The standing of WA College of Agriculture - Cunderdin as a centre of excellence in education has been confirmed by the achievements of its students in the School Curriculum and Standards Authority awards announced at the end of December.

Three of its students received awards based on their achievements in subjects studied for the WA Certificate of Education. Matthew Reynolds (York) received an award of excellence in VET and a certificate of commendation,  Rhiannon Wheatley (Perth) and Thomas Howell (Harvey) both received certificates of commendation.

All 60 year 12 students graduated making it the only agricultural college to achieve 100% graduation and having the largest number of graduates. In addition the students qualified for a total of 242 trade certificates from Certificate l through to Certificate lll.  Matthew Reynolds, qualified for  eight certificates. A number of the students gained entry to university through an ATAR or a principal's recommendation.

For the second year running a  graduate from the WA College of Agriculture - Cunderdin, has won the Rob Riley Memorial Prize for the top Aboriginal student in VET. The winner for 2013 was Mitchell Collard from Dowerin. The recipient is chosen on the basis of results provided by the SCSA.

In addition the College was one of four finalists for the WA Secondary School of the Year award alongside the high profile city high schools, Churchlands, Perth Modern and Shenton College. The winner announced on December 2, was Shenton College. Cunderdin along with the other finalists received high commendation for the standard of education they provided.

In addition to student awards in recent years, the College won an award for excellence at the 2011 WA Training awards, its third win in the category since 2006. In 2009, Andrew Reynolds from York was awarded the highest possible Curriculum Council award, the Beazley Medal (VET), for his achievements as a student at Cunderdin.

College principal, Bernard Beatty, was very pleased with the College's achievements and paid tribute to the staff who he said had encouraged the students to strive for academic excellence.

 "In addition to academic achievements, the 2013 students also succeeded on the sporting field including a win in the Glenn Jakovich Cup. "They also did well in shearing and wool handling, furniture making as well as sheep, cattle and wool judging and the farm skills competition. "One of our year 11 students, Laura-Kate Dymond from Northam, won a place as a WA representative at the ABC Heywire regional Youth Summit in Canberra this month," he said.

Lindsay McNeill

ABOVE: High achieving graduate, Matthew Reynolds from York receiving  the award for Automotive Workshop from sponsor, John Fissioli. This was one of many awards Matthew received at the Cunderdin college graduation last year.