Judith Weir

Last week the school commemorated ANZAC Day by sharing in silence and prayer followed by the opportunity to write messages of hope and peace which have been placed on our flag poles and in the Chapel. As the world continues to struggle with war and the inevitable devastation it creates, it was wonderful to read the hopes of our students.

On Friday last week, Shane Taylor, Cyvonne Scarica, Jemma Banfield and I had the privilege of attending the International Coalition of Girls' Schools Symposium held in Melbourne. We joined teachers from girls’ schools all over Australia to celebrate and reflect on girls’ education. The theme of the symposium was 'Diversity and Inclusivity' and we were challenged to see both in their broadest applications for girls and young women in our schools, in the workforce and in society.

The conference included the rich voices of wonderful leaders like Djapirri Mununggirritj, Yolngu Elder from Yirrkala in North East Arnhem Land. Among her key achievements is establishing the Yirrkala Women’s Patrol, which saw Aboriginal elders walk the streets late at night to successfully deal with domestic violence, alcohol and other community safety issues. She is an accomplished artist who is committed to the protection and promotion of Yolngu art, and spent five years managing Nambara Arts and Crafts. Djapirri shared with us her wisdom and inspired us with her hope as an Aboriginal woman who sees open doors and opportunities for our communities to work together for all young women.

We also heard from Dr Nira Rahman, an Academic specialising in Educational Design and Student Engagement in the Arts Teaching Innovation in the Faculty of Arts, University of Melbourne. Her works are focused towards a more inclusive, applicable, transformative and internationalised Arts and Humanities education. She shared with us the many ways that as a society we live with conscious bias but offered ideas for the ways in which education can be at the forefront of change.

In addition to the keynote addresses we participated in a range of workshops focused on the current educational needs of girls. We are looking forward to implementing some of the ideas we all brought back to OLMC over this year.

Next week the Annual Athletics Carnival will be held for Year 7-12. The Carnival is always a wonderful day. For our Year 12 students this will be their last and the parade will no doubt be a highlight of the day. For our Year 7 students it will be their first Athletics Carnival. For all students it will be a day to share in House spirit by earning points participating in the formal competitive program, the novelty events or the cheering. It is an important part of the year and we look forward to seeing all students there.