Yearly archive - 2014

Girton Student Emotional About Results

Year 12 Girton Grammar student Bevan Madden, today received an ATAR score that will allow him to study Science, which has been his dream for as long as he can remember.

Headmaster of Girton Grammar School, Matthew Maruff, said that the overall VCE results for the school were excellent and that Bevan deserved his outstanding individual result.

bevan_madden“Bevan has worked hard so it’s wonderful that he will be able to follow his passion into the field of Science.

Bevan said that Girton had given him great academic tuition but that it was really the relationships that he had formed with teachers, friends and his parents that had made the difference.

“We were explicitly taught skills at Girton to build our emotional intelligence and this gave us the confidence to make good choices, be resilient, have fun and try new things.

“We learned that how you feel impacts on how you learn so a real culture of care has developed in the school where we all help each other,” he said.

As the first Australian school to adopt Yale University’s internationally renowned ‘RULER’ approach, Girton Grammar is a national leader in the development of social and emotional literacy skills. Student wellbeing is integrated across all of Girton’s curriculum, programs and activities and the physical, social, emotional, cognitive and spiritual health of students and staff is a priority.

“I feel really lucky to have been to a school where every student has a sense of belonging within the larger school community and our House system fosters this.

“Expectations from teachers are quite high but every student knows where to turn if they need someone to talk to,” he said.

Girton Student Says Results a Team Effort

Girton Grammar student, Jessica Farrar, has achieved an ATAR score ranking her in the top 9% of the State, having already received a scholarship for departing students for her outstanding contribution to her school and her community.

Headmaster of Girton Grammar School, Matthew Maruff, said that the overall VCE results for the school were excellent and that Jessica deserved her outstanding individual result.

Teagan Brown, Olivia White, Jessica Farrar, Hansani Tennakoon“Jessica has worked diligently and has been incredibly supportive of her peers along the way, as they have her,” he said.

Jessica said that she was overwhelmingly relieved and could not wait to get together with friends to celebrate and share results.

“We have had such a friendly and cohesive Year 12 and everyone has worked really hard.

“I feel like my results actually belong to so many people – my friends, my family and my teachers – who encouraged and supported me all the way.

“My friends, in particular, have been amazing, giving me guidance and support whenever I needed it, any time of the day or night.

“My VCE score really is the result of a team effort, which my friends and the school have nurtured right from the start,” she said.

Jessica hopes to study Medicine at Monash University, Clayton.

“It’s been such a big year and I can’t wait to start university but I will definitely miss my friends and family in Bendigo.

“I’m sure there will be other Girton students who will study at Monash, which will make leaving my close friends in Bendigo a bit easier,” she said.

Successful Girton Student Praises Teachers and Friends

Year 12 Girton Grammar student, Stephanie Dolman, has thanked her teachers for getting her through VCE and helping her to achieve an ATAR score that will likely get her into a Bachelor of Health Science degree at La Trobe University in Bendigo, where she has already been offered a La Trobe University Vice Chancellor’s Excellence Scholarship.

stephanie_dolmanHeadmaster of Girton Grammar School, Matthew Maruff, said that the overall VCE results for the school were excellent and that Stephanie deserved her outstanding individual result.

“Stephanie has not only worked really hard but she has also rallied her peers to be their best.

“We have high but reasonable expectations of our students and Stephanie has met these in every way, academically, emotionally and socially,” he said.

Stephanie said that the teachers at Girton were instrumental in helping her to achieve everything that she had hoped she would in her final year at school.

“The opportunity to form relationships with teachers at this school is incredible – it’s more like having a family connection than a student-teacher relationship.

“I am especially grateful for the weekly ‘Maruff Master Classes’ that our Headmaster provided to Year 12 students.

“I found them immensely beneficial and my vocabulary, as well as general knowledge, increased exponentially as a result.

“The sessions always generated intellectual discussion about ideas raised and the feedback on my draft English pieces was so helpful,” she said.

Stephanie said that Mr Maruff provided the encouragement, praise and wisdom that allowed her to feel confident as she walked in and out of the English exam.

“In the words of our Headmaster; profound ideas make an indelible impression on our psychological landscapes. That’s the way he spoke with us, which helped us extend ourselves,” she said.

Year 12 Girton Grammar student and School Captain, Thomas Duke, has achieved an ATAR score of 99.95

Year 12 Girton Grammar student and School Captain, Thomas Duke, has achieved an ATAR score of 99.95 giving him the highest ATAR Score possible in the VCE.

Headmaster of Girton Grammar School in Bendigo, Matthew Maruff, said that the overall VCE results for the school were excellent and that Tom deserved his outstanding individual result.

Thomas Duke, Girton Grammar School Bendigo, got a perfect ATAR score of  99.95, at home with mother Christina Sasse and father Richard Duke“Tom has been at Girton Grammar since he was 5 years old and has been Dux of his Year level every year since Grade 3.

“But what stands Tom apart is not only his academic ability, but his all-round depth of talent and even more importantly, his contribution to those around him and to the community at large.

“From Salvation Army Red Shield Appeals to our Student2Student reading mentor program, Tom has been involved in the school and broader community.

“His music and sporting flair is boundless and he was voted by his peers as our male School Captain for 2014,” Mr Maruff said.

Tom said that Girton Grammar had afforded him every opportunity he could ever imagine and that his teachers always went over and above for the students.

“I have been at Girton for two thirds of my existence and the school is more like a family than anything.

“We were always taught that how you feel impacts on how you learn and both the teachers and students at Girton genuinely care for one another, creating a positive learning environment.

“The friends I have made here I will have forever and I am so grateful for the support and encouragement that my teachers and family have always provided,” Tom said.

Girton Students Top Bendigo Region

Girton Grammar School in Bendigo has topped the region for VCE results with a median ATAR score of 81.4 and 54% of its Year 12 VCE students ranking in the top 20% of the State.  Thomas Duke, School Captain for 2014, achieved a perfect ATAR score of 99.95

Headmaster of Girton Grammar School, Matthew Maruff, said that the results were excellent and commensurate with VCE results for the school in recent years.

“Teachers and students have worked so hard and these results are just reward for effort.

“Our students have supported one another and together, strove for their best, united by a camaraderie and common purpose.

“We believe that learning involves working in partnership with parents and nurturing the growth and development of the whole person, so our parents are also to be acknowledged in these great results,” he said.

Other VCE highlights for Girton Grammar are as follows:

  • Two of Girton’s students finished in the top 1% of the State
    Thomas Duke (99.95) and Georgia Jenkins-Smales (99.55)
  • 11% of Girton’s students finished in the top 5% of the State
  • 25% of Girton’s students finished in the top 10% of the State
  • 54% of Girton’s students finished in the top 20% of the State
  • 9 students achieved perfect scores of 50 in subjects as diverse as Mathematics (Thomas Duke, Liam Murphy and Zoe Deed), English Language (Thomas Duke), Music Investigation (Andrew McKinnon), Studio Arts (Sophie Rhule), Outdoor and Environmental Studies (Riley Luke) and Sociology (Leah Hotker).

Mr Maruff said that Girton Grammar aims to be the Australian benchmark for excellence in Regional education with the achievements of students an important measure of the success of the school.

“We aim for students and staff to exceed well beyond a level considered average.

“I am immensely proud that the desire to learn is so evident in this year’s VCE results,” he said.

Energy Breakthrough

A years worth of hard work for our students and staff was put to the test this weekend in our final event for the year, the RACV Maryborough event.

Over a period of 4 days our amazing students presented to judges about Girton’s EB program and environmental sustainability, participated in scrutineering programs to check the safety of their vehicles, and participated in high intellect conversations about the design and construction of their trikes.

In addition to that they raced for 24 Hours straight in a relay-style event! The weather conditions were horrific and the race conditions the most challenging and toughest we have faced. Our students competed with dignity, wonderful team spirit and an excellent competitive spirit in a challenging race. Our students and trikes are certainly race battered and bruised but they had a wonderful time!

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Team ‘Inception’ finished first in its Single Power Source category for the third year running. They too had an extremely difficult race modifying fuel injection systems, changing engines etc- by the end of the race all that was left to replace were tyres! All other spare parts used! Watching this team in operation is breathtaking.

Our HPV teams did a wonderful job against very adverse conditions! Team ‘Intrepid’ finished 5th in the 9/10 B2 category even though they were one rider down. Teams ‘InFusion’ and ‘InTrouble’ finished Sixth and Eighth respectively in the 7/8 B1 category. Team InTrouble’s trike underwent major surgery throughout the race to replace bearings, derailleurs and almost every other part!

Our students did us proud! Special mention must go to our EB Captain Isabella Stone, and to our team managers Caleb Ellis, Lucas Kirby, Monty Velthius, Harrison Geary and Connor McCaig. Our parent Team Managers Mr Robin Kirby and Mr David Stone are thanked warmly for their commitment to the program, their support and their expertise.

Special thanks must also go to Mrs Ewa Piejko, Nicole & Todd Morley, Mrs Joan Merrin, Marg & Tim Geary and Mr Chris Jacobsen for their assistance throughout the four days.

The parents, students and staff involved are thanked for their commitment and efforts this year; having all teams finishing in the top ten teams in each of their respective categories is certainly an impressive end to the year.

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Ms Lynden Francis-Wright

MiC Energy Breakthrough

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Friends of Drama – Dinner meeting date change

The date for the Friends of Drama Dinner meeting has been changed to Tuesday 25th November at 6.30pm at the Cambrian Hotel, Arnold Street Bendigo.

 Anyone interested in joining the Friends of Drama for 2015 is invited to join the Committee and families for dinner on 25th November.

 Please contact Vicki Matthews if you would like to attend. or 0401 688 998

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Choir Students Learn From The Best

Internationally acclaimed composer, singer and vocal arranger, Tony Backhouse, will visit Girton Grammar School on Wednesday 12th November to work with Junior School choirs and impart his unique and inspired vocal coaching techniques on dozens of budding young singers.

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Head of Girton Grammar Junior School, Don Thompson, said that there was nothing quite like learning from example.

“Tony Backhouse is the best of the best in his field and has conducted vocal workshops all over the world with thousands of people.

“We have a strong music and vocal program at the school and exposing young people to musicians of this caliber will make a lasting impression,” Mr Thompson said.

In demand for his inspiring teaching style, Tony Backhouse has run more than 2,000 vocal workshops throughout the world for the public, for festivals, schools, universities, churches, private organisations and corporate training events. He has also written, composed and performed music for the likes of Tim Finn, Renee Geyer, Cate Cebrano and the Sydney Children’s Choir.  Tony lives in New Zealand and founded Australia’s foremost acapella gospel choir, Café of the Gate of Salvation.

“Performing in a choir encourages students to learn the value of sustained team effort to achieve excellence and the concrete rewards of hard work.

“With around 178 music lessons conducted every week in our Junior School, I am sure our students will be very receptive to everything that Mr Backhouse has to share with them,” Mr Thompson said.


It’s that time of year again for fairy floss, snow cones and rides!  The Girton Grammar School Fairbrother Fair is coming on Sunday, November 2, 2014 from 12pm – 4pm.

Girton Grammar School Headmaster, Matthew Maruff, said that this annual Fair has been running for over 20 years and is the School’s largest fundraising event for the year.

“This event is the product of countless hours of volunteer work from the Girton Parents’ and Friends’ Association,” said Mr Maruff.

“It is a wonderful day out not just for the Girton community but for all of Greater Bendigo families to enjoy.  Everyone is welcome.”

Margaret Keech, President of the Girton Parents’ and Friends’ Association said that there is still a lot to do before the event but it will be a great day of fun for both children and adults.

“There are plenty of attractions to please all ages.  For the young ones, there is the street of rides, cupcake decorating, Can in a Pond, a tin can bowling alley, Zorb balls, climbing wall, a chance to play with reptiles, even a disco limo and much more to see and do, Mrs Keech said.

“Parents can enjoy Devonshire Tea or browse through the market stalls that include pot plants and a selection of fresh produce.  Other tasty treats are available in the food hall.   The wine auction begins at 2pm with a live auction to follow.  A silent auction will run throughout the day with several unique items on offer so people are encouraged to get there early and put in a bid.”

The Girton Grammar School Fairbrother Fair will be held at Girton Grammar’s Junior School site located at the corner of Vine and MacKenzie Streets, Bendigo.  Free entry via both Vine and MacKenzie Street entrances.

Giant Giraffe Making Kids Safer and Smarter

This week the Life Education Australia mobile classroom has been parked at the gates of Girton Grammar Junior School and each day, students have been learning how to live safer and smarter. healthy_harold Head of Girton Grammar Junior School, Don Thompson, said that it is never too early to start to teach children the basics about how to have a healthy body and a healthy mind. “If we start teaching Primary aged children how to make strong decisions about small things, as they get older they will be in the best possible position to make good decisions when the stakes are higher,” he said. Life Education Australia ( is Australia’s largest non-government provider of drug and health education to children and young people and their families and communities. Over 5 million school children and young people have benefited from the Life Education program since 1979.

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