College Newsletter

Term 2 Week 2 Friday 6 May 2016

A Message from the Principal

Dear Parents, Staff and Students

As this term moves into its final week, Year 12 students continue to complete their mid year examinations. Year 7 students are currently participating in their Camp, where they are being challenged to make and extend their friendship groups and participate in a variety of experiences that encourage students to try new things.

On a personal note, the Catholic Education Office have requested that I relocate to McCarthy College Emu Plains for Term 2 and Term 3 while they fill a Principal position.

Rest assured that I will continue to do my best to be present for all major Cerdon College events and will continue to act as an adjudicator in CSDA Debating and will continue to hold Cerdon College and its community in my thoughts and prayers.

In my absence during Term 2 and 3, Mr F Caristo will be Acting Principal, Mr N Mulheron will be Acting Assistant Principal – Teaching and Learning, Miss S Ackaoui will be Acting Religious Education Co-ordinator.

I know that all in the community will support and assist these staff members as they adjust to their new roles. I know that each of them is ready to take up these roles and they will continue to work to improve and develop the Cerdon College community.

I attach a copy of the Catholic Education Office’s communication to you as parents.

As a College community we pray:

The Joyful Song of Easter Eve

Rejoice, heavenly powers! Sing, choirs of angels!

Exult, all creation around God’s throne!

Jesus Christ, our king, is risen!

Sound the trumpet of salvation!

Rejoice, O earth, in shining splendour,

Radiant in the brightness of your King!

Christ has conquered! Glory fills you!

Darkness vanishes forever!

On this holy night all evil is dispelled,

Guilt is washed away, and peace restored.

See we are reconciled with God.



From the Ancient Exsultet for the Easter Vigil

God Bless

Mrs Patricia Baker


College Uniform Shop - Additional Trading Hours

To accommodate the uniform change from Summer to Winter commencing in Term 2, the College Uniform Shop will open as follows:

Additional Trading Hours

Monday 4th April - 8:00 am-6:30 pm (Term 1 - Week 11)

Tuesday 26th April - 7:30 am-2:00 pm (First Day Term 2 - Week 1)

Wednesday 27th April - 7:30 am to 2:00 pm (Term 2 - Week 1)

Regular Trading Hours

Monday and Wednesday 8:00 am—2:00 pm (Terms 1 and 4)

Mondays only 8:00 am—2:00 pm (from Week 5 Term 2 and all Term 3)

Year 7 blazer orders have now arrived and are available for collection at the Uniform Shop.

Cerdon College Uniform Shop Management

Telephone: 8724 7329 (During trading hours only)

Introducing Skoolbag

We are pleased to introduce the Cerdon College (CCM) Skoolbag app. Skoolbag will be used to communicate alerts, messages (including SMS and email) and some news items and videos straight to your mobile phone, iPad and/or tablet. Skoolbag will also be used to share excursion permission notes with you and you can respond via the app to provide permission for these rather than complete and return a slip. You can use Skoolbag to keep up to date with school events, notify the school of your daughter's sickness or changes to important contact information.

We will continue to publish a fortnightly newsletter which will be emailed to parents, but you will also find that each newsletter will also appear in the Skoolbag app.

As Skoolbag will become an integral part of our communications with you we'd like to encourage all parents and students to download the app. Instructions for doing so are located below.

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Updated advice for HSC students about examinations

Advice for HSC students about examinations has been updated on the Students Online website to include important information about the 2016 HSC examinations.

It covers a range of topics including revised syllabuses, changes to specifications and courses where personalised answer booklets are being introduced.

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Launching for students

Exciting news! Cerdon has recently subscribed to for all students and teachers. provides access to high-quality, current, and engaging video tutorials presented by recognised industry experts in the fields of technology, design, education and business. For student learning, teachers may integrate courses (or parts of courses) into lessons to support the development of skills in particular areas (for example, in learning how to use Photoshop for an art project or learning how to create an iBook for an English or LOTE assignment). Students can use independently at home to develop skills in areas in which they have a particular interest (for example, photography or web design). can also be used to help students troubleshoot issues they may encounter when using technology or to further develop their tech skills from a beginner level to an intermediate level or higher. is useful not only for developing tech-related skills but for developing skills in other areas as well (such as public speaking skills, memory skills and note-taking). New courses are added every week. You can access via the web, or through the app for iPad or mobile devices. Click here for details on how to access This information has also been shared with students via their school email address. Watch this introductory video for a quick overview of

Mrs Sylaprany

A few suggested courses for learning new technology skills:

· iBooks Author Essential Training

· Google Apps for students

· Google Drive Essential Training

· iPad tips and tricks

· iMovie 10.0.2 Essential Training

A few suggested courses to support study skills and school work in general:

· Improving Your Memory

· Presentation Fundamentals

· Public Speaking Fundamentals

· Communicating with Confidence

· Managing Stress

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ELES Online Study Skills Handbook

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With the end of term approaching it is time to think about study notes. But why now? Well many students wait until just before examination time to even consider their study notes then there is no time to learn them and no time to practise the skills of the subject. If you know you will have tests later in the year, then a smart thing to do is to get all of your Term1 study notes up to date during the holidays.

Can you imagine coming back Term 2, you haven’t done your study notes for Term 1 and you get slammed with new work – it becomes impossible to catch up! So make a smart decision and ensure you have all of your Term1 study notes complete by the end of the term.

You can learn more about goal setting and many other topics to help you achieve your best at school at, logging in with these details:

Username: cerdoncollege

Password: achieve

Top 5 tips to improve your notes:

1. POINTS: Avoid long sentences and focus on key points.

2. TABLES: Use tables wherever you can to create structure.

3. KEY WORDS: Pull out keys words (as shown in this list).

4. HIGHLIGHT: Make sure the key content stands out (but don’t go crazy with colour).

5. FEEDBACK: Show your notes to teachers, parents and friends so they can suggest ways to improve them.

ALIA's Great School Libraries Campaign

Congratulations to Mrs Sylaprany, Mrs Camelleri, Ms Kadry and Mrs Grech on being named as one of ALIA's Great NSW School Libraries. The students always tell us what a great library we have and how lucky they are to have a wonderful library staff to support them in their studies.

The full list appears below (click on the image to enlarge it):

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Palm Sunday Procession

Palm Sunday commenced Holy Week for Catholics throughout the world. This year holds great significance for the Catholic Church, the Jubilee Year of Mercy as well as being the year of WYD 2016 in Krakow. The Diocese of Parramatta marked this occasion again with the Palm Sunday Procession from the Town Hall to the Cathedral for a special mass for those attending World Youth Day.

The available staff and students of Cerdon joined with the hundreds of students and staff of the Diocese to process down Church Street. At the conclusion of Mass, World Youth Day was officially launched in the Diocese with the drawing of the World Youth Day raffle.

Those students attending World Youth Day have continued to work on fund raising ventures at the school. My thanks to the staff and students of Cerdon who have participated in these initiatives.

Mr N Mulheron

Religious Education Co-ordinator

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Numeracy at Cerdon

Most students are able to add or subtract 10 from a given three, four or five digit number with little difficulty. This mental computation can be used to assist students to add or subtract nine and eleven from a given number mentally.

Adding nine can be seen as adding ten and then subtracting one or going back one.

Adding eleven can be seen as adding ten and adding an extra one.

Subtracting nine can be seen as subtracting ten and adding one.

Subtracting eleven can be seen as subtracting ten and then subtracting an extra one.

Students can get lots of practice by rolling dice or drawing cards to obtain the starting number.

An extra challenge can be to use a timer to see how many can be done mentally in one minute.

Students can start with two digits and work their way up to three, four, five, etc digits.

The mental computation can be applied to adding and subtracting 99, 101, 90, 110, 900, 1 100 etc.

There is no end to where such a simple concept can extend students in their numerical journey.

Grace Muscat

(Numeracy Coordinator and Acting Mathematics Coordinator)

Cooking with Miguel Maestre


As the end of term approaches I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all the students who have participated in the many competitions, programs or projects during this term. For some girls the holidays will also provide some wonderful enriching opportunities. After winning the zone and regional finals, Christina Kheir from Year 12, will be representing Holroyd City in the District finals of the Lions Youth of the Year Competition in Goulburn. We wish her every success for this event. A group of Year 10 and 11 students will be preparing their case for their Mini United Nations Assembly which will take place early term two. Almost thirty students from Years 11 and 12 will be participating in the Engineering Link Project at the UNSW over two days during the holiday break, while a group of year 10 students will begin working on their engineering projects for the annual Science and Engineering Challenge.

In this issue of enrichment read about the success of two of our students in the University of Sydney Science Gifted and Talented exam and the highlights of the 2016 Kids Lit Quiz Sydney Heat at Cerdon College as well some competitions open during the holidays.

The University of Sydney Science Gifted and Talented Discovery Program Qualifying Exam

Last November a group of students from Years 8 and 9 sat the Science Gifted and Talented Qualifying exam for the Discovery Program at the University of Sydney. Applications to the program are open to students in Queensland, NSW and the ACT and only the top 12% of the applicants are offered positions.

Following the exam, Catalina Gonzalez and Jessica Li both in Year 10, have qualified and have been accepted into this prestigious program.

Both girls will now attend a three day science program at the University of Sydney with like-minded students, during the July holidays. Congratulations to both girls for this outstanding achievement.

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The 2016 Kids Lit Quiz

On Friday March 18 Cerdon College hosted the Kids Lit Quiz Sydney Heat. 30 teams from school all over Sydney and beyond gathered together to participate in what is becoming a very popular international competition. Last year the competition attracted about 90 teams from ACT, NSW and Queensland. This year 176 teams participated in the sport of reading. The competition aims to promote team work, broaden student’s knowledge and encourages a love for reading

Working in groups of four, students aged 10-14 answer over 100 questions on everything related to books. It was amazing to see the excitement of so many enthusiastic students and even more amazing how knowledgeable they were! The day was a lot of fun and from the student’s insights it will be a popular event in the years to come!

‘It was great to be part of such an amazing event. It was a day filled with enjoyment and knowledge and it felt good to be part of a team…

We really enjoyed this day..It was great meeting new people and challenging our minds to answer lots of questions…I wish I could do it again next year..but I will be too old!’

Congratulations to all the girls who participated and helped out on the day. A special Congratulations to Bethany Nicholls, Isabella Anderson, Ilige Ghasb and Jordyn Severin for winning the book prizes for winning a round and for Emma Giudice for winning the cash prize question. Cerdon’s team came 13th on the leader-board only 10 points behind the winning team, St Catherine’s School Waverley.

The Dorothea Mackellar Poetry Awards 2016

All Australian school students are invited to participate in the 2016 Dorothea Mackellar Poetry Awards 2016. This is an exciting competition for all students who enjoy writing and would like the opportunity to win some fantastic prizes. Students have a choice to use the optional theme ‘waiting’ or use any subject. All poems must be the student’s own work. Entries must be submitted to Mrs Agius by June 5, 2016 for processing.

For further information visit

The 2017 National Science Youth Forum

The National Youth Science forum is a 12 day residential program for students in Year 11 who are passionate about science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM). The NYSF program aims to show students the wide variety of study and career options in STEM fields.

NYSF applications are now open! If you would like to find out more information please visit


The Whitlam Institute within Western Sydney University, offers students in NSW and the ACT the opportunity to write a 400-600 word opinion piece of what matters to them and why. There are a number of prizes on offer and students will be judged in categories based on their school year. For further information and to download an entry form, visit The competition closes on May 6, 2016.

Mrs S Agius

Enrichment Co-ordinator

PDHPE and Sport Report

School Cross Country

On Wednesday March 9, Cerdon College held its annual School Cross Country running event. Approximately 80 students took the opportunity to run the course set out at Merrylands Park. It was a very hot day, however, our students persevered in the tough conditions and all students completed their race.

Congratulations to the following students who finished as Champion or Runner Up in their respective age group:


Champion: Jemmie Le (McOscar)

Runner Up: Audrey Afful (McOscar)


Champion: Claudia Portolesi (Colin)

Runner Up: Sophia Vicic (Marcellin)


Champion: Olivia Achmar (Perroton)

Runner Up: Amira El-Sayed (Perroton)


Champion: Trina Castelino (Marcellin)

Runner Up: Louise O’Neill (Marcellin)


Champion: Alexia Abouhamad (Colin)

Runner Up: Catherine Raftopoulos (McOscar)


Champion: Kaitlin Allan (Marcellin)

Runner Up: Mariah Younan (Marcellin)


Champion: Chantal Cassar (Colin)

Runner Up: Jwana Khouri (Perroton)

I would like to thank Miss Hanson, Miss Herrera and the Year 9 PASS students for their assistance on the day.

PDSSSC Swimming Carnival

On Friday March 18, 14 Cerdon students competed at the PDSSSC Swimming Carnival at Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Centre, Homebush. Our squad was selected based on performances at the Cerdon Swimming Carnival earlier this year. I would like to acknowledge the following students for their efforts in representing the College at the Carnival:

Emily Green, Channelle Succar, Rachael Vella, Katarina Planinic, Bianca Buttigieg, Alexia Kazanzidis, Mikayla Menouhos, Elise Noble, Emerson Walshaw, Anthea Kazanzidis,Trina Castelino, Sophia Vicic, Sarah Denniss and Maja Bang

Congratulations to the following students who finished in the top three in their event:

Emerson Walshaw - 1st Place U14 50m Butterfly, 1st Place U14 100m Freestyle, 2nd Place U14 50m Freestyle, 3rd Place U14 50m Backstroke

Bianca Buttigieg - 1st Place U16 50m Backstroke, 2nd Place U16 50m Butterfly.

Katarina Planinic - 2nd Place U16 100m Freestyle

Elise Noble- 2nd Place U14 50m Breaststroke

We also managed to place in two of the relay events for the U17-18 age group. Congratulations to the following students:

2nd Place U17-18 50m Freestyle Relay - Alexia Kazanzidis, Rachael Vella, Channelle Succar, Emily Green

3rd Place U17-18 50m Medley Relay - Alexia Kazanzidis, Rachael Vella, Channelle Succar, Emily Green

Congratulations to Emerson Walshaw of Year 9 and Bianca Buttigieg of Year 11 who placed first in an event, earning the right to proceed to the NSWCCC Swimming Carnival on Friday April 29. Best of luck ladies!

PDSSSC Touch Football Gala Day
On Wednesday March 30, Cerdon College competed at the PDSSSC Touch Football Gala Day at The Kingsway oval, Werrington. Two teams represented the College on the day, an U/15 team and an Open age team. All players performed to the best of their ability on the day and represented the College with pride. The Open team finished 4th in their pool and the U15 team finished 5th. Thank you to the following students for their efforts on the day:

U15 Touch Football

Amira El-Sayed, Olivia Achmar, Marisa Incognito, Jessie Finch, Georgia Daoud, Rachel Attard, Taylah Ibrahim, Mary El-Helou, Nora-Lee Doueihi, Daniella Elakcnouch, Chloe Issa, Zara El-Sayed, Deanna Hanna and Jayde Saba

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Open Age Touch Football

Nicole O’Connor, Mallory Morrell, Lillian Awad, Alexia Kazanzidis, Julia Achmar, Monique Khattar, Aneesa Eldick, Sophie Robertson, Louise O’Neill, Camilla Diab, Georgia Elias, Chantelle Chan, Natasha Chan, Emma Awad

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Many thanks to Mrs Deegan for her time and effort in preparing and coaching the squads, to Nicole El Jammal (Year 11) for refereeing on the day and to Hayley Nolan (Year 12) for her expertise in preparing the Senior squad in the lead up and on the day of the event.

Mr R Zammit

PDHPE/Sport Co-ordinator

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Term 1 Co-ordinator's Awards

Emily Adams

Felicia Aung

Celeste Aviet

Tamsyn Balogh-Caristo

Kate Burton

Claudia Bussier

Lara Chahin

Jada Challita

Brittney Daoud

Aaliyah Duron Vargas

Angelina Elias

Carmela Espinosa

Ma. Dominique Espinosa

Megan Fisher

Veronica Gambacorta

Christine Ghaleb

Melanie Gjura

Mary Haddad

Salwa Hanna

Genevieve Harb

Ashai Hawach

Caitlin Hitti

Niamh Hughes

Chanelle Imad

Alisar Khalil

Wendy Le

Bree Maguire

Atong Majok

Isabel Mateos

Jessa Planner

Scheherazade Salar

Sabah Shekeb

Lilian Sidra

Renee Singh

Annemary Tran

Nicole Yu

Yr 7 & Yr 9 NAPLAN Information

The following information was sent home on Tuesday to parents of students in years 7 and 9. A copy is attached for your reference.

HSC Languages Timetable

You can download a copy of the HSC Languages Timetable and Rules by clicking here and advice to students here.

HSC Dates for Practical and Performance Examinations

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Permission to Publish Student Photographs and Work

Please advise the school in writing if you do not wish your daughter's name, photograph or work to be published on our social media platforms and website.

You will also need to discuss this decision with your daughter and make sure that she understands that she has a role to play in reminding teachers that her name, photograph or work is not for publication. It is also her joint responsibility to remove herself from photos that might be published online.

Whooping Cough

Please see information below regarding Whooping Cough

Time from exposure to illness
Usually 9 to 10 days (can range from 6 to 20 days).

Starts with a running nose, followed by persistent cough that comes in bouts. Bouts maybe followed by vomiting and a whooping sound as the child gasps for air.

Do I need to keep my child home?
Yes, until the first 5 days of a special antibiotic have been taken.

How can I help prevent its spread?
Immunisation at 2, 4, 6 months and 4 years of age. A particular antibiotic can be given for the patient and those that have been in close contact. The infected child should be excluded from childcare and school until 5 days after treatment begins. Unimmunised childcare attendees may be excluded from childcare unless they take the antibiotics. Click here for NSW Health Whooping Cough Factsheet.

Urgent Safety Notice

All parents are reminded that students are not to be dropped off or picked up from the Sherwood Road or Kenyons Road staff carparks at any time.

A number of parents continue to enter the Sherwood Road Staff Carpark, putting staff and students in danger. PLEASE STOP THIS UNSAFE PRACTICE immediately.

Also DROP OFF AND PICK UP at BP is strictly forbidden and NEVER STOP IN THE T-WAY.

Parents are reminded that parts of Kenyons Road are NO PARKING zones. No student should ever be dropped off or picked up from a no parking zone.

Police and Council Parking Rangers are very active in this area and they will not hesitate to fine you for inappropriate parking or driving within the designated school zone. As this is a public road, normal penalties will apply to parents who break these laws.

Student Attendance


Regular attendance at school is critical for each student’s academic growth and social development.

Students should attend school EVERY day unless they are SERIOUSLY unwell.

Family holidays should only be taken during designated school holiday times as any absence will impact on a student’s progress and students will struggle to catch up on skills and concepts missed. Any request for leave should be made well before the leave commences.

Every student MUST bring a note explaining their absence on the first day they return to school. Any senior student (Year 10 to 12) will need to provide a Doctor’s Certificate to explain an absence from an Assessment Task or Examination. All notes must clearly state the student name, dates of absence and reason for absence and must be signed by a parent/carer.

To assist you, we have attached an absence notification that you are able to download and complete with the relevant information relating to your daughter's absence. Alternatively, a handwritten note with all the required information is adequate.

Partial Student Absences

All students are expected to be punctual to school and remain at school until the conclusion of the school day unless there are exceptional circumstances. Parents must have notified the school prior, so that students know that they must leave class early. These circumstances do not include leaving early to collect children from other schools, attending appointments that can be scheduled out of school hours, part-time work or catching a connecting bus or train. It is impossible to expect Cerdon College staff to collect students from class for parents who wish to pick them up early without notification.


Students should now be settled into their courses of study for 2016 and all students from Year 7 to Year 12 should be undertaking home study every night. Year 7 and 8 students should be spending 1-1½ hours each night on homework. Students in Year 9 and 10 should be spending 1½-2 hours each night on homework and Year 11 and 12 students should be spending 2½-3 hours each night on homework.

This homework should include some time for general reading, but also time completing work assigned in class, research assignments or projects and assessment tasks.

Students needing assistance with this homework should come to Learning Plus sessions held in the Library during each lunchtime.

Opal Cards

I would like to remind students about their behaviour on the buses, travelling to and from school each day. As we all know, behaviour matters and free travel is a privilege. With that in mind I ask that you remind your daughter of a few important points:

  • Tap on and off the bus every time.
  • Misplaced/lost/damaged Opal Card's need to be replaced by Transport for NSW.
  • Offer seats to paying customers without being asked, specifically the elderly or disabled. Remember you can't always see disability as it may be transient.
  • Respect transport staff.
  • Be safe.

As your daughter is travelling on the bus in her school uniform, she is not only letting herself down, but also the College, when she does not do the right thing.

Mrs Baker

Student Medical Information

The College is currently updating student medical information for the 2016 school year. If your daughter has a medical condition that requires an Action Plan eg Asthma and Anaphylaxis, please submit these to the school as soon as possible.

Change of Contact Details

Please notify the College Office if you have changed any of your contact details ie. address, telephone number, email address, etc so that we are able to update our records accordingly.

Thank you

School Excursions and Incursions

As you are aware, you have provided the school with permission to conduct certain excursions and incursions and sports activities. For those activities covered by the general permission note, you will receive a notification where it is appropriate to do so (eg for an excursion).

For other excursions not covered by the general permission note, you may receive a permission note which will need to be completed and forwarded to school by the due date. Some of these excursions may incur a cost which will also need to be paid by the due date. There are no exceptions or extensions to the due date for payment.

A copy of each notification and permission note is also available from the College Website.

School Calendars

You can subscribe to each of the following Google calendars by using the address provided. You need only select the calendar(s) that are relevant to you and to your daughter(s). You can subscribe to these calendars using any default calendar you currently use (eg iCal, Google calendars, etc) You can also search for Cerdon College calendars using a Google search.

Cerdon College Calendar

Year 7 Calendar

Year 8 Calendar

Year 9 Calendar

Year 10 Calendar

Year 11 Calendar

Year 12 Calendar

Sports Calendar

Feast Days

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School Zones

Parents need to take note that the area surrounding Cerdon College is designated as a School Zone. Police and Council Rangers constantly patrol the area. They will have no hesitation in prosecuting drivers for driving offences.

In NSW more than one million school students travel to and from school each day. The vast majority of students do so safely. The NSW State Government is committed to further increasing safety for children during school travel times.

There are 127 fixed digital speed cameras installed in NSW, of which 57 are in school zones.

The school zones were selected according to a number of criteria concerning the risks young pedestrians are exposed to, including a combination of high traffic volumes, the level of pedestrian use and crash history.

All NSW school zones are sign-posted with regulatory signs that list the operating times of the school zones.

What times do the school zone speed cameras operate?

All school zone speed cameras operate 24 hours per day, seven days a week and detect vehicles exceeding the speed limit. They are also programmed to detect vehicles exceeding the 40km/h school zone speed limit during sign-posted school zone times.

For most locations these times are: 8am – 9.30am and 2.30pm – 4pm on gazetted school days.

How do I know I am entering a school zone?

NSW school zones are sign-posted indicating the operating times of the school zone. There are also large, bright yellow markings painted on the road showing the 40km/h speed limit. In addition to the regulatory signs Roads and Maritime has also installed flashing lights (school zone alert systems) at a number of school zone sites, including all fixed speed camera sites that are located in a school zone. School zone flashing lights are used as an additional warning system to alert motorists to slow down, and are not legally required in NSW.

Are school zones enforced on pupil free days?

Fixed digital speed cameras enforce the school zone 40km/h speed limit during the stated school zone hours on all gazetted school days. Pupil free days or staff development days fit into this category and in some cases there may still be students attending schools on these days.

There are also some instances where double demerits apply on a school day. This will usually happen when the day before a long weekend is also a gazetted school day.

School days are defined as those gazetted by the NSW Government and which can be found on the NSW Government website and in most annual diaries. Both Catholic and independent schools, irrespective of their term dates, have enforceable school zones in line with Department of Education school terms. The fixed speed cameras enforce the school zone speed limit in accordance with the Department of Education school term dates.


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