I was lucky enough to be nominated by my school, Kukerin Primary School for the 2016 Vi Barham Award for Excellence.
We, my Mum and I, then went to Narrogin to sit the HAST (Higher Ability Selection Test) from ACER. It was very nerve wracking with 40 other nominees from schools such as Lake Grace, Dumbleyung, Wagin, Narrogin, Williams and Beverley. We had two multiple choice question test consisting of Mathematics and Grammar Reasoning and a Numeracy Test. Also, everyone participated in a Written Expression Test based off a picture prompt, this was my favourite. The Tests were challenging and I had to work hard to complete them.
Over the next two months I waited patiently to receive a letter containing my results. I was fortunate enough to secure a place in the top ten finalists. When I heard the news I was thrilled. The next phase of the process was to sit an interview with the Vi Barham Board of Trustees. The Three Board members asked me seven questions involving myself and the community. I was anxious at first, but the Members made me feel relaxed and comfortable.
On the 10th of November all 11 finalists (two children received equal marks) were invited to the Award Presentation at the Hill Top Café, Narrogin Senior High School. My parents and our new Principal, Mr Simpson, came along to represent me which involved giving a citation about each finalist. Each finalist then gave a short speech about ourselves. It was very interesting listening to each child’s amazing achievements.
Finally, Mr Leong, The Chairman of the Board, came up to present the winner. Time seemed to slow down as he said “The Winner of the 2016 Vi Barham Award for Excellence, from Kukerin Primary School is………...” Since I was the only candidate from Kukerin I knew he meant me! I was in shock, completely speechless, which made my acceptance speech quite short.
It was an honour to be included with such a fantastic and talented group of contenders. I feel very privileged and proud to have been presented this prestigious Award.
By Darcy Kirby
Vi Barham was known as the “Mother of Education” for the Upper Great Southern Region. From 1963, Mr Barham worked tirelessly and diligently as a School Regional Office Secretary giving 23 years of service for the children of the Region.
A most loyal and dedicated worker, Mrs Barham, always worked exceptionally hard with a positive disposition. Continually delivering excellence, as well as being a warm and fine lady.
No better token of appreciation can be given than to perpetuate her name through an “Award of Excellence” for children who demonstrate the ideals by which she served.
Nominees are to be achieving a high level of excellence in academics and participation of co-curricular activities including sport, art, music, drama or community and cultural events.
Eligibility: any Year 6 child currently enrolled at participating schools (one child per 10 enrolled year 6’s).
Article by H. Kirby and D. Kirby.