THE 2012 Higher School Certificate has wound up and a number of the region’s Year 12 students are packing their bags to evacuate for schoolies.
It’s estimated hundreds of school leavers from around the north will join about 7500 of their counterparts from across the rest of the state for the annual migration of 18-year-olds to the east coast, and in particular Queensland’s Gold Coast, to celebrate the end of 13 years of school.
Most students finished their three-week run of the HSC exam gauntlet before being told “pens down” at the end of the last exam on Thursday last week.
The final goodbye, Year 12 formals and graduations, were held for most schools earlier this week.
Oxley High School graduates Kahla May, Clare James and Julia Mulligan sat their final exams between November 1 and 7.
All agreed it was a relief.
“It’s a good feeling, not having to think about what subject to study or which exam is next,” Kahla said.
After exams the girls, like many other HSC graduates, enjoyed their formal. Theirs was held on Tuesday at TRECC.
Clare said after the pressures of exams the formal was fun.
“It was good to get dressed up and have fun with the girls,” she said.
In the time since exams and the formal, the girls have been working and preparing for a trip to the Central Coast.
“A group of six of us are going,” Kahla said.
“I can’t wait,” Julia said.
The girls chose the Central Coast because they wanted to “unwind”.
The trio agreed the reality of finishing school hadn’t sunk in yet.
“I don’t think it will until next year,” Kahla said.
“I still have the Oxley High presentation night to still go to. It really just feels like we are on holidays.”
Clare said she still felt like she should be studying.
“I’m sure when I start full-time work it will sink in,” she said. Kahla and Julia have already organised what they are doing next year.
“I am working at a childcare centre for my gap year and then going to uni to study
primary teaching,” Kahla said.
Julia will have a gap year to earn money and then go to uni. Clare said she will make a decision as it gets closer.
“For now I’m applying for gap-year jobs but I’m still unsure whether I want to
go straight to uni or work,” she said.
Although the girls are ready for their schoolies holiday they agreed some HSC nerves were still hanging around and would at least for the next month.
“The results come out on December 19, so we have to wait a while until the whole process is done,” Kahla said.
The nerves were common.
Clare said while she was nervous it was “just another part of the process”.
Statistics suggest most NSW-based schoolies book their accommodation between December 1 and December 8.
Based on schoolies.com data, about 8700 students from NSW will participate in schoolies this year.
Across Australia the number is closer to 30,000 and most schoolies who book through the schoolies.com site – 47 per cent – are from Queensland.