- Issue 12: The Astonisher
- French Postcards – Year 9
- Black-out Poetry – Phoebe Azzopardi
- Changing the Law: Low Power Vehicles – an Oral Presentation – Chris Davis
- Defining the National Disability Insurance Scheme – Tealia Holmes
- Leather Making – Ruby West
- Illustration Nation – Alexis Shegog
- Photography Camp - various artists
- Top End Camp – Amber Besser, Harry Daniello & Harper Tutton
- Peninsula Energy Challenge Camp – Anita Lang, Zoe Costello-Edwards, Noah Hull & Max McSweeney
- Urban Adventure – Matt Jeffries
- Surf Development Camp – Fletcher Poll & Lally Penna
- Yarrawonga Golf Camp – Raia Flinos & Thomas Lewis
- Falls Creek Camp – Ryan Oakley & Ethan Mangopoulos
- Energise and Revive at the Hive – Lyla Perkin
- Horse Riding in the High Country – Imogen Tabacco
Issue 12: The Astonisher
Dear Parents, Students and Friends,
Enjoy this peek at some of the interesting and diverse learning experiences from Term 3, in the twelfth edition of ‘The Astonisher’.
Activities Week camps have been a highlight yet again, with Legally Blonde showcasing some wonderful talent, SIS highlights and all manner of in-class experiences providing a huge array of challenges for our students to investigate and overcome.
Have a wonderful holiday break. We'll see you back, refreshed and revived, for a huge Term 4!
Head of Senior Campus
Lou Lou Burton, Lucia Puleio, Tealia Holmes, Gigi Footner, Eliza Cooney and April Strilec.
In Australia, we’ve got some of the safest roads in the world. In 2016, Australia had the 15th lowest rate of road related injuries and death. According to the 2018 census, over 9.2 million people were recorded as commuting to work. However, the census can only be partaken in if you’re over the age of 18, this leaves a fair chunk of the younger population who have to often rely on lifts from parents, older friends, and public transport out of the picture. Over 60.1 million people in Australia between the ages of 15 and 24 have a job in, so demand for transport is very high. In countries like the UK, many 16-year old’s have 50cc scooters/mopeds that they can use to get from place to place. You only have to be 16 to get a learner permit on a 50cc vehicle, so it’s a convenient and cheap way to get around.
Australia on the other hand requires all people to be at least 18, and hold a form of driver’s license (learner plates satisfy) before you can then take a 2-day course that allows you to ride a motorcycle/scooter, up to an engine capacity 660cc. I argue that the laws surrounding this should be changed, and people 16 and over should have the right to take a learner’s course, and ride a motorised vehicle of 50cc or less, before then progressing to a higher engine capacity at 18 if they choose.
Due to the low engine capacity, and inability to produce a lot of power, and thus speed, 50cc scooters are relatively safe, and fuel efficient.
Though somewhat outdated, there was a study undertaken in June of 2008 by Vic Roads, that looked at the statistics surrounding moped and scooter use under 50cc. It recorded that in August of 2007, there were 8,632 scooters in Victoria, and seeing as they’re classed as light motorcycles (because of their licensing laws) this accounted for around 6.4 percent of all registered motorbikes in Victoria. Due to the lack of sales of these vehicles (considered light motorcycles), this number has dropped back to relatively the same today as it was in 2007. In August of 2007, VicRoads found that less than 3% of the registered scooters had been involved in an incident of some sort, and whilst almost all of these crashes injured the rider, less than 1% resulted in a fatality. The risk of injury to a minor on a learner’s permit is very low, considering they remain within the legal bounds of that license.
With learners having to successfully pass a practical and theoretical two-day riding course, the likely hood of them being unprepared and ill-informed whilst riding their scooter or moped on the roads is drastically cut. It is far more practical for Australian youths to be able to choose and manage how they get themselves to work, social events, and other places. They’ll have a greater ability to choose how they do this when they eventually get a preliminary car or motorbike license, and won’t be thrown straight into the deep end.
Allowing younger riders to access low power scooter style motor vehicles would streamline the safety procedures that are briefly introduced to older riders when they go for a motorbike license, this creates benefits that may make this law more useful and effective for completely different purposes further down the track. Allowing a 16+ year old to use a 50cc scooter or moped would be incredibly safe, and given that the two-day training course was compulsory, and run to a high standard, the younger riders would be much more competent and prepared for the roads. In the EU, a rider 16 and over can apply for a learners permit on a 125cc vehicle, which is far more powerful than the 50cc maximum I’m proposing, and according to European commission of mobility and transport, only 1.3% of the people who own these vehicles have been involved in crashes, the vast majority of them being in the older category of riders.
With our current legislation, there is a huge gap in the market for scooter and moped manufacturers, and the sale of these vehicles to 16+ yr old’s would not only be more convenient for the user, but also allow for a boost in the motorcycle economy.
Year 10 (Subject: Law and Order)
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is a federal government initiative that funds and provides supports and services for 460,000 Australians under 65 years old who have a disability1. These 460,000 individuals are some of the total 4 million Australians who have a diagnosed disability 1,2,3. The NDIS attempts to intervene as early as possible to provide supports and services to a person to reduce the impact of a disability or a developmental delay3, and to build their skills and independence. The NDIS works with individuals to create a plan or a written agreement that is supposed to provide help, support and funding. These plans often don’t work for the people that they are trying to help. This report investigates some of the issues concerning this.
The NDIS issue - a summary
Whilst heralding a much-needed overhaul of the disability sector, the implementation of the NDIS has led to significant issues that continue to affect the support services available to people with a disability and their families4. These issues include things like; the NDIS supporting people with a disability in regional areas through support groups5, lack of accommodation of diversity7, services closing due to the removal of state funding6, an exponential increase of waiting time for people to learn if they have been assessed as meeting the eligibility criteria7, NDIS portal issues7 and the use of complex terminology and confusing ‘jargon’.
The $22 billion scheme has encountered multiple problems since it began in 2016, with roughly 1000 complaints being launched to the National Disability Insurance Agency each month. Significant changes to the NDIS have been promised by the Coalition, with the intention of giving participants of this scheme more certainty over their plans. The disability sector has been ‘suffering a silent crisis’ under the NDIS, with organisations, individuals and families all feeling the effects. 75% of providers (people who provide NDIS-supported services) have said the NDIS is not working well8.
Many people have taken this to court, such as Ms Tegan Sharp, a 25-year-old living in NSW suffering from cerebral palsy and lifelong physical and intellectual disabilities, taking her case to the Supreme Court9.
Funding through the NDIS
NDIS-funded support may include therapies, technologies or equipment to help with daily living activities, or modifications to the home. NDIS won't fund support that is the responsibility of mainstream services like the education or health systems10.
You can appeal internally made decisions in the NDIS at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal1. The NDIS Quality & Safeguards Commission has recently been established.
Legal definition of a disability (11)
"disability" in relation to a person means—
(a) a sensory, physical or neurological impairment or acquired brain injury or any combination thereof, which—
(i) is, or is likely to be, permanent; and
(ii) causes a substantially reduced capacity in at least one of the areas of self-care, self- management, mobility or communication; and
(iii) requires significant ongoing or long-term episodic support; and
(iv) is not related to ageing; or
(b) an intellectual disability; or
(c) a developmental delay
NDIS eligibility criteria (12)
People with a disability that leads to either an intellectual, cognitive, neurological, sensory or physical impairments, or impairments that can be attributed to a psychiatric condition, whose disabilities are permanent or likely to be permanent, and whose disabilities mean they have a substantially reduced capacity to communicate, socialise, learn, be independently mobile, care for themselves and self-manage are eligible to receive help from the NDIS.
The current status of the issue
Surveys - they are conducting surveys in August and September 2019 to help identify the types of supports that lead to good outcomes, and to improve the NDIS13.
Why I think the media has included this in its content
I think this issue has been published by the media because it affects many people, and it has a significant impact. People are entitled to and have been promised support services to assist them with their disability, or to assist them in helping care for somebody who has a disability. These needs are not being met to a satisfactory degree, with issues arising such as NDIS refusing to help people with certain conditions and NDIS providing support services that are geographically too far away for people, with large transport bills occurring because of this.
Who this issue impacts
This issue significantly impacts people who have a disability, their families, their carers, their friends and the general public. People who live with a permanent disability aren’t given the help and support they need, or themselves and their carers endure unnecessary stress. For example, 21-year-old Liam McGarrigle from the small town of Moriac, Geelong has an Autism Spectrum Disorder and an Intellectual Disability14. As part of his NDIS plan, he was going to work and participating in a disability training and social group. He had to catch a taxi, as he can’t drive and there are no public transport services available. All up, his taxi expenses cost $15,850 a year, creating a huge financial burden for his family. Liam took his case to the Federal Court in 2016, arguing that part of his agreement with the NDIS was that they would only partially fund services and the costs associated with them14.
After Liam’s case, the Federal Court ruled that the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) is required to fully fund any supports and services it has deemed reasonable and necessary. They will no longer be able to offer partial funding of supports such as transport to the work or service placements set out in an individual care plan. This ends a practice that has left the family and carers of people living with a disability out of pocket14.
How this issue is being resolved
This issue is not being resolved and is still highly debated today1. Services such as the Bridges Program, which taught life skills to people with an intellectual disability has recently closed, with people enraged at the poor results and funding produced by the NDIS6. Advocacy groups, such as the Victorian Advocacy League for Individuals with Disability (VALID), and organisations like the Peak Organisation in the Victorian Disability Sector and the Disability Services Commissioner; representing people with an intellectual disability and their families have been inundated with complaints about the NDIS1. Individuals also continue the fight for justice in court.
In conclusion, the NDIS has encountered many issues through its funding and implementation. These issues are not currently being resolved, with huge numbers of complaints being launched, and the NDIS not taking any significant action. In the future, I hope these issues are resolved so necessary care, supports and services can be provided to the people with disabilities who need them, their carers and their families.
Year 9 (Subject: Law and Order)
- Michelle Holmes - Disability Specialist Practitioner, Family Services, Anglicare Victoria Southern Region
- Australian Network on Disability - https://www.and.org.au/pages/disability-statistics.html
- National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) - https://www.ndis.gov.au/understanding/how-ndis-works
- The Guardian, Scott Morrison Launches Review of the NDIS - https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2017/jan/20/scott-morrison-launches-review-of-national-disability-insurance-scheme
- NDIS Plans Challenged in Federal Court - https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-07-20/expiry-ndis-plan-challenged-in-federal-court/10013708
- abc.net, Moana Hope fights to stop her disabled sister’s care program from shutting - https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-06-08/aflw-moana-hope-fights-for-disabled-sister-blames-ndis/11192204
- The Conversation, What needs to happen to get the NDIS back on track - https://theconversation.com/heres-what-needs-to-happen-to-get-the-ndis-back-on-track-117835
- ABC News, NDIS systems and processes not working well - https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-11-19/national-disability-insurance-scheme-service-providers-funding/10509734
- Lander and Rogers Lawyers, Supreme Court decision highlights uncertainty in NDIS - https://www.landers.com.au/insights/publications/health-and-ageing/supreme-court-decision-highlights-uncertainty-in-ndis-funding/
- NDIS Funded Supports - https://www.ndis.gov.au/understanding/supports-funded-ndis
- Legal definition of a disability -http://www.legislation.vic.gov.au/Domino/Web_Notes/LDMS/PubStatbook.nsf/51dea49770555ea6ca256da4001b90cd/0B82C05270E27961CA25717000216104/$FILE/06-023a.pdf
- NDIS eligibility criteria -https://www.ndis.gov.au/about-us/operational-guidelines/access-ndis-operational-guideline/access-ndis-disability-requirements
- NDIS, Measuring outcomes for people with a disability -https://www.ndis.gov.au/news/3432-measuring-outcomes-people-disability
- NDIS case win in Federal Court - https://www.legalaid.vic.gov.au/about-us/news/ndis-test-case-win-for-young-liam-mcgarrigle-in-federal-court
Interesting court cases and articles
This year in Activities Week a group of people participated in an activity called Leather Making. It’s an activity where you can make a variety of things out of leather. Here are some examples you can make keychains, dog leashes, satchels, saddles, belts, iPhone cases, covers for tools or even cuffs and human collars.
We got a visit from the well-known leather and jewelry creator Kylie Gartside who we might add is very nice. She loves coming down to us every year to see what the students will create, to see us help each other, seeing us make new friends, learn new skills and to get to know us all. She taught us a variety of skills which include stitching, dyeing, hole-punching, cutting, hammering and many more. We all got a lot done in that week. We surprised our teacher Ms. Ward with our creations, heck we may have even surprised ourselves. We learnt a lot about ourselves and each other this week. It’s a very good thing to try if you want to try something different artistically. If we observed one thing this week it was that it was a very enjoyable experience for all of us.
These past few weeks, I was lucky enough to participate in the Illustration Nation Activity. It’s run by Pearl Baillieu – or the Nun of the Ninch, as she’s known in the online art community.
The Activity was a great experience and gave us the opportunity to customise our own skate deck (or any item of our choice). First, we coated it in gesso, then took to it with Sharpies, Poscas and fineliners!
It was such a wonderful way to meet and connect with likeminded artists, try something new and learn all kinds of different techniques. I am incredibly glad I picked this Activity and recommend it to anyone who wants to get their art on, regardless of skill or experience.
My only complaint is that it couldn’t last long enough!
Thank you, for these creative images from Photography Camp:
True Sheridan-Grubb, Anthony Ahtypis, Bridie Harrison, Nikki Sartori, Darcy Simpson, Alice Giacomi, Katharine Baker, Tayla Basso, Dan Fidele, John Hannaford, Niamh Little, Alexandra Mathews, Emily Nairn, Nick O'Leary, Samantha Pickering, Lucia Puleio, Will Stafford and Jack Wittingslow-Miller.
For Activities Week we travelled up to Northern Territory exploring beautiful rock pools, waterfalls and sunset lookouts. Our first night we were lucky enough to have a special fish and chips dinner on a sandbar looking out over Darwin’s bay as the sun set. Then we set off to Katherine where we kayaked through the magnificent gorges and saw incredible waterfalls. We were given the opportunity to explore along the river of Nitmiluk National Park where we spent our day in the crystal-clear water and enjoyed a special lunch prepared by the Nitmiluk camp kitchen. At Kakadu we were lucky enough to have gone on the most breath-taking sunrise cruise followed by a buffet breakfast; it was truly a one in a life time opportunity. Bulley Rockhole and Florence Falls were one of our last places. The water looked magical even though the water was freezing cold! Our last night we were taken to Mindil Beach Market which was not only one of the highlights, it was our best dinner yet. We watched the sunset on the beach which just made it sadder that we had to leave the next day. Overall Top End was such a remarkable experience and we would highly recommend it!
Amber Besser and Harry Daniello
I chose the Top End camp as it was an opportunity to get away from Melbourne’s questionable weather whilst being immersed into the oldest culture in the world and seeing some of the most jaw-dropping sunsets and views. During the 10-day trip we went kayaking throughout Katherine Gorge where we were able to explore the ancient skyscraper rocks and swim through the gorges. I loved having dinner every night looking at an otherworldly sunset … whether that was sitting on a sand bank eating fish and chips, or on the border of Arnhem Land surrounded by ancient Aboriginal artworks, or by the pool watching Mr Ryan’s karaoke. We watched the sunrise on a morning cruise where we saw wild buffalos and crocodiles and spent our days swimming through waterfalls and in water holes or sitting on the minibus pretending we didn’t notice how badly Mr Dav was grinding the gears.
Every day we saw another breath-taking view which we all swore was the most amazing … until we saw the next view. Over the course of the camp, we all were given a better understanding of the impacts of colonialism on Aboriginal culture. We were also able to see how historic Aboriginal culture is, by being in the centre of it.
I've had so much fun during this Camp Week. Overall I've made some new friends, got closer to old ones and learnt so many skills to use for the future. I'm so grateful to have the opportunity to come to Woodleigh and go on all these camps and activities. I can't wait to go on future camps and get to learn new life skills.
I loved this camp! I found that this camp was more challenging than I thought. From Mountain Bike Riding to Clay Target Shooting and Archery. I will be so tired but I am glad that I did all that.
Peninsula Energy Challenge Camp
The activities make you feel like a champ
From Gravity Zone to the Hot Springs
When I got to the top of Arthurs Seat I felt like a king.
On Camp Week I enjoyed learning new things and picking up activities that I have never done before. I will start to do some of these activities in my daily life because of this camp.
I had a great time on Urban Adventure. My favorite activities were on the second day when we did go karting, laser tag, and an escape room. I had never done go karting or an escape room before, and I had a great time doing them, even though we didn’t make it out of the room in time.
I did many things I haven’t before, including going to the Eureka Skydeck and out on the edge, going on a tour of Marvel Stadium, and the Melbourne Star. The Edge experience on the Eureka Skydeck was one of the highlights of the camp for me, I have always been quite afraid of heights, but it was really cool to see the city from such a unique angle. The Marvel Stadium tour was really fun and interesting, especially seeing all the behind the scenes stuff below the stadium. The Melbourne Star was a really good experience, it showed off the city in a great way. This camp is a great way to see the city and had a lot of unforgettable experiences.
Throughout the week, we have participated in Surf Development camp. Everyone had an amazing time surfing and learning new techniques and skills, as well as getting to know people from different year levels and with different abilities. We had the opportunity to surf at heaps of different surf beaches on Phillip Island that catered for everyone’s needs. These breaks included Flynns Reef, Forest Caves Beach, and Smiths Beach (which was our “crash pad”). We stayed in a two-storey mansion a 30 second walk to the water. Not to flex but it was legitness!
We spent our bus rides boppin’ to some mad tunes, and our evenings reviewing the footage from our previous surfs. We also took to competing in sting pong tournaments. Shane Hogan was our sick as coach for the week, who was prepared to shred up the waves with us. When we were analyzing our videos, he would give us tips to help improve our rides and make our snaps more vertical, our reos have more spray and our cutbacks link into roundhouses. We woke up each day, ran down to the beach and checked the waves to see if it was firing. Some days, we would pull double surf sessions. After these, we would demolish all of the food in the kitchen to fuel up for the afternoon sesh.
On Wednesday afternoon, we had an amazing surf just out at Smiths. The vibe in the water was the best, and everyone was encouraging each other and calling them onto waves. There was a huge rainbow, and we were all completely stoked. We also had the opportunity to go check out a board shaper, which everyone thought was sick as. Learning about the methods, designing, and work put into a single deck. On the last night, we had a good pub feed at the Kilcunda Pub, where a solid 10 parmas were eaten. “Don’t stop me now” by Queen was the theme song of the camp, and it was blasted in the back seats on multiple occasions.
From the beginning to the end of the week, each person had improved so much and had become so much more confident in the water. There were so many bonds made between everyone, and we all had sickest camp ever.
Fletcher Poll (Year 7) and Lally Penna (Year 9)
On Monday, a mini bus full of keen golfers set off for Yarrawonga. With a few stops on the way, we eventually arrived at Yarrawonga Golfers Resort. We then unpacked our clubs and got ready for our first golf lesson of the week. Two pros from Black Bull Golf Club, Glenn and Andrew, taught us the ways of a perfect swing. We found this lesson extremely helpful as it prepared us for the week ahead. We then set off for dinner at Bourke’s Family Bistro, where we enjoyed burgers along with many other delicious meals.
Bright and early Tuesday morning, we set off for Black Bull, where we were split into two groups, one on the front nine, and one on the back nine. This was a very interesting round as everyone was pretty rusty, and wasn’t entirely sure of what they were doing. We then ate lunch and hit the driving range, while a group decided to go off and play another round. For dinner, we crossed the border and had a nice three course meal at a Golf Club in New South Wales.
On Wednesday, we ventured out to TunzaFun, where we had a round of mini golf. Marlon won the competition, finishing 11 under par! We were then able to go on the dodgems and spinning teacups. Afterwards we headed out to have lunch in a park by the river. We happened to meet brave pelicans, who tried to steal our food, and Marlon was attacked, which we all found very amusing. We had a competitive round of Ambrose, which ended in a very close finish. That night, we returned to Bourke’s for steak night, where we all enjoyed a nice steak.
Thursday, we were split into two groups again, and did a clinic with Glenn and Andrew. They taught us how to align our putts properly, and chip and run with accuracy. We then played another competitive round of Ambrose, and it was another close call. We headed back to Bourke’s for parma night, which was delicious.
On the last day, we packed our bags, and left the Golfers Resort for the final time, before heading off to Black Bull where we were able to choose our groups, resulting in an enjoyable round before we had to leave. We then went into the town, to stop for some lunch, and everyone decided KFC was the best option. Then we set off for home and arrived back around 5.
Overall, we found golf camp a memorable experience that we were able to get a lot out of. We developed better relationships with the people around us who we hadn’t really gotten a chance to speak to before. Lastly, we would like to thank Black Bull, and the pros, as well as Mr Macindoe, Ms Cooper, and Lawrence for such a wonderful camp.
Raia Flinos and Thomas Lewis
FALLS CREEK – ACTIVITIES WEEK 2019
Ryan Oakley and Ethan Mangopoulos
During Activities Week I attended ‘Energize and Revive AT The Hive’. I really enjoyed the camp, it was a great mix of challenges and relaxing activities.
I really enjoyed visiting the Ashram because it was a new experience and the environment was unusual, but really pleasant. We worked on a passion project for the week and I decided to read ‘The Dry’ by Jane Harper to reignite my love of reading which I think I’ve done successfully. We made pasta from scratch and Cara and I prepared the sauce for the group. I also loved the butter chicken which tasted really good. I contributed to the week by helping out when I could and making people feel comfortable. Other activities included daily yoga, a steam train and bike ride and bush walks in the beautiful environment.
Words can't describe how gorgeous each of the rides was, but I will try my best.
Sitting high atop a beautiful, big horse made me feel tall, but seeing the enormous trees tower above made me realise how small we are in this world.
The vast green hills seemed were buried under a blanket of trees, and sparkling creeks and rivers snaked through them.
Riding in the snow was magical. The horses seemed to like the soft, white stuff too. The ice and snow dotted the horizon, and riding closer, the snow became more abundant until the snow covered the ground. The air was still, time felt frozen, it was as if we were in a snow globe, unmoving.
We travelled through the thick of the bush, past small shrubs and towering trees, animals dotted the landscape and birds flew from tree to tree overhead. All I could hear was the soft noise of hooves hitting the ground, the birds rustling in their nests and singing to each other. It was a strange silence, one that nobody felt they needed to fill the gap.
Each night, after the horses had been fed and let into the paddock, we gathered around a warm fire. The fire reached out its palms, hugged us, fighting away the cold. The flames danced all night, while we knitted and talked and played games till late. Each morning everyone rose bright and early, excited for the day ahead of them.
Riding in the high country was a beautiful experience. I wish I could be there every day.