Volume 31 Issue 16 - 8 November 2019

Message from the Principal

Dear Parents and Friends of St Patrick’s College

Sue Lennox - Principal

Last week I finished reading the book “No Friend but the Mountain” by Behrouz Boochani. It is the true story of life incarcerated in Manus Island detention centre for refugees and asylum seekers who arrived by boat. It was awarded the Victorian Premiers Literary Award this year. I didn’t find it an easy read. In fact, I have found that it continues to confront and challenge me. The life of the detainees in the detention centre was horrendous.  Behrouz described the social system in the centre as Kyriarchal. This term was first coined in 1992 and describes a theory of interconnected social systems established for the purposes of domination, oppression and submission. Every routine, every procedure and every process in the centre was cruel and degrading to human dignity and lacked any semblance of compassion or kindness for people who had experienced trauma and dislocation as refugees. Manus Island detention centre is now closed but I believe it challenges our deluded beliefs that we are a nation of people who give people a fair go.

Towards the end of the book, Behrouz wrote about leadership. Here he says real leadership involves guiding groups of people with fortitude. Courageous leaders require courageous men and women in order to create change. He wrote that in the prison, prisoners kept their distance from the bold and the brave because that meant they didn’t have to exert courage themselves. This is true in our own communities also. To speak up against racism, abuse, disadvantage and discrimination requires courage. To stand with someone who calls out these transgressions also takes courage and when we have a number of courageous people calling out the indefensible there is potential for change. Regrettably, the treatment of refugees and asylum seekers in Australian offshore detention centres will remain unchanged for now for there is a dearth of courage in our leaders and followers to make it different.

Last weekend Campbelltown celebrated the Fisher's Ghost Parade. Many from the College participated in the march representing the Australian nurses who served in the wars. Under the theme “heroes”, it was fitting to acknowledge the tremendous service the women provided, often at the cost of their own futures and health, for their country. This edition will have some excellent images of the parade. My thanks to Mrs Fran Musico Rullo, who organised the event with a number of passionate staff and students. On the same evening, the College hosted a reunion for students who graduated in 1989, 1999 and 2009. It was lovely to welcome the women back and take them for a tour of the site. My thanks to Mrs Grant for her organisation and Ms Renshaw for her assistance.

In the next few weeks, we will be farewelling Mr David and Mrs Matti. Both staff have been wonderful contributors to the College and created meaningful learning experiences for their classes. We thank them for all they have done and wish them well as they take up new positions significantly closer to their homes. This week we farewelled Ms Dallo who has worked in the library. We thank her and wish her well for the future.

I will leave you with a short prayer for refugees.

Blessings

Sue Lennox - Principal 


Eyes will see a moment for grace instead of threat.
Tongues will not be silenced but will instead advocate.
Working for peace in their homelands,
working for justice in the lands where they seek safe haven.
Lord protect all refugees in their travels.   
www.crs.org

Confronting Racism: The Australian Dream

As Catholics we are called to confront racism. As was written in the Papal Encyclical of the Second Vatican Council, “… social or cultural discrimination in basic personal rights on the grounds of sex, race, colour, social conditions, language, or religion must be curbed and eradicated as contrary to God’s design”(Second Vatican Council, Gaudium et Spes, n 29). Racism is present in Australian society in various forms. Our First Nations Peoples have experienced racism since the European invasion of the 18th Century. Aboriginal Peoples continue to deal with the effects of the dispossession of their lands and culture. Those who dare to speak of the truth of our history and address the issue of racism, especially casual racism, often bear the brunt of further attacks and vilification. Adam Goodes is one example of such a person. The footy field was where he thrived; the only place where the colour of his skin was irrelevant. Goodes’ world fell apart when he became the target of racial abuse during a game, which spiralled into public backlash against him. He spoke out about racism when Australia was not ready to hear the ugly truth, retiring quietly from AFL heartbroken.

On the first Thursday of Term 4 we took our new HSC cohort for 2020 to see the film “The Australian Dream”, which features the story of Adam Goodes. Having begun their study of issues relating to Aboriginal Spiritualities it was an invaluable experience academically but also in terms of their development as socially conscious, moral young people. The students were very positive about the excursion despite the confronting and emotional nature of the film. All students responded to a survey to aid in the debriefing of the experience. Some of their survey responses follow:

“It was a very powerful film: I learned a lot from it and the depth of Adam Goodes' experience. I believe it is a film that society needs to be aware of, to learn that racism should not and will not be accepted in Australian societies. I previously knew that Australia Day was "invasion day" from Modern History, but the film displayed explicit reasons as to why Australia Day should not be celebrated on that day”.

“It was truly an inspiring film to watch and I'm so glad we got the chance to view it. It really enhanced my knowledge about Adam Goodes' story and I was so taken by the sophisticated cinematography and insightful comments made by the various interviewees. I feel more confident and inspired now to put forward my argument supporting an end to racism”. 

“It was a fantastic experience and one of the BEST excursions ever organised. Something like this should be continued to be done at our school”.

“Prior to this experience I wasn't really aware of the impact of the Adam Goodes story. No one in my family has a connection to Aboriginal spirituality so I was brought up respecting their culture, but not necessarily understanding why they felt the way they did. I believe everyone in Australia needs to be educated about this and shown this film. It really shows Australia's true culture…. disgusting.”

Louise East - Religious Studies Coordinator 

 

News@TheLibrary

The library is undergoing some staff changes this term. As a result of these changes, there are times when the library will be short staffed. This will in no way affect the level of service offered to the students and staff. From Monday 11 November for the remainder of term, the library hours will be 8am until 4pm.

Farewell and Good Luck Ms Dallo

Last Friday saw us say farewell to Ms Amanda Dallo. She has been a valued member of the library team for the past five years and we wish her well as she heads off in new directions.

Mrs Julie Abrahams has temporarily joined the library team to cover Ms Dallo. Mrs Abrahams has over 20 years experience in public libraries. We welcome her to the team. 

The College Library

International School Library Day

International School Library Day was celebrated on 22 October 2019.

Mrs Robertson with some of the Book Club members

International School Library Day celebrates and promotes all the ways school libraries support and add value to the schools they serve, and the wider community. On Tuesday 22 October, the College Library celebrated this day by inviting students who participate in Library Clubs to a 'cupcake' morning tea. These clubs include Junior and Senior Book Club, Creative Writing Club, Makerspace Club and Tech Club. 

The College Library

Email notifications for overdue library items copy

The library has recently changed its notification procedures for students' overdue library items.

Keep a note of library book due dates!

In an effort to ensure library books are returned by their due date, and to avoid unnecessary billing for 'lost' books (that may actually be in lockers or sitting on bedside tables!), the Library has reassessed its notification procedures.

Students will receive an email reminder when their borrowed books are due for return within the week, and a weekly email will also be sent to students with books that are overdue by seven days or more. In addition, parents will be notified by email twice a term if their child(ren) have outstanding library books by several weeks. Replacement costs are charged for lost or damaged books, so it's important to keep track of where library books are once borrowed! 

It's always a great idea to have a particular place at home where library books live to minimise the chances of books being lost or misplaced, especially when a student borrows from both College and public libraries. If there are any concerns regarding a lost book, or if a student would like to extend their loan period, a chat with any of the friendly Library staff is always welcomed.

The College Library

Email notifications for overdue library items

The library has recently changed its notification procedures for students' overdue library items.

Keep a note of library book due dates!

In an effort to ensure library books are returned by their due date, and to avoid unnecessary billing for 'lost' books (that may actually be in lockers or sitting on bedside tables!), the Library has reassessed its notification procedures.

Students will receive an email reminder when their borrowed books are due for return within the week, and a weekly email will also be sent to students with books that are overdue by seven days or more. In addition, parents will be notified by email twice a term if their child(ren) have outstanding library books by several weeks. Replacement costs are charged for lost or damaged books, so it's important to keep track of where library books are once borrowed! 

It's always a great idea to have a particular place at home where library books live to minimise the chances of books being lost or misplaced, especially when a student borrows from both College and public libraries. If there are any concerns regarding a lost book, or if a student would like to extend their loan period, a chat with any of the friendly Library staff is always welcomed.

The College Library

Study Skills Tip For November – How To Stay Positive As Exams (or any challenging situations) Approach.

It can be difficult to stay positive or “be up” as exams approach. The more important we perceive the exam to be, the more stress we can feel. While feeling some stress can be positive and help us get motivated to study, we all have a tipping point. When our stress levels reach our personal tipping point, this higher level of stress can lead to inaction, where we avoid doing the work necessary to be prepared and as a result feel even more overwhelmed. If not dealt with, stress can build and lead to anxiety and depression.

Senior Students researching for their Society & Culture Assessment

The key to being positive and managing negative emotions such as anxiety and feeling down and depressed in any pressure situation including exams is to “fuel up”. It goes without saying that if we are exhausted, tired, stressed, depressed etc it is very difficult if not impossible to deal with the pressure of exams. “Fuelling Up” is about boosting wellbeing factors in your life. You need to boost the wellbeing factors in your BODY, MIND and EMOTIONS.

BODY: Put your health first and eat healthily, exercise regularly and get enough sleep. We all know what to do, but we need to make the decision to prioritise our own wellbeing. Without the right fuel you will feel exhausted and depleted and it is very hard to be positive when you aren’t feeling your best.

MIND: To think more positively, challenge your perceptions. Write down your top five fears and worries. What’s the worst thing that can happen? How valid are these fears? Usually fears and worries are not based on reality but on imagined scenarios that have little to no evidence. If it’s something that can’t be changed, bring acceptance to it, but if it can be changed, take action.

EMOTIONS: To help yourself feel more positive every day think of three good things that happened that day and how they made you feel. Also take the focus off yourself and do three simple but deliberate acts of kindness every day. It might be a kind word, a compliment, helping someone or surprising someone with a kind act. You will be amazed at how making other people feel better lifts your mood as well.

Learn more in the Study Skills Handbook which can be found in Destiny Discover, the College Library's site, that will take you straight through to the handbook without the need to enter the user name or password.

 

Celebration Sing Out 2019

Eleven of our most dedicated Co-Curricular Music students participated in a wonderful event in the last weekend of October. They joined 500 other singers and an enormous orchestra to perform in Sydney's Town Hall.

Thanks to Mrs Cosis for this photo from the audience

The purpose of the performance was to raise much needed funds for Westmead Children's Hospital's Music Therapy program, which relies solely on donations. The event raised over $30,000 and one of the Music Therapists spoke on the evening to express how these funds will be used. Many patients are in hospital for long stays and often return many times each year. Music Therapy gives these children an opportunity to explore their creativity and often greatly improves their overall moods. 

The students greatly enjoyed their performances and a highlight was a medley of songs by John Farnham. Here is the link to view some of this performance: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h2tsq8_1waI&feature=youtu.be

Elizabeth Samyia - CAPA Teacher

St Patrick's Honours Our War Nurses and Veterans at The Fisher's Ghost Parade

On 2 November 2019, over 60 students and staff took part in the Fisher’s Ghost Parade. The parade theme was ‘Heroes’ and we called our entry ‘Commemorating Campbelltown’s War Nurses and Veterans – Our Local Heroes’ to fit in with the work of the History Club. We joined forces with Mr Elwyn Spencer of Campbelltown RSL sub branch to include our veterans and Women’s Auxiliary in the parade.

Group portrait assembling at the Old Campbelltown Showground

Our parade entry began with two Light Horses with riders Denis and Clare from the Richmond Windsor Light Horse Group.

Our banner was held by Bianca J, Aimee C (in WWI nurse costume), Emeline L (WW2 dress) and Chantelle G (1970s dress). This was followed by our WWI Anzac nurses Tiana G, Olivia M, Tess M, Laura Z, Isabelle S, Eve M each representing one of Campbelltown’s WWI nurses. Our little Red Cross girls Alessandra, Siya (navy) and Radha enjoyed their day most of all.

The next contingent was of Australian servicewomen through history. Fatima A and Emily M dressed as World War II V.A.Ds, Layla E and Mrs Wendy McDonald as Vietnam War era nurses, Chelsea P, Emelia B, Layla B, Lilian M as army combat soldiers.  Olivia L in Navy dress, Renae L in WW2 outfit and Caitlin R  in formal Army outfit; all wore the medals of their family members who had fought in either World War I or II.

Our seniors wore authentic Australian military uniforms lent to us by the RSL and John Morthen from Campbelltown and Airds Historical Society. Emma F came in a Navy sailor’s outfit, Elizabeth K in RAAF uniform and Ashleigh K in AAWS uniform with steel hat. Gianna M wore Elwyn Spencer’s authentic army uniform from the Vietnam War.

We were fortunate to have two Cadillacs donated by Cadillac Heaven (https://cadillacheaven.com.au/) that transported our veterans. They contained special World War II veteran, Bert Collins, who is 103 years old. He was accompanied by our College Captain, Imogen in World War II clothing and veteran Jim Wrigley and Women’s Auxilary members. Natalie L in World War II clothing accompanied more veterans Stan Allen and wife Sue (Smithfield RSL) and the Women’s Auxilary in the other Cadillac.

Mrs Lucette Zapirain drove a poppy covered MG with Mr Stan Thomas of Merrylands RSL. This was followed by a 12 seater Army Landcruiser 101 donated by Military Vehicle.org  (https://www.military-vehicle.org/) driven by Sean and carried several Women’s Auxilary members and students Neha D, Sophie I, Amelia M, Brooke F, Miss Iler and Miss Roa madly waving their Australian flags.

Our seniors in school uniform (Alyssa H, Alex F, Janaya B, Rahniesha W, Minduli T, Roisin T) held the Lest We Forget sign made with poppies that the History Club made for the centenary of the Armistice in 2018. They held the letters up high on poles and it looked very impressive as a backdrop to those in uniform.

Our next section of  entry was a tribute to the Land Army in World War II. This was led by a 1940s Fargo ute driven by Russell (with Kiara M in WWI nurse outfit) and a  vintage Farmall tractor from Campbelltown Steam and Machinery Museum (http://www.csmm.com.au/). The Fargo ute had several veterans on board including Elwyn Spencer and other members of Campbelltown RSL sub branch and Bronwyn and Laura Z’s grandparents. Our Land Army comprised Mackenzie M, Karli G, Bronwyn Z, Mackenzie B,  Mrs Deidre Back, Mr and Mrs East (with Sierra and Harriet from St Thomas More School), Sophia E, Jo C, Sneha S and Ashlyn B.

The last vehicle in our entry was the College van driven by Vince Fuda with wife Tina.

I wish to thank all those staff who supported us on the day, Vince, Fuda, Deidre Back, Nathan East, Louise East, Soliette Roa, Cassandra Iler, Wendy McDonald and Shobna Sharma. A special thank you to Liz Samyia for being our photographer. Parent, Mrs Lucette Zapirain went above and beyond helping us prepare the costumes and organising many of the vehicles. We cannot thank her enough for sharing her vision with us.

We were fortunate to win 2nd prize in the parade and equal best ‘Hooves and Wheels’ category with the SES.

Our girls enjoyed the afternoon and there were smiles all round!

Mrs Fran Musico Rullo

 

Apprenticeship Careers Australia

More general information about School Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships is available via this website: https://sbatinnsw.info/  

Retail and Customer Service School-Based Traineeships

More general information about School Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships is available via this website: https://sbatinnsw.info/  

Jobs for Youth - Apprenticeships and Traineeships

More general information about School Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships is available via this website: https://sbatinnsw.info/  

Forensic Science Camp

Appin Carols in the Park- Saturday 7 December

If you are looking for a memorable way to get into the Christmas spirit, come join us in Appin for our Carols in the Park event. 

There will be live music, face painting, jumping castles, food stalls and more. Carols by Candlelight will kick off from 7pm with performances from a variety of community groups, including our very own St Patrick's choir. The night will come to a close with a spectacular display of fireworks at 9pm. Check out the 'Appin Carols in the Park' Facebook page for further information. 

Important Dates

What's on ... 

Image courtesy of Joshua Combes - CAPA Coordinator

for all events at the College, CLICK HERE