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There is much to write about as schools are always a hive of activity. In writing to you now in Week 8, I will focus on the events that have recently taken place and how they have allowed us to continue our theme of ‘creating connections’.

Centenary Fellowship
At Melaleuca’s recent Fellowship, we celebrated our School Centenary and Old Scholar Mrs Marie Potter, aged 93, was our guest speaker. She connected beautifully with our students, describing her time at school, and we understood that while some things have changed dramatically, friendships, as they are today, are integral to school life. The students, staff and Mrs Potter were all delighted to be presented with a Centenary Badge to mark this special milestone.

100 reasons we choose Gippsland Grammar
Continuing the theme of 100, our campus took on the task of listing 100 reasons we choose Gippsland Grammar. We asked students, staff, parents, Old Scholars and community members to contribute to our list from their perspective. 100 reasons were easily achieved, and what was most evident was many of them implied connectedness. To mention a few: community, belonging, friendship, outdoor education, environment, teamwork, faith, giving garden, Fellowships, buddy program, camps, GreenTeam, Service Learning Team and inclusiveness. At Gippsland Grammar, we strive for that positive feeling when connected.

Open Day
Our campus held our Open Day on Saturday and we were pleased to have 16 students support us as we showcased our school with pride and enthusiasm. As current Bairnsdale students and past Bairnsdale students who have moved on to the Garnsey Campus, the students were able to reflect on their opportunities and share their experiences with visiting families. Giving up their Saturday morning for school and communicating with others is a fine example of leadership. I received an email complimenting our students for their approach when touring our families. Thank you, and congratulations to the students.

Regional Swimming
On Thursday March 14, nine students represented our Campus at the Regional Swimming Carnival. All students put in their best effort and should be proud of themselves. A special mention to Juliette Khoo, who placed 2nd in her breaststroke event. The nine students that swam were Juliette Khoo, Logan Dick, Simon Lynch, Dyson Cooper, Alexander Collins, Casper Saik, Sam Snow, Spencer Pearce and Noah Gate. We thank them for their school spirit and determination on the day.

Gallery visit: Annemieke Mein Exhibition
The Year 3-6 Bairnsdale Campus students travelled to the Gippsland Art Gallery in Sale to visit the exhibition Annemieke Mein: A Life’s Work - A Retrospective. The students took a guided tour of the exhibition and participated in workshops. The Year 3 and 4 classes learned a simplified Batik dyeing technique, creating beautiful patterned fabric. The Year 5 and 6 students explored Annemieke’s early patchwork pieces and created their own simplistic fabric collages using heat from an iron, fusing mesh to keep them in one piece. We thank our Art Teacher, Ms Liz McConchie for arranging this enriching opportunity for our students.

‘At the Annemieke Mein art exhibition we looked at her whole life’s work from 1960’s till now! She is a textile artist which means she uses stitches, fabric, stuffing, recycled (donated) materials and tags even. She started art when she was eleven years old and hid it in her maths book since her father was very strict. When we were at the exhibition we saw her work and how it’s changed since she started, her choice of materials and finding her passion for what art she enjoys more. We even saw her first sewing machine to her latest. It was incredible, she has an amazing talent.’
- Lilah Fraser, Year 5 Melaleuca

Our Soiree at St. John’s Anglican church on Thursday night was a wonderful success. Hosted by Blake Maxwell and Simon Lynch, we were entertained beautifully by our students, who had diligently practised their music, allowing them to perform confidently. Mrs Cara Schaefer and her team are committed to our students. We are most grateful for their expertise and support.

Wishing you well for the weekend ahead and the upcoming Easter break.

Virginia Evans

Head of Bairnsdale Campus