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James Ruse Agricultural High School

James Ruse Agricultural High School

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Telephone02 9871-7126


Outdoor Education

Annual School Camps

At Ruse, annual school camps are held for each year group from Years 7-11 led by the School Wellbeing Team. The aim is to develop each student's capacity to think critically about key issues related to better health and physical activity in order to make informed decisions that support and contribute to healthy, active lifestyles.

Camps promote resilience and positive mental health in teenagers. The program specifically targets the prevention of teenage depression and related difficulties. 

Within designated groups, students participate in a range of team building activities – these include; flying fox, raft building, vertical challenges, giant swing, bike riding, canoeing and archery. The camp fire and movie night component is great for group bonding. 

Wellbeing Camp Programme
Year Group Wellbeing Focus Term/Month Camp Duration
7 Peer Support/Values Term 1
2 days
1 night
8 Resource Adolescent Programme (RAP) Term 3
2 days
1 night
9 Outdoor recreation and bushwalking Term 2
3 days
2 nights
10 Leadership/Peer Support Selection Term 4
3 days
2 nights
11 Life Ready Programme Term 2
3 days
2 nights

Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award Scheme

From 1979, James Ruse Agricultural High School has proudly been involved in 
The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award and the school is an official Award Centre. 

The Award is a self-development internationally recognised programme available for young people aged 14-24. Being non-competitive, it encourages students to set and achieve personal goals at a level appropriate to their unique needs through persistence, perseverance and determination. It builds valuable skills to equip them for life and work.

There are three levels of Merit to the Award: Bronze (minimum start age is 14 years), Silver and Gold (minimum start age is 16 years) with each level progressively more challenging. The Gold Award is presented by the Governor of New South Wales.

There are mandatory four Sections: Physical RecreationSkillsVoluntary ServiceAdventurous Journey plus Gold Residential Project (Gold Level only).

To encourage all Ruse students to participate, the outdoor education programme has been designed so that the Year 9 annual camp can be used to fulfil the Duke of Edinburgh's Bronze Award level Adventurous Journey training and practice hike requirement.

A student information meeting for this programme is annually presented in Term 1 to Year 9 students.

James Ruse Agricultural High School Cadet Unit

The 180-strong James Ruse Agricultural High School Army Cadet Unit (JRAHSACU) has been an integral part of the school community since 1960. It is a youth-run organisation which falls under the jurisdiction of the Australian Defence Force (ADF), and all activities are supervised by Adult Cadet Staff (ACS). 

As the premier youth organisation, the Australian Army Cadets (AAC) is committed to providing leadership training to youths, with more experienced cadets providing instruction to newer cadets in many areas including; first aid, navigation, fieldcraft and radio telecommunications (RATEL). Cadets are taught to uphold the ADF values to empower youth to achieve their potential: Service, Courage, Respect, Integrity and Excellence.

Cadets develop their skills through Home parades (held on Monday afternoon from 3:05-5:30pm), three weekend bivouacs and the week-long Annual hike held during the last week of the school year. Proficient cadets may be given the opportunity to attend Promotion Courses during the school holidays for an opportunity to be promoted to a higher rank.

Intake of new recruits generally occurs at the beginning of Term 4 (for Year 7 and 8 students) with an expression of interest email automatically sent to students near the end of Term 3. The Passing Out Parade in Term 3 serves to officially induct recruits into the Unit after completing their initial course, as well as acknowledge the outgoing Year 12 Cadets for their dedication.

Other notable events include Anzac Parades and services.

Locations of past Annual Hikes include: Coffs Harbour NSW, Kangaroo Island SA and Maria Island TAS.