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In this issue

Gawura News
Key dates
Message from our Wellbeing Coordinator
Library news
Sports news
What's happening in the Art Space
Heart Mind Life Uniform Awards
Parenting Tips
Philosophy Extension Club
THRASS – Teaching Handwriting Reading and Spelling Skills
Thank you to our volunteers
What's on: upcoming events and activities
Public Speaking research

Gawura News


Last Thursday 18 August several Gawura students attended the regional athletics carnival known as the ASISSA Carnival for selection to participate at the next level which is the state CIS Athletics carnival. We congratulate two of our Gawura students who have made it through to this next amazing level in Athletics. Well done to Anthony Lees who will be participating in the Shot Put and to Annie Bray who will be participating in the 800m. Both of these students have stood out in our school carnival and the ASISSA Carnival and we wish then all the very best at the next elite level at CIS (Combined Independent Schools) Athletics Carnival.

We are very excited to have booked Australia’s renowned Deadly Scientist, Corey Tutt. Corey Tutt (From the Wiradjuri Nation) is the Indigenous author of the children’s book Australia’s First Scientists which has won several awards and received major acclaim nationwide for sharing how Indigenous people used science for over 80,000 years to produce systems of sustainability. Corey and his Deadly Science team will be visiting our school on Wednesday 31 August and giving three presentations to students in K-2, Stage 2 and Stage 3.

We have a number of events happening this term. Please check the dates below.

We wish you an enjoyable and safe fortnight ahead.

Mr John Ralph
Head of Gawura


Key dates

Tuesday 23 August
Madagascar main cast tech day

Wednesday 24 August
Madagascar full dress rehearsal

Thursday 25 and Friday 26 August
JS&G production of
Madagascar – A Musical Adventure Jr.
NIDA Parade Theatre
Matinee 12.30pm / Evening 6.30pm

Saturday 27 August, 11am
OAA Celebrating our Heritage
Chapter House

Monday 29 August – Friday 2 September
Book Week

Monday 29 August 
ICAS Mathematics
Pyjama Day
Round 2 Public Speaking

Tuesday 30 August
Year 1 Chinese Garden excursion
Author Visit – Sami Bayly Years 3-6
Amazing Me – Year 6
Years 2-3 BEBRAS Thinking

Wednesday 31 August 
Author Visit – Corey Tutt, Deadly Science, Years K-6

Wednesday 31 August
Year 4 BEBRAS Thinking

Thursday 1 September
Author Visit – Matt Cosgrove Years K-2
Tumbalong Park Years 1-2

Friday 2 September, 9am
Book Week Character Parade, Cathedral

Friday 2 September 
IPSHA Debating

Monday 5 September
Year 6 CAT 4 Assesment

Tuesday 6 September
Gateways – selected students

Wednesday 7 September
Great Book Swap

Friday 9 September
Year 3 Harbour Bridge Pylon excursion
Year 6 Music concert

Thursday 15 September, 6.30pm
Showcase, Town Hall


Message from our Wellbeing Coordinator


Friendship and belonging

It is not always easy for children to know how to manage friendships. Learning how to make new friends and keep them involves a number of skills we all need to understand and develop. For some these skills will come very naturally, allowing them to easily move between different friendship groups, sharing their experiences and opening up to new people. For others, this can be much harder to navigate. Belonging to a group that is like-minded with similar interests is highly beneficial to a child’s wellbeing. Friendships are full of ups and downs and it is better for kids to learn how to manage and build their own friendships, even though as an adult carer you may be tempted to jump in to help. 

So, how can parents help their children? This SchoolTV link provides parents with answers to many of their questions from Australia’s leading psychologists and parenting experts.  In a couple of minutes they discuss answers to many questions such as:

  • Is it normal to worry about my child’s friends and friendships?
  • Why is belonging and inclusion important for our child’s wellbeing
  • What can we do to encourage belonging and inclusion at home and school?

Why not click in the link and check out what they have to say on this important topic.

As you consider this topic you may be interested to know that within the Junior School and Gawura our students learn friendship skills through the URSTRONG programme during their Social and Emotional Wellbeing lessons. If you would like to access their parenting resources, there is free membership for St Andrew's families. Simply click on this link


Mrs​ Bronwyn Wake
Junior School & Gawura Well‑Being Coordinator


Library news


The Premier's Reading Challenge has now officially closed

Once again, most students in the Junior School have successfully completed the challenge. Congratulations one and all! Certificates are provided by the Premier’s Department and will be presented to students late in Term 4. Students who are due for a Gold or Platinum Certificate will receive those at the beginning of 2023. There have been many moments over the last weeks, as students made a mad dash to the finish line, that we witnessed students reading more and a wider breadth of books than their usual selection. One student in Year 6 spent his afternoon tea holed up with a pile of PRC books, reading and then relaying the plot of each to the library staff. He managed to get through enough books to complete his reading challenge. It was a joy to hear him say how proud he was to have successfully completed the challenge for the first time ever! We invest a whole lot of time and energy into the PRC because we believe it does help more kids to read more books, more widely.

The week after Madagascar, we will be celebrating CBCA Book Week 2022, 29 August – 2 September. 

Aware that many in our school community may be lacking energy and wishing they could just stay home in bed after the mammoth effort that has been the musical, we decided to kick off Book Week with a Pyjama Day, Monday 29 August. Interpreting this year’s theme of 'Dreaming with Eyes Open' as a calming night-time rest on Country, students can come to the library that day to stare at the stars (including the Emu in the Sky), cuddle up to read a book with a soft toy and try to spot Australian animals hidden around the library. During the week, students will enjoy visits from multiple children’s authors. We will round out the week with our annual Book Character Parade in the Cathedral (more information can be found in a letter coming home soon).

Just as we put Book Week behind us, the library will be hosting one more important event - The Great Book Swap - with proceeds going to the work of the Indigenous Literacy Foundation. The Book Swap provides a great opportunity to update your children’s bookshelves. Students can donate books they are no longer reading and then on Wednesday 7 September, bring some gold coins to school to purchase the donations of their peers. We ask that all donations be made by Monday 5 September and that books be in “as new” condition.

More details to follow in the event notices below.
Enjoying the overflow of amazingness that is St Andrew's!

Nicole Cotter
Coordinator Information and Digital Literacy – JS&G


Sports news


ASISSA Athletics

The ASSISA Athletics Carnival took place on Thursday 18 August. With over 40 of our Junior School students attending we competed in a variety of events throughout the day. Every student did their best and displayed St Andrew's Cathedral School pride, courage and persistence throughout their events. We have six students who placed in the top three in their event, which moves them on to the CIS Athletics Carnival on 20 September:

100mtrs: Katia Delic, Ziyra Wilcoxen, Orsen Gavagna

800mtrs: Annie Bray, Manning Gavagna

Shotput: Anthony Lees

Congratulations to all participants!


Miss​ Annique Botta
Junior School Teacher


What's happening in the Art Space


The ANSTA Shorebirds Competition 2022

This competition gave our Year 5 students an opportunity to investigate the habitats, food availability and environmental challenges of some beautiful endangered Shorebirds around our coastlines: Red capped Plovers, Golden Plovers, Far Eastern Curlews, Oyster Catchers, Stints, Rudddy Turnstones.  

The following six pithy competition posters were created by Clementine C, Leon H, Anneke H, Marcus L, Rafferty M and Meera J.


Young Andrean Artist of the Year Competition 2022

Don’t forget to keep working on your Young Andrean Artist 2022 piece! The competition theme is EGYPT – to celebrate the 100 year anniversary of the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb in the Valley of the Kings. Create your own extraordinary art marvel to mark this significant event!


The Andrean Artist Workshop

The Andrean enrichment fine arts workshop took place on the school campus last week and was a wonderful day full or creativity and productivity. Miss Zucker hosted the programme along with two visiting fine arts tutors to support the students as they pursued their independent projects. The workshop created a unique opportunity for a select group of students who had shown interest and commitment to exploring the Visual Arts, to spend an entire day in a studio environment making new work in response to the Andrean Prize. Students responded to the theme “Mysteries of Egypt Revealed” using a range of unique materials; some students painted on canvas, papyrus paper or fabric, others combined materials such as acrylics and embroidery, printmaking and collage, and still others used digital methods to construct their ideas. We are very proud of the students who engaged in this programme and we look forward to seeing the finished artworks when they are submitted in the first week of Term 4.


Looking for a family exhibition to visit?

  • The Young Archie Portrait Competition
    Art Gallery of NSW, Until 24 August 2022
  • Wildlife Photographer of the Year
    Australian National Maritime Museum, Darling Harbour, Until 5 Mar 2023

Mrs​ Miriam Daly
Visual Arts Integrator JS&G


Heart Mind Life Uniform Awards



Click here for the latest Heart, Mind, Life & Uniform awards.


Parenting Tips


Developing a Growth Mindset

Michael Grose wrote an excellent blog on this topic in February 2017. I have to say that it is one of my favourite areas of learning. Michael says that one of the most exciting developments in recent years is that our brains are able to grow and develop constantly rather than reaching a limit and then “going downhill" from there... which is good news for those of us a little older than others! It’s called brain plasticity. I have enjoyed researching the work of Barbara Arrowsmith-Young on this topic. She, herself, has been able to use this development on her own journey. Michael continues “It’s exciting to know that your child’s talent and smarts are not fixed. Their brains can always learn more, continue to grow and be stretched. This doesn’t mean that your child doesn’t have a propensity to be smart in certain areas such as maths or language learning or that all talent is created equal. Genetics gifts us with certain abilities that are either developed or they’re not. Instead, your child’s abilities and talents, just like yours, are evolving over time.”

It is important then to develop a growth mindset in our children. Growth mindset thinking involves:

  • I can learn anything I want to.
  • I learn from my failures.
  • I want to challenge myself.
  • Feedback is very helpful for me to move forward.
  • I keep going even though I'm frustrated at the moment.
  • My effort and attitude determine my way forward.

Another of my favourite researchers and authors is Carol Dweck. In one of her books, The New Psychology of Success, she states that she “believes that a growth mindset is the quality that separates those who succeed from those who don’t”. Her research is very relevant for teachers and parents alike, I believe, as it reveals “how the use of language when praising children can have a profound impact on their attitudes. Subtle differences in tone, wording and phrasing can lead even a child at two-and-a-half to have self-limiting beliefs when he or she started school a few years later.”

We have been learning about feedback as a staff this year and some of the studies have been fascinating, particularly where praise and feedback come together. It is suggested that we separate praise and feedback and this article tends to support that thinking. Some of the above thoughts are also reflected in our SEW lessons this term, where we are looking at two ways of thinking about situations – positively or negatively, and the flow on effect of that thinking mindset.

Michael Grose gives these simple strategies to think about with promoting a positive mindset:

1. Don’t overpraise
The problem with praising intelligence and ability is that it leads to fixed mindset development. Children believe that their success is reliant on their ability or talent, rather than their effort or attitude, so to be respected and recognised as successful they become risk-adverse. Far better to achieve some success no matter how meagre, than risk failure and being seen as dumb, stupid or a failure.

2.  Praise effort, strategy and action, not results
Focus more on the processes of what children do rather than results to develop a growth mindset. Children need to hear comments such as: “You worked hard to get that right!” (effort); “That was a smart idea to tackle the hardest task while you were fresh!” (strategy); and “You recognised the first few steps were the most important but then after that you were right” (action).

3.  Look for opportunities to stretch your child’s capabilities
Encourage children to stretch their capabilities by adding depth and breadth to their list of activities.

4. Give honest feedback
Providing your child with honest feedback about their performance helps them improve. We often shy away from giving feedback for fear of harming children’s self-esteem. For instance, focusing on two or three things they do well before giving constructive feedback is one way you can keep a young learner’s head up while giving pointers about better performance.”

A great article that is well worth the read!


Joy Rohrlach
Year 5 Leader


Philosophy Extension Club


"Love of wisdom"

Philosophy Club is an excellent extension co-curricular opportunity for Years K-2 high ability students. This discussion based co-curricular group provides introduction to the world of philosophy and ethics. In the club students are challenged to think like philosophers. A philosopher asks questions about how humans behave and the way the world works.

The Greek origin of philosophy is 'love of wisdom'. It is important to understand the difference between knowledge and wisdom. Some questions have a right and wrong answer. But other questions do not have one solution. A philosopher will ponder the different possibilities and options to reach a wise answer.

Consider these questions:

  • Which is powerful, love or hate?
  • Are all humans good or evil?
  • What is beautiful?
  • Do you have to see, hear, or touch something to believe it exists?

These questions do not have a right or wrong answer. But a wise opinion or response can be found by pondering the different possibilities and thinking about real world applications.

At the beginning of the term students reflected on the following questions:

  • Why are some of the things that people say or do not the truth?
  • What is the truth and what is imaginary?
  • Does knowing the truth make you wise?
  • What does the Greek word for philosophy mean?
  • Why do we need philosophy?

For the rest of the term the vehicle for philosophical discussion has been a range of picture books written by Anthony Brown. Into The Forest provided opportunity for pondering the difference between right and wrong. This story is an adaptation of the fairy tale of Little Red Riding Hood. In the story the protagonist was tempted to give away a cake for some starving children. But his mother had given him clear instructions that the cake had been cooked for his grandmother. Students reflected on whether it was right for the protagonist to disobey his mother’s instructions if he was doing it for the right reason.


Mrs Emma Clemens
Gifted and Talented Coordinator JS&G


THRASS – Teaching Handwriting Reading and Spelling Skills


Parent information session

What is THRASS all about?

Parents of Junior School and Gawura students K – 6, are invited to attend an information session about the THRASS framework and how you can best support a child learning to read, write and spell.

Who will be sharing?

The Principal and Founder of THRASS: Denyse Ritchie, Honorary Chair of Literacy and Fellow Murdoch University WA, Perth.

We will discuss:

  • What is THRASS?
  • Explicit phonics discussion.
  • The relationship between reading and writing and spelling.
  • How can I help at home?

Wednesday 7 September, 2pm-3pm
Junior School Level 7


Thank you to our volunteers


Our Senior College support team of volunteers

There is an amazing group of St Andrew's Cathedral School parents and friends who contribute behind the scenes as volunteer readers and writers at the school for our Senior College exams and assessments, and for the past two weeks they have been out in force supporting our Year 12 students through their HSC Trials – many of them volunteering over many days, each one of them volunteering their precious time as well as stepping in at a time of emergency. We are extremely fortunate to have this very special group of parents and friends to call on throughout the year to support our students with their exams and assessments.  

Thank you to the following parents and friends for their great support in the recent HSC Trials – we could not have done it without you!:

Bronwyn Butler, Sarah Cairns, Helen Carson, Mae Leen Choe, Julie Ann Coulton, Sally De Barros, Karen Ericksen , David Gosling, Tan Kueh, Rochelle Le Pine, Ellie Luff, Amy, Marsden, Narelle Monaghan, Nicole Overton. Christian Patterson, Jane Randall, Virginia Rowlands, Sarah Scholl, Wim Steemers, William Sullivan, Lisa Williams.

If you would like to become part of the team and make a difference, please contact Annie Grennell at We would love to hear from you.


What's on: upcoming events and activities


This Thursday and Friday. Buy your tickets today!

Book your tickets to see St Andrew’s Cathedral School production of Dreamworks’ Madagascar – A Musical Adventure Jr.

Our Years 3-6 Junior School and Gawura students are excited to bring to life the adventures of zoo friends Marty, Alex, Gloria and Melman and their friends in this fun-filled musical story that highlights the value of friendship.

This all-ages production delivers plenty of colour, toe-tapping tunes and comic antics that will bring joy to all the family. Click the link below for performance times and to book your tickets through Ticketek today!

Thursday 25 – Friday 26 August
NIDA Parade Theatre


Book tickets here


Thank you to our Madagascar - A Musical Adventure Jr sponsors

Madagascar - King Julien sponsors:


Madagascar - Alex,Marty, Melman and Gloria sponsors:


Madagascar - The Penguins sponsors:


Join us at St Andrew's in celebrating our heritage

St Andrew’s Cathedral School warmly invites you to attend the inaugural Alumni and Archive Day: Celebrating our Heritage.

Located in the beautifully restored Chapter House, we will display some of our treasured memories from the last 137 years. You will also have the opportunity to tours the School. We welcome all donations for our archives but should you have some cherished items that you don’t want to part with, please bring them in and we can photograph or scan them.

Join us in celebrating our heritage and share your stories of the School.

Saturday 27 August
Display from 11am-2.30pm in Chapter House.
Tours: 11.30am and 1pm.

Free entry


RSVP here


Book Week is coming 29 August – 2 September

The 2022 CBCA Book Week theme is "Dreaming with eyes open". Join us in the Junior School and Gawura Library for a week-long celebration of all things books.

  • Monday 29 August: Pyjama Day - enjoy the night sky and bring your torch to spot the Australian animals hiding in the library as we dream with eyes open.
  • Tuesday 30 August: Author visit for students in Years 3-6 with Sami Bayly.
  • Wednesday 31 August: Author visit for students Years K-6 with Corey Tutt.
  • Thursday 1 September: Author visit for students in Years K-2 with Matt Cosgrove.
  • Friday 2 September: Book Character Parade 9am-10am - come dressed as your favourite book character. Parents are welcome to join in the creativity and fun in the Cathedral.
  • Every day: Join us in the library every lunchtime for Book Week themed activities, games, arts and crafts.


Book Week
29 August – 2 September
JS&G Library


The Uniform Shop is having a second hand uniform sale

Second hand uniform sale in the square
Monday 5 September, 7.30am-9am
Sydney Square


Coffee in Chapter House – Year 4 parents

All Year 4 parents are warmly invited to join us for Coffee in Chapter House to meet other parents, key Junior School staff and the P&F.

Monday, 5 September 2022, 8am to 9am
Chapter House

RSVP by Wednesday 31 August


Book here


Why literacy expertise is vital in the early years

This online event is for friends or relations of current families who may be looking at enrolling their children in 2023 or 2024.

Wednesday 7 September, 5pm-6pm
Chapter House


More information


Join St Andrew's and support Indigenous Literacy Day

The Junior School Library invites you to join them for this year’s Great Book Swap in supporting Indigenous Literacy Day. The money raised will go towards helping publish more literature in First Nation languages as well as providing resources to support literacy in remote communities. The idea is to swap a favourite book in exchange for a gold coin donation.

Please donate your good quality second-hand books to the Junior School Library up until Monday 5 September.

Wednesday 7 September
Junior School Library

Students can purchase books for a gold coin donation.


P&F Father's Day Festivities

Calling all fun-loving fathers, daggy dads, urbane uncles.
Come and join the P&F at the Daddy of all SACS events – P&F Fathers’ Day Festivities on the rooftop.

There will be craft beer, televised live sports, pub games and gourmet pizzas. Join us and catch up on the rooftop for your Friday night drinks with other SACS male carers.

Friday 9 September, 6.30pm to 9pm
SAH Rooftop
Cost: $50


Book here


Guest speaker – Melinda Tankard Reist, Too Much Too Young

St Andrew's is committed to engaging with our students and partnering with the School community on important topics such as respectful relationships. We partner with external experts to educate the students, empower our parents, and equip our staff with relevant and current information about these challenging and serious issues. This term our wellbeing programme at St Andrew's Cathedral School is focused on building capacity in students to develop respectful relationships.

Sexualised imagery is ever present in the lives of our young people, and this impacts their ability to develop self-confidence and healthy relationships. Our next guest speaker, Melinda Tankard Reist, will address this issue head on when she speaks with our School community including students in Years 8, 9, and 11, and our staff and parents. Students in these year groups will be engaging with this topic in their tutorial groups prior to the seminar and then debrief together through guided peer discussion about the key themes presented in more detail. Our pastoral staff will be on hand to support our students and be part of this important and ongoing conversation.

Parents are invited to hear Melinda speak on Wednesday 14 September in the Chapter House at 5:30pm. Given the importance of this issue, the School strongly encourages all parents to attend. Parents can register for the event by clicking the grey box below.

Wednesday 14 September, 5.30pm
Chapter House

Mr Derek Champion
Head of Wellbeing and Character, Head of Hereford House


Parents register here


2022 Showcase tickets go on sale this Wednesday at 9am

Join us in the magnificent Sydney Town Hall for our annual Showcase of music ensembles, our Year 7 music programme, and Year 12 soloists.

This year's theme is RISE UP and the concert will be an exploration of the power of music to uplift and renew, and a celebration of the resilience and creativity of our students who can't wait to share their music with audiences again, following our last Showcase Concert in June 2021.

Audience ticket prices:

  • Adult: $45
  • Child: $30
  • Family (2 A, 2 C): $120

(SACS and Gawura students who are performing at the concert will not be required to buy a ticket.)

Thursday 15 September, 7pm
Sydney Town Hall

Ticket sales will open Wednesday 24 August at 9am.


Book here


Join us for our annual Choir Sunday Reunion Service

All choristers, former choristers, choral scholars, lay clerks and their families are welcome to join us for the 10.30am Sunday Service in the Cathedral, followed by refreshments at 12pm in the Chapter House.

If you would like to sing with the choir during the Sunday Service, a rehearsal will be held Sunday 18 September at 9:30am before the service. Music will be distributed in advance.

For enquiries and/or booking assistance please contact Ross Cobb, Director, Alumni & Community Engagement Coordinator at or call 02 9286 9661.

Sunday 18 September
9.30am for 10.30am service

St Andrew’s Cathedral, Sydney

Please RSVP by Friday, 9 September


RSVP here


Trivia Night – Save the date!

Save the night for this year’s parent trivia night. Always a highlight, trivia night this year will again be an action packed, side splitting evening of fun, entertainment, games, dressing up – and of course trivia.

Bookings will open soon. Book early so you have your choice of the Musical Mayhem theme.

Saturday 15 October, 6pm
Heath Centre, SAH

Bookings open soon.


Entries close Monday 17 October


To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the discovery of Pharaoh Tutankhamen’s tomb, this year’s Andrean of the Year theme is 'Egypt'.

Click here for 2022 entry details and winners from past competitions.

Mr Brad Swibel
Deputy Head of School (Secondary)


Public Speaking research


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