CrossRoads

The Crossroads program is a mandatory program conducted in Year 11 and is designed to extend the learning experiences of students by acknowledging the changes in maturity and responsibilities of senior secondary students. The planned activities develop and enhance the knowledge and understanding, skills, values and attitudes of students so that they are more capable of making informed decisions about their lifestyles and the responsibilities they have in society.

Content areas covered include:

  • Managing Your Life – self esteem, goal setting
  • Managing Your Relationships - sexuality, contraception
  • Managing Risks in Life - HIV/AIDS
  • Managing Risks in Life - Drug Education.

In 2014, Willoughby Girls High School Crossroads Program was recognised as exemplary by the Department of Education and Communities and is used as a model for other students’ crossroads programs.

Outstanding Commitment to Learning

Students who are identified in Semester Reports as demonstrating consistently positive attitudes and active commitment to learning, will receive a gold sticker on their reports. Students who receive two gold stickers in a year receive a special award at the Presentation Day Ceremony.

Peer Tutoring - "Power Hour" Homework Club & Peer Reading

A peer tutor reading program has been conducted for several years. A small group of Year 11 students are trained to work with Year 7 students, who have additional learning needs, during the daily home room period, assisting with the understanding of an authentic text. The program is coordinated by the Learning and Support teacher.
The program provides an opportunity for the senior students to develop a supportive relationship with a younger student. The Year 7 students also benefit from the program through gains in reading ability particularly in comprehension and vocabulary, because their learning is supported by a senior member of the school community.

The homework club is a program that is offered three afternoons per week in the library. A group of Years 9-10 peer tutors assist the select group of 30 students (Years 7-8) with homework tasks, reading, time management and organisation. A teacher is also present during these sessions for assistance and supervision. This program provides an opportunity for the Years 9-10 students to develop leadership skills, support their Duke of Edinburgh program and to participate in their school community. The program also provides support for the younger students in their transition into secondary school.

Wellbeing Day - Year 12

Year 12 

An intensive wellbeing day for Year 12 students takes place early in Term 1 in preparation for the HSC.   The day focusses on school/life balance, life beyond the HSC and developing a growth mindset. The day’s sessions include:
A question and answer discussion with students from previous years’ HSC groups and various women in the community.
Goal setting and growth mindset
Habits of Mind
Mindfulness/meditation 
 

Year 11

Crossroads: is a mandatory program designed to help Year 11 students address the issues of health, safety and wellbeing at a time when they face significant changes and challenges in their lives. It aims to build student’s sense of empowerment and respect for themselves and others.
 
Year 11 Camp complements the Crossroads program. It aims to support senior students as they address changing issues related to identity, independence and their changing responsibilities. Students are involved in initiative games, team building games which require effective communication, and outdoor activities to ensure students leave with greater confidence and optimism for their future endeavours. The program also includes a growth mindset presentation, study skills and relaxation sessions.
Max Potential is a personal leadership development course which includes coaching, to young leaders from schools, and the community, to help them maximise their potential during their final years at school, and beyond. It also focuses on the local community and ways that they can work to improve it
 

Year 10

Brainstorm Productions ‘Wired’ performance: a confronting play that highlights the causes and effects of stress and depression associated with examinations, relationships and everyday life. It focuses on key concepts such as mental health, examination pressure, resilience, concentration, depression and positive relationships.
Overcoming Adversity presentation by Michael Crossland whose life has been filled with adversity and overwhelming odds, yet has not let that get in the road of achieving unbelievable heights. His message is about resilience, strength, choices we have in life and about taking control when changes occur.
 

Year 9

Brainstorm Productions ‘The Hurting Game’ performance: shows students how ongoing negative relationships at school and online can affect their self esteem and their future. The Hurting Game AntiBullying Program covers: cyber footprint, harassment, body image, peer pressure, resilience, binge drinking, social websites and positive relationships.
 

Year 8

Brainstorm Productions ‘Cyberia’ performance: an investigation into the pitfalls of technology including cyber bullying at school, stress, lack of privacy and desensitisation. The Cyberia program covers: social websites, isolation, internet addiction and digital citizenship.
High Resolves Global Citizens program: This program develops student’s ability to think beyond themselves. It motivates them to make a difference in their own and other’s lives. In this program, students explore the mindsets and skills needed to thrive in a global society. They develop empathy and a sense of social justice. Modules include: Personal Impact and Social Justice.
 

Year 7

Peer support program: Year 7 are involved in the peer support program which is run by Year 10 students. Peer support is a peer led, skills based, experiential learning program which empowers young people to support each other and contribute positively to society. It helps to develop in students the key skills of resilience, assertiveness, decision making, problem solving and leadership.
Brainstorm Productions ‘Verbal Combat’ performance: a unique cyber bullying program delivered by two young actors which focuses on cyber bullying, social media, texting bystanders and exclusion.
Year 7 camp designed to help students with the transition from primary to high school. The camp involves fun and rewarding challenges that activate key learning in communication, decision making, problem solving, resilience, team building and leadership.
 

Peer Support Program

The Peer Support Program is based on the principle that at every level and in every age group in society, people absorb information and values from each other. Peer Support and positive peer influence are introduced into the school community by training Year 9 students during Term 4 to act as group leaders in Year 10 to incoming Year 7 students.

The Peer Support Program helps children live with more direction. It gives Year 10 students opportunities for self development and provides Year 7 students with a supportive environment in which to develop their own individuality. The Head Teacher Wellbeing and Peer Support Coordinator are the contacts for this program.

Home Room

Each day a home room period is scheduled for 10 minutes before recess. Home room groups consist of about 30 students, with most staff allocated to a group. The purpose of the home room period is to mark the roll, collect notes, read the daily messages, distribute information (e.g. absences and library reminders) and to provide guidance to students including uniform, merit award system. Extended Home Room sessions are held throughout the year for pastoral care purposes, as part of the school’s proactive student wellbeing program.

Mentor Program

The teacher/student mentor program is available as an option for Year 12 students. A teacher mentor can support a student to develop the values, attitudes and behaviours needed to persevere with school work and provide guidance throughout the HSC year. Teacher mentors and Year 12 student mentees meet on a fortnightly basis and discuss skills such as goal setting, time management/organisational skills, stress management etc.

The RAISE program is another mentor program which is offered to select Years 8-9 students. This program involves a one on one weekly meeting with a trained community mentor. It is designed to provide further support to students from another trusted adult.

Merit Award Scheme

Willoughby Girls High School values learning and encourages each girl to strive to achieve her best. Individual progress and outstanding achievement is recognised and rewarded through the attainment of Bronze, Silver and Gold Merit Awards:

  • Level 1 Bronze - Bronze Awards are issued by teachers throughout the semester to support our 'commitment to learning' goals, as seen below:
  • - completes homework/assignments
  • - completes tasks in class
  • - is well prepared and organised
  • - listens attentively and follows directions
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  • Level 2 Silver - These certificates are awarded after a student has accumulated five or more Bronze Awards in one semester. Students who achieve four Bronze Awards in each semester are eligible for a Silver Award. Silver Awards are awarded each half of the year during the Silver Merit Award Assembly. The assembly is followed by morning tea for recipients and their guests.
  • Level 3 Gold -These certificates are awarded at the Presentation Day Ceremony. Students who receive one Silver certificate in each semester are eligible for a Gold Award. These certificates are awarded for outstanding effort in a range of endeavours over the year.