Moree students on the countdown to the start of the 2020 HSC

READY: Moree Secondary College year 12 students Jessica Chittenden, Brennan Cumberland, Josh Wilson, Ashlee Moore and Grace Carter get in some last-minute study ahead of their first English exam next Tuesday.
READY: Moree Secondary College year 12 students Jessica Chittenden, Brennan Cumberland, Josh Wilson, Ashlee Moore and Grace Carter get in some last-minute study ahead of their first English exam next Tuesday.

Moree's class of 2020 are busy hitting the books and reviewing their study notes ahead of the start of their Higher School Certificate (HSC) exams next week.

The 52 local students will join thousands of others across the state when they sit their first exam, English, on Tuesday.

While some nerves are to be expected, it seems most Moree students are looking forward to opening their first exam papers on Tuesday.

"I feel pretty good," year 12 student Ashlee Moore said.

"I'm kind of nervous but kind of excited to get it over and done with."

"I'm stressed, but who isn't?" classmate Grace Carter added.

Fellow classmate Josh Wilson had a more philosophical outlook.

"I just see it as a step in the staircase of life," he said.

"It's just another step I've got to get over."

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Brennan Cumberland said he's feeling "pretty relaxed", but that could be because he's already received four early entry offers from the University of Wollongong, Macquarie University, the University of Tasmania and the University of Canberra to study international studies, politics and international relations or social work.

"It was almost a physical relief when I got all those offers come in," he said.

"I'm still motivated to try my best in my exams and not disappoint my teachers though.

"I don't think it's hit me yet that exams are coming up."

Grace and Ashlee have also received multiple early entry options. Grace is hoping to study media and communications at either the University of Wollongong, the University of Tasmania, Western Sydney University or the University of Canberra, while Ashlee has received offers to study social science at the University of Wollongong and social work or music at Western Sydney University.

"It takes the pressure off having to get a good mark," Ashlee said.

Fellow student Jessica Chittenden has been accepted to the University of Southern Queensland to study business, which she plans to defer so that she can take a gap year to work and save money.

Although Josh hasn't received any early entry offers, he's hoping to get into the JMC Academy to study 3D arts and animation.

Each of the students are feeling confident in their favourite subjects and less so in the others, but all are looking forward to the end of their exams.

For Grace, Ashlee, Brennan and Jessica, they have even longer to wait, with their final exam, drama, on the last day of the HSC on November 11.

The students thanked their teachers, particularly their school mum and dad - Mr and Mrs Auld - and English teacher Ms Trainor, who have gone above and beyond to help them.

The Moree teachers even came in over the two weeks of the recent school holidays to run workshops with the HSC students ahead of their exams.

Moree Secondary College executive principal Jennifer Bird said the year 12 students have received plenty of support this year to help them through the HSC, from daily phone calls from their teachers during lockdown to the provision of laptops and wifi dongles for those who needed it.

"A hidden aspect of COVID is that it has prepared the students for digital online learning, as they're being updated with the latest technology," she said.

Ms Bird paid special mention to Elka Devney who has been nominated for Callback 2020 - the showcase for exemplary performances and compositions for HSC dance students - and Chloe Flegerbein who has been nominated for Art Express 2020 - an exhibition featuring exemplary works by HSC visual arts students.

Ms Bird said the school wishes the students all the best as they sit their HSC exams.

"The hard work they've put in will be the payoff for them," she said.

"That journey they've taken will provide them with different pathways."

The school has a COVID-Safe plan in place for the HSC exams, including a back-up hall should a staff member, supervisor or student contract COVID-19.