The Joy of Competition and Inclusion at the Swan Hill Show

The Joy of Competition and Inclusion at the Swan Hill Show


Students at the Swan Hill Specialist School are celebrating their collective success at the Swan Hill Show, held earlier this month.

The pupils submitted a variety of entries in the show’s competitive photography sections and walked away with a swag of ribbons.

School Principal Jodi Walters said the annual event was something the students looked forward to each year, for all the frivolity that it brings, but also for the inclusion they experience in the competitive show pavilions.

“It goes without saying that the show is highly anticipated in our school but it’s especially because our students love that they compete equally with others,” she said.

“They get to enter the same event but they’re in their own class, and they’re extremely chuffed when they see their work displayed for all to see.”

This year, classroom teacher Bridget Caruso was instrumental in the school’s photography focus, working with students to capture winning images.

“Bridget does a lot of work with the students leading up to the show because she sees it as an ideal opportunity to showcase our school and what exceptional work our students can produce,” Ms Walters said.

“With Bridget, the students use iPads and really enjoy drawing comparisons between what they see with their eyes and what they see through the lens of a camera,” she said.

“Going to the show is part of country life and it shows connection to community; we like to demonstrate to our students that they are capable of anything, that they should be equally included in things like this, and that we are very proud to showcase their work.”


16-year-old student Callum McLean said, though he was unable to attend the show this year, he was proud in the knowledge his work was on display.

“I like taking photos and I think I’m good at it,” he said.

“It’s good for people to see what I can do.”

Classmate, Logan Tonkin said he attended the show with his family and it was great fun.

“There’s lots to do and lots to see at the show — it’s loud and busy,” he said.

“I’m proud of my photos because they looked nice.

“I took lots (of photos) and Mrs Caruso then chose what I entered.” 

Lachlan Matthews, 16, had a similar experience.

“It was my first time taking photos and they turned out good — I am finding lots of things I’m good at,” he said.

“I took lots and lots of photos on the Ipad and Ms Caruso went through and picked what to enter.”

15-year-old Cade Hogan relished his time at the show this year, spending time with his mum in the pavilions and around the grounds.

“I like the animals, tractors and ferris wheel,” he said.

“I went with Mum and we ate chips.”

Sam Selleck, 17, enjoyed particular show success and not only in photography.

“I entered my photos in the Swan Hill Show but I also entered in Miss Teenager Showgirl in the Kerang Show,” she said.

“It was great fun and I came first, so I get to go to Mildura to compete now.”