About Us - Principals Message

To our CAGS families and friends, 

As mentors we recognise the uniqueness of our students and, as educators, immerse ourselves in their academic, sporting and artistic lives, and work to foster their love of learning, and their resilience when things go wrong. We help them get along in life.

A famous horse-trainer was being interviewed in the lead up to a significant horse race. At the end of the interview, the reporter took the opportunity to gain an insight from the trainer. ‘Have you got a tip for us, Frank?’ the reporter said to the trainer. The trainer took a long look at the reporter, summed up the moment, and said quietly, ‘Get on with your neighbours’. He turned and withdrew. One of the major goals of a school is to assist students to make the most of opportunities that come their way; to make the most of the talents they have. Goals and ambitions are most achievable when we are able to work effectively with those around us; to get on with one another – to ‘love thy neighbour’. In a competitive world, this is sometimes not easy, but it is something I work towards in positive conversations and actions with parents, students and staff members. Together we work to find a way forward, and encourage our students to attain the goals they set for themselves. When I consider characteristics that set Cobram Anglican Grammar School apart from others that helps us achieve this goal, I think that it is the action of knowing, noticing, valuing each and every child for the unique contribution they make to our educational community that is most effective in helping students establish and consolidate their own self-esteem.

Ultimately, on the road to adulthood, the school endeavours to provide an inclusive and supportive environment for every one of our students, as they encounter and overcome academic, and social hurdles. As the leader of this great educational community, I am confident that with the help of parents, guardians, extended family and others we can achieve any goal we set our mind to. As we make our way towards the conclusion of another school year, there are many I wish to recognise and mention.

Thanks to the students for being an active part of our community, both in education and socialisation. I thank you for working hard to attain your goals, and for participating in the broad range of wider school activities that have been offered in 2019. I thank parents for entrusting us with their children over our journey this year, and for their abundant ongoing support.

I would also like to make special mention of the School Captains, Vice-Captain and House leaders for their generosity of spirit and enthusiastic approach to the tasks set for them throughout the year. Thanks go to the grounds, and maintenance staff. Our school is fastidiously serviced and maintained and it is this highly committed team that make it so. Also thanks to the office staff led by Business Manager Mrs. Narelle Schreenan and Head of Marketing, Mrs. Jordan Flanagan. The office staff regularly go above and beyond the scope of expectations, to provide the best service possible to students, staff members and families. They do a great job.

Thank-you to the Parents and Friends Committee for continuing to work towards improvements in the school yard, and inclusion in the parent community. Their continued efforts make a real difference to the connectedness of parents to the school. Thank you.

 

Thanks to our Chaplain and Parish Priest, Rev. Maryann Leonard. Her commitment to the ongoing development of the relationship between the school and the Church is unquestioned, and we wish her well as she moves onto other life challenges next year.

Further, I thank the teaching staff led by Heads of School Mr. Ash Kennedy, Mr. Kale Watkins and Mrs. Mary Swoffer, along with Head of Curriculum Mr. Brad Downie, Head of Sport Mr. Jon O’Dwyer, and Head of Anglican Identity, Ms. Shea Doyle. This executive group has worked tirelessly to spur us onto bigger and better things, and the staff have responded with significant support to their leadership. I would like to offer a special thank-you to those staff who offered a number of exciting extra-curricular activities during the year.  School Productions, Grok and Human Powered Vehicle Challenge (among others) do not happen without the considerable efforts of many staff members. I am privileged to work with such a dedicated team of teachers, leaders and educational support staff. I greatly appreciate your ongoing support.

I thank the School Council members led by Mr. Trevor Noonan OAM, who give of their time freely to assemble regularly and scrutinise, debate and resolve issues brought to their attention that, in the end, make our school a better place. Trevor will finish up as Council Chair at the end of this year, after just on 20 years of service to our educational community. We thank Trevor for his untiring efforts and wish him well into the future.

Of course, our relationship with the Anglican Schools Commission (ASC), and in particular Executive Officer, the Rev. Peter Laurence OAM is of utmost importance to us, and we would be a different, and lesser institution without their input. I also thank The Bishop of the Diocese of Wangaratta, The Right Reverend John Parkes AM for his significant and ongoing support, and wish him well as he transitions into retirement. The support of the ASC and the Diocese of Wangaratta in collaboration with the School Council, has allowed us to develop and create a school that is true to its identity, and generous and welcoming to its families. We have created a school that we can all be proud of.

I feel enormous satisfaction as I witness the ongoing development and growth of our great school, and I thank everyone who is part of our educational community for their efforts, and look to 2020 with pride, confidence and enthusiasm.

Have a wonderful Christmas and I look forward to seeing everyone in the New Year!  

 Steve Gale, Principal

 CAGS Yearbook, 10th December 2019