School’s out: ATAR results released

Tumut High School student Lizzy Smallwood with her final Art project. She received a Band 6 for this subject.

Thirteen years of schooling has finally paid off for Year 12 students across New South Wales, who received their HSC results and ATAR scores on Friday morning.

Senior students in the Snowy Valleys have put in a lot of effort over the past year and achieved great results, completing their final year of school against a backdrop of challenges 2020 has thrown their way; starting the year with bushfires, only to then be faced with the Covid-19 lockdown.

Tumut High School captain Lori Webb acknowledged the hardships of the past year, but also focused on the positives after receiving her ATAR of 73.

“I think definitely when Covid hit, it was a challenging time trying to figure out a whole different way of school and having little contact with our teachers, but I wouldn’t take it back,” she said. 

“I think it’s also really prepared me for what university might be like and helped me adapt to situations.”

Ms Webb said she was “feeling pretty good” on Friday after receiving her results, and that she hadn’t been too stressed because she already received a few early offers.

“I have a few different offers but I think I’m pretty set on going to the University of Wollongong to do a Bachelor of Medical and Health Science,” she said.

The departing school captain was particularly happy to receive an 86 in Agriculture and an 83 in Geography.

“I’m very surprised with my Advanced Maths result as I found the exam super hard, but I ended up getting a 74, which I was pretty happy with,” Ms Webb said.

She celebrated the end of exams with a trip to Port Macquarie with friends and is now planning on working until university begins to save up a bit of money.

Tumut High School student Lizzy Smallwood’s favourite class was Art, and she received a fantastic Band 6 result for the subject.

“I was expecting maybe a 70, so to get a 92 was really cool!” she said. 

“I know my Art teacher Ms Munro was really happy because I was constantly asking questions and making her read my notes! Art was the only subject where I really really tried, so it feels pretty cool to get a good result.”

Her friends and family have been really impressed with her result, with an ATAR of 62.65.

“My mum was really stoked, she knew how much I tried, and how much I stressed about it,” Ms Smallwood said.

“My family and friends were really happy for me, and so were my bosses Bruce and Jen, who’ve seen me at work freaking out about it!”

Ms Smallwood received a few early entry offers and ultimately decided to go to Macquarie University in Sydney and study a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in Psychological Science.

“It feels so cool, like I’m finally done,” she said. 

“All the ups and downs, quarantine, the friends, the teachers, it’s all over; which is honestly so weird to think about, like I’m finally finished – a day I’ve been waiting for for ages!”

Captain of Batlow Technology School, Jack Gould, also looked on the bright side when reflecting on 2020.

“I thought it was fine, not too difficult,” he said. 

“The fires were during the holidays so it didn’t really affect me too much with my schooling.”

Mr Gould was also able to attend school during lockdown, as his parents are essential workers.

He said that it is a “relief” to finally be finished with school.

“[I’m] excited for what is next, but sad that I have left,” Mr Gould said.