Emanuel School: top of the class

Ascending the HSC School Ranking to 38th in the state, up from 41st last year, Emanuel also came in at fourth place among non-selective co-educational schools.

Emanuel School students celebrate graduating year 12.
Emanuel School students celebrate graduating year 12.

EMANUEL School has emerged triumphant as the highest ranked Jewish day school in this year’s HSC.

Ascending the HSC School Ranking to 38th in the state, up from 41st last year, Emanuel also came in at fourth place among non-selective co-educational schools.

The school’s careers adviser, Claire Pech, believes the small number of students – 56 – in this year’s cohort, their stable and conscientious disposition, and their cohesiveness as a year group laid the foundation for academic success.

“This year was difficult for everybody but they took it all in their stride. They were disappointed that all their rites of passage were cancelled, but they were able to roll with it,” said Pech, adding the cohort was “small, solid, and they got on well. That helped them as a year group”.

The school’s dux, Beau Glass, said Emanuel has “given me an opportunity to embrace and explore each and every passion”.

Thirty-nine per cent of students received an ATAR of at least 90.

While noting that some students may not have received the university acceptance scores they were hoping for, Pech advised, “It’s not how does the HSC prepare you for life after school, it’s how does year 12 prepare you for life after school. I am a big believer in all those other things that prepare you for life after school beyond the ATAR – things like time management, discipline, working hard but balancing that with fitness, nutrition, sleep and social life.”

Principal Andrew Watt said, “This year’s impressive HSC results are testament to our students’ academic strength, resilience and tenacity, as well as their teachers’ commitment to their success and personal development”.

A close second, Moriah College came in at 41st, with 43 per cent of students achieving ATARs over 90.

“We are so proud of our students for their triumphs, commitment and agility,” said principal Rabbi Yehoshua Smukler.

Meanwhile, 30 per cent of Masada College students received ATARs above 90, with the school ranking at 113th.

Principal of Kesser Torah College (KTC) Roy Steinman said COVID-19 “brought out the best in all of our year 12 students”.

Fifty-two per cent of KTC students received an ATAR above 90.

Congratulating the class of 2020, Premier Gladys Berejiklian said HSC students have endured one of the most challenging years in a generation, experiencing bushfires, drought and a pandemic.

“Finishing first in an HSC course is an outstanding achievement, and to do so in a year like 2020, is a credit to the dedication and talent of the students being recognised,” said Berejiklian.

KTC student Rivka Schapiro finished First in Course for HSC Classical Hebrew Extension and fourth for Classical Hebrew Continuers, while co-dux of KTC Yehuda Eisenberg placed first for Classical Hebrew Continuers, and third for Classical Hebrew Extension.

KTC shared the glory for excellence in Hebrew with Killara High School student Leanne Juter, who topped Modern Hebrew Continuers and was taught by an outside tutor.

While Josh Abelev from Cranbrook School has not yet finished the HSC, he already has reason to celebrate.

The year 11 student co-topped the state in Maths Advanced, and achieved band sixes in Chemistry and Maths Extension.

Students also shone in creative pursuits this year, with Ariel Berger from Emanuel School and Masada College’s Tong Chen accepted into ArtExpress. 

“To actually have it be accepted is validating for all the work throughout the year … I definitely wouldn’t be able to get to ArtExpress level without the school, my family and their support,” said Berger.

Full HSC coverage in this week’s AJN, out today.

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