Ed Week video stories
Watch our Ed Week 2022 profile video stories and see how NSW education is creating futures.
Caringbah North Public School (Dharawal Country) student Lennox Wade is helping create better futures for children in need via the ‘Snacktember’ movement – an innovative scheme she founded at just 3 years old.
I'm Lennox, I’m nine years old and I go to Caringbah North Public School.
When Lennox came to me as a preschooler, her mum mentioned to me that Lennox had a little project.
Snacktember is where I collect snacks and we give them to Oz Harvest and then they would give them to the kids who don't have any snacks.
I had a feeling that it would grow big, but I never thought it would grow this big.
We make a box with a sign saying ‘Snacktember’ and then we would take the box to school and at the end of September we would give it to Oz Harvest.
It started off with only one little box at my preschool. Since I’ve started with one little box, it's been 500 kilos.
The One to Watch Award. I was very happy to be announced as a finalist.
Everyone was sitting there, fingers crossed under the table. When they called her name out, what can you do other than cry and you're still shocked, of course.
When I won the award, I felt very happy, very excited, very surprised.
When she brought her little trophy in, that was a huge moment. I think we had 30 kids clamoring around it. "What is it? Young... of the year, of the year?!" She says, "Yes, yes. It’s of the year.” And she's telling me that there was 17-year-old girls and 16-year-old girls and she was the shortest. But I can imagine her in that room, her voice would transcend her height.
A lot of students can look to Lennox and her involvement in Snacktember and think that they could do it too.
So we’re always encouraging the students of our school to take initiative and responsibility. And Lennox is a shining example of that.
Lennox is creating her own future by putting herself out there in all of these different areas, both in the school and out of it.
Our biggest goal in this is just to not clip her wings. Just to let her know, that you know what, she can do any damn thing she wants.
I think Snacktember is setting a future because it's gonna help the people who don't have food and who are homeless.
And definitely, it’s inspired the kids at my school because they’ve been trying to make the world a better place.
Video: Goodooga Central School
From an isolated corner of north-west NSW, Goodooga Central School (Muruwari and Kamilaroi Country) is showing how education can springboard students into limitless career futures, all while achieving their HSC.
Goodooga Central School is a little school way out in the never-never.
Approximately 500km from Dubbo.
You've always got a home in Goodooga. It's a nice little town, very close-knit community.
We run a very big 'Transition to Work' program, that allows our students to be able to start a traineeship or an apprenticeship. So they have the opportunity to make that part of their HSC and it also allows them to work while they're at school. Our main goal is to provide as many opportunities as we can for our students.
Just because we are in a rural and remote area, doesn't mean that these students need to miss out.
We go down to Dubbo for five days. We pick five different places to work at. I really liked Education Support, so the next time I went down, I did a full five days of just Education Support and they organised it so I had a traineeship. By the time I'm finished, I'll have a Cert 3 in Education Support and I'll be able to go straight into the workforce.
Aunty Karen. She's been amazing. She's like the reason that we get to do what we do.
I go with the kids. I'm passionate about the kids. I love it because it's giving them opportunity. Try and get them ready for the big wide world.
She's our mum away from home when we're there. Always like going above and beyond. We need more Aunty Karens out there in the world.
A lot of our staff here have grown up in Goodooga, so they know the limitations of being in a rural and remote community.
I'm a very proud person to call Goodooga my home. I came to this school and I've seen kids come through and their parents come through. Yeah, nothing like Goodooga Central.
I am passionate about helping our Indigenous students. Like it's very good to help mob get to where they need to be and to be able to like, take care of your own like that. Like you're helping this little five-year-old, become the person they want to be. Five little nice words from us can make their entire day.
Through our 'Transition Pathways' program and our students achieving the HSC, we've had a 100% success rate which the whole school staff, parents, carers and community are extremely proud of.
It's rewarding to see our students achieve and succeed. That main goal in the light of the tunnel is when they graduate on our graduation night. And that really is the proudest moment ever.
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Video: Vouch for Lismore
Widescale flooding in the Northern Rivers floods earlier this year left many parts of the region uninhabitable, including local schools in Lismore.
To support those affected once the immediate emergency responses had left, The Rivers Secondary College (Bundjalung Country) started the ‘Vouch for Lismore’ fundraiser.
Over the last couple of years here, we went from fires, to a flood, to COVID, to the biggest flood in recorded history.
It was obviously mind blowing, seeing the entirety of Lismore under water. It's good to see now that everyone is so optimistic with moving forward and getting Lismore back to where it was.
My name is Lochlan Maguire. I'm School Captain at the Kadina High Campus. It was tough in the beginning. What stayed is just the impact it really has on the entirety of Lismore. So it's kind of just rebuilding slowly. It happened pretty rapid and we had to get out really quick. Everyone was kind of just gathered outside on the little bit that wasn't under water. Just looking at the chaos that just happened.
We lost our school. It was completely inundated with water. I was doing three major works and I lost everything.
The Rivers Secondary College is the heart of education in Lismore. I really want to see as we move forward, that our kids just get stronger from this.
We wanted something that we would be able to provide some support to families once those immediate responses had left.
The teachers and principals have done a lot of supporting. They had a very hard job obviously and they've done really well.
The community does look to the school as a form of support and we facilitate that role on a daily basis.
The focus is on just seeing the kids develop and recover from the trauma that they've all been through.
We came up with the idea of Vouch For Lismore, that meant that, we would go out to our broader community and ask for help. And the way they could help us is run their own fundraising activities. From bake stalls, to fundraising drives, to donation buckets, and then convert those proceeds into vouchers. What we ended up with was over a thousand vouchers being sent, as well as over $75,000 of fundraised funds coming through to us as well. So we made over $130,000.
Just the overwhelming desire of people just wanting to support us here in Lismore has been just profound.
It helps to see people do still care and they're still providing all that help.
I suppose it's like, you know, the old Australian way. Your mate's down, dig in, help them out. The whole community have sort of got behind it and every sort of little bit has helped.
It's not a huge amount of money per family necessarily. It's not going to replace heirlooms, it's not going to rebuild houses. But I think the greatest thing is about that impact. It's that, in that resilient community that we have, we stand ready to help everybody when they need us too. You know, it's created a pretty lovely reciprocal thing I think, about public schools across the state.
Being school captain through all this, I have had a bigger role in representing my school and it does feel good to be able to help through this.
I want to stand up for my school and I want to stand up for everyone who's been affected by the flood because it's such a hard thing to deal with and we really do need role models at the moment.
Coming to school is probably one of the best things that everyone can do, just to try and get some more normality back in our lives. Honestly, just taking every day, day by day, just trying to put one foot in front of the other.
The number one message in all of this is the power of public education and the power of what people can do together. When we're empowered to make those decisions and move together as a team, to keep in step and make sure that people are cared for, is pretty special.
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