What an amazing time and opportunity was had by all staff and students who took part in this year’s Canberra and Sydney trip! The students took part in a tour from the 28th June to the 6th of July of Canberra and then Sydney visiting a variety of educational venues and taking part in activities with their focus being on the history, culture, heritage and democratic traditions of Australia. Many individuals and organisations contributed to the success of the trip.

Morley Senior High school would like to first extend our thanks to the Parliament and Civics Education Rebate (PACER), a Federal government funded subsidy provided through the National Capital Educational Tourism Project.

Students from our school having taken part in this educational tour of the national capital were given the opportunity to participate in a variety of educational programs with a focus on Australia’s history, culture, heritage, and democracy. The Australian Government recognises the importance of all young Australians being able to visit the national capital as part of their Civics and Citizenship education.

To assist families in meeting the cost of the excursion the Australian Government is contributing funding of $510 per student under the Parliament and Civics Education Rebate program towards those costs on the condition that eligible students complete the trip by attending a number of designated Canberra venues such as Parliament House, the Australian War Memorial and the Electoral Education Centre and many others.

The rebate is paid directly to the school upon completion of the excursion. We would like to thank the Australian Government for their support of this program.

A special thanks also to Mrs Gilchrist, our school Principal, and Ms Rae Prameswari, the Head of the HASS Learning area, who supported this HASS extra curriculum initiative, and to Mr Gerard Richardson, Mr Darrin Francis and Ms Selby Pritchard who gave up part of their holiday time to accompany the students. This is also an opportune time to thank all staff and parents who have supported this worthwhile experience for the students involved.

Lastly, but not least, I would like to commend and thank the students on their exemplary behaviour and their enthusiastic participation in activities throughout the tour. The teachers received many comments from venue providers and the like, praising our student’s conduct; they were a credit to the Morley SHS community. They thoroughly enjoyed themselves and for them, there were many memorable and fun moments during the trip. During their time at Parliament in Canberra, students took part in an eye-opening tour of the two Houses of Parliament and making a law by a role play in which students ably participated. There was a visit to the Australian War Memorial and students in addition to taking part in a guided tour, also placed poppies next to names of Australian servicemen related to members of the Morley SHS community. Across the road students took part in a walking tour of the memorials on ANZAC Parade to pay tribute to the service and sacrifice of Australians in overseas conflicts. Other places visited whilst in Canberra were the Electoral Education Centre, Australian Institute of Sport, the old Australian Parliament House and the Rose Gardens, the National Portrait Gallery the Royal Australian Mint, the High Court, the National Exhibition Centre, Questacon, the National Museum of Australia, the National Film and Sound Archives and the National Gallery of Australia. On Sunday 2nd July, the students

went to the snowfields in Perisher Valley, NSW and had a fabulous time tobogganing down the slopes and having fun playing in the snow, followed by a ride on an underground train to ski fields above at Blue Cow for more fun in the snow. In Canberra too, students had time to indulge in some retail therapy by day and go to the movies and ten-pin bowling in the evening. The students also travelled to Sydney via coach bus to visit other interesting educational venues and landmarks (Powerhouse Museum, Taronga Zoo), crossing by car and walking the Sydney Harbour Bridge, and also took a ferry ride from Taronga Zoo on Sydney Harbour for the final night’s stay at the YHA in the historic Rocks area before the group’s return to Perth two days later. The weather too was on our side and despite the cold temperatures normally experienced here at this time of year, we enjoyed crisp, clear, sunny days both in Canberra and the snow and Sydney.

All in all a wonderful experience for everyone involved and the making of happy and lasting memories.

To see lots of photos and day to day breakdowns – head to our facebook page for more information

Maria Cameron (organising and accompanying teacher – HASS Learning area)