Thank you for submitting your questions through to our Rowville Secondary College Question and Answers form. Our Principal & Leadership Team have now gathered all the questions and answers are listed below. If you have additional questions please submit them by emailing administration@rowvillesc.vic.edu.au.

QUESTION 1.

Can you share the College’s average study score between the programs. E.g. If our child is enrolled in the General Excellence program, what is that program’s average study score?

ANSWER

Every subject has an average study score. It is not possible to break this average down into an average for each program, as students from across all 4 programs combine into different classes. Because every subject is elective, the mix of programs is different in every class. Some of our average study scores that had a mix of students from all 4 programs last year were:

  • Music – 36
  • Health and Human Development – 31
  • Biology – 28.5
  • Drama – 30
  • Further Maths – 30
  • Legal Studies – 28
  • English – 27

QUESTION 2.

How separate are the two campuses and four programs? What activities/events exists when all programs come together? Or do the programs run as separate schools?

ANSWER

While we have two campuses with two programs on each campus the College Leadership have responsibilities across both and many of our meetings incorporate staff on both campuses. The activities which involves students and staff across both campuses include but not exclusive to the Year 7 Camp, House Sports, College Production and music program.

QUESTION 3.

What percentage of students in the General Excellence program at senior level undertaking VCAL as opposed to VCE?

ANSWER

This varies quite a bit from year to year. However, on average we would say approximately 20% of our Senior General Excellence cohort undertake a VCAL pathway.

QUESTION 4.

Can you provide information or data to support the strength of the academic program at General Excellence?

ANSWER

We are extremely proud of the academic outcomes of students in General Excellence. For the past 20 years our top ATAR scores have ranged from 91.40 to 99.90. You can see on our website our Dux from each year. In 2017 our Dux was Annie Hu from the General Excellence program with an ATAR of 99.50. You can also see from our Alumni page on Facebook the breadth of careers that students from General Excellence pursue.

Last year our graduating Year 12 students entered 100 different tertiary courses ranging from Medicine to Companion Animals. 44% of these are studying Bachelor Degrees, 36% are doing Certificates or Diplomas and 20% have commenced apprenticeships or traineeships. We are dedicated to providing a diverse range of subjects in General Excellence and high quality teaching and learning across the College that supports students to pursue successful careers in a world of work that is rapidly changing.

QUESTION 5.

We’re going to apply for the Maths and Science Academy, but are we able to have the General Excellence program as back up if my daughter doesn’t get into the Maths and Science Academy?

ANSWER

If you live within the school zone, you are guaranteed a place in General Excellence. If you live outside of our zone your application will be considered after local students. Over the past few years we have accepted most of the students applying for General Excellence who live outside of our zone.

QUESTION 6.

Has Rowville Secondary College completed Safe Schools? What is the school’s stance on safe schools?

ANSWER

Rowville Secondary College is committed to fostering a safe environment that is supportive and inclusive of all students, including LGBTQI students. Our staff have completed professional development and reviewed processes and policies that support our school being a safe and inclusive place for all students.

QUESTION 7.

We are a same sex family and are wondering about the diversity of the school in regards to this? Are there other kids with same sex parents? Are there any openly ‘queer’ students?

ANSWER

As a strength-based school, we celebrate the uniqueness of every child. We embrace diversity and support each child to develop their full potential. In 2019, in response to student requests, we created a support group for LGBTQI students. This group meets at lunchtimes on a weekly basis.

QUESTION 8.

We can see that the school doesn’t tolerate bullying which is great. Just wondering if there is an inclusion policy or something similar? Could find anything openly available on your website.

ANSWER

We have an Inclusion and Diversity policy approved by the School Council in November 2018. You can find this on our website click here.

QUESTION 9.

What is the number of enrolments at the school and in each year level?  Is there enrolment availability? We are in Belgrave Heights.

ANSWER

We currently have close to 1900 students across two campuses. This equates to roughly 300 students at each year level. Availability for enrolment depends on which program you apply for:

  • GE – we accept all students who live in our neighbourhood zone and most students who apply but live outside of the school zone. In 2020 we have 127 students in year 7 GE.
  • MSA – we have an intake of up to 52 students. Selection is based on successfully meeting the entrance requirements.
  • RIA – intake is up to 78 students. Selection is based on successfully meeting the entrance requirements.
  • RSA – intake is up to 130 students. Selection is based on successfully meeting the entrance requirements.

QUESTION 10.

If our son starts in General Excellence is there possibility to move across to the Maths & Science Academy or Arts Academy down the track if he finds himself more interested and invested to one of these?  He is very passionate in art and literary, but also very interested in video game production and robotic engineering

ANSWER

Our curriculum is specifically designed to ensure easy transition between programs, if required. However, it should be noted that we require students to make a commitment to their program for a full year and so program transfers usually only happen at the commencement of a new academic year. All students changing programs must meet the same entry requirements as external students.

QUESTION 11.

Can you please outline the fees for me?

ANSWER

The fees vary according to program (in some cases specialism) and year level. Therefore it is best to contact the program specific representatives who will provide an indication of the current fee structure for that program.

Please contact:

QUESTION 12.

MSA Immersion Day was understandably cancelled. Going forward, how will this years grade 6’s be assessed? So, we parents can know the outcome, and thus then look at GE or other schools. I already have 2 children in the stream, so I know what is involved.

ANSWER

In light of the current situation, we have had to innovate how students apply/try out for the MSA program for 2021. The new process will be as follows:

  • Interested families/students submit an expression of interest by the 29th of May.
  • The applicant will be sent a STEM Challenge package on the first of June. Students will have 2 weeks to complete the assigned tasks and upload their video submission. The package will provide support materials to complete the video submission, and outline all details regarding the assessment of students’ performance.
  • The STEM Challenge pack will provide students with an opportunity to demonstrate their STEM skills and to create a personal profile to support their application for the MSA program.
  • Student submissions will be judged by an expert STEM panel and parents will be notified of the outcome of this (date of notification is to be confirmed).

QUESTION 13.

Can my son only try out for one sport that he wants to do in future?

ANSWER

Students can try out for more than one sport but would only be offered a position in one sport. When enrolling in a try out please communicate this to the RSA Administration and in particular which sport is their priority.

QUESTION 14.

I would like to know if there are school buses organised for pick up and drop off from school to home and from to home to school?

ANSWER

For an additional cost there are buses coordinated by Rowville Secondary College which picks up and returns students to their local area but does not pick up or drop off at home. Click here for the 2020 bus timetable including pick up areas.

QUESTION 15.

What are the weekend sporting commitments we may be asked to attend?

ANSWER

In the Rowville Sports Academy there are no scheduled commitments on the weekend, the only exception to this is if a student is involved in an interstate or overseas tour. We encourage the athletes to be participating fully in their community sporting team training and competition.

QUESTION 16.

For the Rowville Sports Academy year  7  I would like to understand what a week/fortnight looks like as far as subjects and sports are concerned? Perhaps a sample timetable of a year 7 in the answer section to show parents/students what they will be learning and how much of their chosen sport they will be doing.

ANSWER

All Year 7 students in the Rowville Sports Academy will participate in 10 sessions of coaching a week including two sessions per week in Athletic Development delivered by Exercise Physiologists employed by our partner RISE Health Group. The weekly coaching schedule can be found here.

QUESTION 17.

What subjects are taught in RSA Year 7? Are languages included? I’d like to get an understanding on what subjects are taught?  For example my child isn’t crazy about the amount of hours spent on musical subjects at her current school so I’d like to find out if any, and how many variants in subjects there are within the Year 7 Sport Academy curriculum.

ANSWER

A detailed breakdown is available by clicking here.

QUESTION 18.

Is there sports practice before and after school? Can you attend one over the other?

ANSWER

There are no Year 7 coaching sessions before or after school, we encourage all students to actively participate in their community sport training and competitions.

QUESTION 19.

Can students who enrol in RIA have access to VCAL?

ANSWER

Students in RIA can’t access VCAL. VCAL is a program with specific subjects (Literacy, Numeracy, Personal Development and Work Related Skills) that are taught at school usually over three days. The other two days are spent completing a VET subject and work placement off site. In order for students to fully participate in the RIA program in year 11 and 12, they need to be at school for the same days as VCE students and this is not possible for VCAL students.

In the early days of RIA we did have students in VCAL and they really struggled with the ensemble work in Specialism as they were attending less than half of the classes. We did not feel we were offering a quality program so had to make the decision to only support VCE in the RIA program.

Students can transfer to General Excellence to complete VCAL for their senior years of study if they wish.

QUESTION 20.

What support is there for students who are struggling in areas such as English and Maths?

ANSWER

At RSC we have a comprehensive support system in place which encompasses ACE teams, the Department of Education Middle Years Literacy & Numeracy Support program (MYLNS) and comprehensive tracking of individual student data to determine progress and identify areas requiring further attention. Our ACE teams run at years 7 and 8, in most cases three teachers work with two classes to allow for greater differentiation and engagement of all students. This benefits students as there is a fluidity of teaching and learning based on need and growth.

Currently we also have Quicksmart which is an intervention program designed for students identified as up to 12 months behind expected level. This is an intensive program whereby two students regularly work with one tutor on specific skills as identified by testing. The MYLNS program services students in years 9 and 10 who have been identified as needing assistance with Literacy and or Numeracy. Students work in small teams with expert teachers to up skill their understanding of points of need.

QUESTION 21.

If my child was enrolled for dance, how does the weekly/fortnightly period structure look?

ANSWER

For all specialism subjects (Dance, Drama, Media, Music, Visual Art) students in Year 7 & 8 will do 9 periods of per fortnight (four 96 minute lessons and one 48 minute lesson).

In Years 9 & 10 this increases to 14 periods per fortnight (four 96 minute lessons and two 144 minute lessons).

Students will also do a term of Dance in their Broad Arts subjects in Year 7 and 8.

QUESTION 22.

What camps/excursions or trips do you offer that are specifically for RIA, from year 7-12?

ANSWER

We were planning our inaugural USA RIA Tour for 2021 but we assume that we won’t be able to go. The RIA tour has been planned to occur every two years so hopefully if travel returns to normal we will be able to continue with this plan.

There are no other camps for RIA however there are camps that many RIA students participate in such as the Music Camp and the Production Camp.

Individual Specialisms also participate in a range of excursions. Visual Arts students visit galleries. Music and Drama students go to shows. Dance students have performances of the ballet. Media students visit exhibitions and do filming off site. These excursions change from year to year based on what is available.

QUESTION 23.

I read that there was a test for prospective 2021 Maths and Science Academy students. Are there any more details on this test?

ANSWER

In light of the current situation, we have had to innovate how students apply/try out for the MSA program for 2021. The new process will be as follows:

  • Interested families/students submit an expression of interest by the 29th of May.
  • The applicant will be sent a STEM Challenge package on the first of June. Students will have 2 weeks to complete the assigned tasks and upload their video submission. The package will provide support materials to complete the video submission, and outline all details regarding the assessment of students’ performance.
  • The STEM Challenge pack will provide students with an opportunity to demonstrate their STEM skills and to create a personal profile to support their application for the MSA program.
  • Student submissions will be judged by an expert STEM panel and parents will be notified of the outcome of this (date of notification is to be confirmed).

QUESTION 24.

What are your average class sizes for Year 7 RIA? How many home groups do you have for Year 7 and how many students in total are on the RIA campus?

ANSWER

Year 7 RIA classes for core subjects are usually 26 students however for Specialism this may be smaller. At the Eastern Campus, we have nearly 1100 students. RIA students make up about one third of students at this campus.

QUESTION 25.

If my child is shy or suffers from anxiety, would this impact their chance of being accepted into Visual Arts program at RIA?

ANSWER

Our teachers do the auditions (they will be by portfolio this year for Visual Arts – information will be sent to you) and they have a lot of experience in dealing with shy and anxious students. We endeavour to make this process a positive one for students but we are aware that for some of them it is a real challenge. What we value is students’ passion for their chosen specialism and their capacity to grow, and that is what we seek to discover in the audition process. This year particularly, the process might be easier for shy and/or anxious students as they can audition remotely. Shyness and anxiety are no bar to being a part of the RIA program.