Volume 31 Issue 15 - 25 October 2019

Message from the Principal

Dear Parents and Friends of St Patrick’s College

Sue Lennox - Principal

It is hard to believe we are now entering the last term and soon it will be Christmas. There is a lot of activity in the College at this time as teachers and students are busy bringing the year to completion with courses and assessments and the planning for 2020 is well under way. It is not uncommon  at this time of the year to see staff movement as our current staff pursue positions in other schools and we have the opportunity to welcome new staff to our community.

Ms Dunn, who has been on parental leave for the year, has requested a further year’s leave so will not be returning until 2021. We also have some staff taking much deserved long service leave this term. Mr Williams, Mr Lord and Mrs Harradine will be absent from the College this term. We hope their time away will be restorative and refreshing. We will welcome them back again next year.

You may have noticed the building work which is happening in and around Westview. The first stage, which included the new kitchens, has been completed. The girls have started using the new spaces and they have all given it the "thumbs up". The builders are currently working on the Design and Technology areas now. The woodworking areas, stores and textiles areas are currently being refurbished. Whilst the work is happening we are also refurbishing the girls' toilets so that when this area is completed, the whole space will be new. Finally, we are hoping to attract some funding from the Government for the central area which will be the Design Centre. If we are successful, work will begin in the area early next year. By mid-2020 the whole building will have been refurbished. I am sure the girls and staff will find the areas exceptional to work in.  I am appreciative of the Board for supporting this project and the work that will transform the learning for the girls in the KLA area of TAS.

Girls in Years 7 to 10 will be sitting exams and completing assessments over the coming weeks. I encourage the girls to prepare as best they can for this period so that they are able to demonstrate the learning that has occurred over time. I hope that the feedback you would have received at the recent parent teacher night has provided you with some useful information in supporting your daughter and has given you an insight in to her current progress. Please contact the College at any time if you have any questions.

Earlier this week, we were delighted to hear that the Minister for Veterans Affairs, Darren Chester, announced that our History Club has won two awards in the Anzac Day Schools Awards. You will find more details of the awards in an article further in this edition. Congratulations to all the girls in the History Club and to Mrs Fran Musico Rullo on such a wonderful achievement. 

This Friday, World Teachers Day is celebrated in Australia. We will have a few treats for our staff on that day. At St Patrick's, I consider all staff work in the capacity of teacher to the girls and each other. They model respectful relationships, they model care and compassion, professionalism and encourage the girls to be their better selves. We are indebted to the service provided by the staff at our College as they devote themselves to the care of your daughter.

I will leave you with a short poem on the value of the teacher.


Sue Lennox - Principal 

Paint their minds
and guide their thoughts
Share their achievements
and advise their faults

Inspire a Love
of knowledge and truth
As you light the path
Which leads our youth

For our future brightens
with each lesson you teach
Each smile you lengthen
Each goal you help reach

For the dawn of each poet
each philosopher and king
Begins with a Teacher
And the wisdom they bring.

by Kevin William Huff

Halloween and Our Catholic Faith

Halloween is celebrated annually on 31 October and has become increasingly popular in Australia. This is reflected through the decoration of homes and preparations made for “trick or treating”, with some suburbs gaining a reputation for being the best places to visit. Many children and adults dress up in scary costumes and participate in the rituals of this event. Ghosts, demons, witches and other ghoulish characters or themes often feature.

Some may question what this has to do with Catholicism and see it as a commercialised sugar fest based on paganism. There are in fact many links that can be made between Halloween and our Catholic faith. In 2016, Bishop Peter Ingham wrote a letter about this very topic and conveyed how Halloween can be understood and appreciated as a “Godly” event. Some of the key points he addressed concerned the meaning of the event. Halloween is observed on the "een" or "eve" of All Hallows Day (All Saints Day) on 1 November. The word “hallow” means holy as made clear when it occurs in the Lord's Prayer – "hallowed be thy name" (may God's name be held holy). All Saints Day is a solemn holy day of the Catholic Church dedicated to the saints of the Church, that is, all those who have attained heaven. Bishop Ingham explained in his letter that Catholics can celebrate Halloween but they need to ensure that they make connections between what they are doing on Halloween and All Saints Day. He argued that “to celebrate Halloween without connecting it to All Saints Day would be like celebrating Christmas Eve without a Christmas Day”. It is also important to remember All Souls Day as a holy day celebrated on 2 November to remember and pray for all of those who have died.

Some suggestions made by Bishop Ingham, who referenced Father William Bausch, of ways to make these connections include:

  • before going out “trick or treating,” gather the family to offer a prayer for deceased members and friends, people of our past who meant something to us and whose influence is still with us
  • bring out the family album for the triduum of Halloween, All Saints and All Souls; put it on the coffee table with a little lit candle in front of it. This makes a statement that we all come from a long line of people who loved us and that Halloween is a sacred time as well as a fun time, that we are part of their journey, as they are of ours
  • on All Saints Day, possibly around the dinner table, have family members research the saint after whom they are named and tell everyone something about him or her
  • bring some of the things you may get by going around tricking or treating to a nursing home or send to the St Vincent de Paul Society

Louise East - Religious Studies Coordinator

Santa Teresa Immersion

The Santa Teresa Immersion was a trip that I will always hold dear to my heart. Year 11 students Rachael W, Stephanie M and myself, embarked on a weeklong enriching journey with six other students and two teachers from Good Samaritan schools. The week exceeded beyond my expectations.

Stephanie M and Rachael W with Ms Boulatsakos

The Ltyentye Apurte Community also known as Santa Teresa, is an Arrernte Aboriginal community in the Northern Territory. The girls packed light, shopped for a week's worth of food and we 4-Wheel drove down the very long and very red dirt road 85km out of Alice Springs. There, we met the remarkable Sister Liz, a Good Samaritan Sister who has lived with and in the community for 11 years. She has established the most unique connections with the Aboriginal community and especially the women in the Spirituality Centre. She is their biggest advocate and has made a tremendous impact with her mission work, a true servant leader.  

During the week we were encouraged to “Be more” and “Do less” a very tricky task when we are so task-orientated in our society. However, without any mobile reception, it became easier to “be more” as the week progressed and as Benedict urges us to “listen with the ear of our heart”. Each day we rotated around the places that needed some extra help and TLC. For example, we volunteered our time in the Community Centre, preparing and delivering lunches for the elderly in the community. We assisted in the Creche by minding the young children and doing the odd jobs such as cleaning the walls, windows and toys that can be quickly overlooked when you have 13 children to entertain all day. We sat and admired the works of art the ladies in the Spirituality Centre create daily with their special dot paintings on the crosses and other keepsakes, integrating Aboriginal Spirituality and Christianity. One day we also cleaned the Central Land Council’s boardroom which due to the big dust storm a few months back, was left to be untouchable – luckily 22 hands and legs got to work with a little bit of music to keep us going! The week was filled with many revelations and “uh-ha” moments as Sister Liz educated us on the struggle and injustices the community has and continues to endure and how we can make a difference by sharing our experiences and stamping out the stigma to those with whom we share their story. A highlight was the special campfire where we reflected on our Mother Earth and the beautiful star lit sky, counting our blessings. Also our trek up the mountain for sunrise and sunset to see a panoramic view of the town was very special, reaching the large cross on the top, witnessing the ceremony boundaries of rocks and feeling the sacred land speak to us. I am so humbled to have been a pilgrim on this journey to Santa Teresa and appreciate eternally the lessons offered to me.  

If you are interested in purchasing a beautiful cross in time for Christmas and supporting the ladies in the Spirituality Centre, they are $20 plus $2 postage. Please ask your daughter to bring in the money on Monday so we can place the order next week.  

Maria Boulatsakos - Year 7 Coordinator


Welcome back for term 4. Term 4 is always a busy time of year and the library are no exception to this.

Our HSC collection

The HSC is underway and the library support the students in any way we can. We have emergency stationery packs, maths sets and calculators; we do emergency ID card replacements and the kitchenette corner is a popular space for making a cuppa or a Milo and heating that meal to eat whilst preparing for the exam or debriefing afterwards.

With the new timetable, we are supporting the Year 11 students as they begin their HSC studies. We have a large Preliminary and HSC collection of study guides, related material and past exam books. We are currently working on this 'HSC' collection to make it easier to use. Keep a lookout for the changes and new material as it hits the shelves.

The College Library

Study Skills Tip For October Managing Anxiety During Exams

If you are someone who freezes or has a mental blank during an exam or is overly anxious, you may find that the heightened anxiety is reducing your ability to recall.

Study skills to assist in managing your exam stress

Remember that being as prepared as possible and not leaving your study until the last minute can make a big difference in reducing anxiety. Start your study early and make a plan so that you have time to study what you need to without stress. It is also important to note that the more practice tests you do, the more familiar you are with the test so it will be less intimidating and you will be used to working under time limits.

When you are in the exam, if you feel anxious, a good strategy is to close your eyes for a moment and take some long, deep breaths. When you open your eyes do some of the questions you find easy or feel confident about. Meanwhile, your subconscious will have a chance to recall the things you are struggling to remember. Another trick is to try moving your eyes to different directions, ie looking up and to the left etc. This can also sometimes prompt recall.

You can also visit the MANAGING STRESS unit in the online Study Skills Handbook for more strategies.

You could also seek help from our College Counsellor for techniques on how to manage stress.

The College Library

Congratulations Evana S and Katarina S

Congratulations to both Katarina S and Evana S on their selection in the NSW Waratahs team for Indoor Netball. Katarina was selected in the U/14s team and Evana in the U/16s team. Both girls will now compete at the Australian Indoor Nationals from 30 Nov to 7 December in Queensland. An outstanding achievement, well done and good luck.


Special mention must also go to Katarina who was also selected for the Little Athletics Australia National Camp for U/15 athletes this year. Only 120 athletes from around Australia were selected, and only 3 female shot putters. Katarina spent 4 days in camp at the AIS over the school holidays participating in specialist coaching sessions with former Olympians, and attending workshops relating to strength and conditioning, recovery and sports psychology. The athletes also heard inspirational talks from former Australian Olympians. This was a very special opportunity for Katarina and is a great reward and recognition for all her hard work and effort over a number of years.

Scott Ashcroft - Sports and Activities Coordinator

Congratulations Jarian H

In the first weekend of the holidays Jarian competed at the Australian (U/17) Youth Weightlifting Championships in Brisbane. This was Jarian's final competition as a youth as she ages up into Juniors (U/20) next year.


During the competition Jarian achieved the following outstanding results:

- Snatch 72kg (2kg PB and an Australian Youth record)

- Clean and Jerk 90kg (3kg PB and equal Australian Youth record)

- Combined total of 162kg for the Snatch and Clean (7kg PB and an Australian Youth record)

In the process of breaking / equalling three Australian records, Jarian also broke nine NSW records. This performance saw Jarian crowned as the Australian Champion in the Youth Division. Congratulations Jarian on a phenomenal performance and being named Australian Champion.

Scott Ashcroft - Sports and Activities Coordinator

Congratulations Amy S and Natalie S

Congratulations to Amy S and Natalie S on being named in the Giants Netball Academy for season 2019/2020. 

The Giants Netball Academy creates a clear pathway for athletes in New South Wales to develop to the elite level. The Academy is focused on developing and preparing players who the club believe have the potential to rise as a Giants and play Suncorp Super Netball. The program will be closely aligned with the Giants Super Netball team, allowing Academy athletes to work alongside some of the best athletes in the world’s best competition. A great reward for two very talented and hardworking athletes.

Scott Ashcroft - Sport and Activities Coordinator

Term 4 MISA Teams

Congratulations to the following girls who were selected in MISA teams for Term 4.


Year 7/8/9 AFL

Sandrine M, Mia F, Sophia S, Fale'ofa A, Stevie F, Jacqueline C, Siena B, Annabel M, Ilori P, Annalise D and Charlotte T. Coach Mrs Arena.

Year 7/8/9 Softball

Charlotte F, Katarina S, Lucy O, Sophia E, Abbie H, Molly Q, Grace K, Jess W, Amy W, Brianna M, Jordanne M, Lillian M, Piper C and Samantha S. Coach Mrs Lawrence.

Year 7/8/9 Oz Tag

Eden G, Amelia , Amy Y, Olivia Z, Lara M, Grace G, Keesha D, Tess M, Olivia H, Sophie A, Ava H, Aaliyah B and Darcy E. Coach Mr Baca and Mr Ashkar.

Year 10/11 Volleyball

Evana S, Naina N, Rachael T, Arden D, Georgia R, Loretta T and Natalie C. Coach Mrs Nash.

Year 10/11 Frisbee

Piper L, Muskaan N, Tara B, Amadee T, Alysha B, Kassandra S, Gabby K, Olivia S, Sarah P, Emilee O, Ruby D, Rahni W, Paris H and Ellie F. Coach Ms Wallin.

Year 7, 8 & 9 Diocesan AFL Tournament

On Friday 18 October the St Patrick's AFL team participated in the Diocesan AFL tournament.

The team consisting of Annalise D, Sandrine M, Sophia S, Ilori P, Amy Y, Annabelle M, Charlotte T, Stevie F, Mia F, Carrera-Rose K, Amelia M, Sianna F, Madison M, Samantha S, Sarah M and Lucy B played extremely hard and fair on the day. The level of skill and commitment shown by all of the girls was wonderful, demonstrating great ability against some very tough opposition throughout the day. Our girls did an amazing job and achieved a wonderful result, finishing in third place overall. Well done to all students on their amazing effort and for how they represented the College on the day. A big thank you must be extended to Mr Ashcroft who convened the day. The carnvial ran smoothly and it was a great success. 

Jared Baca - Year 9 Coordinator

Diocesan Basketball Carnival

On Monday 21 October the Junior and Senior Basketball teams competed in the Diocesan Basketball carnival in Wollongong. Up against 11 other schools, the St Patrick’s College Junior Team came third and Senior Team came fourth.


Junior Team
Game 1 vs St Benedict’s College – 42 to 0 (Won)
Game 2 vs Corpus Christi College – 18 to 3 (Won)
Game 3 vs Magdalene College – 26 to 6 (Won)
Game 4 vs St Mary’s Star of the Sea – 10 to 25 (Lost)
Semi Finals vs Holy Spirit College – 13 to 16 (Lost)
Finals vs Mt Carmel College – 22 to 4 (Won)

Senior Team
Game 1 vs St Benedict’s College – 58 to 0 (Won)
Game 2 vs St John’s College – 52 to 0 (Won)
Game 3 vs Holy Spirit College – 9 to 30 (Lost)
Semi Finals vs St Mary’s Star of the Sea – 12 to 34 (Lost)
Finals vs John Therry Catholic High School – 32 to 34 (Lost)

All games were quite physical and demonstrated our team skills. It was a great day with all girls doing themselves and the College proud.

Julian Nash - Basketball Coach

St Patrick's College History Club Wins Two Anzac Day Schools Awards & upcoming Fisher's Ghost Parade

On Wednesday 23 October, Darren Chester, Minister for Veterans Affairs announced that St Patrick's College has won two Anzac Day Schools Awards for their research into the role of war nurses. We were successful in receiving a special category award - Best Local History Project (Australia-wide) and were runners up in the Best Secondary School (NSW) division.  Our College will receive two plaques and prize money of $1500.

A section of the History Club display

The judges were impressed with the level of engagement of the History Club in its commemoration and research into Campbelltown's seven World War I nurses, particularly its historical display that will be up until the end of the year.

The judges comments were:
This entry showcased research undertaken by students into the contribution of nurses, with a particular focus on seven Campbelltown World War I nurses. The student-led Anzac Day service provided an opportunity for reflection and the video featuring students sharing the word ‘remember' in their cultural languages was an emotive addition to the service. The judges were particularly impressed with the level of student creativity and their understanding of the traditions and commemoration of Anzac Day.

A 10 slide powerpoint demonstrating the work of the History Club and a one minute video (made by Eve M of Year 7) comprised the entry.
More info at http://www.anzacportal.dva.gov.au/education/competitions/anzac-day-schools-awards

Well done History Club!

We are going to take our theme of commemorating our war nurses and veterans to the Fisher's Ghost Parade on 2 November. We will have our girls dressed in nurses'  and military costumes ranging from World War I to the present (including a contingent of Land Army girls). Our veterans from various RSL subbranches will be marching with us.

If your daughter would like to be involved please contact me via email: fmusicorullo@saintpatricks.nsw.edu.au

Fran Musico Rullo - HSIE Teacher

Debating and Public Speaking

Last term saw some significant achievements for the girls in Years 8 and 9. Year 8 (Molly, Charley and Isabella) made it to the CSDA Grand Final, placing them in the top two teams of over 120 teams from across Sydney! Well done on this outstanding achievement girls.

CSDA Debating Finalists 2019

Here’s what the girls themselves had to say:

"Being in the Grand Final was a great achievement and even though we didn’t win, I am so immensely proud of Izzy and Molly, the two amazing girls on my team. I feel like getting to the Grand Final has clearly helped with my public speaking and speech writing ability, especially because of the limited time available. It isn’t just about the experience but the bonding too. Debating is such a great experience for which I am so grateful. I definitely feel that I wouldn’t have gotten as far as I did without my girls." - Charley

"Debating is an experience like no other. It is a way to share your political, social and everyday knowledge on a professional and lively platform. I love debating, it is a challenge, but also a fun way to put personal concepts and ideas into constructive idea sharing. Debating is a way to grow confidence and make friends while experiencing challenges and criticism together. This year I made it into the grand final with my other teammates, this experience, although we lost, was amazing. It was a large task, yes, and losing wasn’t the greatest, but I got to do it with my teammates and push myself to try harder next time. Overall I love debating. It is my favourite way to represent my school." - Isabella

We also had Year 9 students Molly and Grace participate in the Year 9 MISA Youth of the Year Award at Mount Carmel. Their reflections sum up the benefits of such a great day:

"I found that MISA YOTY was a really unique experience. It was really interesting to compete against other Year 9s who had different takes and perspectives on our society today. It was also great to hear the perspectives of adults in the interview with the adjudicators. Overall, I found it an enriching day." - Grace

"Earlier this year, Grace and I had the opportunity to participate in the MISA YOTY competition. It was an amazing day. We were invited to write a speech about something we were passionate about, and also the chance to hear other bright young people from our area speak about what they felt were the important issues. I certainly learned a lot and came away from the day with a newfound understanding of many topics, both locally, nationally and internationally. All in all, it was an awesome experience and Grace and I are extremely grateful we were given the opportunity to participate." – Molly

Speaking to one of my Year 12s after the English exams struck a chord: “I’m so glad I did debating”. With HSC demands even more about putting a cohesive argument together in a short time frame, debating once again delivers.

Congratulations girls, we are all very proud of you.

Marguerite Pulham - Debating/Public Speaking Coordinator

History Club Member Zara Reflects on Her Study Trip to the Anzac Battlefields

During the September holidays I was privileged to be one of 20 students selected as a recipient of the Premier's ANZAC Memorial Scholarship from the Office of Veterans Affairs, of the NSW Government.


Zara H - Image courtesy of Jeff McGill

This trip was an amazing experience to learn about the views and experiences of the countries involved in the war, and to take on board the views of the younger generations who are living in the world created as a result of the first and second world wars.  I made so many new friends and learnt so much from the other students and teachers who went as a part of the group to Europe, especially from Brad Manera, the tour historian. 

Throughout the two weeks, we visited many sites from the first and second world wars, including Dachau Concentration Camp in Germany, the art bunkers in Nuremberg, the beaches where the Normandy landings occurred on D Day, as well as more well known sites like the battlefields of Passchendaele, the Somme and Polygon Wood.  In addition to this, we also visited the Nazi rally grounds in Nuremberg and spent time reflecting amongst the thousands of headstones at various Commonwealth Cemeteries, throughout France, Belgium and Germany, including Tyne Cot Cemetary. 

One of the highlights of the tour was being able to participate in a ceremony at the Menin Gate as a guard of honour. As well as all the memorial sites, there was still a lot of time for connection and fun - waffles and chocolate were a must in Belgium.  I will never forget this experience and am so grateful for the opportunity and the life-long friends I have made.

By Zara H - Year 11 Student

An article about Zara was also featured in the Macarthur Advertiser https://www.macarthuradvertiser.com.au/story/6418829/camden-student-following-diggers-footsteps-in-europe/

Environment Council

Last Term, the Environment Council was working hard to create creative backboards for our Playground Bin Stations.

The purpose of these backboards was to raise awareness of the devastating environmental issues and concerns our planet was experiencing and how we as a College of individuals, can still make a difference. The paintings were designed by our 2018 student leaders and painted by many talented Year 12 students. This term the Council will endeavour to finish the project and have them ready to be displayed for next year. Here are some photos of the work in progress.

Maria Boulatsakos - Environment Council Coordinator

Jobs for Youth - Apprenticeships and Traineeships

Your Career in Health Expo

Important Dates

What's on ... 

Image courtesy of Joshua Combes - CAPA Coordinator

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