No. 11, November 22, 2007
Retirement of Dal McGuirk
After 19 years of service at Western Springs College Dal McGuirk will commence a most deserved retirement at the end of the term.
Dal was appointed as Seddon High School’s transition education teacher in 1989. He was subsequently promoted ( in 1997 ) to the position of head of transition education at Western Springs College. By this time Dal had become widely recognised in the educational community as an expert in his field, much to the benefit of our students whose transition to further education, training and employment was facilitated by his able coordination.
In 2001 Dal relinquished his role in careers and transition education to take up an appointment as the school’s international students’ director. Under his direction there has been a steady growth in the numbers of international students. Dal has achieved particular success recruiting students in the European market, with the result that German, and more latterly, Italian students, along with their Asian counterparts, have become a regular feature of campus life at Springs.
Dal has taken pride in the quality of pastoral care provided by the international staff at Springs, acknowledged in successive reviews of international students’ education by the Education Review Office in 2004 and 2007.
We all wish Dal a fulfilling retirement.
Top Academic Awards for 2007
Last week at the senior prizegiving ceremony Hannah Clark was announced as the Western Springs College dux; the runner-up award went to Kate Peirse O’Byrne. Both Hannah and Kate also received highly coveted University of Auckland Scholarships.
It is appropriate to pay a tribute to these two outstanding student leaders.
Hannah’s academic stature is underlined by her achievement last year as a year 12 student in gaining an NZQA English Scholarship in the Outstanding Performance category. She recently attained an A-level pass for her English course under the auspices of the Young Scholar’ Programme at the University of Auckland.
Hannah has served as a student representative on the WSC Board of Trustees and leader of the Student Council. Her contributions to school life also include participation at the highest level in debating and writing for the WSC Mathematics publication, Maths Uncensored.
Kate is an exceptionally fine student. Like Hannah, she is within reach of a Level 3 NCEA Certificate with Excellence. She also gained an A-level pass in English at the University of Auckland this year. Recently, Kate gained Distinction in her Grade 8 piano exams. She was the lead speaker in the Springs debating team which won the Auckland Senior Championship in 2005.
Kate has been a wonderful academic student leader. She has selflessly given her time to assisting year 9 students as a leader of the Peer Support and Peer Reading programmes, and as a tutor of year 10 French students. She has coached a junior debating team, coordinated a year 9 Mathex Quiz team and presented an English workshop for visiting intermediate students.
Hannah and Kate have both made a truly outstanding contribution to Springs!
English Department News
School Writing Competition Winners:
Congratulations to Zarah Butcher-McGunnigle for gaining third place in the Sunday Star Times Short Story competition. This national competition is very competitive and it is a tribute to Zarah's talent that she gained third place.
News from the Mathematics Department
We are pleased to announce that Maths Uncensored 2007 has now been published and will be available from the 21st of November. Hannah Cleverly and her team did a fabulous job, providing us with yet another great read. The range of articles, cartoons, puzzles and interesting facts are bound to appeal to a large audience.
I have included a snippet from Helen McLean’s article on the Monty Hall problem:
“Some of you will still be shaking your heads and saying I am wrong, and let me assure you, you are not alone. Many a maths professor has been stumped by this problem including a Dr. Robert Sachs who apparently got quite aggressive but later said, “After removing my foot from my mouth I’m now eating humble pie. It has been an intense professional embarrassment.” So there you go, now if you are ever in the situation of choosing between a car and a goat, you know what to do… unless of course you like goats!”
As has become the tradition at Springs, the junior gifted and talented students will yet again be presenting their work at the Mathematics Evening scheduled for Friday, 23 November. Students have been working on projects from three main areas:
Mathematics and Alcohol
Mathematics and Nature
Designing and building a dolls house/toy garage
Specific topics include Tsunamis, Fibonacci, Animal mechanics, Calories and Snails.
Dolls houses and toy garages will be auctioned at the event and proceeds donated to the Child Cancer Foundation.
Everybody is hard at work to yet again secure a successful evening for all involved.
With exam week fast approaching, staff will be making every effort to prepare students through regular revision. It is imperative that parents/caregivers support their students by encouraging them to complete all the scheduled work on a daily basis.
Science and Social Studies News
Year 10 Field Trip.
On Friday the 16th November, our Year 10 Geologists braved the unfavourable weather on a field trip to some of the Auckland’s volcanic features.
Firstly, we went to Mangere Mountain where two archaeologists took us on a hiking tour of the mountain and explained the different features, including kumara pits and sculptures.
We then bused across town to Tahaki Reseve in Mt Eden. We hiked up the reserve where David Okey explained the rock composition to the students and pointed out the Basalt columns behind the Auckland Grammar School hockey turf which was quarried and used to build the Mt Eden prison.
After that we stopped at Savage Memorial for lunch before heading back to school. We had intended to visit Orakei Basin to see the water-filled crater and the scarf on the tuff ring due to sliding land, as well as to Judges Bay to inspect the Waitemata sandstone layers, but the weather was too inclement.
Though it was windy and showery, our students made us proud by not complaining and making the most of the EOTC experience. They completed worksheets and booklets as part of the report on the field trip. We would like to thank the staff for their support and sense of humour throughout the trip. We look forward to running this again next year.
Geraldine Victor and Sharda Patel
Congratulations to all students who participated in the 2007 Asia-Wise competition.
Once again all year 9 and 10 Rumaki students took part through the encouragement of their teacher Tere Tamarua.
Commendable results included the following:
Distinction (86% - 92%) Zoe Butcher McGunnigle Lewis Purdon
High Distinction (above 92%) Zoe Dunster
Ariella Balmforth was one of the top 1% of all students who achieved a score of 97% or more. Out of 18,000 participants there were only 172 students from throughout Australia and New Zealand who achieved this score.
I hope all students enjoyed the Asia- Wise experience and that more students will be encouraged to participate next year.
On behalf of the sports department I would like to thank everyone who helped make the 2007 Western Springs College sports year a great success. Students keep up the good work. As I said at the Sports Dinner, “It’s not what you have but what you give that makes the difference.”
|The Seddon Memorial Technical College Cup - Junior Boys Swimming
|Intermediate Girls Swimming
|Intermediate Boys Swimming
|The Dearsley Cup - Senior Girls Swimming
|The Burt Cup - Senior Boys Swimming
|Stallworthy Cup - Junior Girls Athletics
|Magee Cup - Junior Boys Athletics
||Amokura Heather Kingi
|Baillie Cup - Intermediate Girls Athletics
|Western Springs Cup - Intermediate Boys Athletics
|Hindley Cup - Senior Girls Athletics
|Chairmans Cup - Senior Boys Athletics
|Tennis Champion - Girls Singles
|Most Outstanding Player - Tennis
|Most Outstanding Player - Cricket
|Player of the Year - Senior Girls Soccer
|Player of the Year - Soccer
|Most Improved Player - Hockey
|Most Consistent Player - Hockey
|Best All rounder - Hockey
|Sports Excellence - Lacrosse
|Most Outstanding Player - Netball
|Most Outstanding Player - Girls Basketball
|Alpha Omega Cup - Boys Basketball
|Peter Walters Trophy - Touch
|Most Outstanding Player - Touch
|Stacey Jones Cup - Rugby League
|Old Boys Cup - Rugby
|Sports Excellence - Cheerleading
||Sports Excellence - Cheerleading
|Principals Award - Junior Sports Excellence
|Western Springs College Sports Challenge
|Ellis Cup - Most Promising Athlete
|Auckland Under Water Hockey
|Western Springs College Scarfie Trophy
|Sports Excellence - Synchronised Swimming
|Most Outstanding Player - Under Water Hockey
|Te Whai Tihi Award
|Coach of the Year
|Team of the Year
||Senior Boys Water Polo
|Pare McIntyre Memoriol Cup Hakinakina
Congratulations to the students whose work was displayed and presented in the TAPAC foyer as part of the Junior Art festival. The high level creative energy this year, reflects the diverse programmes and students enjoyment and pride in their collective and individual achievements. In particular, the striking Year 10 canvas works for Te Ahurea, the inventive Year 9 relief Punga creatures and Portraiture units, the painting studies ranging from the Cubist masters to Rosenquist.
It is also the last opportunity to remind parents and caregivers of Year 10 students about the Art fees that are still outstanding. The half year fee is $20.00 and the full year fee is $25.00. We appreciate and thank all families for their contributions as it is a vital support for the materials and resources that we are able to offer the students throughout the year.
Lastly, a happy and safe holidays for all students and a tearful bon voyage to Lisa Jagusch, Toni Mackinnon and Ashra Clement. The Junior students have been incredibly fortunate to have had such dynamic, caring and innovative experts leading them through a range of challenging Art experiences. We wish them all the best with their future endeavours and look forward to the new and exciting developments of next year’s programmes and personnel.
Final GAT (Gifted & Talented) Report of 2007
What we have achieved so far at WSC is summarised in this chart.
The GAT committee feel confident that we are ahead of many schools in our GAT programmes which are mostly operating without the need for withdrawal groups.
The Year 9 and 10 Philosophy options have been very successful and the students enjoy the discussion-based programme. Unfortunately, the desire to follow other options can exclude students from this pathway.
The X-Curricular topic was Chaos v Order and the groups began with a lot of enthusiasm, but lost impetus as the year progressed due to other commitments and a genuine desire to not miss classes. The students are also involved in many other GAT programmes.
A GAT tracking sheet is underway to follow the progress of these students during their years at WSC. The 2007 Yearbook also contains an article about three of our original GAT students experiences during five years at WSC.
There has been serious success in music performance for WSC students recently.
Firstly, Kate Peirse-O’Byrne achieved a distinction pass for grade 8 piano – an absolutely outstanding result!
Next Harry Peirse achieved a distinction pass for his grade 5 jazz piano exam – also a fantastic result.
Congratulations to the two students who have gained entry to Auckland University’s music performance programme – Harry Peirse in piano and Bernice Austin (yr 13 2006) in voice. Competition for places in this course is fierce so well done to these students and we look forward to being invited to many recitals.