26 May 2023

From the Deputy Principal

Article by Mr Paul Lewis | Deputy Principal of Staff, Identity and Operations

From the Deputy Principal

College Assembly

We held a wonderful College Assembly last week and it was completely conducted by the College Vice Captains Amy Thompson and Zac Dwyer.

Apart from the Principal’s address all the other speakers were Senior Students Leaders who gave tremendous reports about their respective portfolio areas:

Academic Captain Curtis McCoughtry

Arts Captain Zoe Walter

Environment Captain Paddy Noble

Justice Captain Alana Clark

Ministry Captain Madison Duncan

Sports Captain Chloe Hobbs

Wellbeing Captain Charlotte Punton

Thank you to the staff who supported the students leaders in organising the assembly including Michael Timms DP Students, Anthony Gravener and Robyn Frigo Student Development

Co-ordinators, Michelle Ryan Design and Digital Communications Officer and the IT Team.

Sorry Day Smoking Ceremony

Every year we hold a Sorry Day Smoking Ceremony at the College as part of National Reconciliation Week. This year the theme for Reconciliation Week is ‘Be Brave. Make Change.’

We had our Smoking Ceremony on Tuesday and we are very grateful to Norm Stanley and

Nikki Mc Kenzie who conducted the ceremony for us, as they have done for more than 10 years now.

Several FIRE Carrier students spoke about the importance of Sorry Day as part of the ceremony and one student, Isabel Gee, shared a very personal and incredibly moving account of her family background and the impact on family members of being part of the stolen generation. Thank you to Isabel for her courage to speak to the whole school about her family.

Thank you to the FIRE Carrier students for all their great work to prepare for the ceremony and for the way they conducted it on our behalf: Ed Aspinal-Kline, Alana Clarke, Isabel Gee, Alex Quirk and Keira Murray.

Thank you also to FIRE carrier staff members Deb Hodge and Attel Martschinke for their support of the FIRE Carrier students for the ceremony and indeed throughout the year.

Two extracts from the ceremony:

Justice Captain Alana Clark

We commemorate Sorry Day every year because sometimes there is this misunderstanding that because we ourselves haven’t committed any of these atrocities, that we shouldn’t have to be the ones saying sorry. But Sorry Day is about more than that. It is about;

  • acknowledging that the injustices were and still are a source of ongoing trauma for First Nations People today

  • acknowledging their incredible resilience throughout this period of time and

  • acknowledging the true history of our nation, and working towards national healing.

FIRE Carrier staff member Deb Hodge

In 1835, Europeans began massacring Wadawurrung people and destroying their food sources and infrastructure. It is unknown how many were killed in the region – the best estimates come from European diary entries, which predicted that in five years alone, over 60% of the Wadawurrung population had been killed.

By 1850, almost no Wadawurrung people were left in Geelong.


Last week we marked IDAHOBIT Day with a range of activities at the College to focus our awareness on the importance of respecting the dignity of all people in our College Community.

Thank you very much to the students and staff who arranged and conducted the activities for our College to further increase our awareness and help us all better understand and acknowledge IDAHOBIT Day.

Careers Panel Evening

On Monday evening we welcomed back a number of Alumni Students who gave up their evening to come back to Saint Ignatius College to speak to students and their parents/carers about their personal career pathways and their experiences of study and work.

Our alumni enjoyed a student-led College tour before a light dinner in the Loyola Centre Staffroom where they caught up with many of their “old” teachers.

Following this they presented in a panel format over three sessions (three repeats) so, the students and their parents/guardians could hear about three different career pathways during the evening.

This year there was also a 'Pathways Showcase' in the MPC as part of the evening where many universities, TAFE colleges and other post school organisations were on display.

Thank you very much to everyone involved in organising and conducting such a wonderful and informative evening:

  • Alumni

  • Elana Cole Director of Community Engagement and Development

  • Kim Abbott Principal’s PA

  • Deb Miles College Registrar

  • Michelle Ryan Design and Digital Communications 

  • Staff who attended the evening

  • Dot Vajda Acting Work and Further Education Coordinator

  • IT Team and Facilities Team

  • All the staff who attended in support of the event

Semester Exams and other Assessments

This is Week Five of a Nine Week Term and so we are entering the “business end” of the Term and Semester.

Next week is deemed “Activity-Free” at the College for Year 9 to Year 11 and Revision starts next week for Year 10 and Year 11 in preparation for their Semester One Exams.

Class assessment is happening throughout the school at present and students are doing tests and submitting assignments.

It can be a very stressful time for some students and so it is important that they approach it in an organised and focused way. It is absolutely crucial that they have strategies to manage any stress they might feel and also look after themselves with mindfulness activities and a good balance of exercise, sleep, healthy eating and support from family and friends.

Exams and assessments are a normal part of any study period in our life (school / uni / apprenticeship / TAFE etc) and it’s also very normal to have “peak times” like the end of a Semester. An amount of stress can be helpful for motivation but it’s also important that students manage it, plan ahead and if they are feeling it increasing to an uncomfortable level they need to make arrangements to have someone to talk to about it.

Blessings and best wishes.

Paul Lewis | Acting Principal