Mac.Robertson Girls' High School
|The Mac.Robertson Girls' High School|
Latin: Potens Sui
(Mastery of self)
|Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria
|Type||Public, Single-sex, Selective, Day school|
|Sister school||Melbourne High School|
|Principal||Dr Toni Meath|
|Enrolment||ca. 950 (9–12)|
Maroon, Green & Charcoal
The Mac.Robertson Girls' High School (also known simply as Mac.Rob or MGHS) is an academically selective, public high school for gifted students, located in the city of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
Entry for Mac.Rob, which is operated by the Victoria Department of Education, is by competitive academic examination. It is unique in its status as a statewide provider for girls in years 9 to 12. The equivalent for boys is its brother school, Melbourne High School. Each year, over 3000 candidates will sit the entrance examination for a total of approximately 960 places (across all four schools).
In 2001, The Sun-Herald ranked The Mac.Robertson Girls' High School sixth in Australia's top ten girls' schools, based on the number of its alumni mentioned in the Who's Who in Australia (a listing of notable Australians).[a] The Mac.Robertson Girls' High School has a long tradition of academic excellence with VCE scores propelling the school to be ranked 1st in the State of Victoria for seven consecutive years from 2002 to 2008, inclusive. The school was ranked 3rd in 2009, but reclaimed its number 1 ranking once again in 2010, 2011 and 2013.
The school provides an educational experience that equips girls for tertiary study and leadership roles in academic, professional and business communities, and develops interests and skills to enhance their personal lives. The school has a prestigious history, tracing its origins to the establishment of the first Victorian state secondary school in 1905. Its many eminent former students provide strong role models and inspiration for current students.
The Mac.Robertson Girls' High School traces its origin to the Melbourne Continuation School, the first government funded school in the state of Victoria, established in 1905 in Spring Street, Melbourne. Renamed Melbourne High School in 1912, it was a co-educational school, but the school's second principal, Mr Claude Searby, believed that boys studied better in a single-sex environment. And so, in 1927, the boys moved to their current residence in Forrest Hill, South Yarra, Victoria, Melbourne, and became Melbourne Boys' High School.
The girls remained in the crumbling Spring Street building until it was condemned in 1930. The girls then moved to Government House. They were moved once again to King Street in 1933. In 1934 Victoria celebrated its centenary. Sir Macpherson Robertson made a gift of 100,000 pounds, 40,000 of which was to be spent on building what was to become The Mac.Robertson Girls' High School in the north/east corner of Albert Park Reserve. The building gained a national trust classification in 1987.
The school celebrated its centenary year in 2005 with Melbourne High School in a joined assembly. Mac.Rob also celebrated by inviting Premier of Victoria Steve Bracks to witness the restarting of the school clock tower (which coincidentally would not start when the time came).
The Mac.Robertson Girls' High School today continues and maintains a tradition of high academic achievement. Each year the school's VCE results are among the highest in the state, topping the statewide VCE results seven years running (2002–2008 inclusive).
Enrolment and structure
The school operates in a two sub-school structure. The middle school caters for students in years 9 and 10, whilst the senior school caters for students in years 11 and 12. The school's enrolment across all four year levels totals to approximately 950 to 960 students every year. A quota of 225 year 9 students are selected for enrolment every year through the year 8 entrance examination. The year 10 cohort adds another class of 25 into the year level bringing the total to 250 students. The size of both the year 11 and 12 cohorts vary slightly each year, totalling approximately 260 students each year, including the intake of few students into Year 11 and 12.
The Mac.Robertson Girls' High School uniform consists of a summer and winter uniform. The summer uniform is worn in term one and four, consisting of an A-line dress, charcoal blazer with red as well as green trim and emblem, optional red jumper for years 9 and 10, optional green jumper for years 11 and 12, white knee-high socks and either black leather t-bars or lace-ups.
The winter uniform consists of a tartan green and red skirt, school tie, long sleeved shirt, black tights, optional red jumper for years 9 and 10, optional green jumper for years 11 and 12, charcoal blazer with red as well as green trim and emblem, optional school scarf, optional school umbrella and either black leather t-bars or lace-ups. Hair accessories must be in the school colours. No make-up is allowed. Hair must be in a neat hairstyle and should be in a natural hue.
Some students have the centenary tie (half Mac.Rob and MHS colours) or Adelaide Exchange tie (Adelaide High School's tie).
The school uniform is not compulsory for students in year 12 from term two onwards.
Mac.Rob offers a wide range of extracurricular activities for its students. For example: debating, combined school musical and play with Melbourne High, Chess Club, CCC (Chinese Culture Club), Amnesty International, I.T. Committee, Japanese Shinwa Club, Indo Club, French club, German club, Winter Concert, Ballroom Dancing, Peer Support, Links Leader Program, GIV (Girls in Volunteering), SSAYF (Same-Sex Attracted Youth and Friends) and more. This is along with sports such as basketball, badminton, table tennis, cross country, cheerleading, volleyball, hockey, football, soccer, softball, cricket, aerobics, gymnastics, swimming and theatre sports.
Student leadership is one of the cornerstones of Mac.Rob life. Students from all year levels attend a number of student leadership forums and conferences arranged by the wider community during the year, and develop their personal and leadership skills through their involvement in these. They include the Victorian Alliance of State Girls’ Conference, the Halogen Youth Leadership Conference, various Vision Generation (World Vision) activities, and the Next Gen Youth Forum, as well as long term programs and projects, such as The Lord Mayor's Charitable Foundation: Youth in Philanthropy Project.
In addition to these roles, there are other more senior leadership opportunities in the school. The school has a School Captain, School Vice Captain, SRC President and Vice-President, elected by the student body. The Student Representative Council at Mac.Rob is a proud and long-running tradition whereby students can have their voices heard and see their ideas implemented in a concrete way throughout the school. The Council works by having two executives per year level and an executive council of the SRC President and Vice-President, Treasurer and Secretary.
The four houses and their associated colours are:
- Naiads, River Nymphs (Blue)
- Dryads, Tree Nymphs (Green)
- Nereids, Sea Nymphs (White)
- Oreads, Mountain Nymphs (Red)
Nereids official colour is white, although throughout the years it has come to adopt purple as its secondary colour.
The houses compete in four major competitions, each taking place annually:
The school's yearbook is called Pallas, with the editors generally being two year 11 students. There is also an informal satirical magazine, Ethos, with articles written by students and editorship shared by a group of year 11 students who are elected by the student body.
- Alexandra Adornetto, author
- Judith Buckrich, academic and author
- Jean Burns, pilot
- Chloe Dallimore, actress
- Beverley Farmer, novelist
- Alice Garner, actress and academic
- Antoinette Halloran, opera singer
- Tan Le, Young Australian of the year
- Zoe Lehner, 2Day FM radio producer
- Martha Macintyre, associate professor, anthropologist and historian
- Lili Wilkinson, author
- Penny Wright, senator
The Mac.Robertson Girls' High School offers its students various chances to interact with students from different schools in other countries, which involve Japan, Indonesia, Germany, France and China.
Every year, an exchange takes place with Adelaide High School over the period of three days. This exchange varies its location every year, alternating between Mac.Rob and Adelaide. The students compete in a variety of different events, such as debating, theatre sports, chess, netball, volleyball and football. The school that wins most events is awarded with the Prefect Cup to keep until the next exchange. The exchange began in 1913.
North Sydney Girls High School exchange
The North Sydney Girls High School Exchange began in 2008. It is a two-day leadership exchange between Mac.Rob and the The North Sydney Girls High School, with the focus on the sharing of ideas rather than competition. However, there is still some competition with water polo and table tennis played.
- Who's Who of girls' school rankings:
- PLC Melbourne
- SCEGGS Darlinghurst
- MLC Melbourne
- PLC Sydney
- Melbourne Girls Grammar
- Mac.Robertson Girls' High School
- North Sydney Girls High School
- Sydney Girls High School
- MLC Sydney
- University High School, Melbourne
- "2006 Annual Report to the school community" (PDF). Mac.Robertson Girls' High School. 2007. Archived from the original (PDF) on 1 September 2007. Retrieved 13 September 2007.
- School profile
- Walker, Frank (22 July 2001). "The ties that bind". The Sun-Herald. p. 16. Retrieved 12 September 2007.
- "2009 VCE School Ranking". Retrieved 14 December 2010.
- "Author, 14, lands publishing deal". The Age. 27 October 2006. Retrieved 24 July 2008.
- Zoe Lehner, LinkedIn
- "Macintyre, Martha (1945–)" by Ann Standish, The Encyclopedia of Women and Leadership in Twentieth-Century Australia
- Fenton, Andrew (25 June 2011). "Greens duo putting family first". The Advertiser (AdelaideNow.com.au) (News Corporation). Retrieved 26 June 2011.
- Mac.Robertson Girls' High School website
- Website of the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development