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Killara High School

Killara High School

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Killara High School in the 2000s:


In 2000, KHS celebrated 30 years of education since KHS students were on the current KHS site.

“Much has changed since the school first opened in 1970. Traditions have been formed, buildings have been built. The school has thrived and matured greatly since.”

In 2000, the Director-General’s School Achievement Award for Excellence Across the Curriculum was awarded to KHS.

In 2000, the NSW Governor presented the Anzac Day School Trophy for 1999 to KHS at a ceremony in the Kerrabee Centre.

In 2000, year 12 KHS students attended a Tertiary Information Day at Macquarie University. Stalls situated throughout a large hall represented various universities, TAFEs and private colleges. Each stall was manned by representatives of the different institutions, who were able to explain the details of courses.

In 2000, the relatively new ‘Hospitality Operations’ course was made possible, primarily through the fully furnished kitchen in B Block.

In 2000, the newly inducted KHS prefects of 2000-2001 spent a day helping at Cromehurst Special School’s ‘Mini Olympics’.  Cromehurst School was a school for students with both intellectual and learning disabilities. The ‘Mini Olympics’ proceedings commenced with a torch relay. The students took part in slightly modified but equally challenging events, ranging from tennis to high jump, javelin and gymnastics.

In 2000, the KHS Zone Swimming Carnival was held at the prestigious Olympic Aquatic Centre. Many KHS students did extremely well, with many KHS students managing to make the regional competition at Warringah Aquatic Centre.

In 2000, two female KHS staff members and two female KHS Prefects attended the annual International Women’s Day breakfast held at the Westin Hotel in the city, where nine hundred guests gathered. An international guest speaker spoke of her first-hand experience to help women and families in Cambodia.

In 2000, twelve KHS students participated in the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games Opening and Closing Ceremonies, as audience leaders.

In 2000, the ‘E’ team, a structured work place experience program, was developed and conducted by the Australian Quality Council. This team attends a training day, and while at the host organisation, analyses a specific work process to identify opportunities for improvement. KHS’s E-team consisted of five year 11 KHS students. They were placed in a company called ‘Transgrid’ – a division of Energy Australia. The project was to improve access and retrieval of resources within the Asset Management Group, allowing the five students to return to KHS with a higher understanding of the operation of business.

In 2000, ‘Beau’ was a dog, who regularly ‘attended’ KHS.

In 2000, throughout the year, the following students were acknowledged for their work and efforts at KHS:

  • 480 KHS students received certificates of merit for academic progress
  • 146 KHS students had their names inscribed in the school’s Honour Book
  • 37 KHS students were awarded Honour Badges

In 2000, KHS celebrated the diverse culture which constitute the school’s population with a Multicultural Day. Displays of traditional Japanese, Korean, Chinese and Thai dances were held throughout the day, as well as martial arts displays. The school’s annual Art Show was held in conjunction with the festivities. Guest speakers on the day included:

  • A representative from the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation
  • the Local Member of Parliament
  • the Mayor of Ku-ring-gai

In 2000, twelve KHS students participated in the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games Opening and Closing Ceremonies, as audience leaders.

In 2000, during the sixteen days of the Sydney Olympics Games, a number of year 10 KHS students were actively involved in supporting the Olympics as dancers, musicians and volunteers.


In 2001, four KHS year 12 students were placed in the top 1% of the State in the HSC examination.

In 2001, the annual Art Show attracted large audiences, including people from the community, other schools, the Department of Education and Training, and the Board of Studies.

In 2001, the SRC was in close liaison with the clothing pool in regard to the design of a new school jacket. There were also involved in these further activities:

  • became a member of the Australian Rock Company, allowing students to advance their skills and gain practical work experience in the Australian music industry.
  • A number of SRC members attended the annual Ryde District Primary Leadership Training Day to facilitate the development of future student leaders.
  • Other SRC members attended an Inter-district camp, where they were able to broaden their own knowledge as well as mingle with other student leaders from twenty-four schools.
  • Supported the Lindfield Rotary Club in their request to create a much-needed youth centre on the North Shore.
  • Organised fundraisers including: World Vision, Amnesty International and Legacy

In 2001, the TAS Home Economic Faculty held a number of excursions. These were:

  • Year 7 KHS Design and Technology students went to ‘Wonderland’.
  • Year 10 KHS Textiles and Design students attended the Whitehouse Institute of Design Open Day at the Powerhouse Museum
  • Years 10 and 11 KHS Food Technology students participated in a behind-the-scenes tour of the Sydney Tower Restaurants, followed by lunch in the revolving restaurant.
  • Year 11 KHS Textiles and Design students attended a fashion drawing workshop at the Whitehouse Institute of Design
  • Year 12 KHS Hospitality Operations visited Ryde TAFE to observe students at work in a commercial setting


In 2002, the KHS students entered a number of competitions with their English work. These were:

  • Four KHS English students entered their work in The Mosman Youth Awards in Literature, and received Commendations for their efforts.
  • Year 10 and 11 KHS English students entered the Commonwealth Bank Junior Debating Competition and the Karl Cramp Debating Competition – both inter-school competitions which offered invaluable experience in public speaking and formulating a convincing and coherent argument.
  • In term 4, all year 7 KHS students were involved in inter-class debates.
  • In term 1, a fantasy writer spoke to years 7, 8, 10 and 11 about his experiences as a composer. He also ran a workshop for the year 11 and 12 extension students. The library staff reported that his books became very much in demand after his visit.

In 2002, eleven KHS students attended the Arthur Phillip Commemoration Service at Garden Island, where they also met the Governor of NSW.

In 2002, the Social Science Faculty organised many excursions which were:

  • Year 9 Commerce to the ‘Coca-Cola‘ bottling plant at Northmead
  • Year 10 Commerce to the Law Courts
  • Year 12 Geography to the Hunter Valley to study the productive activity of wine making
  • Year 11 Business Studies went to the ‘Cotton Discovery Centre’ at Darling Harbour to study marketing and global business
  • Year 12 Society and Culture students went to the State Library to gain research skills for the methodologies of the Person Interest Project.

In 2002, two KHS students submitted a business plan for a hypothetical business called ‘Designer Jeanz’. The plan was so good that their teachers encouraged them to enter the EBE Business Plan Competition in the group section. At Parliament House in November, 2002, the two students were awarded first prize. KHS received a $200 book voucher and the Social Science faculty was given two business-related books.

In 2002, the house [part of KHS] was given freshly painted, and a colourful display of posters and students works.

In 2002, year 7 KHS students went on an excursion to Bicentennial Park in Homebush Bay to investigate the science topic: “Our Local Ecosystem”. The students examined the mangrove ecosystem and drew mangrove trees, the animals that lived on them, counted the names of their seeds, studied their root systems, and learnt about the way they affect the soil and air around them.

In 2002, fourteen students from KHS and five from Baulkham Hills HS travelled to Germany. The tour included:

  • Vienna (two nights)
  • Munich, staying with host families in Landau for two weeks
  • Salzburg ~ to visit the home of The Sound of Music
  • Lake Constance
  • Lake Titisee
  • Strasberg
  • Heidelberg, Oberwesel and Weinheim
  • Rhine River
  • Frankfurt


In 2003, a year 8 KHS student was placed in the top 0.5% of students in the Mathematics Competition in NSW. Six other KHS students received High Distinctions, and eighty-eight KHS students received Distinctions and Credits.

In 2003, year 9 KHS History students, as part of a history assignment, created a historically accurate care package. These packages were sent to provide hope, encouragement and extra supplies to the soldiers in World War One by the Australian Comforts Fund (ACF), an organisation made up mainly of women. Recreating these care packages allowed students to be creative and create replicas at a very high standard.

In 2003, ten KHS students and one KHS teacher participated in the annual University of Sydney Physics Competition. The challenge was to design, build and demonstrate a mechanical vehicle, powered only by gravity, that would travel a set distance between two and ten metres. The exact distance would be specified on competition day. The closest to the mark would be the winning entry. Working at lunchtimes, the KHS group decided on a tricycle to build. A former KHS ex-student provided the group with technical assistance.

In 2003, two year 8 KHS students who represented the school at a Forensic Science Camp were chosen from a large selection of NSW school students. It was held at the Armidale School and involved five days of intensive crime solving. The one hundred and forty-eight students who attended the camp were divided into groups of four and given a scenario on the first night of camp. Very realistic scenarios had been created by the team leaders, who were year 9 students. The students received pieces of physical evidence to analyse and communicated with their leaders via email, getting into the role of a detective to solve the crime. On the second day, the students had to submit a letter of accusation to a judge and on the last day, the students prosecuted, playing all the roles of barristers, bailiffs, jurors and the accused. The judge was played by a real judge who serves in Australia’s courts.

In 2003, year 12 KHS students attended a Tertiary Information Evening organised by the KHS careers advisers. Over one hundred students and their parents attended with a range of speakers providing information. These included:

  • the head of the UAC’s Scaling Committee
  • Macquarie University’s High Schools’ Liaison Officer
  • an ex-student of KHS

The speakers spoke on a range of topics, including:

  • how the UAI is calculated
  • alternate entry routes to university
  • how you should strive to do the course of your dreams rather than doing a course just because you obtain the marks to get into it
  • how to apply for university

In 2003, year 12 KHS Earth and Environmental Science students went on the annual field trip around Orange, NSW, to look at fish fossils, power stations and a coal mine.

In August 2003, KHS staff and students organised an Open Night for primary school students and parents. Some of the activities on the evening included:

  • displays around the school
  • the choir and bands performed
  • sausage sizzle, drinks and dancing in the quadrangle
  • LeGrande Café serving coffee, tea and biscuits in the Loft
  • food stalls around the school
  • Textile and Design students demonstrated their craft
  • students’ woodwork pieces on display
  • in Science – demonstrations of experiments
  • the Art show – with year 12 Major Works on display, as well as other works from students in other years

In 2003, seventeen KHS students went to the Hunter Valley for a Geography field study that included visiting wineries and wetlands.

In 2003, a number of science students achieved excellent results in the Rio Tinto Australian Science Olympiads Qualifying exams. These were:

  • biology: three High Distinctions and one Distinction
  • chemistry: One High Distinctions, two Distinctions and one Credit
  • physics: Two High Distinctions, one Distinction and one Credit

In 2003, two KHS Business Studies students won first prize in the Teams Division in the ‘Plan Your Own Enterprise Competition’.


In 2004, a number of KHS English students, who entered the SMH Young Writer of the Year competition, won Certificates of Encouragement or Certificates of Commendation. Thirty-one KHS students received the former, eight received the latter.

In 2004, an event called “The night of the notables’ took place – an evening where intriguing and historical talks were performed with costumes for various famous people, such as Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, Cleopatra and Mother Teresa.

In 2004, KHS HSC English students who studied the text, ‘Frontline’, came face to face when the creators, from Working Dog, visited KHS. The visit was made possible because of the efforts of three KHS student filmmakers, who won the visit in ‘Funnybone 500 – a comedy film competition’.

In 2004, KHS Business Studies and Economics classes went on an excursion to Wonderland. The students were given a question sheet before they entered the theme park in order to examine the different aspects of the theme park and how the business operates.

In 2004, a number of year 11 KHS students selected water as a theme for their senior geography projects. The classes had already examined case studies of the Snowy and Murray/Darling rivers. The students visited the Narrabeen Catchment to extend their investigation further. The excursion included the following:

  • study sites at Collaroy Plateau – site overview
  • Oxford Falls – sediment retardation and stormwater management systems at Oxford Street
  • noxious weed infestation flooding at Middle Creek
  • rural-urban land use practices contributing to erosion, sedimentation and nutrient concentration at Ingleside
  • evaluating water quality and examining the delta at Deep Creek

In December 2004, seven KHS students volunteered at the Wayside Chapel in Kings Cross, for a total of two weeks between the students. Two KHS students who wrote about their experiences in The Green Years (2005) wrote:

“We took so much from our experience at Wayside. Not only were we helping people who are less fortunate than ourselves, but they were helping us by allowing us into a small part of their lives and letting us experience something so elevating and enriching that words fail to describe it.”


In 2005, a year 12 KHS student was presented with the prestigious 2005 Whitlam Institute Award, a prize for excellence in writing. This was sponsored by the University of Western Sydney and Fairfax Press. The topic chosen for the submission concerned funding for higher education and its impact on access to tertiary education. The same year 12 KHS student also won the Taronga Foundation’s poetry competition and the Sydney Theatre Company’s Young Playwright Award.

In 2005, a group of year 7 KHS students went on a Design and Technology excursion to Homebush to see the ‘Houses of the Future’ exhibit. Students also had a chance to make model houses, using materials such as cardboard and paper.

In 2005, the year 9 KHS advisers organised a ‘P’ night for their cohort. Expecting most of year 9 students would arrive in their pyjamas, they were astounded at the effort and imaginative ideas by year 9 students. Here are some of the ‘outfits’:

  • the Pineapple
  • the Prime Minister
  • the Pink ladies
  • The Phantom of the Opera
  • the Pirates
  • the Poms
  • the Protesters (demonstrating against changes to their Monday timetable)

In 2005, seven year 11 KHS Physics students took up the Great Engineering Challenge, organised by the University of NSW and Engineers Australia. Competing with over twenty other schools, from public and independent school systems, the theme was disaster relief. The KHS students were firstly required to develop a method of dropping relief supplies without damaging the contents of the container. They worked out that a truncated cone packed with semi-soft material would be best. Next they were required to raise a telecommunications tower that had been blown over, as had occurred in Brazil. There were very limited resources available for the students to perform this difficult task. After several false starts they developed a successful methods which involved making a lever from short pieces of wood and adding this to a pulley. It was the combination of these two challenges that placed the KHS students as overall winners. They received Ipods as prizes.

In 2005, the KHS Business Society, aimed to increase the awareness for KHS students of contemporary business affairs, and to organise people who have business backgrounds to speak to interested students about their business experiences. Some of the events/activities included:

  • An excursion to the Imax Theatres to enhance students’ understanding of business, particularly marketing. There was also a presentation from the Managing Director of Accor Hotels. His efforts allowed the students to develop a case study that could be used for the HSC examination.
  • A professor of Economics and Finance from the University of Sydney visited KHS in March. His discussion focused on overseas and domestic market influences, and trends in financial markets and their implications for business financial needs.
  • The Managing Director of Telstra’s Global Business Unit visited KHS, and was able to provide an insight into the world of global business.
  • Financial Manager at the Snowy Mountains Hydro Scheme provided an analysis of the various business functions their associated interlinked nature.


In 2006, a female KHS yr 12 student came 1st in the State in both Visual Arts and Aboriginal Studies in the 2006 HSC exams – the only student in NSW to achieve this feat in an area other than languages.

In 2006, the KHS Prefects, as part of their ‘Clean up the school with Enviro-term’, took to the school grounds, with the aim of allowing students to trade trash for lollies from them. This was also a fundraising event, and the money raised went towards Steve Irwin’s Wildlife Warriors campaign.


As a result of KHS becoming one of the largest schools in the state, limited playground space was a concern, and one of the Deputy Principals was negotiating with Ku-ring-gai Council for the school to hire Koola Park as additional active playground at lunch time when it was available. This area was to be of course supervised by staff.


In 2008, KHS established a Science Club for students who wanted to express their interest in Science. Students participated in the ‘Murder under the Microsope (MuM)‘ and ‘SPECTRA’ Awards. ‘Murder under the Microscope (MuM)‘, was a competition open to all schools that operates like a detective mystery. Students have to investigate ten potential crime sites, fifteen potential environmental victims, and pick out the final answer from the list. This was to be done over three weeks, with clues from various sources found on the website. The first school to identify the environmental villain, victim and crime site is crowned the Mum ‘Eco-Sleuth of the Year’. The ‘SPECTRA Awards’ was where students choose areas they are interested in, and complete activities to earn awards.

In 2008, a female KHS student was asked to deliver a keynote address at a Citizenship ceremony conducted at Ku-ring-gai Council Chambers. For the audience of new Australian citizens, her address was both empathic and sensitive in providing a personal perspective on the experience of moving to a new country.

In 2008, a year 11 KHS male student was presented with the Regional Director’s Recognition Award for Student Achievement in recognition of his service to Cromehurst School and its young people and families. He was one of two students selected from many nominations submitted by school communities across the Northern Sydney Region.


In 2009, KHS’s debating and public speaking team consisted of two year 7 KHS students, two year 9 KHS students and two year 11 KHS students. This team collected a number of ribbons in the following debating and public speaking competitions:

  • Winners of the senior high school category of the ‘Voices of the Ages’ competition, with a speech on the positives and negatives of going to school in Ku-ring-gai.
  • A year 11 KHS speaker won through to the Regional of the Sydney Morning Herald Plain English-Speaking Awards, with a speech on life and death and growing up.
  • The two year 7 KHS students made an impact in the Legacy Junior Public Speaking Award.

In 2009, year 8 KHS geography students, as part of their study of ‘threatened habitats’ spent one day investigating the inter-tidal wetlands at Homebush Bay. Some of the activities they completed on the excursion were:

  • tested water quality by investigating the biodiversity of living organisms
  • identifed the physical environment require for the ecosystem to function

From their findings, the students presented outstanding reports on their return to class as PowerPoint presentations and brochures.

In 2009, year 10 KHS geography students ventured into a variety of sites within Sydney to investigate issues affecting Australian environments. The issues they studied were land and water management, coastal management and urban growth and decline. The sites visited were Penrith Lakes, Long Reef coastal region and the suburb of Rhodes.

In 2009, a year 11 male KHS student embarked on a journey on board the Young Endeavour [tall ship]. He was selected as a member of the youth crew and set sail on an eleven-day voyage from Airlie Beach to Townsville that covered 355 nautical miles.

In 2009, four year 11 KHS students completed the subject PHIL137 – Critical Thinking, as part of the Macquarie University School Partner Gifted and Talented program. The students were required to attend two on-campus sessions as well as participate in online discussion boards. The course was a first year University Philosophy subject, where student engaged in exploration of the differences between explanation and argument. They analysed and evaluated the structure and quality of sample argument texts to determine the validity of the arguments therein. All four KHS students performed admirably in the course, with two students achieving a Distinction, one student achieved 1st place in the course with a mark of 86% and the award of High Distinction.

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