6 February 2020 - 6 February 2020
From the Chair of the Board

From the Chair of the Board

Dear Members of the School community,

On behalf of the School Board, I write to send our best wishes to all at the beginning of the new school year.

We would particularly like to welcome those new to the School community this year. We hope that you all feel quite at home as quickly as possible.

SCEGGS is a great school with a big heart and we want you all to experience the best possible education you can here at SCEGGS.

It is important to say at the outset that we do not have a role in the day-to-day running of the School. Our role is to determine and maintain the mission and vision of the School and set long-term strategic directions and governing policies whilst supporting the Head in enacting the mission, vision and strategy of the School. We acknowledge the importance of good governance in all our undertakings. We aim to provide broad, comprehensive and modern governance of the School.

You can find out more information about the Board on the School website. A list of all of the Board members can be found here.

The School is owned and operated by SCEGGS Darlinghurst Limited, a company limited by guarantee. All adults within the SCEGGS community are eligible for membership including parents, Old Girls, staff, friends and benefactors.

The cost of membership is $100 – and this lasts for six years. This may be made in the form of a payment or donation. All members receive a copy of the Annual Report and may vote at the AGM. Applications for membership are sent to every person who donates to the SCEGGS Trust and to anyone else who asks about membership! It is great to join the company – to show your support for the School and to acknowledge the ownership of the company which is so clearly vested in the community of which we are all a part. That is something so special to SCEGGS.

If you wish to become a company member please contact the Business Manager, David Tran, on (02) 9332 1133 or email.

But to everyone in the School community, whether you are a member of the company or not, our best wishes to you for 2020.

Peter Hicks

From the Primary School

From the Primary School

Our New Look Playground!

The start of the school year has seen the unveiling of the new Primary School playground equipment. Our old playground had served us well but needed an upgrade! The new equipment has been carefully designed to maximise playing space, cater for all students from K-6 and to add a more natural feel to our urban environment.

The new equipment is proving to be a great hit and is certainly keeping the girls active and engaged!

Sustainability in the Primary School

Throughout 2020, the Primary School community will be working towards becoming a more bio-diverse and sustainable place. During Semester 2 of 2019, the student led environment group EnviroGirls considered many wonderful ways girls might be able to improve our school environment. A few of these are listed below:

Waste Free Wednesday: Every Wednesday we ask that the girls bring recess and lunch to school that is wrap free. Our aim is to be as waste-free as possible by the end of the year.

Our new vegetable garden: The landscaped area next to the Library courtyard has been transformed during the summer break into a small vegetable garden and is now ready for planting. After School Care and Year 1 are ready for action and will be demonstrating their green thumbs throughout Term 1!

Bike racks: Some families who live close to the School may consider allowing their daughters to ride a bicycle to and from school from an appropriate age. This has the benefit of reducing local traffic, reducing our environmental impact and promoting physical activity.

Equally, there are a number of safety and legal obligations for parents to consider when making the decision to allow their daughter to cycle to school.

  • Primary school students are safest when they are supervised by an adult when riding.
  • Children under 16 can ride on the footpath, unless there are signs prohibiting cycling.
  • All cyclists must wear a helmet and protective gear, understand and follow the road rules and give way to pedestrians.
  • All bikes should be in good safe working order fitted with working brakes, reflectors, a bell and lights.
  • All cyclists must store their bike safely and securely in the bike racks provided in the Primary School and Secondary School for the duration of the school day.

The cycling route and surrounding traffic environment to and from school will be slightly different for each student. Sometimes the busy roads and conditions at specific times of the day can impact on rider safety and the safety of other road users and pedestrians. If the school deems that a student is displaying unsafe behaviours when riding to and from school, we may deny permission for the student to bring a bike to school. 

Helen Dempsey
Head of Primary School

Temporary Road Closures – Clapton Place and Farrell Avenue

Temporary Road Closures – Clapton Place and Farrell Avenue

The City of Sydney have advised us that they are about to begin a project to carry out stormwater drainage works in Clapton Place and Farrell Avenue in Darlinghurst.

The project will begin on Monday 10 February (weather permitting) and they have indicated that this may take 4-5 weeks to complete, again depending on the weather.

How will this affect us?

  • Clapton Place will be closed to traffic for some short periods of time over the next month. Other temporary traffic restrictions will also be unavoidable, particularly between 7.30am-5.30pm on weekdays and on Saturdays.
  • Traffic flow may also be more restricted than usual in nearby streets, especially in Forbes Street, and this will be managed by a number of Traffic Controllers.
  • Pedestrians may need to take extra care when using footpaths adjacent to the works and follow the instructions of the Traffic Controllers to ensure their safety crossing the road and around any work vehicles.

How can you help?

  • Please be patient and take extra care if you are driving in Forbes Street and follow the directions of all Traffic Controllers to ensure the safety of our girls and other pedestrians.
  • Anything you can do to help us minimise the traffic in Forbes Street is also going to make a difference, including carpooling or encouraging your daughter to catch the bus, train or walk to and from school if she is old enough to do so safely.

The City of Sydney is going to continue to keep us informed of the progress of this work, and we will pass on any relevant details as soon as these come to hand. If you have any questions about this project, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Primary Sport

Primary Sport

It was lovely to see the girls at their first Saturday sport session on the weekend. Trials will continue this week and teams will be announced in week 3.

Congratulations Camille Coonan

Congratulations to Camille Coonan (Year 6) who qualified for the Little Athletics Regional Championships on the weekend. Camille made it through to the Final of the U11 discus where she came 7th. A great effort!

IPSHA Football Yrs 4-6

There will be a trial session on Saturday 8 February at Moore Park Turf fields. Final teams will be announced in Week 3.

Time: 8.00am – 9.30 am
What to wear: SCEGGS sports uniform, shin pads, long SCEGGS socks and trainers or boots (football boots are not compulsory).
What to bring: Large water bottle, sunscreen
In case of wet weather: Please check SCEGGSport.  This can be viewed on the ‘Sport’ home page on Cognito (Parent Access) if you do not have a twitter account.

Training sessions will be at Moore Park Turf Fields. The girls will catch the bus from SCEGGS and can be picked up at 4:50pm at Moore Park or approximately 5:20pm outside the Sports Hall on Forbes Street.


Year 3 Basketball 

Year 3 Basketball has started with the first two weeks being training and learning the rules of the game. The first session was last week and the next one will be on Saturday 8 February in the Sports Hall from 8.30am – 10.00am.  Matches will begin on Saturday 15 Feb at SCEGGS.

After school training sessions will be on Tuesdays in the Sports Hall. The girls will be collected from their classroom at 3.10pm and taken to the Sports Hall. They will have a snack before commencing the session. Please ensure your daughter has a large water bottle as well. Pick up on Tuesday is at 5.00pm from the SCEGGS Sports Hall. 

What to wear: SCEGGS Sports uniform and sport shoes
What to bring: Large water bottle and healthy snack, ie fruit or cheese and biscuits, no chips etc.


IPSHA Flippa Ball

The first training session was held on last Saturday and  the next one will be on Saturday 8 February at Prince Alfred Pool, from 8.00am-9.30am.

Your daughter will need a one piece swimming costume, cap, goggles, water bottle and towel.

Training will be on Monday mornings at NCIE Pool from 6.30-7.30am. The girls will catch a bus back to school.

Sue Phillips
Primary PDHPE and Sport Co-ordinator

In This Together

In This Together

Music – a lifelong love                            

As your daughters are making their choice of Co-curricular activities for the year, there is a likelihood that a Music Ensemble will be one of the choices that is considered.  In many instances, participation in a Music Ensemble is a logical choice.  Students who undertake regular music tuition in voice or instrument are often encouraged to play or sing as part of an ensemble to further enhance their learning.  For other students, this step to participation is the first step in discovering a skill or talent that they had previously not had an opportunity to explore. 

Unlike some other Co-curricular activities, participation in a Music Ensemble requires a year-long commitment. Whilst the seasons of the year can determine changes of sport, this does not apply to Music. The development of skill and an ability for ensemble members to work together requires time.  In fact, in many instances Co-curricular Music is an extended commitment that should be concurrent with the years a student spends learning an instrument.  The participation in an ensemble is vital in helping a student to put into practice the skills acquired through individual tuition.

Aside from the obvious social element of playing in an ensemble with their peers, there are many positive attributes that can be learnt and developed from being a part of one.  Teamwork is an obvious skill that can be acquired through participation.  How else can a whole section of players learn to play a passage together in time, with the correct notes and expression?   In order to do this, players learn to listen to their desk partner, their section and the other sections of the ensemble.  Engagement with the conductor for directions and being able to follow their prompts or nuances is important too.  Players are working together towards a common goal, being a musically successful performance.

There have been many research papers written on the effects of learning a musical instrument, singing in a choir or playing a musical instrument in an ensemble. Scientists have demonstrated the positive effect on brain activity of actively playing a musical instrument.  Many studies have also shown a direct correlation between musical training and academic achievement.  Playing an instrument helps to enhance many of the brain’s functions, such as memory and abstract reasoning, which in turn are beneficial to other disciplines including Mathematics, Science and Languages.  Albert Einstein is a classic example of this!

If you were to ask any former SCEGGS students what their fondest memories of school were, many would respond with “singing in the whole school item” or “being a member of the band”.  Participation in Music Ensembles has helped students from different year groups to meet and work together.  Many of the students who played in ensembles together during their time at school have continued their relationship beyond school, despite their age or disciplines in life.  Some former students have even made Music their calling in life, with success in both the contemporary and art music scenes.  These Alumni members include:

  • Anna DOWSLEY (2005) – Opera Australia
  • Isabella MANFREDI (2005) – singer of “The Preatures”
  • Aristea MELLOS (2005) – composer
  • Veronique SERRET (1993) – violinist
  • Giselle ROSSELLI (2008) – singer/song writer/producer

and many more.

Commitment to an ensemble is vital to both ensuring musical success but also providing opportunities for students to share their music beyond the Green Gate.  Over the past year the Music Department has been able to develop relationships with local communities through the String Ensembles’ performances at RPA Hospital and Ardency Trebartha (retirement village), and the Basie Jazz Band performing at the Wayside Chapel. 

Last year, the SCEGGS Choristers contributed to a series of performances in the Gondwana World Choral Festival.  Some of the students and their families were kind enough to open their homes to the visiting choristers from Inner Mongolia who performed as part of the festival.  Students were not only sharing their music, but also acting as cultural ambassadors to our overseas visitors. Taking this further, we would like to ignite a culture of building relationships both domestically and internationally through touring at SCEGGS.  However, this is not possible if the commitment to ensembles is not 100%.  We want to show everyone who attends our performances the best of what we can do.

This year, to celebrate the School’s 125th Anniversary, the Music Department will contribute to the celebration with a concert at Sydney Town Hall. 

The concert will be a celebration of Australian women who have made a significant contribution to our history.  Some of these women may not be well known, but each have left a legacy that we would like to celebrate through a series of commissioned works.  Three of the composers that have composed the commissioned items are also former students of the school – Georgia SCOTT (2008), Aristea MELLOS and Jayne GROVES (1991).  There is no better time to be part of this musical journey.

Pauline Chow
Head of Music

Thinking Allowed

Thinking Allowed

Being and living the presence of light in the world: How we might consider our foundations as a Christian school            

The image of light is one that is woven through the Bible with the opening lines of this Sacred text being God’s spirit hovering over what is still formless and desolate and in a state of chaos, not order. “Everything was engulfed in darkness, and the power of God was moving over the water.” (Genesis 1:2). This is, until the first act of creation came about through the presence of light being brought forth and into existence. A light that was pleasing to God and a light, that with the darkness was fashioned into day and night; order and purpose being the creative acts of God.

No longer will the sun be your light by day
Or the moon be your light by night;
I, the Lord will be your eternal light:
The light of my glory will shine on you.
Your days of grief will come to an end.
I, the Lord, will be your eternal light,
More lasting than the sun and the moon…(Isaiah 60:19-20)

This passage coming from the prophet Isaiah , written at a time when the people of Jerusalem were looking to God for reassurance that justice and righteousness would reign after being in exile for many many years. The understanding that this light is a promise and hope in a time when it seems that there is little that makes sense and a reaching out, almost in an instinctive like manner, to a reality that reaches far beyond what is visible and known. To a reality that moves and has its being beyond the ordered created world. This light is eternal and independent of this world, and yet finds its presence among us. John’s Gospel, a gospel not so much concerned with providing a synoptic account of Jesus’ life, but rather exploring the cosmology of Christ and engaging with the symbolic nature of everyday realities such as light and water to point to spiritual truths. The beginning of John’s Gospel too draws on this image and presence of God’s light in the world, a light that is in the created world through the presence of Christ and a light the “shines in the darkness, and the darkness has never put it put.” (John 1:5) And in turning to the motto and foundation upon which SCEGSS is built, we, too are awakened to the presence and power of light in life.

“Let your light shine” (Matthew 5:16), with the passage reminding us that it is God that we show to the world when we do this.

We realise that, through our school’s motto, we come into the folds of this image of light that has been weaved through the Bible and we too, here at SCEGGS are cradled by its wisdom, truth and beauty. In thinking about and writing this article, I have come to a much deeper understanding of what letting your light shine is. Or, perhaps, as is true of Scripture, I have responded to the invitation to think about, contemplate and know the meaning of this for me in a way that I didn’t before. That is the beauty and mystery of our Sacred texts; they are conversations with our inner most being and what we bring to this is where we need our God to listen and respond.  

In thinking about this image of light, I was caught in moments of deep reflection about both light and darkness for light is really only present and visible and seen, when there is darkness. Without the dark, there is no light. The passages from Genesis, Isaiah and John remind us that this is true. This understanding, obvious as it is, is a consideration that invites us into reflection on the nature of the world in which we live. A contemplation that calls us to consider how we relate to this world. We are being called to notice, engage with, and be a loving presence to the things in this world that aren’t always moments of love, joy and happiness. That are experiences and realities in life where we may see suffering and pain in others, or truths about ourselves that we would rather remain hidden and buried within as they are the not so good truths about ourselves. Truths that divide us, separate us from who we truly are and the dignity and light that we created out of and with. This darkness of the world is manifest in a myriad of ways. The light that Jesus came to teach us about is a light that is called upon to respond to the and be present to that which is where people are in pain, suffering and broken. We are called to that which we might be apprehensive about. To that which we know we will probably be challenged by. We are asked to know in this, and trust, that we can bring something loving to the suffering in the world. That we can be the Christ’s loving presence in this world. A loving presence that does not judge, nor seek to criticise.

A loving presence that through understanding what true love is, wants only to be what is going to bring us closer together and unite us as one creation. This loving presence that remained so, even through the agony of pain, suffering and disappointment is what we see in some of Jesus’ final words on the Cross. Words said after he was witness to the ways in which fear and power in people’s hearts caused them to act in a way that was unjust and not right. Jesus said,

“Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” (Luke 23:24)

In being light in this world, we must let this light first transform us into what it is. And we see Jesus’ words being one of seeking to understand, not lord over or condemn. Jesus’ choice was a choice to come to accept and realise that when we act in ways that cause pain and destruction it is an expression that we have not fully come to know the healing power of love. Jesus’ insight into this enables us to consider when it is, we too may not know what we are doing. What a generous response from Jesus. And what a call to our humanity to notice when we are unaware of the impact of our being on others in this world. We are asked to be light to all people in this world, to those we hold dear to ourselves and cherish as they are familiar and to those, we don’t know but whose realities we need to acknowledge and reach out to. In each of these experiences we go to where there is a loss of hope and a need for light. We are asked to bridge the divide and bring light into the darkness.

A light that here at SCEGGS, we understand to be that of God and of goodness and love.

When considering this and considering that this is the motto of the school, it is something that we are guided to have at the core of our being. It is the lens by which we are encouraged to see the world. A lens that engages with the whole person. Their whole being. Our own being. It is something, as all mottos are, that we are to be formed and shaped by. In reflecting on this, my thinking turned to wondering about how we can be that light. The images of God that are used in the Bible are at times comforting ones, and other times given our distance in space and time from the writing of these texts, ones that we may not easily associate with. The image of God as light is  one that is not only particular to the Judeao-Christian world. It is a universal, archetypal image of hope. Of the presence of life. Of a deep yearning and longing within the human spirit to pay respect to that which transcends this material world. It is in essence, the recognition that within each of us we are both the light and the darkness. A beautiful piece of music, Jeff Buckley’s “Hallelujah” expresses this so well.

“There is a blaze of light in every Word, it doesn’t matter which you heard, the holy or the broken Hallelujah”. If you don’t know this song, I would encourage you to listen to it. In it is the expression of a religious truth and the basis of our Christian worldview. God, or the divine that is there in both our joys and our struggles, being present to us and taking us for what and who we are. Jeff Buckley reminds us that we can come to knowing and experiencing God in and see God in all that we know to be going well for us in life, and through our brokenness. We can all appreciate that God’s goodness can be recognised and felt when things are going well. The feeling and experiencing of contentment and joy in life naturally creates in us an impulse to be thankful and grateful for what is going well in life. However, the darkness, brokenness and suffering, how can these be times when we see God? God’s presence in these times can be known and experienced when it us who allow the light to be present and soften ourselves to it. This may that that we are the ones who are in need of healing, or that we notice and respond to life as it is around us and see this brokenness in others and respond to it. All of it is God’s presence. All of it is this because it takes us out of experiencing the world as an individual and enables us to connect to one another and creation and in so doing, we are connecting to a reality far greater and bigger than our own.

This light can only be light, if we are transformed into being it. And it can only be light if we see, know and recognise it as so. And this is tough going! This is the transformation of the ego driven self, the ego that wants to be right over wanting to be loving. That wants to self-promote, rather than respond to life. That wants to be seen, more than it wants God or love to be seen. The transformation of the self through both the presence of light and darkness is what I believe walking the path of a religion is meant to do.

In Year 8, after learning about the nature of the Christian worldview in our unit, “The Big Questions in Life”, the girls are asked to consider what caring for others looks like. It is at this point in the curriculum that we can see growth and development in their understanding of what is at the heart of Christianity. “Much is required from the person to whom much is given; much more is required from the person who to whom much more is given” (Luke 12:48). An initial reading of this might only remind us to be generous in our giving of time, money, material goods; all things that are needed more of in this world to help address social justice inequalities. Yet, we need to add to this rights and freedoms. We need to add to this patience and kindness. All these things are needed in our world and they are the things I believe that Jesus really was speaking about. These are the ways we connect with others, we build communities and understanding, and we move from an existence of division and disharmony to a greater and more everlasting reality of connection. They form the foundations of the Kingdom of God that Jesus taught about. The Kingdom of God that is not a distant reality but, can be and is meant to be a living presence in the here and now. However, the giving of these things is not meant to be end in themselves. The giving of things and of self is meant to be there so we too, are part of the process. That we too, take a journey, for if we don’t it may just risk being paternalistic. If we give and are not present in the giving, transformed by the giving, changed to see life differently, what has been the point of the giving for us? For humanity? For the divine command to love? Jesus walked this earth as Christ. Pointing to, showing us how God and humanity can live as one. He showed us that to include all in society was not something we could do, if we did not have a change in understanding about the nature of life. Of people. Of dignity for all. Jesus ate with outcasts, with sinners, with the sick. He defied social norms in doing so. He risked being seen as ritually unclean by associating with people who were deemed outcasts.

Something worthy for consideration is that Jesus was not put to death because his message was easy. It was one that angered people. Upon reflection of this, we can see that we too, may be easily angered or offended by a vision that is loving and just and inclusive. Is it not such a tragedy that over 2000 years later, we still think God wants division! And that God doesn’t love us as we are! How we choose to see the “other”, whoever they may be, speaks volumes about how much we have come to know in our hearts what is called of us to be like when Jesus compels us to do. He respected the Law. And because of his respect of it, he also challenged it. His understanding was that by our love we fulfil the requirements of the Law. And from this we get the call, to love your neighbour as yourself. A call that when considered, recognises that we too are complex beings. Courageous and frail. Understanding of what is right in life and aware of how that reframes our being and makes for us, if we let it, a life that isn’t always easy or comfortable. Where we are led to act with integrity in life will look and be different for each of us, as it was for Jesus. What remains the same, is that we have lived with our eyes open and our hearts aware of life around us. We too, as Jesus was, are beckoned by God to be transformed through being present to all of life and be transformed into love because of it. Transformed by the presence of light and love into something greater than we ever though we were. It is through this process, that we can let our light shine. Turing into and not away from the darkness, and letting it work in and through us.

I read a little while ago something that has stayed with me. It was written by a theologian, Ron Rolheiser and he said of Christian faith that is isn’t so much having faith in Jesus, but rather having the faith of Jesus. How wonderful this way of seeing faith is! Faith isn’t then an object. To be had. Held onto and owned. It is a vision to be lived. A way of relating to the world. Whether or not you agree with him, he certainly does make a point. That the values of our Christian community, and that in particular of those here at SCEGGS, ought to be about being Christ’s presence in a world that is in constant need of healing. Be it in our personal lives, or the wider communities. And Jesus, by being the living presence of love, showed that it is an approach to living that is not always easy. It is one that asks a lot of us and one that asks us to have trust that by living love, we too can be transformed. One story that speaks to me about what this transformation looks like is the story of Jesus with the woman at the well (John 4:4-16). He speaks to a woman who has been shunned by society and, as a result has to collect jars of water in the midday heat to avoid the gossip of the other women who make the journey early in the morning.

Jesus speaks with her at this well. He sees her as a being, not through her mistakes and shortcomings; something we all have. He engages with her humanity, as well as her spirit. He sees her as being dignified and worthy, as we all are, of love.

A love that heals and nourishes and provides freshness and growth to our lives, just as the water she was collecting from the well would in a very practical way. We can only wonder about this encounter. Wonder about how we might feel if we were seen and engaged with by those around us in a way befitting our inherent dignity. A dignity that is God given, eternal and a gift of love. It cannot be taken away by God. It is Jesus who shows us that we must go into who we are as people, before we can be transformed. Once we know and understand this, I believe the giving of light is the giving of healing for our lives too, as we begin to see us in others, as they are on ourselves. And so, at SCEGGS, it is my hope that we engage in being present to life in all the ways we encounter it, and bring life to it through our transforming love, honouring too, that we are part of that journey and integral to it. And that when we do this, we can be the light. We can let our light shine because we have come to know what true light is, and how to give of it generously, humbly and with integrity.

Dynielle Whitney
Religious Education Teacher

Secondary Sport News

Secondary Sport News

The Secondary Inter-House Swimming Carnival will be on tomorrow from 9.30am – 2.30pm at Drummoyne Swim Centre.

Travel Arrangements

All girls must come to school (8.15am) in correct sports uniform and travel on the buses to the carnival. Girls are to go to their Form room and wait for instructions to move to the buses. Form Teachers will travel on the bus with their class.

The Carnival will finish at 2.30pm. All girls will travel back to school on the buses unless a written permission note has been given to the Form Teacher. If parents are present at the carnival, students may be dismissed at the conclusion of the carnival, after consulting their Form Teacher.


Girls must wear correct sports uniform to and from the Carnival. They may change into other decorative House attire once at the pool. No girl is to travel to or from school in any clothing other than their correct sports uniform.

A school hat, sunscreen, a school jumper or tracksuit must also be brought to the Carnival.

Girls should swim in the SCEGGS swimming costume or approved race suit, and House swimming cap (available from the School Shop).

Lunch and refreshments

There will be no canteen facilities available. All girls must bring enough food and drink for the day.

Parents and spectators

There is an entry fee of $3.90 for parents and other spectators.

Parents are advised to bring a fold-up chair.

On the morning or afternoon of the Swimming Carnival, there will be NO Secondary Co-curricular activities.


  • There are to be no mobile phones, Tablet PCs or chewing gum.
  • Girls are to move to their allocated House area when they arrive at the pool.
  • Attendance at the Carnival is compulsory. Girls unable to attend on the day are required to submit an explanatory note to their Form Teacher.
  • The most important contribution on the day is each girl’s support of her House.
  • Girls must adhere to the pool rules – no running, pushing, bombing, unsafe or disruptive behaviour. The wading pool is out of bounds.

Wet Weather

Be fully prepared for wet weather – bring umbrella and/or raincoat.

In the case of extremely inclement weather a decision will be made at school on the morning of the Carnival. All girls must be prepared for Day 10 lessons in the event the Carnival does not proceed.

Alison Gowan
Director of Sport

Cape York Trip 2020

Cape York Trip 2020

The Cape York Trip is taking place this year in the September/October school holidays from Sunday, 27 September-Tuesday 6 October. This immersion and community service experience is available for all students in Years 9 and 10.  However, the group will be limited to 46 students.

Again, the trip will be organised by Red Earth and we will be visiting the Binthi-Warra and Jajikal communities in Cape York. Red Earth feel it is really important for a school to have an ongoing connection with the homelands they visit, and they have no doubt that the Elders and Traditional Owners we met in 2018 will remember SCEGGS and be equally keen to build on the relationship. While visiting these homelands the students will spend part of the time participating in community service, such as assisting with building projects or environmental conservation, based on the needs of the communities we stay with.

Some important dates…
Tuesday 11 February Student Presentation by Daniel Carson from Red Earth. Daniel will be introducing the Cape York Trip to all Year 9 and Year 10 students during Form time.
Tuesday 18 February Parent evening in the Lecture Theatre from 6.00pm – 7.30 pm. 
All Year 9/10 parents are welcome to attend presentation from Red Earth and learn more about the trip and what it entails.

We look forward to seeing interested students and parents at the presentations as we begin to prepare for this exciting experience.

Ashleigh Smith and Sue Zipfinger
Cape York Trip Coordinators

Music Matters

Music Matters

Important Dates for 2020                       

A special concert will be held in the Town Hall on Thursday 18 June to celebrate the school’s 125th Birthday.

The concert will feature exciting pieces of music by Australian composers and will feature many of our ensembles.

To facilitate preparation of this concert, the Music Department will be holding two weekend workshops for the featured ensembles. The dates are:

Workshop 1 – Monday 27 April (day before the commencement of Term 2)

Workshop 2 – Sunday 14 June (Sunday before the concert)

Attendance at both workshops is compulsory for students who will be performing. We would appreciate your support with your daughter’s regular attendance of rehearsals and for both workshops. Further information about each of the workshops will be provided closer to the time.

The concert will be a wonderful celebration of the school’s birthday. It will also be a wonderful evening of Music!


National Choral School

SCEGGS was thrilled to have a significant number of students successfully audition for this year’s National Choral School which was held in January. A number of these students took their musical talents to another level by snaring important musical roles in the National Choral School concerts. At the conclusion of this two-week residential choral extravaganza both Astrid Girdis (Year 11) and Scarlett Pearce (Year 10) were the featured vocal soloists in the world premiere of choral works by Australian composers Paul Jarman and Lisa Young. Jedda Thorley (Year 12) was selected as the violin soloist in the Gala Student Performance evening. This year’s Choir Captain Annika Deitz (Year 11) has been chosen to join the National Touring Choir for performances at the World Symposium in New Zealand and then Japan. The Music Department is very proud of these choristers’ achievements in the wider choral community.

Secondary Music Ensemble Rehearsals

Rehearsals for ensembles begin in Week 3. Students who are taking Music as an elective study MUST participate in at least one Music Ensemble. If for whatever reason you cannot attend your rehearsal, please do the courtesy of letting your conductor or Mr Jewitt know ahead of the rehearsal.


Music Tuition

Music tuition formally started in Week 2. Families are encouraged to review the 2020 Peripatetic Music program guidelines and the policy that has been set by their daughter’s tutor. Parents and students are also encouraged to look ahead in their daughter’s diary for any possible disruption that may affect their scheduled lesson time. Please contact your instrumental tutor if you have yet to receive confirmation of your lesson time.

If you would like to commence instrumental or vocal tuition, please do not hesitate to request a Music Tuition form. The form and the guidelines are available on Cognito or from the Music Department.


2020 SCEGGS Music Eisteddfod

The applications for the 2020 SCEGGS Music Eisteddfod are opened to all students who are having voice or instrument tuition.

  • The SCEGGS Music Eisteddfod is a competition open to ALL musicians currently taking private lessons, inside or outside of school.
  • Entry into the Eisteddfod is FREE.
  • All Elective Music students are preparing for participation.
  • Heats will be held in Weeks 7 and 8 during regular Music class lessons for Primary students, Year 7 students and Elective Music students.
  • All other heats will be held during regular class lesson time.
  • Students will perform for the external, specialist adjudicator in a music studio – there is no audience.
  • Due to timetabling restrictions, adjudicators do not provide written reports or any other feedback.
  • The adjudicator’s decision is final, and no discussion will be entered into.

Entry forms can be accessed on Cognito or at the Music Department.


2020 Organ Scholarship

Calling on expression of interest from students who are interested in applying for the 2020 Organ Scholarship. The scholarship application is open to any student who is currently learning the piano (of approximately 5th Grade standard) and have a desire to learn the organ.  For further information and for a copy of the application form, please access Cognito through the school website.

Applications close on Friday 14 February 2020.

Pauline Chow
Head of Music

Drama News

Drama News

School of Rock:

Please note that the planned theatre excursion to the musical School of Rock for Thursday February 6 (tonight), has been cancelled by the Producers.

The planned excursion to War Horse is going ahead on Thursday February 27 at 7:30pm at The Lyric Theatre. Places are still available and permission forms may be obtained from Mr Eyers.



Students from Year 11 and 12 Academic Drama will attend OnSTAGE – the annual exhibition of practical work from HSC candidates. Students will observe examples of high achieving works to propel them into their 2020 study. This excursion will take place on 10 February.  Ms Rodda and Mr Eyers will accompany the excursion.


Ladies in Black

Auditions are now open!

Ladies in Black- Musical Director

Raised in Busselton, Western Australia, Tim Cunniffe took his first paid gig at age 15 in a local piano bar, before moving to Perth to complete a degree in classical piano at WAAPA, and later studying conducting with Dobbs Franks.

He forged his career in Western Australia, where he is best known as Music Director of more than 30 stage shows, co-creator of more than 80 cabaret shows presented around the world, lecturer in Music Theatre at WAAPA, conductor of the Churchlands Choral Society, and for his long association with His Majesty’s Theatre.

Since relocating to Sydney in 2012, he has continued his classical career, enjoying engagements with the Sydney Philharmonia Choirs, the Sydney Children’s Choir and Gondwana Voices. His recent Music Theatre work includes serving as Assistant Conductor on national tours of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (JAP), The King and I (OA/GFO), Dirty Dancing (GFO), We Will Rock You (GFO), and Jersey Boys (New Theatricals).


I don’t profess to have music as my big wheel and there are a number of other things as important to me apart from music. Theatre and mime, for instance.

David Bowie

Peter Eyers
Head of Drama

Duke of Edinburgh’s Award

Duke of Edinburgh’s Award

The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is back better than ever in 2020!

Although it’s been a long and hazy summer, the SCEGGS Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is back with more excitement, challenge, personal discovery and teamwork on the agenda. We trust all our girls have returned to school refreshed, enthusiastic and motivated, and those that have signed up for the Award are looking forward to some adventure and re-connection with the outdoors.

Mr Swain and I would like to take this opportunity to reassure everyone – students and parents – that we are (obviously) planning all our hikes with safety as the highest priority – especially in regard to bushfires, but also exercising in the outdoor heat and smoke haze. At this stage early in the year, we are putting together our schedule of expeditions for the next six months, but obviously hikes may be postponed at short notice if weather conditions are not conducive to a safe and healthy result. We understand this will occasionally be inconvenient for some students, whose busy schedules limit expedition planning, but we are sure everyone acknowledges that this is the only sensible course.

There will be every effort made by us to accommodate girls that have expeditions rescheduled, and we encourage girls to come and talk to us should this become an issue for them.

For girls in Year 9 embarking on their Bronze Award, the process is to:

  1. Return their permission note (emailed out to them last year, available on request) to Ms Bower.
  2. Via the SCEGGS Cognito page, open the SCEGGS Duke of Edinburgh’s page, and then the NSW Duke of Edinburgh’s Award site, where all the information is available about doing the Award – reading and understanding this thoroughly can save a lot of time and heartache!
  3. Be alert for emails notifying Duke of Edinburgh’s meetings (currently, usually in W5 at lunchtime) – and be sure to attend them so that you are fully informed and can plan your hike with your peers.

For girls continuing on to Silver or Gold, or those completing a Gold Award they started last year, remember to stay on top of your activities, and keep up to date with logging them – and also get those assessor signatures sooner rather than later. If you have questions or difficulties with your award, a quick review of the rules on-line, or a question to Ms Bower (at school or by email) may save hours of wasted effort or missed opportunities.

One example of wasted effort can be the plan to use parents as assessors – rarely allowed by the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award office, and often a cause of heartbreak when girls have tried this in the past, only to be refused. Assessors should be independent of your family, and (from the website): “Assessors must have experience and/or qualifications in the activity chosen by the young person. They must be suitably skilled to assess a Participant’s activity, write a report at the completion of that activity, and sign off the Participant’s records to verify that the Participant has achieved the requirements of The Duke of Ed.” This rule also applies to Expeditions.

Although it sometimes seems the rules and requirements of the Award become more restrictive every year, we still feel that the rewards and benefits are well worth the effort, and trust that we continue to see the energy, enthusiasm and enjoyment that the girls have always shown, again this year.

Ms Joanne Bower and Mr Doric Swain
Duke of Edinburgh Award Co-ordinators


From the Chaplain

From the Chaplain

In Week 3 we celebrate Harvest Festival, where each girl is asked to bring to school at least one non-perishable food item which will eventually be distributed to those in our city whose lives have been affected by misfortune. Two million Australians rely on food relief every year and half of them are children.

These one million children often go to school without breakfast, or to bed without dinner. Unfortunately, this number has only increased in the last few years. This festival recognises all of the good things that we have been given and the opportunity to give to those in need.

With the tragedy of the recent bushfires throughout our country I am sure these numbers would have increased. We continue to pray for those affected and dealing with great loss and trauma. We will continue to consider ways that we as a community may be able to help in the process of restoration.

The Chapel is decorated beautifully with these items and other produce. You are all very welcome to view the Chapel at any time. At the end of the week the food will be given to our local Anglicare office and distributed throughout the south eastern area of Sydney.

Garry Lee-Lindsay
School Chaplain

Visual Arts News

Visual Arts News

Monday Afternoon Drawing Classes                         

Due to such high demand we are pleased to offer two sessions of Drawing on a Monday afternoon. All applicants who nominated Drawing have secured a place and classes are now full. We are thrilled to welcome Babette Robertson as the second tutor for Monday’s Drawing. Babette is an Old Girl from the class of 2014 and is currently completing her master’s degree at the National Art School. She is a dynamic and highly engaged educator also currently working at the Art Gallery of NSW as part of the Kaldor Projects 50 Years Anniversary education program. Students can look forward to a very exciting semester ahead!


SCOPE Magazine

SCOPE Magazine is now in its third year of production. SCOPE is a highly developed in-house publication run by its Chief Editor and founder, Hannah Keir in Year 11. Hannah began the magazine in Year 9, and it has become a quarterly publication with an outstanding reputation for quality writing about the Art World. SCOPE provides significant access and insight into Art practice both at SCEGGS and within the broader Arts Community on a national and international level. Hannah works with a team of writers to put together each issue. If you are interested in joining the editorial team this year, either on an occasional or regular basis, please come to the Art Department for further information.


Heidi Jackson
Head of Visual Arts




If you still wish to sign up for debating, it is not too late! Training and trials will continue in Week 3 for all years, so if you would like to join please email me or come to the training session for your year.

The ISDA Competition begins on Friday 21 February, and the Eastside Competition begins the following week on 28 February. All the times and venues for debates can be found by students on Cognito, or in the letter sent home.

A reminder also to please hand in your debating permission note as soon as possible.


Imogen Harper
Debating Co-ordinator

Air Force Cadets Squadron 306 Information Night

Air Force Cadets Squadron 306 Information Night

Details: Friday 7 February 5-6pm Palladium Theatre, Sydney Grammar School

SCEGGS girls and Grammar boys can join the Air Force Cadets SQN306 from Year 8 and experience Air Force Cadet camps, excursions and parades. On Friday 7 February, AAFC Flying Officer and Grammar History Master Matthew Glozier will host an information night for students and parents, giving an overview of the Squadron and its activities. Student Cadet Non-Commissioned Officers will also speak about their experiences in the Squadron and there will be a Q&A for parents.

Setting the Standard, Leading the Way.

Parents’ and Friends’ Association

Parents’ and Friends’ Association

The SCEGGS P&F Association is delighted to invite the School community to the annual Welcome Cocktail Party.

Tickets are $50 per person and RSVP is required by Monday 17 February.

We hope to see you there!


Thursday 13 February



Lecture Theatre

Lecture Theatre

P&F Committee Meeting

P&F General Meeting with Class Parents


Friday 14 February

7:00am St Peter’s Playhouse

Years 9 and 10 “Father”/Daughter Breakfast



Friday 28 February

6:00pm JFSATC Rooftop Terrace P&F Cocktail Party


Tuesday 10 March

7:00pm Lecture Theatre AGM P&F Association Term I Meeting – all welcome


Year 7 Immunisation Program

Year 7 Immunisation Program

The NSW Ministry of Health offers all school students free vaccinations recommended by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC). These vaccines are important and protect students through to adulthood.

At SCEGGS all Year 7 Students will be offered the following vaccines on the following dates:

  • Visit 1: Wednesday 26 February
  • Visit 2: Friday 6 November


Vaccines administered:

  • Diptheria, Tetanus and Pertussis (whooping cough) vaccine as a booster dose for all students

  • Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine 2 dose course

Further information will be provided in 2020 Parent Information Packs and is also available now in many languages.

A Record of Vaccination Card will be given to the student at the time of each vaccination at each school clinic. Please keep these cards for your records and provide a copy to your local doctor. The School does not keep vaccination records.

If a student is absent for any of the clinics, they will have the opportunity to catch up at the next school visit, or, if you wish, you can organise the catch-up vaccination with your doctor.



Consent Forms

When available, all Year 7 students will receive consent forms for completion. Only return the consent form if you wish your daughter to receive the vaccines.

Please note that the consent forms for Year 7 students will need a parent/guardian signature for each vaccine requested. The nurses will not be able to vaccinate any student if their form is not signed.