Extra Curricular & Special Interest
PROGRAMS AVAILABLE DURING THE YEAR
(a) Student Leadership
The Student Representative Council (SRC) is a major activity in our school. The body is elected by their peers as well as the staff of Parkes High School and provides great opportunities for developing student leadership, public debate, decision making and problem solving.
Students don't have to be school captains or house captains to be considered leaders. We encourage our students to be leaders in the classroom and playground, through their support for other students, or their involvement in academic, sporting, cultural or community events and projects eg Charities and Appeals Commity.
Students are encouraged to enter Australia wide and local competitions such as: -
ICAS competitions in English, Mathematics, Digital Technologies, Writing and Science;
Categorical and Algorithmic Thinking Competition (previously known as Informatics);
The Mathematics Challenge for Young Australians; and
The Big Science Competition
Students who achieve a High Distinction in these competitions receive a special award at the end of year assembly; students who perform to a high standard are sometimes offered the chance for further opportunities eg attend Science Camps or Computer programs.
Students are able to extend their learning experience through excursions to the local area and further afield. These excursions into the 'real world' enhance our students' experience in many subjects by direct observation, interviews and field work. Students should not be denied the opportunity to participate in excursions for financial reasons. If financial assistance is required, please contact either Deputy Principals or teacher organising the excursion.
(d) Gifted Education
Opportunities are available to gifted students to explore their capabilities through a variety of means, including workshops and competitions, both within the school and through external avenues.
All students attending Parkes High School are tested in Comprehension and Numeracy using standardised PAT achievement tests. Those students who achieve in the top 20 percentiles (stanine 7) are offered the chance for higher level testing and official identification as being academically gifted. Identification may also occur through IQ testing, teacher nomination along with high academic achievement or parent/student nomination along with high academic achievement.
From 2018 Parkes High School will be offering the Academic Excellence Program, where identified students are offered the chance to study a modified program in English, Science, Mathematics and TAS with an emphasis on deep understanding of content, problem solving and making cross curricular links.
Students who sat the Selective High Schools test in Year 6, and are offered a position, may elect to be part of the Aurora College Virtual Selective High School. These gifted students study Mathematics, English and Science virtually using computers to attend live classes with their teachers, and attend residential schools twice per year for 1 week each time. More information regarding Aurora College may be obtained from http://www.aurora.nsw.edu.au/.
Please contact Ms Dawson who is our Gifted Education Coordinator.
(e) Work Experience
Students in Year 10 are encouraged to complete one week’s work experience, either locally or in regional centres. Students must apply formally for their work experience positions in the same competitive way as in normal work. This includes developing a curriculum vitae, undergoing job interviews, and being evaluated by their employers at the conclusion of the program. All students who complete the program are provided with a Careers Assessment Report and Work Experience Certificate
The success of the Work Experience program can be partly gauged by the number of students obtaining part time and full time work opportunities from their work experience employers.
In addition, our Transition Advisor, Mrs J Morrissey also works with the local community to provide work experience and community service that meets the needs of specific students in Years 7 to 10.
(f) Music and Band
The school is fortunate to have a band, which performs at various events with considerable success. Students may also join ensemble, vocal and instrumental groups and participate in various events. Band members are also encouraged to become members of the Parkes Shire Town Band and Symphony Orchestra.
Parkes High School is now a licensed award unit and can guide students who choose to accept the challenge and strive toward a Duke of Edinburgh Bronze, Silver or Gold award.
Students who are 14 or over can take part in the Duke of Ed which requires students to spend at least 6 months working on four areas: developing a skill, Physical Recreation, Service and The Adventurous Journey.
Completion of the Duke of Ed Award fosters many attributes which develop the student in positive ways and which are highly regarded by employers, eg resilience, tenacity, self confidence, and leadership.
(h) Reconnect and Involve Programs
Reconnect is a program aimed at giving students the opportunity to catch up with any school work they may have fallen behind with at various times.
The program is held in the school library. Students in danger of receiving ‘N’ Awards are able to ‘reconnect’ with the requirements of their courses.
Involve is an innovative program that began in Term 1, 2014. Both Indigenous and non-Indigenous students work together with Mrs D Garner on projects to benefit the school community and the wider community of Parkes.
The program is aimed at improving literacy and numeracy as well as engaging students in creative projects which have a definite visible purpose. Projects to date include a sculpture for Memorial Hill, entry into a public art exhibition, murals for the children’s room at the PCYC, paintings based on a study of contemporary Indigenous art which is to become part of a travelling art show for Parkes Primary Schools and PBL artworks for the High School. The program also strives to develop an understanding of Indigenous culture.
i) Weekly Rap
Weekly Rap is a junior journalist program where students have the opportunity to report , write articles and take photos of school activities. The students then attend the Parkes Champion Post to design a page layout that appears weekly in the local paper