GIPPSLAND Grammar celebrated their Year 12s’ Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR) results with a morning tea at Garnsey Senior Campus last week.

An ATAR score determines a student’s position relative to all the other students in the state and is one of the key factors used to grant students a tertiary place in the first round of offers, which take place this Thursday, December 21.

Thirteen per cent of the regional school’s 2023 graduating cohort achieved an ATAR above 90, placing them in the top 10 per cent of students in the state, and 26 students achieved a study score of 40 or above in at least one subject, placing them in the top nine per cent of students in that subject in the state.

But two students achieved perfect study scores of 50: Zara Clydesdale in Media and Ellen Roberts in Biology.

A total of 40 per cent of Gippsland Grammar’s students achieved an ATAR of more than 80.

The school’s median ATAR for 2023 was 73.8.

Gippsland Grammar’s DUX for 2023 was Georgia Shell with an ATAR of 97.6. She said she plans to study an Arts degree majoring in French at the University of Melbourne next year.

“Year 12 is difficult for everyone but I chose the subjects I was most passionate about and put lots of hours of work into,” she said.

“It was hard balancing all my extra curriculars and passions with the school work because I am passionate about musical theatre and attend this while studying (which) was a challenge, but that’s also what gave me the energy to try so hard.”

Gippsland Grammar Principal, Michele Wakeham was thrilled about the results, and said students were very persistent in their studies.

“This year’s cohort has shown such resilience through the adversity of COVID during much of their secondary education,” she said.

“Congratulations to all for the excellent effort the students put into their classes, co-curricular activities and assessments. They have been wonderful role models for other students to follow. A huge thank you to the teachers who persisted with skill and expertise. “We are very proud of our community and our Year 12 students.”

A Gippsland Grammar spokeswoman also said many students successfully transitioned to the workforce through an apprenticeship or traineeship.

“Tertiary study is not the desired destination for all students, and we are so proud of the students that have this year started their journey in the workforce,” they said.

“We are grateful for the ongoing support of local businesses and companies who support our work experience activities and employ our students. We aim to prepare our students for the next step in their journey, regardless of the pathway they choose.”

Gippsland Grammar’s 2023 Year 12 cohort included 67 students from across Gippsland, the Latrobe Valley and far East Gippsland. Some of these students were either full-time or part-time boarders at the school’s Blackwood House. Four students chose to complete their VCE unscored, meaning they did not receive an ATAR despite successfully obtaining their VCE and graduating.

Students joining DUX Georgia Shell as the school’s highest achievers with an ATAR above 90 include Nathaniel Shelton (Bairnsdale), Samithri Kaluarachchi (Sale), Leah Brutovic (Paynesville), Lailah Moore (Bairnsdale), Monty Richardson (Eagle Point), Edward Courtier (Bairnsdale) and Sophie Alexander (Bairnsdale).

AT St Paul’s Anglican Grammar School, Traralgon, there was also a number of high ATAR results.

Fourteen per cent of students achieved an ATAR over 90 and 69 per cent of students achieved an ATAR above 70.

The percentage of students who achieved an ATAR 80 or above was 46 per cent, placing them in the top 20 per cent in the state; 98 per cent of students achieved an ATAR over 50.

The 2023 Dux was Hamna Mohamed Fahmi with an ATAR of 99.75 and a perfect study score of 50 in Psychology. She said she plans to study Medicine at Monash University.

“The Year 12 subjects were very hard and there was a huge workload,” she said.

“But I was able to manage the stress because I would always talk to my teachers who would help me overcome the challenges and get the most help I could.”

St Paul’s Principal, Cameron Herbert said he was proud of how students had actively pursued their educational ambitions.

“The school is incredibly proud of the way our class of 2023 embraced every opportunity they were presented with both in and outside of the classroom,” he said.

“The Class of 2023 approached this year with maturity and good humour and have actively pursued their potential to achieve excellent results.”

This year’s cohort have a variety of plans for the immediate future, from tertiary study in areas such as health, commerce and law, apprenticeships, Australian Defence Force traineeships and work.

Students joining DUX Hamna Mohamed Fahmi as the school’s highest achievers with an ATAR above 90 include Shivi Maheshwari (Warragul), Harrison Miller (Pakenham), Devmini Rankethkumbura (Traralgon), Quinn Carmichael (Warragul), Lachlan Speairs (Traralgon), Samuel Williamson (Warragul), Charles Jaques (Warragul), Elsie Steenholdt (Warragul), Lucy Shen (Morwell), Madison Ashley (Warragul), Ocea Urbach (Warragul), Alannah Rogalsky (Traralgon) and David Baker (Warragul).