Congratulations to Year 12 2020
On behalf of everyone at Canberra Grammar School, I am very pleased to congratulate the students of Year 12 2020 on the outcome of their extraordinary final year at School.
It was a year that began in choking bushfire smoke and was then dramatically disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Nonetheless, our students stayed positive and seized every opportunity to make the best of circumstances and to refocus their academic strategies on university entry in a year of tremendous uncertainty.
Drawing on the strength and breadth of their education across Years 11 and 12 – in academic study, leadership, service, sports and the arts – both Higher School Certificate (HSC) and International Baccalaureate (IBDP) students applied for tertiary options through early entry pathways in greater numbers than ever, and they broke all records in securing an outstanding array of early offers.
In 2020, over 95% of our Year 12 students applied for further studies. Of those, an extraordinary 85% secured tertiary offers prior to receiving their HSC and IBDP results, a truly unprecedented outcome that compares with roughly 25% on average across NSW. That significantly redefines the School’s traditional measures of success.
Building on clear trends away from ATAR-based university entry in recent years, many students attained multiple offers even before sitting their final examinations. The majority of all early offers were for students’ upper preferences, with that proportion increasing following the release of HSC results in December and IBDP results in January.
Although securing so many early places undoubtedly affects the determination of some to compete for the highest possible ATARs, the School welcomes the movement of universities towards recognising more holistic educational outcomes and experiences, including participation in university extension courses, Mathematics and Science Olympiads, subject-based competitions, debating, youth forums, student leadership and service projects, artistic performance and sporting representation.
We are especially pleased, for example, that a record 40% of our students secured places at the ANU, consistently regarded as one of Australia’s leading universities. Many of those also gained offers to other universities in NSW and Victoria, with 25% of students ultimately taking paces at the Universities of Sydney, NSW and Melbourne. A further 25% of students also gained early offers to study at the University of Canberra.
The most common destinations for our students will be to degrees in Engineering, Economics and Commerce, Science, Law, Arts, Medical Science, International Relations, Computing and Construction. Others have opportunities in the Creative and Performing Arts, while others will study Psychology, Sports Science, Nursing and Health Sciences, Criminology, Agriculture, Environmental Science and Teaching. Around 10% of students will take combined or double degrees.
In addition, we are very proud to congratulate those who have secured apprenticeships through non-ATAR pathways in sports management, landscaping and groundskeeping, and in electrical and mechanical fields.
At a time when international travel and studies remain restricted, we are also delighted that a number of our students are set to study overseas in the United Kingdom, the United States, Europe and New Zealand.
We also give special acknowledgement to those students who spent their entire Year 12 studying remotely while stranded overseas by the COVID-19 pandemic. I congratulate them and thank all students and staff who supported them.
In 2020, 54% of students took the HSC with a small number taking non-ATAR vocational pathways.
Amongst HSC students, we are delighted to congratulate Zack Noyes, who placed first in the entire HSC cohort in Software Design and Development, along with Dylan Turner, who also placed fourth in Software Design, a truly outstanding achievement for both that consolidates our students’ exceptional track record in the subject.
Under the NSW HSC system, schools do not receive ATAR notifications and cannot therefore report ATAR statistics for the HSC. However, we understand that Zack Noyes is dux of the HSC cohort with an outstanding ATAR of 99.70; he has our warmest congratulations once again.
We also congratulate 20 students, a fifth of the cohort, who earned places on the HSC Distinguished Achievers’ List, in some cases several times. In addition to Software Design and Development, notable HSC subject performances this year include Physics, Chemistry, Music and Geography, as well as Dance, Entertainment and Aboriginal Studies, new subjects to the School’s HSC offering this year. I congratulate all involved.
I am also delighted to congratulate the first graduates of the School’s Indigenous Scholarships programme, all of whom undertook the HSC and earned excellent offers for subjects including Law, Health Science, Business and Communications.
In 2020, 45% of Year 12 students took the IBDP.
Amongst those students, we are thrilled to congratulate Archer Martin, Alexander Wang and Kevin Xie, all of whom attained exceptional IB point scores of 44/45, making them co-duxes of the IBDP cohort, each with an outstanding ATAR of 99.75.
With an impressive median ATAR of 92.2, two thirds of students who gained an IB Diploma attained point scores equivalent to ATARs of 90 or above, with almost a quarter gaining 95 or more.
Notable subject performances in either Higher or Standard Level courses include English, French, Indonesian, Business Management, Geography, Politics, Sports Science and Film. We congratulate all involved.
We also congratulate students who took languages a year early, all of whom attained the highest possible IB grade of 7.
Congratulations and thanks
Once again, I congratulate Year 12 2020 on their results and their outstanding tertiary offers. I also thank them for their superb leadership of the School in the most difficult of years.
While much was curtailed at the end, they can be immensely proud of their record throughout their time at School. They performed at the highest levels in music, drama and dance. They proudly represented the School in a wide range of competitive sports. They presented art and design exhibitions, and they took part in outdoor education and leadership development activities. They organised House projects and carnivals. They participated in the Sony Foundation Camp and instigated many other student initiatives and service projects, including raising thousands of dollars for charitable causes.
All of these activities contributed enormously to their educational outcomes and tertiary placements and, for that, I congratulate them. I also thank staff for their dedicated teaching and support, especially amidst the trials of 2020, and for their enormous efforts in working closely with students to secure such an exceptional array of tertiary opportunities despite the disruptions of the year.
On behalf of all once again, I thank Year 12 for their enormous contribution to the life of the School and I wish them every happiness for the future.
Head of School