Mrs Lisa Peterson

From the Director of Learning & Teaching image

Year 12 Half-Yearly Reports

Year 12 Half-Yearly Reports were emailed to parents last Friday. If you have not received your child’s report, please contact Mrs Gowdy


Study Skills

Many students in Years 7, 8 and 9 participated in a fantastic Study Skills session with Prue Salter from Enhanced Learning last week. This presentation provided great advice on developing an effective study routine. If your child was unable to attend, they can download the handout from My Big Campus.



This week, students in Years 3, 5, 7 and 9 are completing their NAPLAN tests:
Tuesday – Language Conventions and Writing
Wednesday – Reading
Thursday – Numeracy

Students in Years 5-7 are reminded to check their email for information on the time of the tests and the equipment they need to bring.

We wish them well in these tests.


Half-Yearly Examinations and Assessments

Students in Years 5-10 will complete their Half-Yearly Examinations and Assessments during Week 6. The Examination Timetable can be downloaded >here. It has also been emailed to all students in Years 7-10. Students should be receiving Study Guides for each subject over the coming week. We encourage them to begin their preparations for these examinations by developing a home study timetable.

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From the Director of Wellbeing
Ms Lynne Walker

From the Director of Wellbeing image

A story of humility – and greatness

Nelson Mandela’s personal assistant always enjoyed telling everyone about the time that Mandela visited China and stayed a very fancy hotel in Shanghai. His assistant was very concerned that It would be regarded as a great insult to the hotel staff if Mandela were to make his own bed. The custom in China was that it was the responsibility of those providing hospitality to perform this task. Mandela’s assistant begged him to put aside his usual practice while he stayed in China – but he would not listen. Mandela had been brought up not to expect others to serve him like this. In the end, Mandela asked his assistant to bring the hotel manager and cleaning staff to him so that he could explain why he had to make his own bed. He wanted to make sure that they understood and would not feel insulted. “He didn’t ever want to hurt people’s feelings. He never really cared about what great big people thought of him, but he did care about what small people thought of him.”

Mandela wanted to be remembered not as anyone unique or special, but as part of a great team. This humility and genuine respect for others, is what made him a great man – loved by all who knew him.

In Tyrrell Term we celebrate this quality of humility in others and ourselves.

From the Head of Park Campus
Mrs Alicha Dyer

Park Campus celebrated Mother’s Day last Friday. It was wonderful to see our mums enjoying time with their children in the open classrooms. Afterwards our mums were treated to an elegant and relaxing morning tea in the SWPC. During our afternoon Chapel and Assembly we gave thanks and expressed our appreciation for the amazing women in our lives. Our celebrations gave us all a wonderful opportunity to come together and enjoy a feeling of community spirit.

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From the Director of Pre-school
Mrs Angela Tapp

We hope all our Pre-school mummies had a wonderful Mother’s Day. We also hope that you loved the special gift that your clever Pre-schooler created for you. The gifts were made with a huge amount of love. We had lots of special visitors on Friday – including a great grandma. The children were very proud showing their mums and family members the Pre-school and all the hard work they do. It was a lovely morning.

This week at Pre-school we are promoting a ‘low waste lunch week’ as part of our sustainability policy and The National Quality Framework. Families received a note asking them to pack lunch boxes with as little packaging as possible or with no packaging or waste. We know it is not always easy for busy parents to create lunch boxes while limiting waste. During low waste lunch weeks families are asked to think about:

  • Reusable lunch boxes and containers * No pre-packaged foods such as fruit cups, cheese wrappers etc.
  • Reusable drink bottles for water * No cling wrap, foil or snap lock bags
  • Reusable cutlery
  • Appropriate proportion sizes

It is interesting to know that by buying lunch box food in bulk and by packing a low waste lunch, families can save up to $400 a year and help the environment as well.

Next week (Thursday, 21 May) is the Pre-school Athletics Carnival and we are already doing our stretches and warm up exercises in preparation for that.

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From the Head of Co-curricular
Mrs Corey Rowntree

From the Head of Co-curricular image


Term 3 Newcastle Grammar School will be offering Sailing to any student in Years 5 to 8 that would like to learn to sail. The School will be going to the Newcastle Cruising Yacht Club at Wickham from 3.15pm-5.00pm on a Tuesday afternoon for 10 weeks to learn the skills of sailing. The School will transport the students to and from the training venue. Students will return to School in time to catch the late buses home.

Please see Mrs Rowntree for an enrolment form and further details.



Any student wishing to study in Victoria there is an information session worth attending. Please >click here to view the attached flyer.

All Year 12 students will be attending the Newcastle Lake Macquarie Career and training expo on the Thursday, 21 May from 1.00pm till 3.00pm. A bus will take the students to and from the Newcastle Jockey Club. This is a great opportunity for students to ask questions of the various universities and the courses they conduct.

All Year 11 and 12 students there is a Avondale’s Future Day being held on Wednesday, June 3.

The content of the day will contain:

  • HSC lectures and study hints and tip session
  • Career profiling
  • Course information expo
  • A tour of Avondale’s Lake Macquarie campus
  • Interactive tours specific to the areas of study that your students are interested in
  • Information about the various courses, scholarships, credit transfer, fees and student life
  • Chats with lectures and students

Any student wishing to attend please go to the following website for further details.

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From the Director of Music Performance
Mr Kevin Young

From the Director of Music Performance image

My thanks to the Chamber Choir and Yuchan Park in Year 9 who provided music support for the Eucharist last Thursday. Your selections of music added much ambience to the service and your talents are always appreciated.


Extended Orchestra Rehearsal

On Thursday, 11 June, Symphony Orchestra rehearsal will be extended to 6pm. Mr George Ellis, a familiar face to most of us, will be here to lead us in the rehearsal. All orchestra members are asked to organize themselves to stay the extra hour.


Sydney Eisteddfod

The Chamber Choir will once again be participating in the Sydney Eisteddfod Open sections. These will be held on Saturday, 30 May at the Chatswood Performance Centre. We will need to leave NGS around 1.00pm on Saturday afternoon. Please check the Chamber Choir group on My Big Campus for your permission note.


String Section Tutorials

This tutorial led by Mr Gavin Clark will continue to take place each Thursday and all students in the String Section of the orchestra from Years 7 – 10 are expected to attend. This will really assist your music reading, playing and ensemble skills. An improvement in the overall sound of the string sections has already been noticed.


HIRS Cultural Festival 2015

Notes are now due for this annual event to be held on 29 July at Hunter Valley Grammar School. Students can nominate their preferred ensemble on the nomination form which is available from your ensemble director. Students have a wide range of activities they can support including, string orchestra, concert band, wind orchestra, choirs and dance groups. Buses will transport NGS students to HVGS and there is a concert at 6pm on the same evening which parents and friends are invited to attend. Parents will be responsible for their children/s transport home.


Brass RaZoo at Presentation Ball

Brass RaZoo are rehearsing to support this year’s Presentation Ball. This event will take place on Saturday, 13 June. Times are to be advised but you will need to wear your formal gear. More details next week.


From the Director of Music Performance

>Click here for the Tools for Success: An Orchestra Parent’s Guide to Being Involved.


Term 2 Music Events

Saturday, 30 May: Chamber Choir at Sydney Eisteddfod departing at 2.00pm.
Thursday, 4 June: Winter Concert 6.00pm SWPC
Thursday, 1 June: Extended Orchestra Rehearsal with Mr George Ellis
Saturday, 13 June: Brass RaZoo at the Presentation Ball

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From the Director of Sports
Mr Leigh Carroll

From the Director of Sports image


On Friday, 1 May, two teams (consisting of two boys in each team) competed in the Regional Surf Titles at Merewether Beach.

Kyle Robinson and Henry Hawcroft competed in the Open Senior Boys competition wand Nicholas Tonks and Alexander Ferch competed in the U16 Junior Boys comp.

Both  teams represented the School proudly and Nicholas and Alexander placed 5th out of 8 competing teams. We look forward to the AICES event later this year. – Alexander Ferch – Year 9 Student


CIS swimming

Congratulations to Oscar Jeffery – Year 7, who recently represented AICES at the NSWCIS Swimming Championships at Homebush. Oscar had a very full programme over the two days and amongst some excellent performances, finished 3rd in the 12 years 200m Individual Medley.

Oscar will now represent NSWCIS at the NSW All School Swimming Championships, at Homebush on 18 May. On behalf of the School I would like to wish Oscar every success in that Championship.

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Oscar with his Bronze medal at the NSWCIC Swimming Championships


NGS Members of the HRIS Secondary Schools’ Cross Country Team

Following the atrocious conditions in which the HRIS Cross Country was held and the fact that there were no age group teams able to be selected, AICES has allowed HRIS to send 15 competitors to AICES. In the past all regional teams have had many more in their teams due to the age-group conditions which have been in place. This means that there have been 14 NGS students selected in the HRIS team to travel to the AICES Championships.

Please note the changes to both the venue and date of the AICES Cross Country. These changes have been made due to the unavailability of Easten Creek after the recent weather issues.

AICES Date: Thursday, 4 June.
AICES Venue: Sydney International Equestrian Centre, Saxony Road, Horsley Park.

NGS members of the 2015 HRIS Cross Country team (secondary) are:
Nicholas White – 12 years
Molly Broad – 12 years
Connor Henderson – 14 years
Madison Campbell – 13 years
James Myles – 15 years
Kate Hackett – 15 years
Lachlan Rae – 16 years
Karma Randall – 15 years
Caleb Agostino-Morrow – 16 years
Phoebe O’Keeffe – 16 years
Jackson Gosling – 17 years
Seraina Danuser – 16 years
Laura Flack – 17 years
Sophie Laurence – 18 years

An information sheet containing all travel and other arrangements will be issued directly. A bus will be provided to transport students to and from AICES.

Mr L Carroll


NGS Co-Curricular Touch 2015

Berkeley students – NGS Quads Mixed Division
This term welcomes another exciting season of Winter Touch. Below is some information on the season and dates for training.

Team members:
James Robinson
Lena Ingram
Freya Whitehead
Lexy Halpin
Sara Farragher Hoey
Bethany Lee
Bea Torpey
Eliza McGowan
Sara Melrose
Patrick Nicolle
Michael Waring
Monique Aganovic
Tristram Kaluski
Joshua Franks
Asha Ryan
Sam Theo
Tara Valarie

Games: Thursday nights – NEWCASTLE CITY TOUCH FIELDS, Harness Racing Club, behind Knights Stadium (first games played at 6.30pm, last games 8.10pm)
First game night: Thursday, 14 May (the competition runs for 12 weeks)
Uniform: you are supplied a shirt Newcastle City Touch and to wear school sports shorts.
Game One: NGS Quads is 7.20pm
Training: Wednesday afternoon starting Wednesday, 13 May at National Park Union Street from 3.30pm – 4.45pm. A bus will run from school to National Park and back for any player requiring transport.

Any questions regarding the commencement of the season please see Ms Byrnes in the PDHPE Department or email on

Ms Byrnes – MIC Touch


Park Campus Athletics Carnival

Park Campus will be running their 2015 Athletics Carnival at the Newcastle Athletics track on Thursday, 21 May.

Students from Years 2/3/4 will walk to the track for commencement of the carnival at 9.00am and K/1students will arrive after recess.

We ask any parents who are willing to assist on the day to please leave their name at the front office of Park Campus or email Miss Byrnes on .

If students are ordering their lunch on the day a revised canteen list was sent home with the information sheet and we ask that items be selected from this list. A coffee van will operate at the carnival from 11.00am for all hot drinks.

There will be no Co-curricular training for Park Campus teams on this afternoon due to the Carnival.

Miss C Byrnes – Park Campus Sports Coordinator



Co-curricular tennis training will commence next Wednesday, 20 May (Week 5 of this term). Students will catch a bus directly after School to District Park Tennis Courts at Broadmeadow. A return bus will leave the courts at 4.40pm to arrive back at NGS by 5.00pm.

If you wish to collect your child directly from the courts, a note will need to be given to Mrs Dart explaining who will collect your child. If parents aren’t at the courts by 4.40pm, children must return to School with us.

Grading will take place at the Wednesday training sessions throughout Term 2, in consultation with our Head Coach, Mr Greg Billingham, and the competition coordinators, Topspin Tennis. More information will be given once training has commenced.

Important Dates
Wednesday, 20 May – Training commences
Saturday, 18 July – First day of competition (end of Week 1, Term 3)
Saturday, 12 September – Last day of competition/finals (end of Week 9, Term 3)
All Saturday competition games will be held at District Park Tennis Courts. The two time slots are: 12.00noon – 2.00pm (lower grades) and 2.00pm – 4.00pm (higher grades)

Players need to be at the courts at least 10 minutes before their game commences in order to have their names marked off and have a hit up.

It’s great to see so many students choosing to compete this year. We look forward to a wonderful season.

Mrs V Dart – MIC Tennis


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Nexus 17 Art Exhibition

Nexus 17 Art Exhibition image

Music Fundraiser

Music Fundraiser image

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The Blog
by the Head of School

School Photographs

If for any reason your child missed the School photos day, you can still be included in their year group composite photo. Please organise a time to have a photo taken at the studio directly with Newcastle School Portraits on 4965 4114 as soon as possible.  Family photos can also be organised and paid with Newcastle School Portraits.

For convenience, the cost of photo packs will be charged to your School account unless individual parents have advised the Office otherwise. The photo packs are expected to be delivered prior to the end of Term 2. Family photos are paid directly to the Photographer.

Head Lice Notification

There have been several outbreaks of Head Lice within the Hill Campus since the beginning of Term.

Could all families please check their child/ren’s hair on a regular basis & treat as necessary. For further information and treatment >click here.

Smart Phone App

The new NGS App is now connected to the NGS website and should allow you to read events in the calendar, alerts and the newsletter in a format that should prove more convenient.  It can be downloaded from the >Apple Store or >Google Play.

Uniform Shop
Hours for 2015

The Uniform shop hours are as follows.

Monday: 8.00am – 2.00pm
Wednesday & Friday: 10.00am – 4.00pm

Canteen Duties

Hill Campus

Mon 18 May:
Toni Lee

Tue 19 May:
Alette Schot

Wed 20 May:
Sue Clark

Thu 21 May:
Felicity Prior

Fri 22 May:
Doreen Ingram

Park Campus

Mon 18 May:
Natalie Swancott

Tue 19 May:
Dana Stojanovski

Wed 20 May:
Liz Richardson

Thu 21 May:
Athletics Carnival

Fri 22 May:
Kym Carpenter