Home' Capricornus Quarterly : September 2011 Contents initiative supports professionals through
mentoring, modelling, and counselling.
The program also highlights the positive
aspects of rural teaching placements
such as the valuable experiences gained
by working with diverse people in a
safe, vibrant and aesthetically appealing
environment. Emphasis on outdoor
activities and familiarity with the
community also help develop pre-service
teachers' notions about rural living and
The research shows that if pre-service
teachers, such as Shannon, either live or
work in a regional setting they are more
likely to become long-serving regional
community members and employees.
"Up until now we had active and
successful, but largely ad hoc, placements
of preser vice teachers at RGS. We believe
this scholarship initiative at the national
university level will bene t the sector
and the School in terms of developing
full-time employment opportunities," Mrs
The School will soon review applicants
for the 2012 Scholarship, focusing
on non-rural universities so they can
be involved in changing pre-service
teachers' attitudes for teaching outside of
"We will instil con dence and empower
preser vice teachers to teach and live
in rural areas through a rst-hand
experience here at one of the best schools
in the country," says Mrs Murphy.
Feeling the regional pull
Originally from Coonamble (population 4800)
in Central West NSW, then Manilla -- outside
Tamworth -- from Year 5, University of
New England pre-service teacher Shannon
Garnsey took a daily 6:30am hour-long
bus ride into school at McCarthy Catholic
College. Halfway through her four-week
placement at The Rockhampton Grammar
School she explains that her upbringing is
driving her to teach in a rural setting after
she graduates from university.
You could have done your work
placement anywhere. Why here?
When I applied I looked up the School. I was
really impressed with the expectations RGS
places on its students and the teachers.
It seemed to me a school of really high
standards in a regional setting.
Tell us about your rst couple of weeks.
The mentors I have had (Mrs Jodie Moore,
English and Ms Carroll Byrne, Drama) have
helped me so much. Not only have I been
able to pass on what I know to the children
but I am learning from them as well. [They
are] quite impressive. To work with [them]
is a privilege. It's so lovely to have a group
of students who are so responsive. I have
learned that things I didn't think could work
can actually work out really well and I have
learned never to underestimate the students.
I've been working here every night in the
upper dorm with Years 9, 10 and 11 students
and I've been able to work with each of those
groups in prep time which has been one of
my favourite parts of this scholarship. It really
gives you another dimension of the students
and [enables you] to get to know them on a
different level. Not only is RGS their School,
it is also their home .
Has your RGS experience changed you?
I've always been encouraged here to 'give it
a go' and I have found that has really helped
me grow as a teacher. When I rst came up
here I was worried because I didn't know
anyone. And I was worried about being lonely.
I should not have worried at all because
boarding staff and everyone here has made
me feel so welcome.
What will you tell your friends and
colleagues back at the University of
I'm so glad that I applied for the scholarship
because it is such as good opportunity to
see what a region school can offer. So many
university students such as me might think,
"No, you could never get that out in the
country or in a regional area." If anyone was
looking to come to school like Rockhampton
Grammar I'd say it's something you have to
do. It is something you have to see.
Shannon Garnsey was inter viewed
by WIN News about her RGS work.
RGS at Clermont and Capella
Prospective, Current and Past Boarding Families of The Rockhampton Grammar School
are invited to meet Headmaster Dr Phillip Moulds, Senior Boarding Staff
and members of the RGS Boarder Parents' Association
Friday afternoon & evening, 14 October 2011
2.00 -- 4.00pm Afternoon Tea at the Commercial Hotel, Clermont
5.00pm onwards at the home of Don and Mary Farquhar, Ta ll a ra , via Capella
A BBQ Dinner and drinks (beer and wine) will be provided
RSVP is essential, by 7 October to email@example.com or 4936 0634
Looking forward to seeing you there!
families you know
who have RGS
Capricornus Quarterly September 2011 | 11
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