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A big shout out to our dedicated teaching staff who have ensured our Year 12 students have remained supported during the holidays, with the HSC now only days away.

Calrossy's Year 12 teachers ran a series of holiday study sessions for students throughout the two weeks across all subjects, with teachers also making themselves available for student support via email, as well in person, at the sessions.

The Northern Daily Leader caught up with some of our students and teacher, James Forsyth, at a study session late last week.

Here is their story below.

Words: Emma Downey 

Photo: Gareth Gardner

The last fortnight has passed in what at times has potentially seemed like a blur of study, revision and trial exam papers, as Year 12 students across the state prepare to take the first step on their career path - the Higher School Certificate (HSC).

The 2023 HSC will kick off with written exams for English on Wednesday, October 11, and conclude on Friday, November 3, with Food Technology.

During the written exam period more than 74,000 students will sit for 124 exams totalling about 350 hours of work over 18 days at 782 exam centres.

In the New England North West, 1480 students from Tamworth, Gunnedah, Narrabri, Moree, Armidale, Inverell and Tenterfield, will sit for the HSC this year, which is up on 2022 when 1442 students sat the exams.

The Leader caught up with some of the 95 Year 12 students from Tamworth's Calrossy Anglican School on Thursday, October 5, as they ran through a Society and Culture study session with teacher James Forsyth.

As the students approached the pointy end of the study period, the nerves were well in hand, and they were generally feeling confident heading into the first exam.

To arrive at this point, some had created study timetables to ensure a balance between study, averaging about three hours daily, and breaks, while others had been practising with past papers.

"Most days you tackle some study but it varies from person to person," Leila Ryan said.

"We've done enough trials and prelim work to know what works at this point," she said.

While they were yet to "down pencils" on their last exam, the young women were already contemplating their futures, focused on tertiary study paths that will hopefully lead them onto their career paths of choice, such as social work, engineering, law, environmental science, the arts and teaching.

The HSC examination period is a mammoth annual operation which the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) is tasked with making sure runs to plan. That includes ensuring each HSC exam paper has been reviewed at least six times and checked a further three times, at a minimum, before printing.

In total more than 700,000 exam papers will be printed for the HSC.

The HSC examination period requires 750 exam centres located across the state, staffed by more than 7500 supervisors and presiding officers. Then, once the exams are done, more than 5000 markers will work in eight marking centres and from home to grade each paper.

While compulsory English has the highest enrolment numbers, the 2023 HSC Enrolment Snapshot from NESA shows Mathematics was the next most popular subject.

This year there were 60,093 students studying Mathematics, followed by Biology (19,808) and Business Studies (19,087).

The highest language enrolments remain unchanged for the past decade, with Japanese (1250 students) the most popular, then French (817), Chinese (625) and Italian (405).The student profile shows about 900 siblings will sit exams this year, with 878 sets of twins and 14 sets of triplets and quadruplets enrolled in an HSC course.

NESA chief executive officer Paul Martin reminded Year 12 students to "celebrate all that you have achieved already and back yourselves".

"Remember - exams, your HSC mark or your ATAR (Australian Tertiary Admission Rank) do not define you - they are stepping stones to the next adventure," he said.

The 2023 HSC results will be issued online and via SMS from 6am on Thursday, December 14.