Elle O’Connell, just one of the high achievers
Elle O’Connell, just one of the high achievers

HSC achievers praise teachers

In keeping with a statewide trend, girls in the Brunswick Valley featured strongly in the sciences in the HSC results at both Mullumbimby High School and Shearwater Steiner School.

At Mullumbimby High, the highest-performing students were Elle O’Connell, Meisha Grant, Josh Iwaszko, Kerian Singh, Maggie Van Kemton-Acton, Jasmine Galper and Damon Meredith.

While not all students were available for comment, being either unobtainable or in Bali, those who were expressed surprise and pleasure at their results, and frequently acknowledged the help and support of their teachers.

“Viva Mullumbimby High,” wrote Josh Iwaszko from Bali.

“I would like to thank the teachers at Mullumbimby High for putting in extra tutes and one-on-one time to make this great result possible.”

Josh excelled in maths and the sciences as well as drama and English, as did Damon Meredith.

Damon hopes to get into journalism at UTS, with a possible view to specialising in science journalism to close the gap between important scientific issues and the lack of knowledge about them in the wider community.

“Climate change has been a huge issue for ages,” he said, “but no one knew much about it for a long time.”

Both Elle O’Connell and Kerian Singh are off to study scientific subjects, with Kerian firm in her choice of bio-medical science at Griffith University and Elle saying, “something in science, maybe medical science at UQ or Griffith.”

Principal Ian Graham declared himself very pleased with the overall performance of the students, citing a large number performing above 80 per cent in at least one subject.

“There were excellent results from a number of subjects – drama, business studies, senior science, society and culture, maths and Indonesian beginners,” he said.

“There were 23 band six achievers, out of 125 candidates.”

From Shearwater Steiner School, Geneva Goldenberg declared herself ‘amazed’ at her results, particularly the 93 per cent for biology.

Geneva had never been particularly interested in science prior to going to Shearwater in Year 9, where she credited teacher Greg Savage for inspiring her.

“I had excellent teachers for everything,” she said.

Geneva plans either a BSc or a BA after she “figures something out” during her gap year, while fellow student Felix Lalanne, with a top mark in music, will go straight to uni to do a B Science and Music.

Felix also credited Greg Savage with his love of physics, naming him ‘a really motivational teacher.’

Also surprised and pleased that all his hard work had paid off was Jesse Boyd-Reid with a high score in art, off to Melbourne to study photography after a gap year.

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