Week 8, Term 4 2022


The internet site finder

How the world has changed for many of us parents and educators. I began teaching in 1987 – a time where the gestetner reigned supreme – and chalk was still the teachers’ tool of choice. We then morphed into overhead projectors, followed by the use of photocopiers (only under supervision of course) – and then the internet in the early 2000s. I still remember my first attempt at using the internet (well before we had computers) where I felt like I was going down a black hole of information from where there would be no return. There was no index, no structure and all I wanted to do was get back to the starting page. I was so concerned; I went out and bought a book titled ‘the internet site finder’ (see below) where you could look up ‘great’ sites to get information and more – all of 400,000 sites at the time. Of interest, in 2022 it is estimated that there are 1.98 billion websites (and likely many more as you read this!)

So, life is very different for our Generation Z and younger students. Research tells us that they have more worries about the economy and want financial security as a result. They also face increasing levels of anxiety and depression and value environments such as schools and workplaces that support their mental health.

Our current students are classified as Generation Alpha. Generation Alpha have 4 distinct themes – they know nothing but digital, they have had years of COVID-19, are globally connected and influenced, and are leaning back towards the fiscal responsibility of their grandparent’s generation. They are concerned about housing affordability, the environment and economic volatility. They are more likely to access ‘used’ or ‘second hand’ items and value hard work and resilience.

The internet site finder

It can be challenging for staff to really understand generation Alpha – we try to keep up with the language, the viral trends, the Tik Tok, and more – but sometimes if can be a fruitless exercise. We would be better served by focusing on what we do well – knowing our students, providing great experiences in the classroom, giving students the opportunity to challenge themselves, but also to engage in activities outside of the classroom. It is only by developing strong and trusting relationships with our students and broader community that we can support one another and continue to achieve excellence in what we do.

Please note that the newsletter will no longer be sent every two weeks in 2023. News will be communicated via Schoolbox and/or email when required.

Enjoy your Christmas break everyone and we look forward to seeing you return safe, well and rested in 2023.

Mrs Deborah Clancy


Week 8

  • Monday 5 December – Kindergarten graduation ceremony
  • Tuesday 6 December – Motiv8 fun day
  • Wednesday 7 December – Junior school speech day
  • Thursday 8 December – Senior school speech day


  • Wednesday 1 February – Years 1-7 and 11 and 12 return to school
  • Thursday 2 February – Years 8-10 return to school
  • Wednesday 6 February – Kindergarten commences


I don’t know about you, but 2022 has proven to be quite an eventful year. Some of our experiences that have unfolded I certainly didn’t see coming in the way that they did. Some have been painful, full of deep sorrow and others have been completely joyous creating a rich tapestry of moments. It is funny when we take the time to look back and reflect on our year, we see that it is not bland or linear, but rather a whole series of ups and downs, swirls, jagged edges, and flavour filled interactions with the world.

At the end of our 2022 school year, I feel as though we have grown through change. As we wrap up the last week of term, we are now in a season known as Advent, a word that means arrival. The church uses these four weeks before Christmas to help Christians focus their spiritual lives. We hear stories from the Bible that help sharpen our senses in preparation for celebrating that day when God came to walk amongst us in the person of Jesus. Knowing that God fully understands our human experience can help each of us to connect with the divine. The very fact that Jesus was a vulnerable baby means that God knows what it is like to be vulnerable, dependent, trusting and in need. Every Advent and Christmas this knowledge just seems to deepen in my heart and mind. God knows what it is like to be me, he knows what it is like to be you! So as all the Christmas lights adorn the houses in your street and you pop up your Christmas tree with a star or an angel on top, may you know that God loves you. As you hear the carols at the shops or purchase the hundredth online present may you know that God loves you. And as you hear the buskers sing of good cheer and see the tinsel on the buses may you know that God loves you. This is the message of Christmas…God loves you. If you remember nothing else, I have shared with you this year in the newsletter, know this…God loves you. Jesus in the Christmas story proves this…God loves you!

May you and your family be richly blessed this Christmas and may 2023 bring you all great joy, wonder and delight. Hopefully I will catch many of you in our final week of celebrations in person too.

Reverend Matt Shorten


Safe guide to partying


As we move towards the end of the year and continue to plan for 2023, a reminder that Lakes Grammar is a Bring Your Own Device School. If you are considering purchasing a new device for your child (Years 5 to 12), please check the JB Hi-Fi portal for the schools’ recommendations. This does not mean that you must purchase these items from JB Hi-Fi. We recommend accident insurance for any purchase.

To access the JB Hi-Fi portal and use the code: LAKESBYOD

With Years 5 and 6 now moving towards continuous reporting and utilising the full functionality of Schoolbox, we will be transitioning to those year groups also having a device, with all Year 5 and 6 asked to have a device by the start of 2024. Year 5 and 6 are asked to bring devices from 2023, however, we understand that this may not be possible for all, and we will manage this at a school level.

If you have any questions regarding BYOD, please contact the school.


The Uniform Shop's final day of trade for 2022 is Friday 9 December.

All orders placed after this date during the holiday break will be dispatched or available for collection from Monday 16 January.

Visit our website to book your appointment -

We will be open in January on the following dates:

Mon 16 Jan         9am – 2pm          Appointment only

Fri 20 Jan            9am – 2pm          Appointment only

Mon 23 Jan         9am – 2pm          Appointment only

Wed 25 Jan         9am – 2pm          Appointment only

We look forward to welcoming you back into the shop in the new year!

Phone 0412 168 048 | Email


Due to limited stock, there will be no further second-hand uniform shop opening dates for 2022.

We would like to give families the opportunity to clear out preloved uniforms once school ends for the year. Families are encouraged to support the second-hand uniform shop and our school community by either donating preloved items or presenting them buy-back consideration. Please use the attached second-hand uniform shop buy-back form.

Collection dates for buy-back items are:

  • Drop off from now until 14 December by 3pm
  • Drop off between 5 January and 9 January by 3pm.

January/February holiday trading hours

  • The second-hand uniform shop will be open for extended hours prior to Term 1 2023 on Monday 23 January (9am - 3pm)
  • The shop will open again in February on Wednesday 8 February (8:30am - 10:30am) and Tuesday 28 February (2pm - 3:30pm).

If you have an enquiry regarding the second hand uniform shop please email

Become a foster carer


Go4Fun is a FREE 10-week healthy wellbeing program for children aged 7 to 13 to enjoy along with their families. Please contact 1800 780 900 to see if you meet our criteria.
Quality time with whole family

  • Group activities and games
  • Professional tailored advice about nutrition, mental health, and healthy behaviours
  • Make new friends, increase self esteem
  • Rewards and prizes for the kids

Run by trained health and community professionals, it’s a fun way for kids to build self-esteem and learn about eating well, staying active and living a healthy life.

Term 1 2023 programs will take place at:

  • Wyong Olympic Pool, Mondays 4:00–6:00pm, starting 30th January (Aboriginal Program for everyone run by Bungree)
  • Mingaletta, Umina Beach, Tuesdays 4:00–6:00pm, starting 31st January (Aboriginal Program for everyone run by Bungree)
  • The Entrance Ocean Baths, Wednesdays 4–6pm, starting 1st February
  • Lake Haven Recreation Centre, Thursdays 4–6pm, starting 2nd February

    To register, visit or call 1800 780 900.


As this school year rapidly draws to a close, please see the following important information regarding the finish of 2022 and the start of 2023.

Speech Day – Thursday 8 December at 10am

This is a school day and as such all students are expected to attend to celebrate the achievements of their peers.

Full school uniform is required including blazer.

Families are welcome to attend. We anticipate the assembly to conclude at approximately 11:30am. Where possible, and with permission, students may leave after the presentation finishes.

There will be supervision for any remaining students.

Yearly reports

Reports will be available on parent lounge for Years 7-11 next week.


Students and parents will be able to access timetables and classes via Schoolbox from 16 January. An email will go home to let you know when it is ready to access.

Textbook orders

Prescribed textbooks are compulsory for all students. To ensure you receive your physical items in time for the start of the school year, please place your order by Friday, 9 December 2022. (See email sent to parents on 17/11/22)


All students need to have a suitable device for the new school year. We are a BYOD school, please refer to the letter emailed to parents on 15 November. Students will not be able to use their mobile phone as a device in class.

Peripatetic music lesson bookings for 2023

Please access the booking form through parent lounge to book your student for music lessons with our peripatetic teachers. This includes both returning and new students.

Uniform requirements and uniform shop school holiday opening hours and dates

Please ensure all uniform items are purchased in time for the first day of school. Uniform requirements are outlined in the school diary. The expectation is that all students will return to school in full school uniform. The blazer will not be required for the first day.

Please see more information in the Whole School News section

Return to school dates 2023

Wednesday 1 February – Years 1-7 and 11 and 12 return to school

Thursday 2 February – Years 8-10 return to school

First Day of school

Students will start their first day with an assembly in the hall, followed by year group meetings and will then spend some time with their academic care teacher. They will be given their diaries, a hard copy of their timetables and a term calendar with key dates including assessments and other activities.

Years 7 and 11 will spend some time together for peer support sessions on the first and second day and Year 12 will be working with their academic care teachers developing their learning portfolios.

2023 year advisors

Year 7 – Mr Sam Willmott –
Year 8 – Mrs Sandra Baxter –
Year 9 – Mrs Sally Baker –
Year 10 – Miss Jordan Evans –
Year 11 – Mr John Hurst –
Year 12 – Mr Charles Berry –

Emergency contacts

If you have need for any emergency contact during the holidays, please send an email to Mrs Clancy, Mrs Smith, or me.

The school holidays can be a difficult period for some students and families. Here are some emergency helplines you can use if needed.

Mental Health Helpline - 1800 011 511

Kids Helpline - 1800 55 1800

Beyond Blue - 1300 224 636

Lifeline - 13 11 14

Please follow the link to information about free Headspace webinars called ‘supporting young people in school holidays: practical tips for parents and carers.

I wish each of our students and their families a happy, holy, and safe school holidays. I hope every person gets to do something they love and some time to rest. I hope to hear everyone’s stories when they return next year for a fantastic 2023.

Mrs Alison MacLarty
Acting Head of Senior School


This week was an exciting time in the senior school with the continuous reporting going live in Schoolbox for our Year 12 students and their parents/carers. This is an exciting development for our school. This will be available to all our school community from Year 5- 12 in 2023.

Continuous reporting means students and parents will be able to view their overall mark for each individual assessment task on Schoolbox and the teacher feedback when assessment tasks are returned to student. Parents/carers will no longer have to wait for semester reports to see how their child is achieving in each individual subject. Students and parents/carers will also be able to view the student’s overall progressive grade, achievement of course objectives, areas of learning and individual progression in relation to achievement of these.

Student and parent/carer information sessions will be run early Term 1, 2023 to inform our community more about continuous reporting. Keep an eye out for these dates in Schoolbox news over the coming weeks.

During 2023 all students in Years 5-11 will also have eportfolios on Schoolbox where they will set goals, achievements and set individual learning goals for all their subjects. Schoolbox in 2022 has certainly changed the way in which we communicate and interact with our community, and we look forward to continuing this journey with our parents and students in 2023.

I hope you all have a wonderful and safe Christmas and holiday and I look forward to seeing everyone return in 2023 for another great year at Lakes!

Mrs Michelle Smith
Deputy Principal


On Friday we hosted our annual Years 7-9 spelling bee. It was a delight to host this event and the student body responded with excitement and enthusiasm.

Congratulations to our following students:

First place

Talan J – Year 7, Lexi M – Year 8, Vaughn P – Year 9

Second place

Zac P – Year 7, Beau J – Year 8, Daniel P – Year 9

Third place

Claire H – Year 7, Abigail B – Year 8, Maggie S – Year 9

Mrs Serena Hart
English coordinator


On Thursday 17 November, a group of enthusiastic Year 9 and 10 photography and visual arts students visited Maitland Regional Gallery accompanied by Ms Lobregat, Mrs Braun, and Mrs Baker. Featuring Australian Art from the 1850s to the present day, the gallery has a diverse collection rich in historic and archival items, sculpture, and contemporary art. The students were given guided tours around the gallery space and current exhibitions including artist Marco Luccio who has used various mediums to explore Greek myths and tragedies.

The photography students were particularly inspired by an exhibition featuring Kris Smith whose expansive ideas of time, light and the sublime is beautifully displayed through image and video. Kris Smith is a Hunter based artist with a longstanding interest in the rhythm and visual poetry of natural light, the landscape, and our place within it.

After viewing the works and morning tea, the students were given time to engage in a series of photography and art challenges using cameras and responding to works in their gallery journals before heading back to school, tired but very inspired. The visit provided the students with an opportunity to view a variety of artworks and gain creative ideas for future art and photography projects.

Mrs Sally Baker
TAS Teacher


Rotary primary school citizenship awards


Rotary Primary School Citizenship Awards

I spent a lovely evening at the 2022 Rotary Primary School Citizenship Awards held at Doyalson Wyee RSL Club on Wednesday evening with our Year 6 School Leaders, Ava Dand Callum L, and their families. Both Callum and Ava were commended for their citizenship and leadership throughout the year and spoke on behalf of the student leaders from 20 local schools.

We were also privileged to be asked to perform at the event – the only school invited to do so. Congratulations to 35 of our Years 3-6 choir students who performed a repertoire of songs and thoroughly entertained the audience. They were all amazing ambassadors for the school.

Spelling bee

The very first Lakes Grammar junior school spelling bee was held on Wednesday 30 November. We were thrilled with the quality of the grade finalists’ spelling knowledge. I also need to make special mention of the courage that was displayed – it is not easy to be on display in front of your peers, with the potential to make errors, but our students handled it with grace and dignity.
Congratulations to the following students:

Year 6

Raquel C – 1st
Keshav P – 2nd
Giulia B – 3rd
Austin T
Jake L
April M

Year 5

Marli M – 1st
Ashley W – 2nd
Bentley F – tie 3rd
Mackenzie A – tie 3rd
Bronson C
Alice S

Year 4

Eve H –1st
Ryan M –2nd
Mac M – 3rd
Kellis S
Clementine M
Nicholas M

Year 3

Lotus V – 1st
Benni M – 2nd
Anabella A – 3rd
Christopher S
Sofia A
Sam D

Year 2

Miguel M –1st
Lilly E –2nd
Maddy C – 3rd
Indiana F
Zeah C
Charlie G

Year 1

Thomas K – 1st
Addi H –2nd
Nala B –3rd
Finlay M
Sanvir V
Jeremiah B

Term 4 key dates
  • Monday 5 December – Kindergarten graduation ceremony
  • Tuesday 6 December – Motiv8 fun day
  • Wednesday 7 December – Junior school speech day

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Lakes Grammar community for welcoming me into the school with kindness and compassion. Whilst the last two terms have been an absolute whirlwind, I am thrilled to be leading the junior school and look forward to 2023. I hope all our families have a safe and enjoyable holiday season.

Mrs Kylie McPherson
Head of Junior School


Returns are now due

Please note that borrowing has now ceased for all grades in the junior school library. Could you please ensure all returns are back by the end of Week 7 in order to complete our annual stock take in Week 8. Thank you for your support with this and for borrowing throughout 2022.

Mr Danny Summers
Junior School Teacher Librarian


Change and loss are issues that affect all of us at some stage in our lives. At Lakes Grammar we recognise that when changes occur in families through death, separation, divorce and related circumstances, children may benefit from learning how to manage these changes effectively. We are therefore offering a very successful education program called Seasons for Growth for our K-6 students, which will commence in Term 1 2023.

This program is facilitated in small groups and is based on research which highlights the importance of social support and the need to practise new skills to cope effectively with change and loss. The program focuses on issues such as self-esteem, managing feelings, problem-solving, decision-making, effective communication, and support networks. If you think your child would benefit from Seasons for Growth, we encourage you to talk to them about participating in the program.

Lakes Grammar is pleased to be able to offer this important program and we are confident that it will be a valuable learning experience for those who request to be involved. Please contact junior school counsellor, Michelle Knight at to register your interest in the program.



The primary swimming program has been successful for students gaining much needed knowledge and skills. In recent weeks, K-6 students have also been involved in a cricket NSW program, and Year 5 students in a tennis taster program.


TAP students have recently completed their final fitness session at Ashayne Fitness and received a visit from winter Olympian, Rohan Chapman-Davies (see photo above). They will complete the raw challenge together on Tuesday 6 December.


The Lakes Grammar secondary tennis competition was another successful fun-filled day for students. Congratulations to Austin mand Allyssa D who won the doubles competition, and Austin M who also won the singles competition.

Mr Darren Beecroft
K-12 Sports Coordinator