Secondary Matters - 2022 Term 1 Week 2

Friday, 04 Feb 2022
2021 World Prepared Valedictorians

71 Valedictorians have entered the workforce or further training this year from Year 12. We are extremely proud of their grit and determination to work through their last two years of schooling, their families support and the expertise of their HSC teachers and the wellbeing teams, especially Mr Close and his Tutor staff. The HSC exams were completed very late in December last year and their results were published in late January. I hope you see some familiar names below in some of the success stories that were the Class of 2021 and can congratulate them if you see them around the community.

You can read the full HSC results here 

We also rely on families and BDC Alumni letting us know about ATAR results and scholarships, as these do not get shared with the school. If there is other scholarships/ATAR to add, please let Mr Close know so this week so that we can add it to our summary.

There are an enormous selection of positive and high achievers from the Class of 2021. The number of apprenticeships alone are a testament to the BDC Way and what employers are looking for in a young adult. As university commences over the next few weeks, if there is a Year 13 student from the Class of 2021 who still has a few questions about further studies they should still contact Mrs Gina Driscoll our Careers Pathways Coach 

Congratulations to our new BDC Alumni and we look forward to hearing from you in the years to come.

For all your 2022 HSC questions, please contact Mr Craig Verbruggen our Director of Learning and Teaching 

Shirts Printed for our Goori students

The College would like to acknowledge Toni-Anne Hart, our local Gumbaynggirr artist  BARRWAYA GUMBAYNGGIRR NATION who has created the Bishop Druitt College Goori Shirts. Thank you from the Bishop Druitt College team and our Goori students looked amazing in them this week.

New staff 

We welcome the following new staff to the secondary campus, please make them feel welcome:

  • Nicole Hogan -Chaplain
  • Fiona Harris Head of Faculty Science
  • Kevin Flanagan Mathematics
  • Tia Lang Sport Assistant (Class of 2020)
  • Connor McMillan Sport Assistant (Class of 2020)
  • Holly Donovan, Ryan Parsons, Mark Scholten - LRC
  • Kate Freeman - Performing Arts

Congratulations to staff member Mrs Michelle Santilli and Peter on the birth of their son recently. An amazing special way to start 2022, congratulations from the college.

We wish Mr Paul McCormack Head of Faculty -Science well in his retirement. After 10 years service, leadership and expertise in any science lab to the college we are sure he has many more adventures planned. Thank you.

Year 7

Year Coordinator - Mr Terry Close

Year 7 have received a warm welcome (remember Monday to Wednesday!), and have an excitement about whatever it is they are about to complete. Their Tutor and Peers Support teams from Year 10 have completed a number of activities and games to get to know names, the Tutor group and how to get around the campus. Their first sport on Tuesday was a hugh success, even with the heat. The use of the new locker lock seems to be no worries for most. 

Year 7 Camp Year 7 will be heading off to camp on Monday 14th February. Please be here by 7.45am and complete the forms as shared by Mrs Beth Hilton ASAP. Year 7 do not attend school on Friday 18th February as part of the experience. It is a time to reflect, energise, share stories of camp and help mum or dad before returning to school on Monday.

Thank you to those parents who could attend the information evening and we hope Year 7 continues to enjoy their first weeks into high school.

Year 8 

Year Coordinator - Mrs Meegan Bruggemann 

Year 8 and Year 7 have been making their Kaizen course selections and these should be finalised early next week. This is a very popular elective program for Years 5 to 8. They will also complete a pastoral day in Week 4 while Year 7 are in camp. Thank you to Year 8 who have made a quick settling in for 2022 this week.

Year 9 

Year Coordinator - Mrs Katie Gudgeon 

World Options have become a key learning focus in Year 9 and 10 where students engage with their passions, interests and challenges. Accelerated Mathematics has also begun and Year 9 have now moved to our Green Room, closer to the canteen!

Year 10

Year Coordinator - Mr Troy Sodeau 

A range of accelerated courses commenced in Year 10. Accelerated Mathematics continues, Studies of Religion II and Business Studies commence. This means students in these courses will be completing Year 11 in 2022 and the HSC in 2023 for these courses. In the coming weeks Year 10 will also start to discuss careers, pathways and work experience. Year 10 is as their first year as a senior is preparing for life into Year 11 and Year 12, especially in Term 3.

Year 10 Camp: Camp was transferred from last year and now Year 10 will be on camp from the 21st February. Year 10 spend Friday 25th February at home, the day after camp and return on Monday the 28th, rested and completing this rite of passage. 

Year 11

Year Coordinator - Mrs Rebecca Brown 

Year 11 courses have commenced and the excitement of starting preliminary work for the first time or for some starting an accelerated HSC course, the energy is very obvious. The workload and quality required from here requires a consistent application far more than in Year 10. If a Year 11 student tells you they have no school work to do, I doubt this is 100% accurate. Making course notes with the syllabus, preparing a major work, rehearsing a performance, reading ahead or studying after school in the library are all real options now as they head towards their future pathway. We are often asked about part time work. We believe part time work is a very positive part of becoming a young adult. A recommendation of 2-3 four hours shifts maximum a week when their study is going well or there are few assessments. But once it starts to get busy changing to one shift a week is preferred. Year 11 now have three short terms before they commence the final leg of their HSC.

Year 12

Year Coordinator - Mr Joel Blythe 

I encourage you to sit down with your HSC student and read over the legacy of last year's HSC students. Ask them to tell you, where do they see themself in the Class of 2022 story? Is in an extension course, major works, heading into an apprenticeship or applying for university? Just keeping the idea alive of their future self is a positive way when they may not be sure what they are doing next year. Mrs Gina Driscoll will be completing individual pathway meetings soon with Year 12. However, please feel free to contact her at anytime. All HSC students should be settled and working with their teachers to complete the next part of their course. Time will move quickly. It is working away at assessment tasks from when they receive them, not the night before that will really assist them with their academic progress. We wish Year 12 the best for their final year at school.

iHUB and Senior Study Centre

A massive refurbishment has occurred in the old school library, now the iHUB or information hub. The iHUB is our focus for reading, learning commons, research, tutorials, senior study (then STEM) and IT have been relocated to this facility. We thank Year 12 for their patience that it was not unfortunately ready at the start of the year. Like the rest of the country delays in materials and some depleted contractor teams due to COVID resulted in the delay for Phase 1. Phase 1 is almost complete and some Phase two areas are now underway. This resulted in the senior study area opening this week. Thank you to the many contractors and businesses (a number of parents) involved in this project for working long hours under difficult conditions to keep the work flowing. We expect the rest of the iHUB to be open next week. However, some furniture items are still coming due to delays. It already looks fantastic and we believe it should be finished in Term 2 (although in use from next week). Another unique change is that each zone within the iHUB will be named after one of our House Patrons. Our library team have worked tirelessly from last year moving, reviewing books and now refitting the iHUB and with our grounds team have taken on a major workload and their normal day to day school activities. We look forward to inviting parents when it is officially opened in June.

Our new Senior Study Centre is a 2022 strategic development which will result in a new study centre above the pond and next to the current Year 12 Common Room. It will feature a range of areas to study in, meeting spaces, staff room, kitchenette and a unique young adult environment to assist our senior preparation and direct assistance by staff in the same facility. The aim is to have this completed for the Trial HSC. Once this is completed the current senior study in the iHUB will become a focus for STEM in the college.

Senior study Rules Year 11 and Year 12

We have included the senior study guidelines in this email letter as well. At this time of year please sit down and discuss these with your son or daughter. When we use study periods well, it will save us time at home. At school the resources and staff that are available are invaluable. Study periods are for designated learning, individual or at times small group work. They must be in the correct place and of course do enjoy the privileges of being able to visit the canteen or using music with Airpods. There are no pass outs (you cannot return in the same day), if they have your permission to leave early, it is to go home for study and then return the next day. Fast food cannot be ordered or purchased by and returned back to the school. Driving often becomes an option at these ages and we ask all drivers to the college to drive respectfully, slowly and park correctly in the appropriate areas at all times.These are usually seen as common sense. However, it is timely to discuss the guide with your son or daughter at this time of year.

COVID19 Update

It is just part of what we do now. After the new year, most of us are used to the requirements. Year 7 have been fantastic wearing masks inside this week. It is our expectation that all students unless exempt to bring and wear their mask into class. Please ask your child to take a mask with them each day. Masks are available from Year Coordinators when an extra is needed or one breaks. Thank you for your support on this matter.

The issuing of rapid tests has been explained through emails and letters home. Once again thank you for completing the tests and letting us know when someone tests positive. We believe at this stage this will only be supplied to schools for 3-4 weeks according to government announcements.

COVID19 Isolation and School

Due to the current environment and its placing additional challenges on families and staff, we expect there will be disruptions to school life for some students and staff over the coming weeks. The school will endeavour to proceed where possible with normal timetable classes while following the recommended COVID safe practises and in the unlikely event that an extensive outbreak occurs, remote learning may become a possibility.

Under the current NSW Health requirements, if a student tests positive to COVID or is a household contact of a positive case they must isolate at home for 7 days. We recommend if they are unwell please allow your child to rest and seek medical treatment as required. Your child’s wellbeing will always be the first priority to the school.

In the event of any unplanned disruption to your child’s learning due to COVID, or isolation, we recommend the below: 

  • Log your child’s absence via Parent Lounge and advise in the comment field the reason for sick leave and their possible return date.
  • Email the Year Coordinator to notify them of your child’s wellbeing so they may check up on them if needed.
  • Students (only if they are well) can continue to work through their course work on Schoolbox (Years 7-10) or Google classroom (Year 11-12). For Schoolbox login support please email
  • Students can email a subject teacher for specific support if they require it. Please note: staff could be absent due to illness and this may delay return emails for some time.
  • Students in Years 10, 11 and 12 are required to follow the assessment guidelines at all times and will be required to submit Special Consideration or Illness Misadventure forms if they were to miss an assessment task. This is in accordance with the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) guidelines.

We understand this could be a particularly stressful time for students. It’s perfectly normal for students to feel anxious or unsettled when there is a change or a worldwide event such as COVID-19. Staff will assist students on their return if they have missed classwork. 

 If students are feeling anxious, upset, or worried they should:

  • talk to their parents/carers,
  • contact their Tutor teacher
  • contact their subject teachers
  • touch base with their Year Coordinator/ 

If further wellbeing support is required, please don’t hesitate to reach out to the Year Coordinator or our Director of Student Wellbeing, Sue O’Connor – or for specific curriculum support Mr Craig Verbruggen Director of Learning and Teaching.

The swimming carnival is almost here, Year 7 have completed their orientations, 200+ new students in the college, camps are about to start, iHUB almost complete, our classes have begun, school photographs complete, the 2021 HSC results are fantastic and parents have been allowed to return to school. A great way to start 2022, I hope you also look forward to the rest of the year as part of our community.

Simon Doyle
Assistant Principal (Head of Secondary)