Rochester students receive top honours

SIX Rochester Secondary College students received awards and certificates from the Robert Burns World Federation after entering an essay-writing competition. 

The students were required to write about Mr Burn's poem The Cotter's Saturday Night. 

Their essays were based around the line of the poem - an honest man's the noblest work of God. 

Rebecca Kellett was the winner of the competition's Australian section while Kristy Evans came second and Kara Azzapardi third. 

Meagan Baker, Bonnie Pearson and Georgina Schroen also received certificates recognising the quality of their essays.

English teacher Peter MacIver said he was proud of the efforts of his students and said they had produced high-quality essays. 

He said the experience of participating in the competition would put them in good stead for further studies. 

"This is a competition that can help them with VCE," he said.

"The style of writing fits with the concept of VCE."

Mr MacIver said he offered support and tips to his students with their essays but it was mostly up to them. 

"I gave them basic ideas linked to the line from the poem," he said. 

"I helped fix up their language and spelling but other than that it was all up to them.

"They have done very well."

Federal member for Bendigo Lisa Chesters presented the students with medals and certificates, and said it was wonderful to see students participating in writing competitions. 

Bendigo Burns Society president Jim Millar said the standard of the entries was high and the essays demonstrated not only a good understanding of the poem, but also the message Burns wanted to get across.

Mr MacIver said he was keen to get other schools in Australia involved in the competition. 

Competition details will be available from the Robert Burns World Federation website later this year.

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