Welcome to Term 3

Term 3 Information

Term 3 has commenced in a most unusual way. We send our best wishes to all students and families currently in lockdown, either in Greater Sydney, the Central West or interstate. This is an extraordinary time in the life of our nation and our school community. We can take heart in the knowledge that we have managed challenging situations like this previously and we will be able to manage this current circumstance as well. For many of us, life is different from usual – movements are curtailed, we are unable to visit family and friends, we are missing out on special events, having to wear masks, undertaking testing, working from home as a family, all meetings on Zoom – as we work together to contain the spread of the virus. With approximately 1/3 of our students here on campus, we are working hard to remain connected as a community, through virtual and ‘IRL’ activities. We are reminded that from the moment when COVID-19 first burst into our lives, we've had to learn to deal with change, as each stage of the pandemic has changed the way we live, work and socialise.

Our school’s unique location and diverse community, distinguishing features of Frensham, set us apart from other schools. This means that we have some distinctive operational considerations to work through when lockdowns and restrictions apply to some Local Government Areas and not others. We do thank all members of our community for their patience and understanding.

It can sometimes feel stressful and overwhelming for young people and adults alike during an event like this current outbreak of COVID-19 and individuals are affected differently. You might feel overwhelmed by the information, conversations and the increased levels of stress in your community. It can be hard to know what information to trust, especially in a situation where things are changing so quickly. It can be helpful to keep up-to-date but it is also important to switch off from the 24-hour media cycle if this gets too much at times. Please do refer to our COVID-19 Information Page for useful support resources, fact sheets and relevant links, and do not hesitate to contact a member of staff should you wish to discuss support for your daughter during this time.

We have had to make the difficult but necessary decision to postpone, adjust or cancel many of our planned school events for the coming month. This is because of the current restrictions in place for schools and the proportion of our community who are not able to travel due to various restrictions in different parts of NSW. The full list can be found on the front page of Schoolbox and will be updated as decisions are made about further future events.

Families of girls in Year 10 and 11 are asked to note that the Year 11 Weekend and Year 10 Planning for Senior Studies sessions will be proceeding on the weekend of 7/8 August. At this stage we do not have clarity about whether we will be able to hold these on campus. If they are not able to occur in person we will conduct these in an online format to ensure all families have access to individual meetings with teachers and information about Senior Studies.

To assist further with your planning, please note the Term Dates for 2022

  • Term 1 - Gib Gate & Frensham
    Monday 31 January - Thursday 7 April
    (Boarders always return the evening before classes start)
  • Term 2 - Gib Gate & Frensham
    Wednesday 27 April - Thursday 23 June
    (Boarders always return the evening before classes start)
    *Queen’s Birthday Long Weekend* – Departure: Thursday 9 June, 3.00pm – Gib Gate and Frensham
  • Term 3 - Gib Gate & Frensham
    Monday 18 July - Thursday 22 September
    (Boarders always return the evening before classes start)

  • Term 4 - Gib Gate: Tuesday 11 October-Friday 9 December
    Term 4 - Frensham: Tuesday 11 October-Sunday 11 December 12.00pm (after 11.00am Carol Service)
    (Boarders always return the evening before classes start)


Exciting news! This week we have launched our Boarding Page on Schoolbox, where you will find important boarding information. It is also a place where you are able to see photos that capture the many aspects of life at Frensham. Please take a moment to look at the page and see some images from our recent bonfire. This is updated each Wednesday and we hope that you enjoy the photos of girls having fun on the weekends here at Frensham.

What you will find:

Weekend Programme: This is a varied programme, changed weekly, with a range of activities organised over the school term. Some of these activities involve outside organisations coming to school to run sessions, such as yoga, whilst others are off-campus trips, like bowling or ice-skating. We also ensure that girls have a little quiet time as they would at home with ‘feet off the floor’.

Friday Night Activities: Each term senior girls organise the Friday night activities. Pop Concerts, Harry Potter nights and Valentine’s Day dinner are perennial favourites. We began this term with an exciting spotlight game with torches across the main campus. Lots of laughter could be heard when girls spotted each other with their torches in the dark!

Weekend Activities and Excursions: This details specific information about the upcoming weekend activities or excursions. Each year we aim to visit Jamberoo (Term 1), go ice skating, rock climbing and attend the theatre.

Exeat Forms and bus sign up: This contains links for weekend leave and transport arrangements.

Ms Amanda Graham, Director of Boarding



The Trial HSC Examinations for Year 12 students commenced on Monday 19 July. These examinations are an important part of the learning programme and are excellent practice for what students can expect in the final HSC Examinations in Term 4. School-based assessment measures performance in a wide range of course outcomes and Trial Examinations are the final component of this HSC assessment programme. Student’s results will be posted on Schoolbox when marking has been completed.

The conditions for the Trial Examinations closely resemble those of the final HSC Examinations, with supervision carried out by the School’s current appointed Presiding Officer and her team of supervisors. Year 12 students have been provided with information highlighting the rules relating to the examination period and their responsibilities during this time. A reminder that all students should present for their HSC examinations where possible. If illness or accident prevents a student from attending, the appropriate Illness/Misadventure forms will need to be completed, accompanied by a medical certificate or other required documentation. This will be facilitated by the School and students should contact me as soon as possible in the event of any issues.

Year 11 students are in their third and final term of Preliminary studies, with their examinations commencing Friday 3 September and their HSC studies to commence at the beginning of Term 4. During Term 3, evaluating course progress and making initial decisions about modifications to their overall programme for the HSC are important. This may involve taking up an extension course or reducing their total units.

The end of the Preliminary Course should consolidate the skills and behaviours for success in studies into Year 12. Year 11 Parent Teacher interviews will provide parents with an up-to-date assessment of their daughter’s progress to assist in this decision-making process.

In Week 8, students in Years 7 and 8 will also undertake examinations as part of their Stage 4 skills development programme and will be guided by their teachers as to how to prepare for these examinations. Examinations for Years 9 and 10 will be held in Term 4.

Ms Janene van Gogh, Director of Studies


White Sheep, white sheep
On a blue hill,
When the wind stops
You all stand still.
When the wind blows
You walk away slow.
White sheep, white sheep
Where do you go?

Clouds by Christine Rossetti

The power of a vivid metaphor capturing the image succinctly in our mind is creativity at its finest. We have all gazed at clouds and wondered at their beauty. It is a challenge for many of us to find the words to represent the precise moment of what we see, (real or imaginary) and how we feel. Poetry can express the inexpressible.

For a student to gain a deeper understanding of a poem, in this case the beauty and mystery of the natural world, they need to be familiar with figurative language. They need to explore how its use can add to the meaning of the text. Explicit teaching of figurative language and studying authentic texts, are key.

For Year 12 students, their final HSC module is the study of the masterful works of TS Eliot. They are learning that a life “measured out in coffee spoons” is not the way “to disturb the universe” and as humans we should always be moved by the “infinitely gentle” and the “infinitely suffering”.

Year 8 students will embark on a unit this term which examines the Truth of War. They will explore a selection of texts which will include war poems. They will be moved by Owen's tragic Dulce et decorum and recognise that tales of the glory of war are indeed lies.

Year 10 girls, in their most recent unit of work, had a glimpse of Poetry Through the Ages from Shakespeare, to John Keats, Alfred Tennyson, Christine Rossetti, WH Auden and Maya Angelou. They composed their own poems, submitting accompanying annotations which informed us of their creative process and how they were inspired by the experts.

Some student samples which highlight just how skilled they are in the poetic form. 

A monochrome forest,
Identical leaves,
Geometric, greyscale canopies.

The Wise Old Owl stood tall and strong,
Narrating the phrases that emerge over the courses of our lives.

I love the story that doesn’t quite end,
Leaving you gasping and breathless.
You’ll never know what happens next as the narrator drops the pen,
Right in the middle of a-

Let me speak                                
And say my own words,         
The things I know                   
And the things I’ve heard.    

As quick as a dart,                     
As loud as a silent room,    
A voice is cut off                       
Another quiet doom.  

One day, we will all grow old,
And forget where we left our socks,
Confusion will warm when our feet are cold,

As we sit and stare at the clocks: 

Ticking, ticking, ticking, ticking 

Frozen in motion.

Ms Lee McGuinness, Head of English


The final few weeks of Term 2 were filled with Drama…in a good way.

On Thursday 27 May, Zeal Theatre worked with Year 12 Drama students on their Group Performances in preparation for the HSC Drama External Examination to be held later in Term 3. 

On Tuesday 8 June, Drama students, accompanied by Ms Allison and Mrs Hannah attended a production of Anton Chekhov’s classic The Cherry Orchard at Belvoir Street Theatre in Surry Hills, starring Pamela Rabe. Students were mesmerized by Rabe’s brilliant performance and the way the ensemble brought Chekhov’s characters to life on stage. To be able to watch a production live (especially now) was a wonderful opportunity for students to see professional theatre at its finest.

On Wednesday 9 June, Years 9-11 Drama students attended a production of The 7 Stages of Grieving, directed by Shari Sebens and performed by Elaine Crombie at the Wharf Theatre, Sydney Theatre Company. The 7 Stages of Grieving is studied as a Preliminary HSC Drama text in a unit of work on the Elements of Production in Performance. Co-written by Wesley Enoch and Deborah Mailman, this is a contemporary Indigenous play which appropriates western form whilst using traditional storytelling, The 7 Stages of Grieving. This one-woman show gives an emotional insight into Murri life, following the journey of an Aboriginal 'everywoman' as she tells poignant and humorous stories of grief and reconciliation.

Important notice: The excursion to Come From Away at the Capitol Theatre (Years 7-10), originally scheduled for Sunday 18 July has been postponed to Sunday 10 October, due to current COVID-19 Restrictions.

Mrs Sally Hannah, Head of Drama


Acknowledgement to:

  • Year 12 – as they commence their Higher School Certificate Trial Examinations this week.
  • Eliza Mulligan AMEB Flute Video Repertoire Grade 8 examination – Honours (A).
  • To all involved with the publishing of the Frensham 2020 Chronicle.
  • Frensham Madrigals for their performance of Share Your Truth, published on Youtube, https://www.youtube.com/Frensham Madrigals, Share Your Truth 2021. Share Your Truth lyrics are taken from the speech from the 2021 Australian of the Year Grace Tame at the National Press Club in March, and set to music by Michael Spencer, Head of Music.


Staffing update

During the vacation we farewelled three members of staff. We thank all these staff for their contribution to Frensham Schools and wish them all the very best in their future.

After eight years of dedicated service to Frensham Schools, Mrs Colleen Relf has retired from her position as Registrar; from the Health Centre, Ms Millie Ellice-Flint and her fiancé have relocated to country NSW; and, Mrs Camille Macpherson, Enrolments and Marketing, has been recalled to recommence her responsibilities with Qantas. Camille will remain as a member of the Frensham community as a Gib Gate parent.

We welcome:

  • Mr Andrew Lundy will be working in our HSIE department this semester, currently teaching Year 9 History.
  • Ms Carole McCormick returns to Frensham Schools in the role of Registrar.
  • Miss Theresa Healey joins Gib Gate as a Preschool Assistant.
  • Health Centre team, Mrs Abigail Gordon (Registered Nurse) and Ms Britt Martin (Registered Nurse)

Ms Kate Chauncy, Director Teaching and Learning, is taking Long Service Leave during Term 3, with the following staff taking on additional responsibilities during her absence:

  • Dr Ruth Phillips
  • Ms Emma Lake
  • Mrs Alison Andrew
  • Ms Lee McGuinness

Ms Sarah McGarry
Head of Frensham

Head of Frensham Schools