Helena Grahame (1959)

Alumnae Award: Contribution to MLC School

Helena Grahame remains grateful for and proud of her education at MLC School.

She attended the School from Kindergarten to the Leaving Certificate in the footsteps of her mother Constance Haigh, who attended from Kindergarten to 4th Form when she left for Business College in 1931. Con’s sisters Margaret, Norma and Barbara also attended MLC School, two of whom attained tertiary level at the University of Sydney. Helena’s grandfather, Arthur Haigh, taught music at the School in the 1920’s. Helena’s association with MLC School was strengthened further by the fact that she was the only girl of her generation for many years.

Helena pursued a career in teaching after leaving MLC School in 1959. She studied at Alexander Mackie College Paddington from 1960 to 1962 then taught at Cabramatta Public School before teaching Primary classes in Ontario, Canada. Returning to Sydney in 1970, Helena taught at several Demonstration Schools, the purpose of which is to show student teachers creative and constructive strategies to ensure meaningful learning experiences for children. During those years she graduated with a B.A. (Macquarie) and a Dip. Sch. Admin. (Armidale CAE). Her final teaching role was Assistant Principal at Campbelltown North where she was associated UWS (Milperra).

Helena has been a lifelong member of the MLC School Old Girls’ Union where she has held executive positions as Secretary and is currently Vice President assisting President Sue Cartwright.

Helena was an active, committed and enthusiastic member of the MLC School Council for 20 years, retiring in 2018. On the Council, she served on various committees including the Principal’s Selection Committee. Her long, professional experience teaching in Department of Education schools gave her confidence in her ability to recognise and share educational advantages of both the private/public sectors.

Helena finds it a pleasure to liaise with MLC School's Archivist Barbara Hoffman to explore and develop family associations with the School. She supports the annual Sapphires’ Luncheons and encourages family members and friends to attend, passing on all the news to those that are unable to join each occasion.

Helena’s passion for the wellbeing of MLC School is legendary among her family and friends. She is a true “Daughter of the Light”

Reflections

What would you say is your proudest achievement?

My proudest achievement is based on the solid outlook on life that my family and the School gave me. Throughout my schooling I was encouraged to do what I could to give back to a part of society that has given to me. It started with the Good Citizen Prize I received in Year 12. Over the years the solidarity of family and friends involved with the School provided me with the this opportunity.