Principal's news


​​​​​​​Mr Tom Beck - Executive Principal​


​Redbank Supports Its Neighbours

Thank you to all members of the school community who focussed on maximising learning during the recent flood emergencies in the Brisbane and Ipswich area. As our enrolment catchment was not threatened by flooding or dangerous weather, Redbank Plains State High School scheduled as many school days as we could over a very dislocated week, while still maintaining everyone’ safety.

During that week of the floods, many homes and businesses in our neighbouring suburb of Goodna were inundated. Students, parents and staff rallied around and, in three days, had collected two ute loads of food and cleaning products that were delivered to Goodna Street Life. This spontaneous generosity is a testament to the caring nature of the Redbank Plains State High School community.

With the end of term approaching, students will be busy with assignment writing and exam preparation. The best way parents can help is to emphasise that multiple tasks can be completed if they are done one task at a time and then assist students in preparing a schedule to complete these tasks. Some students can get bogged down with perfectionism. A good strategy is to share the attitude that, “the best anyone can do is to work as hard as you can in the time you have available”.

Finally, I would like to wish everyone a safe, relaxing and productive Easter vacation, with no interference from COVID-19 or extreme weather!

Your partner in education.
Mr Tom Beck​

Another Exciting Year Ahead

February 4​

Over the summer vacation the school received the excellent news that the Year 12 class of 2021 had achieved the highest academic outcomes in the school’s history with three students in the top 1% of ATAR scores, the equivalent of an OP1.​

Not only did our top students do well, the entire ATAR cohort achieved a 6.6% improvement on the already high results from the year before. The result is a great return for the hard work and talent of the students and the dedication and expertise of their teachers. These students are now commencing their studies at Queensland’s top universities: The University of Queensland, Queensland University of Technology, Griffith University and the University of Southern Queensland, in addition to other universities and TAFEs.

This year the school will continue its improvement agenda with a focus on student attendance and improvements to the quantity and quality of student’s reading and writing. This is a partnership between staff, students and parents. Parents can best assist by ensuring their children are ready to learn each day and all school tasks are competed to the best of the student’s ability.

Despite a delayed start to the year, students are now settled into learning and the school has a quiet and business-like atmosphere. To minimise any disruptions to learning from COVID-19, please ensure your child brings a mask to school and isolates and tests if they have any symptoms of the virus.

Our air-conditioned classrooms and supportive teachers ensure a positive learning climate. I look forward to working with you over the year to ensure success for every member of our school community.

Your partner in education.
Mr Tom Beck​

The End of a Successful Year

December 3
Despite dislocations, and the threat of dislocations, from COVID-19, 2021 has ended with a number of successes. Our destination data for the Year 12s of 2020 shows a vast improvement in the percentage of students studying at tertiary level or engaged in work or training. We now have the highest percentage of Year 13 students in Ipswich engaged in earning or learning. Members of the Year 12 class of 2021 have excellent prospects of very high ATAR scores, with students entering their final exams with full marks in some very challenging subjects.

In November the Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk visited Redbank Plains State High to promote the school as a vaccination hub and was charmed by our school captains and the canteen staff. Ms Palaszczuk visited classes and toured the vaccine location, while our expanded resource centre became the location of her news briefing and was seen on television screens across the nation. Feedback from her aides was that was her best school visit (one of many) in 2021.

This month concluded with four major celebrations, our Parent and Community Acknowledgement and Recognition Ceremony, Awards Night and Year 12 Formal and Graduation. All celebrated student academic and cultural achievement and service to the school. Students and parents can be very proud of the outcomes celebrated.​

Over the school vacation I hope families have an enjoyable time together and that students are refreshed and revitalised for a productive and exciting 2022!

Your partner in education.
Mr Tom Beck​

A Very Positive Start to Term 4​

​​​October 25

We are now at the “business end” of the school year, where student focus produces the biggest results. This is especially true for our Year 12s who commence their external exam block or are finishing off their final assignments or trade certificates.

Over the school holidays, the school received its Next Step Destination Survey (available on the school website) which outlines the outcomes of last year’s Year 12 students six months after they finish school. This showed a dramatic improvement in student outcomes with a 12% increase in students going on to further study at TAFE or university and a 50% increase in students going onto employment after school, including a 300% increase in students gaining full-time work. We now have the best statistics of any school in Ipswich for the percentage of Year 12 students from 2020 in study or work. A key part of this achievement is the extraordinary efforts of our Link and Launch officer Roz Bowd, who works with former students, parents and our community to provide a second-chance to engage with work or study.

I also want to thank our wonderful Parents and Citizens organisation for a very enjoyable Trivia Night on Saturday. It combined fun and fundraising and the significant sponsorship by local politicians, businesses and organisations reflects the many partnerships the school has with its community. Thank-you P and C!​

Your partner in education.

Mr Tom Beck

Thank You To Our Community

August 23​

Thanks for supporting student mask wearing and helping student optimism about the future.

A big thank-you to all members of the community who have supported the school in complying with the health directive mandating mask wearing at school. While wearing masks can be a bit discomforting at times, students and teachers are coping well and continuing our core business of teaching and learning. Thanks to all for your cooperation in supporting our compliance with this directive.

While the report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change made some very disturbing reading last week, the school is making a dedicated effort to contribute to sustainability and reduce its carbon footprint.

The 874 solar panels recently installed on the rooves of Admin, A Block, PAC and Junior Secondary have a capacity of 323.38 Kw/h which will power the school with renewable energy and, in the mornings and evenings and on the weekends, will generate surplus energy for about 100 neighbouring homes. In the future we will be able to place charging points in the carpark so teachers can recharge their electric cars with renewable energy while they are at work and raise money for school projects!

Solar power is not the only environmental practice we have.

  • We are part of a paper and cardboard recycling scheme.
  • We have an Environmental Prefect in our student leadership group.
  • Some of our new outdoor furniture is made from recycled plastics to provide a market for recycled materials.
  • Special Education Program students raise money for their projects through the Containers for Change scheme which recycles container deposit products made of plastic, glass, steel, aluminium and pasteboard.
  • Our External Spaces Masterplan has provision for water-tanks to water gardens, including the kitchen gardens near the Home Economics centre.
  • There is an extensive tree planting program as part of the Masterplan.

It would be very easy for our students to be despondent about their future. However, if they participate in sustainable practices that enhance the environment at school, they are then part of the solution and can share these strategies with their families at home.

We have a very healthy environment in the school grounds. Over forty different species of birds visit the school and six breed on the grounds. The birds seen nesting here are Bush Stone Curlews, Masked Lapwings, Welcome Swallows, Superb Blue Wrens, Pale-headed Rosellas and Willie Wagtails. In addition, a number of unusual species have adapted to eat food shared by our students; Rainbow Lorikeets, Blue- faced Honeyeaters and Straw-necked Ibises. These are in addition to the ubiquitous Crows and White Ibises that can be found in all schools across the region.

Your partner in education.
Mr Tom Beck

Opportunities for Caregiver Engagement

June 28

Redbank Plains State High School values its partnership with parents and caregivers. We greatly appreciate feedback and believe that the best student outcomes are achieved when the school and parents work together.

The School Opinion Survey is a convenient means to let us know what we are doing well and where we can improve. An Email was sent from the Department of Education earlier this month to all parents with a link to the survey. If you have not responded to the survey yet, the school greatly values your input and will continue to focus on the areas parents prioritise.

Another opportunity to collaborate with the school is through engagement with teachers at our second Parent/Teacher night for the year on Tuesday the 3rd of August. All caregivers will have received their child’s reports by Email and these contain strategies for students to improve their performance or maintain their results at the highest level. At Parent/Teacher interviews, all caregivers will be able to discuss student outcomes and improvement with teachers, and benefit from the expertise of staff. Please book online and come along! If you are unable to attend on the day, please contact your student’s teachers by Email and request an alternative time for a meeting or a phone call. These contacts can be negotiated for mutual convenience.

I am very pleased to inform parents that the 2021 Semester I reporting data shows a significant increase in results in many subjects compared to previous years. This is a product of enhancement in a number of factors in the school: improved attendance, improved behaviour, the opportunities provided by our homework centre and a focus on developing teaching practices. The most important element, however, is the expertise and dedication of our teaching and support staff who work tirelessly to improve student outcomes.

Your partner in education.
Mr Tom Beck

Caring for Our Students Beyond the School Gates

June 16

Redbank Plains State High is a school that continues to support its students even after they have completed Year 12. In 2019 we became one of the “pilot” schools for the Link and Launch program, that works with former Year 12 students to ensure success in the years after they leave high school.

Link and Launch works with students who have been unsuccessful in finding employment or training opportunities after school or who have discovered their chosen pathway “was not for them” and left it. Our Link and Launch Coordinator Roz Bowd has done a fantastic job in establishing networks with local employers, training providers (including the University of Southern Queensland) and community organisations, who can offer our students a new pathway after their initial plans have stalled.

A recent evaluation by Sagacity Consulting of the Link and Launch program across Queensland, has identified the Redbank Plains State High School program as the best performing in the state. Over 85% of our students who failed to engage after school have been helped back on track through the school’s program and have remained in their new pathway for the long-term.

The school’s success is a result of the talent and dedication of Roz Bowd and her determination to see all students achieve a future in line with their potential. We believe all students are capable of success and the Link and Launch program is another means by which we ensure it happens.

Your partner in education.
Mr Tom Beck

Grounds Planning for the Future 

May 25

At last Monday’s Parents and Citizens Association meeting I presented the first draft of the school’s External Spaces Masterplan. This is a planning document for the development of facilities to promote student learning and wellbeing outside the classroom including play-spaces, outdoor learning areas, gardens and tree planting. The plan divides the school into precincts that allows a phased implementation as budgets allow.

We are committed to developing stimulating and environmentally sustainable school grounds for both student recreation and learning. It should support wild-life, be sun safe and encourage cooperative interaction before school and at breaks. The plan is designed to be implemented over a number of years and provide student amenities for the decades ahead.

The P and C is providing feedback to the school on the first draft and parents are invited to provide suggestions as well. The draft plan and some alterations can be found on the school website and suggestions from parents for changes can be emailed to me at I welcome your suggestions.​

Your partner in education.
Mr Tom Beck

A Great Start to Term Two

April 30

Term Two began very positively at Redbank Plains State High School with a moving and respectful ANZAC Day assembly attended by the Ipswich Mayor Teresa Harding, federal Member of Parliament for Blair Shayne Neumann, and representatives of our state MLA Lance McCallum, defence force personnel and our local Returned Services League. The student leaders, staff and guests delivered thoughtful addresses and student conduct was outstanding. As always, our band performed to a very high standard with The Last Post played movingly on the trombone by Liam Chilcott.

This performance was followed up on ANZAC Day itself with the Marching Band taking pride of place in the Ipswich ANZAC Day march, the only school band to perform. Accompanied by school prefects, the band, under the tutelage of Instrumental Music teacher James Humphry and Band Major Nicolee Clarkson, was a great demonstration of the school’s talent and commitment to our community.

Last Tuesday night student performers repeated their Harmony Day assembly performance for family and friends. Our guests witnessed a celebration of culture and tradition that was greatly appreciated by the 800 people in attendance.

With Term Two in its second week, students should be back into the core business of learning. A key way that parents and caregivers can help, is by monitoring students’ bookwork and reminding students to be organised in their notetaking, having a separate notebook or laptop folder for each subject and making sure the correct notebooks are in their bags for their timetabled subjects.

Parent/Teacher Interviews will be held in the Community Recreation Centre from 3.30 to 6.30 pm on Tuesday May 4th. These are an excellent opportunity to discuss student progress and learn from teaching experts how to help improve student outcomes in the classroom.​

Your partner in education.
Mr Tom Beck

Harmony Day a Celebration of Talent

March 27

Last Tuesday our Harmony Day school assembly was a showcase of the talents of students who presented performances from their cultural backgrounds or that they have learned from their friends or teachers.

There were songs and dances from Australia, the Pacific Islands, Africa, India and Japan which celebrated the diversity of our school’s population and provided an entertaining demonstration of the cultural traditions that enrich the school. Over 250 performers had rehearsed for weeks and showed pride in their backgrounds and pleasure at being able to share their culture with other students. It was a very enjoyable performance.

With heavy rain causing road closures and problems for parking, the school postponed the evening Harmony Day performance for parents till Tuesday the 30th of March. Tickets will be valid for that date. I look forward to another excellent performance that night.

I would like to wish all parents and students an enjoyable Easter school vacation. Term 1 has been a busy and rewarding time, full of student achievement and progress. I look forward to continuing this momentum in Term 2!​

Your partner in education.
Mr Tom Beck

Support for Student Learning

March 5

Learning at school is challenging but rewarding. Every day at Redbank Plains State High, students are helped to develop their skills, whether it be in writing creatively, solving a maths puzzle, presenting a dramatic scene or baking a cake. At times, students will face challenges and may be temporarily discouraged. Do not despair, help is always available!

The first person a student should ask for help is their class teacher. These are experts in the subject, most with years of experience teaching the topic involved. While some individual support can be given in class time, many lessons are busy with whole class and group instruction. All teachers will give appropriate individual assistance at a mutually convenient time, before school, after school and in breaks, when not doing other school activities such as grounds duty or sports or cultural coaching. Students make an appointment with the teacher and have their most recent attempt at the task available for consultation.

Another great source of support is Homework Club on Thursday afternoons in the Library from 3 pm to 4.15 pm. At Homework Club, teachers, volunteers and senior students will provide help with classroom work, homework and support with assignments. As Homework Club finishes after the school buses have left, students need to bring signed permission from their carers to their first session, so that the school knows the students have a safe plan to return home.

Our Senior students in Years 11 and 12 have a dedicated resource in the Senior Study Centre where teachers provide daily assistance to students for all their subjects. Both the Library and the Senior Study Centre have access to laptop computers that can be borrowed by students before school and in breaks and during Homework Club.

Our school is passionate about helping students improve their skills and we invite all of them to use the strategies and resources outlined above to reach their potential.​

Your partner in education.
Mr Tom Beck

Academic Award Ceremony - A celebration of excellence

February 12

Last Tuesday’s Academic Awards Ceremony acknowledging students with high level academic results from Semester II 2020 was an enjoyable and inspiring event.

It was great to celebrate the success of all those students who have worked with their teachers to achieve high academic outcomes and welcome parents to share in their children’s success. As last year’s Awards Night was held before the Year 12s studying General Subjects had their final exams, the subject winners from 2020 were presented with awards and Christina Mora was presented with the School Dux award for 2020 as the highest academic achiever in Year 12.

It was rewarding to welcome so many graduates back to the school, just before they commence their studies at the University of Queensland, Queensland University of Technology, Griffith University and the University of Southern Queensland. They are entering degree courses ranging from Architecture through Education to Information Technology.

Speaking with the award winners before the ceremony, a common theme was their appreciation for their teachers’ expertise and support and all were confident of success at university, based on the excellent learning foundations laid at Redbank Plains State High.

We are confident they will continue to flourish as learners!​

Your partner in education.
Mr Tom Beck

Welcome to the 2021 school year!

January 29

Over the summer vacation the school received excellent news of the opportunities earned by the Year 12 students of 2020, with many receiving high Australian Tertiary Admissions Rankings (ATAR scores) and offers to enter excellent courses at prestigious universities. We have students going on to study architecture, pharmacy, education, nursing and criminology at Queensland’s top universities: The University of Queensland, Queensland University of Technology, Griffith University and the University of Southern Queensland, in addition to other universities and TAFEs.

This year the school will continue its improvement agenda with a focus on student attendance and improvements to the quantity and quality of student’s reading and writing. As this process is a partnership between staff, students and parents there are some simple strategies that parents can utilise to improve outcomes for their children.

The first area for parental support is attendance for the simple reason that we cannot help students if they are not at school. There is a direct relationship between school success and attendance, so parents can best assist their children by helping them develop a positive mindset about school and ensuring they attend every day of the school year, including the first and last day of each term.

Improvements in reading and writing will increase students’ opportunities in education, employment and recreational activities. Parents can help achieve this by ensuring that students have six separate exercise books (one for each subject) or a charged laptop with six subject folders and that the correct books (or laptop) come to school each day. Teachers will monitor that all reading and writing exercises are competed at school and parents can support this by examining the work and checking the completion of homework.

The year has started very positively with students keen to experience the new air-conditioning systems in all classrooms. Having a more comfortable learning environment will further improve student attendance, behaviour and work ethic. I look forward to working with you over the year.​

Your partner in education.
Mr Tom Beck​


Last reviewed 30 March 2022
Last updated 30 March 2022