Testing time for teachers

THERE FOR STUDENTS: James Sheahan Catholic High School TAS coordinator Jane Edwards, Maths coordinator Peter Hargraves and English teacher David Wickham. PHOTO: JUDE KEOGH
THERE FOR STUDENTS: James Sheahan Catholic High School TAS coordinator Jane Edwards, Maths coordinator Peter Hargraves and English teacher David Wickham. PHOTO: JUDE KEOGH

IT IS common knowledge that the Higher School Certificate (HSC) exam period is a busy and often stressful time for students but this can also be the case for teachers.

Three James Sheahan Catholic High School teachers are among the many HSC teachers across the city that have an increased workload and availability during the HSC exams.

English teacher David Wickham said while the changing nature of the HSC was “challenging” at times, it was important to keep on top of it for the benefit of students.

“It changes all the time. As student demands increase obviously they’re looking to us for guidance, knowledge and to help them through the difficult times,” Mr Wickham said.

Mr Wickham said while he has not felt stressed for himself, he felt empathy for his students during the exams.

“I get concerned for the students and I worry about some of the questions,” he said.

“There’s always a question that can throw students and that probably concerns me more than anything else. It’s more about empathy and understanding the students.”

Technological and Applied Studies coordinator Jane Edwards said she was always available for her students out of school hours by email.

“I’m lucky because I have a small, dedicated class who can contact me 24/7,” she said.

“Even when I was in Sri Lanka last week, I could keep in touch with them through email.”

Maths coordinator Peter Hargraves said while the role came with its challenges, it was very rewarding.

“The thing we always try to get across to the kids is do your very best whatever that may be and certainly try and challenge yourself,” Mr Hargraves said.

“What we have always looked for, for any student regardless of what mark they ended up with, was have they achieved a little bit more than they expected to when they started year 11.

“We have measures where we can see what they expected to get compared to what they ended up with and it’s obviously a win if we can improve those students a little bit further.”

On Thursday students will sit biology, software design and development, French (beginners and continuers) and Japanese (extension).

On Friday students will sit mathematics general two, mathematics and mathematics extension two.

On Monday next week, students will put their knowledge to the test with ancient history, Indonesian background speakers, industrial technology, Arabic (extension), Chinese (extension and heritage), French (extension) and German (extension).

Visit studentsonline.bostes.nsw.edu.au/go/exams/hsc_2016_exam_timetable to view the full HSC timetable.