THE final school bell may have already sounded across the Sunshine State, but staff and students at Maryborough State High School are celebrating another significant achievement as the year draws to a close.
Principal Simon Done has been inducted into the Australian Education Awards ‘Hot List’ for 2022.
Nominees were evaluated on the overall impact of their work in the K-12 education sector over the past year.
The school said the ‘Hot List’ celebrates expertise in linking theory and practice and designing and implementing innovations that provide students will high-quality education experiences.
Mr Done was just one of 24 principals from across the country included on the ‘Hot List’ this year – a total of 73 professionals were inducted.
“While there are a lot of people who contribute to the success of Maryborough State High School on a daily basis, it is gratifying and humbling to be acknowledged for leading the outstanding and innovative work that our school does,” Mr Done explained.
Maryborough State High School has grown significantly over the past 7 years.
The student body has swollen from 650 children in 2015 to over 1,300 in 2022.
Even more students are expected to don the blue and brown next year.
Mr Done said he was particularly proud of the way the school has managed to maintain its education standards and standing within the community despite this growth.
The school was recognised in two categories at the Australian Education Awards this year, receiving a total of 11 awards over the past four years.
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It’s also a dual Hall of Fame recipient at the Fraser Coast Business and Tourism Awards.
“It is the consistency of quality of which I’m most proud,” Mr Done said.
“It’s easy to do it as a flash in the pan but consistency of quality is the key to true success.”
Maryborough State High School’s various accolades in recent years prove that quality education is accessible in regional Australia.
“I am very proud of ‘myth busting’ the notion that quality education cannot happen outside of a capital city. The region is blessed to have two great options in Fraser Coast Anglican College and Maryborough State High School, both regional schools, but both nationally recognised,” Mr Done said.
“Having worked in larger centres, including Brisbane, I enjoy the fact that you can escape the hustle and bustle of a big city but not compromise on the important things, like getting the very best start in education.”
The school has changed a lot since it opened its doors 141 years ago.
Maryborough State High School, as an Independent Public School in the 21st Century, has brought all of its traditions with it, but Mr Done explained that “while we have an eye on the past and where we have come from, it also serves us to be nimble and dynamic about our future.”
“We review our subjects annually and ask students and the community what we should offer to keep the curriculum current, relevant and engaging.
“We offer many sporting academies at the school and innovate with offerings in the vocational and academic realms, as we know in the 21st Century there are many different ways to define success.”
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Mr Done said he was happy the Maryborough State High School community embraced the notion that innovation linked with tradition provides opportunities.
“I am continually surprised by students and their ability to rise higher to challenges and test themselves as well as their limits.”
Mr Done said his role as a leader of a dynamic school was to provide students with as many opportunities as possible so they can achieve their version of success.
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