Volume 54 No. 16

Sydney Grammar School

As the conclusion of the academic year is now upon us, I would like to wish all Grammar families the very best for the holiday season ahead. Well done to the boys on all that they have achieved across this busy and exciting year. 

Next year, Sydney Grammar School is hosting the 21st Biennial Australian Combined Schools Music Festival (ACSMF) from the 26–29 June 2019. This will be the third time Sydney Grammar School has hosted the festival.

The aim of the ACSMF is to provide an opportunity for the most talented students to work with renowned conductors to produce music of the highest possible standard. Students apply to be involved in The Festival Symphony Orchestra, The Festival Symphonic Wind Band and the Festival Choir. The conductors of the 2019 ensembles all have international reputations: The Festival Orchestra will be conducted by Daniel Carter (OS07); The Festival Wind Ensemble will be conducted by John Lynch and The Festival Choir will be conducted by Reka Csernyik.

The 2019 Festival promises to be a wonderful experience as it brings together some of the top pupils from around the country. Rehearsals will be held here at school all day Thursday, Friday and on Saturday with the final concert in the evening of Saturday 29 June 2019 in the John Vallance Hall.

As the Festival hosts we are responsible for billeting the 200 interstate visitors to Sydney. We desperately need your assistance. If you have a spare bed at home or a mattress on the floor please help by hosting a couple of visiting musicians for the four nights of the Festival. Please visit the website www.acsmf.com for more information, instructions and the billet hosting form.

Dr RB Malpass 


Illness and Misadventure

Please note the following procedures for senior boys regarding Illness and Misadventure for assessments and examinations during their HSC year.

If a boy is absent on the day of any assessment or examination during the year, they are required to contact the Director of Studies.

Upon their return to School they must provide a Medical Certificate from a doctor who is not a close relative and complete an Illness and Misadventure Form. Forms are available from Mrs Brun, Masters’ Reception. 

If a boy is unwell on the day of an assessment but is at School, they need to see the Director of Studies before the beginning of the assessment.

Medical Certificates are required in all cases of illness. 

Boys are able to submit an Illness/Misadventure application if they are affected by misadventure prior to or during an assessment task. Independent evidence of the misadventure is required.

Dr AD Stevens


Form IV Special Activities

Special activities for Form IV occur throughout next week, commencing Monday 26 November. Ms Fin has been in touch with Form IV parents by email about the programme. The activities will include job and interview workshops, “All my own Work” HSC sessions, a talk on alcohol and substance abuse by Associate Professor John Raftos from St Vincent’s Hospital, a mental health education day run by “Batyr”, a three day First Aid Course and Form IV Camp.

Speech Day 2018

Speech Day marks the end of the school year. It will take place at the Sydney Town Hall on Thursday 6 December. Boys must arrive by 10.15am and report to their Tutor for roll marking. Dress is full summer uniform. The ceremony begins at 11am and concludes just after midday. Parents and guests are invited to join us for this significant occasion. Seating will be available in the upstairs galleries or at the rear of the stalls. Speech Day is always well attended and the Town Hall seating is limited so parents and guests are advised to be early in order to find a seat.

Phone Policy 2019

Next year our updated mobile phone policy will apply to all boys in Forms II to V in 2019. These boys will be required to place their phone in their locker when they arrive at school. As such, their phones may not be used during school hours except for essential communication (e.g. contact with a parent or carer may occur at a boy’s locker out of class time if strictly necessary). In the interests of safety, boys are also allowed to take their phones with them into the city at lunchtime but they must return them to their lockers before period 6 and they must not have them visible walking through the School grounds. At the conclusion of the day, boys will then collect their phones from their lockers. We have found that the majority of boys have adjusted well to this change of routine and we feel the change has been a positive one. Thank you for your ongoing support of this policy.

As part of their Form VI privileges, boys in their final year will be allowed to access their phones in the Green Zone playground area throughout the school day. Form VI boys should not access their phones in other areas of the School. As senior boys they need not lock their phones away in lockers during the day.

Term I 2019

The 2019 school year commences at College Street for current students on Wednesday 30 January. It is important that all boys are ready to start the term on time on day one. Boys and parents need to ensure that holiday arrangements do not impede a prompt and productive start to the year. Thank you for giving this your attention.

Lost Property

At the end of the school year, there is always a large amount of unclaimed lost property. Please encourage your sons to follow up any lost items with the School Sergeant, Mr Greg Bulger. We will also remind boys in the remaining weeks.

Mr TC Watkins


Form IV Activities and Duke of Edinburgh Award

Form IV Activities

Information has been sent via email to parents regarding end of term activities for boys in Form IV. Please download the Form IV activities letter here.

Duke of Edinburgh's Award 

Boys enrolled in the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme should use the holiday period to check their records very carefully. It is important that individual accounts are checked and updated before the start of the new school year. 

All boys who completed hikes in 2018 should ensure that they have entered the details into their online record books and that they have completed their hike reports and submitted them to the assessors (as per instructions in my email to parents) to ensure a smooth sign off.

Please refer to the School website under the ‘Other Club’s and Activities’/Duke of Edinburgh for further information or boys can see me in my office, opposite WM3.

For each of the other areas, Volunteering, Skills and Physical, boys should set up the correct assessor in each category. They should NOT nominate me as the assessor unless it is for School Orchestra.  For school sport, Mr Alan Campbell is the assessor. Please download the following document about the ‘Duke of Edinburgh's Scheme at Sydney Grammar’ (click here) to obtain other assessors.

Boys currently in Form V going into Form VI should look carefully at their completion plans to avoid panic at the end of Term III next year when they are trying to get their records signed off by their assessors and me.

The Bronze, Silver or Gold Award checklist is the final document that needs to be uploaded before a boy obtains sign off. Below are the direct links to the files.




Please note that it will not be possible for me to sign off anyone during the holidays. If a boy has already completed his level or sections within a level, he should see me well before the end of this term or it will have to wait until the first week back in 2019.

Ms RM Fin

AMEB Examinations, Term IV Concert, Welcome to New Parents, the Australian Combined Schools Music Festival

AMEB Examinations

Could any boy who completed an AMEB instrumental examination this year and was not entered through the School, please forward a copy of the report to Mr Wagner (if they have not already done so). These can be sent via email to rjw@sydgram.nsw.edu.au


In line with the AMEB Syllabus, classes will be offered in Musicianship Grades 2 to 6 in 2019. The study of Musicianship is a prerequisite (additional requirement) for Practical Examinations as follows:
Practical Additional requirement
Grade 6 – Pass Grade 2 Musicianship
Grade 7 – Pass Grade 3 Musicianship
Grade 8 – Pass Grade 4 Musicianship
AMusA – Pass Grade 5 Musicianship
LMusA – Pass Grade 6 Musicianship
Please note, the study of Grade 2 Musicianship assumes the study and/or knowledge of the Preliminary and Grade 1 Syllabuses. As such, all Form I/new boys wishing to enrol in Musicianship classes must be tested to determine their suitability. Boys wishing to study musicianship should see Dr Vines as soon as possible to arrange tuition. Any questions should be directed to Dr Vines on 9332 5891 or email npv@sydgram.nsw.edu.au

Instrumental Lessons

Boys who would like to start instrumental lessons in Term I next year can collect the application form from the Music Secretary or download one from the School website. Forms should be returned by Friday 23 November. 

All boys who have been learning musical instruments this year will be presumed to be continuing next year, unless their parents send a cancellation email to Mr Wagner (rjw@sydgram.nsw.edu.au) by Friday 30 November. Cancellations received after that date will apply from the end of Term I 2019.

Term IV Concert

On Thursday 22 November at 6.30pm many of the School’s large ensembles will be performing in the John Vallance Hall. This concert will include the School Orchestra, Alastair Mackerras Chamber Orchestra, Zephyr Winds, Concert Band, Percussion Ensemble 2, Cantorum, Grammarphones and Croonivores. The concert is approximately two hours long including a short interval. The Middle Playground will be open for parking from 6.00pm. Refreshments may be purchased in the Foyer of the John Vallance Hall before the concert and during interval. A donation on entry is appreciated and will go to the Music Association (the parent body of the Music Department). Funds raised are used to help the Music Department purchase instruments, support concert tours and provide scholarships and prizes for boys.

Music Association AGM

The Music Association Annual General Meeting will be held on Thursday 22 November at 5.30pm in the Green Room (on Level 0 on the left hand side before entering the John Vallance Hall from Yurong Street). All Music Association members are welcome to attend. A separate notice of the meeting has been emailed out.

Welcome to New Parents Information and Concert Evening

This event will be held on Thursday 7 February 2019 in Big School and is a wonderful introduction to the musical life of the School. In addition to performances from several ensembles, staff will provide important information about the Music Department. Members of the Music Department will be introduced and will talk about private lessons, music ensembles and the classroom programme. Family members are also welcome to join on this night. The Captain of Music and other boys in Form VI will also be available to speak about various aspects of the programme and their personal experiences.

Australian Combined Schools Music Festival 2019

Sydney Grammar School are excited to host the 21st Australian Combined Schools Music Festival (ACSMF) in 2019. This is a call out to all Sydney Grammar School families who would like to and are able to billet pupils attending this festival. Over 300 ACSMF pupils from eight high schools around Australia will need to be accommodated from Wednesday 26 June to Saturday 29 June 2019. Billeting is a rewarding experience for all Sydney Grammar School families.

If you are interested in discussing the wonderful opportunity to billet a ACSMF student, please contact Ms Francisca Sjahry on 93325895 or email foms@sydgram.nsw.edu.au. Further information is available on the festival website www.acsmf.com.

Mr PR Gaske

Volleyball National Championships

Keen to continue building upon our national ranking, the School is sending two teams to the Australian Schools Volleyball Championships held in Melbourne from Sunday 9 - Saturday 15 December. The boys will compete in a week long tournament and they have been training hard in preparation for this competitive event. 


Holiday Tennis Camp

A holiday tennis camp programmed to accommodate boys of all levels will be held at Weigall tennis courts from Monday 10 December - Friday 14 December. Preparatory School boys will attend from 9am-12noon. College Street boys will attend from 1pm-4pm. The number of positions is limited. Please email Mrs Thame for information jmt@sydgram.nsw.edu.au


Swimming 2019

The Sydney Grammar School Swimming Selection Carnival will take place at Andrew (Boy) Charlton Pool on Friday 1 February 2019 from 4.30pm to 6:30pm. Any boys who would like to be part of our swimming team for the 2019 season are welcome to join. Entry forms are available at the Sports office and completed forms must be returned by Friday 30 November.



Congratulations to Archie Carl (II) and Vivek Reddy (II) for their selection in the GPS U15 cricket squad. Special mention goes to Rahul Jayakanthan (I) for his century (122) against Sydney Boys High School on Saturday 10 November.


Library hours during the School Holidays

The Library will be closed during the school holidays from Friday 7 December and will re-open 8am to 6pm on Tuesday 29 January 2019.

Dr JJ Hughes

Annual General Meeting

The SGSWA's AGM was held on Wednesday 7 November. I am pleased to announce the new executive for 2019. Please join me in congratulating the following office bearers: 

President: Sharmila Soorian
Vice-President: Mary Ann Apte
Treasurer: Christine Park
Secretary: Anna Reed-Stephenson
Membership Secretary: Wendy Searle

I would also like to thank Carlie Losanno (past President & Treasurer), Dyan Comino (past President & Vice President), Gillian Fox (past Secretary) and Vjera Arnall (past member) who are all stepping down as this is their final year at the School. Thank you for your contribution to the Women’s Association. We wish you all the best for the future.  

Pink, Passion and Purpose (PPP) Dinner – Wednesday 14 November 

The PPP dinner was a success and it was so lovely to see all the mothers present. We were fortunate to hear three speakers, experts in their field sharing their insights on the future. We would like to thank Tina Milson (Photographer & Rural Artist), Susanne Gervay AOM (Award-winning author & children’s advocate) and Petra Andren (CEO Cicada Innovations) for attending and speaking at the event. We would also like to thank Wendy Searle for hosting the evening and to Gillian Fox and Dominique Hart for organising set-up, catering & drinks for the event. Thank you to the old boy, Nicholas Hirsch, for being our photographer for the evening. For photos click here

Grammar Shop 

The Grammar Shop is open:
Monday 12pm - 2pm
Thursday 12pm - 5pm
Friday 12pm - 5pm
For the Grammar Shop price list and order form click here
For the Grammar Shop roster please click here

For the Tuckshop roster please click here


Click here for the full article

Weigall Barbecue - House Sports Day

Thank you to all the fathers who assisted with the BBQ at House Sports Day. This will be our last BBQ for the year. I look forward to providing more BBQ support next year and many thanks to all our volunteers this year.

Annual General Meeting - Thursday 2 November

As mentioned in the last newsletter, the SGSFA held the election for the SGSFA committee at the recent AGM. The Office Bearers for 2019 will remain unchanged except for the Secretary. Mr Dale Druckman has been elected Secretary. Thank you to the outgoing Treasurer, Mr Steve Luker, for his support over his time on the Committee.

I would like to thank the Committee and its members for their support and contributions this year, and I look forward to next year.

Contact with the Association

Please feel free to contact us about any matters of interest to you. The Association is only too happy to assist in any way it can. The most direct method of contact is via email at sgsfa.president@gmail.com. We will commence our monthly meetings again in Term I 2019. Dates will be published in the 2019 Newsletters.

All the above information, calendar, contacts and event information are available on the SGSFA website www.sgsfa.com.au

Mr M Scotter