Deputy Principals’ Column
Faith and Mission
Last Friday 13 May De La Salle College celebrated Founder’s Day. It began with the College staff gathering together to share breakfast at 7:30am and was soon followed by the celebration of Mass in the College gym. Celebrating Mass as a school community provided us with the time and space to stop and acknowledge our Founder, St John Baptist de La Salle, and to give thanks for being a part of the rich Lasallian story and a wonderful school community. Father Martin Tanti sdb was the presiding celebrant and in his Homily reminded us of the story of St John Baptist de La Salle and how his work is still very much alive and relevant to us today. We were also very fortunate to have present among us the company of Lasallian Brothers from the Malvern community: Br Michael Carroll fsc, Br Paul Toohey fsc, Br Mandy Dujunco fsc, Br Julian Watson fsc and Br Lawrence King fsc.
It was overwhelming how reverent the atmosphere was during Mass and how truly, one could sense the presence of God and even St John Baptist de La Salle himself among us!
Following Mass, the whole school walked over to the Kinnoull Campus where the festivities continued. Upon arrival, the staff and students were greeted by waiting food vans, carnival rides and activities, a live DJ, an ‘open mic’ for talented singers and musicians and more.
The sun was shining and the positive energy and vibe was infectious. And it was easy to see that a great day was being had by the entire De La Salle College community. The entire day was a huge success and a reminder of how wonderful it is to be a part of this rich and vibrant community.
Month of May
Christians have traditionally dedicated the month of May to Our Blessed Lady and it is the occasion for a moving tribute of faith and love which Catholics in every part of the world pay to Mary.
The importance of Mary as the Mother of God is not only because Mary was the woman who gave birth to Jesus, but also because she was the one who had faith in God and freely said yes to participate in God’s plan of salvation. In Mary was conceived the Saviour of the world, Jesus — God’s word became a living person in her and through her. Mary spent her entire life saying yes to God and she never lost faith, not even when her son suffered and died on the cross. As Mother of God, we also recognise that Mary is our mother and the Mother of the Church. And so during this month, we remember Mary and begin each morning with a prayer dedicated to Our Blessed Lady.
The Ascension of the Lord (8 May) and Pentecost (15 May)
When remembering the Ascension of the Lord and Pentecost this month, we also reflected on the meditations of St John Baptist de La Salle:
When will you be able to say with Saint Stephen that you see heaven open and Jesus Christ who is there, ready to share his graces with you?
Jesus is your mediator; he presents your prayers and good works to God his Father.
Jesus himself prays for you to draw down God’s mercy on you. Meditation 40. 2⁄3 (Ascension)
You carry out a work that requires you to touch the hearts, but this you cannot do except by the Spirit of God.
Pray to Him to give you today the same grace he gave the holy apostles and ask Him that, after filling you with His Holy Spirit to sanctify yourselves, He also communicates Himself to you in order to procure the salvation of others. Med 43.3 (cf. Jn 14:23–31; Pentecost)
Year 9 Lasallian Service
Students in Years 9 Benilde, Hegarty and Roland have been busy the past few weeks organising their Lasallian Service placements which begin in late June. Lasallian Service is a community service program, structured in a way that allows students to put into practice the core Christian values of our Lasallian charism. Lasallian Service encourages students to put their faith into action as well as enhancing their learning and awareness of social justice in a broader sense. Good luck to these boys as they embark on this experience!
Mrs Rana Brogan
Deputy Principal – Faith and Mission
Learning and Teaching
Semester 1 Examinations
Semester 1 examinations are almost upon us and it is timely to point out a couple of the changes we will be seeing in this exam period.
This year, there will be no formal end of semester examinations for Year 7 students. This decision was made following an extensive review of our examinations throughout 2015. Normal timetabled classes will be taking place over the exam period, with in-class assessments occurring at this level.
Similarly, Year 12 classes will be running as normal through the exam period. Year 12 students will need to be alert to any subject-specific SAC arrangements running in class time. Worth noting too, is that the General Achievement Test (GAT) will be conducted on Tuesday 7 June. This involves all students enrolled in a Unit 3 study, including Year 11 students completing a subject as part of the Accelerated Learning Program.
Further information about the end of semester exams and the GAT will be provided in coming days. In the meantime, all students are advised to ensure that they are up to date with the requirements of each subject as semester units draw to a close. In addition, regular study routines should be well established in order to enable the best possible chance for success in the coming exams.
Mr Mark Gustincic
Deputy Principal – Learning and Teaching
Staff and Operations
Mission Action Day Awards
The annual Mission Action Day Awards were presented at the conclusion of the Founder’s Day Liturgy on Friday 13 May. Again this year the response from students and the wider community has been outstanding. The total collected now stands at just over $108,000. Such an amazing total would not have been possible without the extraordinary effort of individual students.
The following students received a Certificate of Commendation from College Principal Mr Peter Houlihan for raising in excess of $500:
Nathan Blizzard 10A6, Max Kolpin Year 6, Lachlan Connolly 7R, Cormac Fleming 7J, Charles Newell 7D, Nicholas Nicolaou 9B, Benedict O’Shea 12L6, Jonathan Blanas 12A6, Nicholas Leontaritis 12L3, Cooper Smithe 7B, Evan Ferentinos 7J, Andrew Kim 7V.
The highest individual fundraiser was Christian Mora 10M3, who raised $1,475.05. Christian was presented with the Ian Oliver Mission Action Award. Christian also won this award last year. Ian Oliver, who retired from the College in 2015, was a driving force behind the success of Mission Action Day over many years. Ian attended the assembly to present this significant award.
While recognition of the contribution of individual students is so important, the total amount achieved is done through the collective efforts of hundreds of boys and staff working together. The result is a wonderful achievement which will support the many development projects and initiatives of the Lasallian Foundation in remote Australia and Asia.
The Mission Action Day raffle was also drawn at the assembly. Boys were allocated a raffle ticket for each $50 increment they raised. There was a major prize of a $200 JB Hi Fi voucher and a runner-up prize of a $50 voucher for each campus.
Congratulations to Kinnoull winner Jeremy Wagland 12M4 and runner-up Sam Callaghan 11L2 and Tiverton winner Alistair Fitzgerald 7H and runner-up Timothy Ward 7H.
The final MAD activity for the year will be the Mission Action Day Thankyou Lunch. The top 300 money raisers will be invited to this lunch. It will be held on Friday 27 May at lunchtime outside the PAC on Tiverton Campus.
Camps Review Committee Parent Survey
A review of camps and overseas trips at the College is currently in progress. Parents are invited to participate in a survey concerning Year 4–9 camps. An email will be sent in the near future with more details. For those that would like to participate the survey is available at http://goo.gl/forms/lbPwVyGB8my3YO8J3.
Mr Tom Ryan
Deputy Principal – Staff and Operations
Meet Our Student Leaders
In my role as Leo’s House Vice-Captain I am constantly working with my peers and it is a great experience to be able to work with my Lasallian brothers. I strive to make De La Salle a second home that people look forward to coming to every day, just as I think of De La Salle as my second home. I have had leadership experience with the Australian Air Force Cadets as a Cadet Sergeant and loved every moment of it because it allowed me to interact with pupils and become a mentor and teacher to them just as I would like to do at De La Salle with any of my peers.
Founder’s Day is special because it allows everyone to stop and give thanks for being a part of such a mighty school community. As a community, we pause to commemorate the legacy of Saint John Baptist de La Salle, our patron saint. In the lead up to Founder’s Day details of the life and work of our patron saint appeared in the daily notices. Behind the scenes, the Year 12 Student Leaders were booking food trucks, securing donations, negotiating council requirements and developing a program of activities for the day.
This year, the work of the Year 12 Student Leaders is underpinned by three guiding principles: brotherhood, faith and personal excellence. Their active contribution to the community sought to encourage student participation, develop stronger relationships and foster a sense of Lasallian spirit and belonging. All of the Year 12 Student Leaders lived out the mission of their guiding principles in a spirit of service on the day. The day commenced with a special Eucharist to give thanks for all the blessings bestowed upon our Lasallian community. Then, the fun began in earnest when we moved over to the Kinnoull Campus to enjoy a carnival with various events and activities. De La Golf, De La Classic Catch, De La Gift, Counter Strike, bubble soccer and the jumping castle were obvious favourites.
I’d like to extend my thanks and appreciation to Vanessa Marolda and Steve Young for supporting the young men in their Year 11 Business Management classes. There was a terrific energy around their stalls and a great sense of brotherhood.
It is no wonder that one long serving staff member commented that it was “one of the best Founder’s Days in [his] twenty years at the College.” The perfect weather and bright blue skies probably had something to do with it too. Recent studies have affirmed the importance of outdoor play both at home and at school. Indeed, a study of 12,000 parents with children aged from five to 12 years old, in 10 countries, found almost a third of children play outside for just 30 minutes or less a day. These statistics are alarming to say the least. The playful fun of Founder’s Day should not be underestimated in your son’s learning; it is vital to nurture his creative spirit and sense of connectedness to our College community.
In Lasallian schools the relationship between us as educators and our young men is not negotiable. This relationship is invitational and it requires both care, participation and support. Our young men are blessed to have so many great teachers at De La Salle; this was evidenced by the staff who assisted with various activities. Indeed, we are a rich Lasallian community and Founder’s Day helped me to come to a deeper understanding of what that means.
2016 Young Endeavour Youth Development Program
Applications are now open for the 2016 Young Endeavour Youth Development Program. Young Australians in our community have the opportunity to set sail for the voyage of a lifetime as the national sail training ship Young Endeavour circumnavigates Australia!
All young Australians aged 16 to 23 can apply for voyages at www.youngendeavour.gov.au. Youth crew are selected by ballot, and no sailing experience is required. Main round applications close on Monday 30 May 2016.
Following a 12 month voyage around the world, Young Endeavour has visited Victoria, Tasmania and New South Wales, and will soon set sail for Queensland, the Northern Territory, Western Australia and South Australia. Twenty four youth will join each 11 or 13 day voyage, and will learn the skills to sail a square-rigged tall ship. They will keep watch and take the helm, cook in the galley, navigate using the ship’s charts, and climb the 30 metre mast to set and furl the sails.
Each participant will be encouraged to pursue personal and team goals and challenges. By the end of each voyage they will have the skills and confidence to elect a leadership team and take command of the 44 metre brigantine, sailing Young Endeavour along the Australian coast.
Challenges for Women in Leadership
On Thursday 12 May several De La Salle staff attended the Victorian Catholic Secondary Schools Deputy Principals’ Association’s Women in Leadership dinner. The evening is always a great opportunity for Catholic school leaders to come together and network with colleagues – women and men – and listen to a speaker who has demonstrated leadership in her field. This year we welcomed Patricia Cowling, former principal of Genazzano FCJ College and Padua College. Patricia embraced the challenges of contemporary learning and teaching, and ensured that the schools she led were strategically placed to meet the educational, political and economic opportunities of the future. Patricia is an advocate for synergy in vision, personnel and strategy. Patricia emphasised the importance of teamwork and her inspiring message sits in alignment with our current push for collaborative practices to support De La Salle’s school improvement.
Ms Lisa Harkin
Deputy Principal — Students