This is the final newsletter for 2020. Years 7-11 students have their last day of classes tomorrow before commencing summer holidays.
Parents will be able to access the Semester Two Statement of Results for these students via the parent portal from Monday 14th December 2020.
The exam period for Year 12 VCE students finished this week. Students undertaking Unit 3/4 VCE exams will receive their results on Wednesday 30th December 2020.
I hope our students’ results are reflective of solid gains in their learning for another year, taking into account the impact of the pandemic, and affirm their determined efforts and positive attitude to their subject courses.
An overview of some key dates on the College calendar over the holiday period:
• Orientation Day for next year’s Year 7 students will be held next Tuesday 8th December.
• The College office will close on Friday 18th December and re-open on Monday 18th January 2021. Book collection and Years 7 and 10 laptop collection will be on Thursday 21st January.
• The first day of classes for all students next year will be Monday 1st February.
With the academic year nearly finished, and the number of COVID-19 cases at zero for a month, we can look forward to celebrating Christmas and enjoying the summer break after what has been a very challenging year for everyone in our community. We could not have anticipated the year ahead when we finished up last year.
Despite the uncertainties and difficulties, there have been many examples of care, compassion and resilience. I commend our school community for the way we have together managed during the States of Emergency and Disaster declared by the Victorian Government. As we look back on 2020, may we take strength from the knowledge of what we have accomplished from working together, persisting and supporting each other and that this will put us in good stead for managing future challenges.
I hope you can view the 2020 Mosaic video that celebrates many of our students’ achievements and highlights from this year. You can access the video through this link:
There are five staff members leaving the College at the end of this year. On behalf of our school community, I thank them for their contribution and wish them all the best for their futures.
Ms Penny King will be retiring after 38 years of teaching. Ms King has been a dedicated, diligent and well-respected teacher at our College for 18 years and has mainly taught English.
She has taken on a number of leadership roles, including: Head of Middle School, Years 8 and 10 Coordinators and recently Assistant Student Leadership Development Coordinator.
Ms Freda Gray has been associated with the College for 32 years, commencing at Goold College. Ms Gray has supported many hundreds of students to access the College’s programs.
Her professional, caring and dedicated approach has helped so many students over the years. Her leadership roles over the years include: Integration Coordination, Literacy Coordinator and NAPLAN Coordinator.
Ms Norma Ellis will be finishing her teacher career after 40 years, the last nine being here at Saint Ignatius teaching Indonesian.
Ms Ellis is well-known for her enthusiasm, energy and passionate language teaching.
Our final retiree, is Deputy Principal (Teaching & Learning) Mrs Annette Chidzey. Mrs Chidzey has been teaching for over 40 years with the last six as Deputy Principal here at Saint Ignatius. Mrs Chidzey has mainly taught English and Humanities over the years.
As an Executive member, Mrs Chidzey has significantly contributed to the senior leadership of the College. Her dedicated commitment to education and the students she taught has been so beneficial to the development of our College. On a personal note, I acknowledge with gratitude Mrs Chidzey’s generous hard work and support.
Although he is not retiring, I express our gratitude to and best wishes to our Digital Technology Learning Area Leader, Mr Brenton Reid. Mr Reid will be leaving to move interstate. Mr Reid has enthusiastically worked to develop this new learning area at our College.
On behalf of our College community, I express my appreciation of and gratitude to the Parish Priests of the Geelong Region who have served as Canonical Administrators of the College and in particular, the President of the Canonical Administrators, our local Parish Priest, Fr James Puppady, for their support over many years. From January 1, the current governance and operational arrangements will change. Our College, along with 292 Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Melbourne will be governed and operated by Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools Ltd (MACS). All staff will be employed by MACS and there will be adjustments to the role and function of the College Board. While the role of the Priests will be different, they will still have a welcome and significant involvement in the life of the College community as faith leaders.
I provide the following from a letter I circulated on Wednesday.
Our school community has been deeply saddened by the death of Ms Maree Maurer on Tuesday. Ms Maurer was a long-serving staff member who worked as a dedicated librarian and library technician supporting the education of thousands of students over more than forty years.
Maree commenced work at Goold College Geelong in 1976. When Goold College closed in 1991, she joined our former College, Catholic Regional College Geelong as the Yarra St Campus Librarian. She then moved to the Drysdale campus when Yarra Street was closed in 2004. Since that time, Maree continued to be a dedicated and valued member of the Information Learning Centre at Saint Ignatius College. Maree commenced long service leave at the beginning of this year. However, unfortunately, she became ill with cancer and passed away on Tuesday, 1st December 2020.
We extend our prayerful sympathy and support to Maree’s family, loved ones and friends and in particular her father, Cyril and sister, Karen.
Eternal rest grant unto her O Lord and may perpetual light shine upon her. May her soul and all the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.
May Maree Rest in Peace.
As the academic year draws to a close, I want to express my gratitude to all parents for your support of the College community throughout what has indeed been a challenging and uncertain year. Through maintaining a strong parent-school partnership, we have been able to support our student’s learning continuity through the ups and downs, twists and turns and restrictions due to the impact of the pandemic on our society.
I am aware of the challenges on many different levels that families have faced maintaining health and wellbeing, coping with the restrictions and in some cases, loss of employment or reduction in income. I hope there have been some positives in this as you reflect on the year. I know it has reinforced for me that the little things are really the big things in life. I hope family relations have strengthened and resilience has been built. I hope Christmas will be a wonderful celebration and filled with peace and joy.
With the school year coming to a close it is a very busy time and we are eagerly looking forward to the summer break. In this end of year busyness it is easy to forget that we are in the Advent season that prepares us for the Christmas celebration of the birth of Jesus and calls us to reflect on God’s entering into the human story by becoming one of us.
As partners in the Christian education of our Saint Ignatius College students, it is a challenge for us all to ensure that we keep “Christ in Christmas.” At the final day year level assemblies tomorrow that I will be able to attend, I will encourage the students to ensure that Christmas will be more than just receiving gifts, although this will be an enjoyable part of the celebration, by attending their church service and/or attending a carols event or including an act of giving or service for someone in need – some way of helping them to reflect on and more deeply enter into our faith story.
As this is the last newsletter of the year, on behalf of the College may I wish all families a very happy and holy Christmas and safe and restful holiday break
Michael Exton Principal
As the year draws to a close many conversations I have had of late have focused on the phrase “I can’t wait for this year to end”.
The pandemic has certainly made 2020 a very difficult year and with a vaccine on the horizon it’s natural that our focus falls upon on a world that is ‘normal’. As we begin our journey through Advent our thoughts mirror those we have about the end of the year. During Advent we find it hard to wait for Christmas Day. This year even more so as for many of us we will see our extended family for the first time in almost a year. There is great joy in the celebration of Christmas but Advent reminds us there is joy also found in the waiting.
As I reflect upon Advent I consider the times in my life when I ‘couldn’t wait’. As a young child I truly couldn’t wait for Christmas to come. As a young adult I could not wait for the end of Year 12. As the years went on I could not wait for my wedding day, the birth of my children and my first day at Saint Ignatius College. Today I can’t wait until my youngest son’s last day of primary school at St Thomas – neither can he!
In contemplating this theme, I conclude that I am actually quite an impatient person. Whilst I enjoy meditation and make the most of each day, I have not developed the virtue of patience in full. I think that as you read my reflection it may resonate with your life experience also. Our society forms us into people who are decisive and focused on key events or achievements that mark the end of a journey. Ignatius was like us also. In his early years he ‘could not wait’ for the next battle, his next big win at the tavern or his promotion as a soldier.
As he recuperated Ignatius considered his future and concluded that a pilgrimage was required to achieve his goal of coming to know God and live like the Saints. His story also gives us an insight that at Manresa he became aware of the joy found in waiting. I imagine that between each mystical experience he desired nothing more than to encounter Jesus personally again. But God taught Ignatius that life requires equilibrium. We must always strive for our goal but be patient and enjoy the period of waiting.
This year during Advent we are so focused on the end of 2020 and fresh start that it would be easy to continue our pattern of focusing on the future and not seeking the joy in waiting. Patience is a virtue that needs to be practiced. Although our days are full we can practice patience in being truly present and focusing our attention upon the moment we are living. Even in the busyness of the working day we can still focus our attention on the moment that we are living rather than the task we are completing.
As we seek to develop a balance between the future and joyous waiting we might profit from contemplating the following questions:
• How did Mary and Joseph enter into the period of waiting for the birth of our Emmanuel?
• During their long and arduous journey did the Magi find joy in the journey or did they long for it all to be over?
• Were the shepherds patient in their work or did they focus upon their return to their families?
• How can you practice patience this Advent as we await the coming of Jesus?
As the year draws to an end I pray that you focus on seeking joy in the waiting and that each day becomes more whole as a result. I ‘can’t wait’ until I write to you again at the beginning of a new school year!
Yours in Christ,
Brendan Nicholls Liturgy Coordinator
‘Mosaic' this year was re-invented. Not the usual Costa Hall, Geelong evening event but a fully pre-recorded “production in video” students and staff enjoyed last Thursday in homerooms. Award certificates were presented during this time. The link was sent to year 12 students and families later in the day.
It was a wonderful showcase of the year which included so many of our talented and dedicated students - a continuation of what we saw of them during the year in video and involved in many other activities despite the difficulties of the year.
Congratulations and best wishes to all our students - for those finishing their exams and in the lead up to the holidays.
Mrs. Claire Hewitt Development Manager
We thank our very kind and generous sponsors for Mosaic 2020
Saint Ignatius College Parents and Friends’ Association
ADF Long Tan Awards
ADF Innovators Awards
Deakin Young Influencer Award
Deakin Science Prize: School of Engineering, Faculty of Science Engineering & Built Environment
Libby Coker - Federal MP for Corangamite
Rotary Club of Drysdale
Portarlington/Drysdale Lions club
St. Patricks’ Old Collegians’ Association
De Grandi Cycle & Sport Geelong
This Semester, Year 9 kicked off with a focus on the art style Cubism and Picasso. We learnt about his famous mural “Guernica” and about the history of the work when during the Spanish Civil war, the town of Guernica was bombed.
Guernica displays several human figures, displaying emotions of stress, agony and pain. Not only can you see the pain and trauma of the war but we also came across the feeling of chaos that is embedded into the mural. We then created our own Guernica Appropriation painting. It was essential we had to include the style of Cubism into the painting so it was comparable to the original Guernica.
We reflected on our own time in isolation during COVID and used symbols in our work to represent this experience. There were paintings that contained symbols of masks, toilet paper and medical supplies. We used a monochrome palette in acrylic paint with touches of granite pencil drawn over the top.
Next we delved into the work of American artist, Keith Haring. We decided to paint a mural about Equality in the art room. We jotted down ideas of our own, each with a topic that comes under the meaning of equality. Some of the ideas included, the most recent protests surrounding Black Lives Matter, gender equality, poverty, race, religion and cultures. We painted the wall in a Keith Haring style, with lots of pattern. The process took a while but all the hard work and drafting was so worth it!
I am happy with my choice of choosing Year 9 Art as my elective and grateful for Ms Wood for being our creative leader in Year 9 Art!
by Laura McMahon
One aspect of the VCAL program is Structured Workplace Learning (SWL). Both our Year 11 and 12 VCAL students have the opportunity to participate in SWL. During Year 12, students are out one day a week (Fridays) for the duration of the year and Year 11’s are able to participate each Thursday in Semester 2.
Obviously Covid-19 has had quite an impact on all of us, and it definitely put a hold on SWL placements during lockdown periods. However we were very pleased to have students head back out on placement during Term 4.
Some of our year 11 students have been unable to secure placement due to Covid-19 but those that have been able to, have taken a lot away from their experiences. It has been great to be able to visit students at the worksites over the past few Thursdays, which gives us the opportunity to not only see the student in the workplace, but to also talk to their employer.
During Structured Workplace Learning we see students actively engaging in their career pathways beyond senior schooling and there are a range of industries and businesses that students are interested in pursuing. It is so great to hear the positive feedback from employers and the students alike in relation to their work placement.
We are very grateful for businesses that offer to host our students, to the WAFE Coordinator Mr Bruce Connor and the College for supporting our VCAL students to have these invaluable experiences creating real world connections and experience before they complete their senior schooling.
Kirsty Allan VCAL Coordinator
On Friday 20th November 2020, the Year 11 VCAL students attended an OHS presentation by Ms Lisa Harvey, Operations Officer, The Potato Shed, City of Greater Geelong.
The session included information on the dangers and hazards associated with working at heights, the dangers of electricity, risk / hazard management and emergency evaluation procedures.
It was also valuable to hear the many issues and processes around Covid-19 and its impact on audiences, bookings and visitor procedures in and out of the venue.
The students were very grateful to Ms Harvey and the venue technician Trent for taking the time to explain OHS in their specific industry as this information was extremely valuable in supporting their Work Related Skills studies as part of their school coursework.
Attel Martschinke VCAL Teacher
The annual Year 7 & 8 House Basketball Championship was always going to be an exciting tournament owing to the year being what it has been. We had healthy numbers across all House teams which allowed all students registered to get an opportunity to represent their House. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Ms Rebekah Spencer and Mrs Kymberley Naylor for overseeing game-day. A lot of the behind the scenes work was done by our Sport Assistant Max Kos.
Year 7 Boys
FINAL: Cuthbert 27 defeated Elliott 12
Play off for 3rd: Bradman 15 defeated Fraser 7
Year 7 Boys House Champions: Cuthbert
Most Points Scored
Will Cunningham 38
Riley Molloy 23
Azer Onekawa 16
Year 8 Boys
FINAL: Bradman 29 defeated Elliott 10
Play off for 3rd: Cuthbert 27 defeated Fraser 23
Year 8 Boys House Champions: Bradman
Most Points Scored
Billy Hayward 35
Daniel Fragapane 35
Luke Devlin 29
Year 7/8 Girls
FINAL: Bradman 52 defeated Elliott 7
Play off for 3rd: Cuthbert 18 defeated Fraser 11
Year 7/8 Girls House Champions: Bradman
Most Points Scored
Taryn Hall 40
Sofia Dickenson 16
Alanna Miles 14
Over a three week period in October/November students were encouraged to post a run in their own time and for their efforts to be matched up against all other Geelong Independent Schools in our region. We received individual results on Friday last week and I would like to congratulate the following students on their success:
Harry Rawson (13 Year Boys – 3km) – 2nd Place
Evie Lewry (13 Year Girls – 3km) – 3rd Place
Lachlan McLean (14 Year Boys – 3km) – 2nd Place
Cameron Donald (Open Boys – 4kms) – 2nd Place
And finally, Nicolas Nadile (Open Boys – 4km). Our 2020 Sport Captain posted an impressive 14:12 in one of his 4km runs earning him the title of 2020 GISSA Open Boys Campion. Congratulations Nicolas and well done to all students who posted a run throughout the competition.
Andrew Philp Director Of Sport
As we head into the summer holidays, students can feel lots of excitement, but also some apprehension about break from routine, structure and contact with friends.
It’s important that we all consider how we can maintain healthy habits and staying connected during the holidays, while also taking a well-deserved break from school and some of the stressors that can come with it.
To help students juggle this balance, we have come up with some top tips:
• Schedule social time with friends so you don’t let too long go past without connecting with your mates. Then you will also have things to look forward to as well incase your days start to blend into one.
• Try to maintain a semblance of routine, even if that is giving yourself a bit more of a sleep in – we know healthy food, sleep and exercise routines are very good for our mental health.
• Practice self-care: make sure you enjoy yourself over the break, have fun and try to rejuvenate for 2021.
For parents/guardians/families, we recognise how the upcoming break may feel overwhelming or daunting given the amount of time students will spend away from school. To help, we have attached a Headspace support sheet which covers many of the tips we have already addressed, as well as some additional information on how to check in on your young person.
Please know that help is still available – although the wellbeing team will not be available after the 18/12/2020 there are still many supports available online and in our community over the summer for students and families so make sure you reach out if you feel the need, or if you are worried about someone else.
Look after yourselves, stay connected, have a fantastic break and Christmas and we look forward to seeing you in 2021.
Student Wellbeing Team: Tenille, Liv, Mel and Sally.
Here are some important dates to keep in mind for the the rest of 2020 and the start of 2021.
Term 4 Ends: Friday December 4th
College Office Closes: Friday December 18th
College Office Reopens: Monday January 18th
Book Collection Day: Thursday January 21st
Start of Term 1: Monday February 1st (All students)
Student Photos: Wednesday February 3rd
The Examen we will pray is based on our College motto of ‘Amare et Servire’, to ‘Love and to Serve’.
It was developed by the 2020 Vice College Captains Florence Noble and Daniel McInerney-Sotomayor with the assistance of Alicia Deak and myself.
Please enjoy praying the ‘Love and Service’ Examen.
Kind regards and God bless,
Jarryd Atkinson Youth Ministry Facilitator
Leanne Riley, President
Peter McInerney, remaining as Treasurer
Nicole Sadler, Secretary
We are still looking for a Vice President, so if you are interested in joining the team, please email: email@example.com
Please help support the PFA by buying a ticket in our Annual Fees Raffle – our biggest fundraiser! Log onto Trybooking to purchase a ticket.
First Prize is College Tuition Fees for 2021
(Fees applicable for youngest child at the College, does not include Digital Technology, VCAL or VET Levies or other extra-curricular activities- Donated by Saint Ignatius College)
Stays safe and look out for one another.
Sandi Clark (outgoing President)
Parents and Friends' Association
Our boys tend to get into trouble more than our girls. There are lots of cultural and biological reasons for this but much of it boils down to the fact that boys are still soft-wired to be ‘mammoth hunters’, ready to react to any threat.
Generally, boys have more muscle than girls and, with that, a physicality that gets them in strife. There’s also brain research that shows that, while females tend to quickly shift emotions from the brain’s limbic system to the word centres of the brain, males tend to shift them into their bodies.
This is more obvious as our boys become teens as they can be as big and strong as men, but their brains are under construction and their bodies are flooded with testosterone.
Author and counsellor Michael Gurian writes that boys tend to seek external measures of success to feel good about themselves. It is critical they maintain credibility and status in the eyes of the ‘tribe’… that’s their peers, not you.
Inevitably, all this means your son will probably make many mistakes; or hurt himself; hurt someone else; or make a very poor, thoughtless, seemingly stupid or cruel choice.
How you react as a parent can significantly impact how your son recovers from mucking up. Your first reactions may be anger, disappointment or the urge to discipline harshly. However, there are other ways of reacting that can strengthen your bond with your son and ensure he learns from the experience through growth rather than shame.
Listen to him, guide him to see the impact of his poor choice, help him make it right, forgive him and ask him what he might do next time he’s in the same situation.
This code told us that men don’t apologise as it’s a sign of weakness. One of the most powerful things we can teach our boys is that when we make mistakes, we own up to them and we apologise if need be. Teach your boys that saying sorry when they really mean it is a sign of courage and strength, not the opposite. It is also about taking responsibility for your actions, which is important for boys to learn. They need to see the men in their lives – particularly dads – apologise.
Forcing a boy to apologise can be problematic. A genuine apology is very different to a forced apology. A genuine apology has a real sense of remorse attached to it. Coach your son to see the situation through the other person’s eyes. If someone has been impacted, he needs to apologise and make amends even if he didn’t intend for the consequences of his poor choice to happen. It doesn’t mean he’s wrong. It just means his choice affected someone.
To help your son better learn about failure, have conversations about things you hear in the media where boys and men have experienced failure and recovered. Steve Smith, the former captain of the Australian cricket team who was involved in a ball tampering scandal, is a great example. He owned his mistake, publicly apologised, paid his dues and went on to have a very successful return to cricket.
Your son is going to make poor decisions repeatedly until he has enough myelin in his brain to be more mindful of the choices he makes. That is just a fact of life. As parents, your job is to, day-by-day, help your son learn a culture of accountability without a need for severe punishment, shaming or ridicule.
Michael Grose, founder of Parenting Ideas, is one of Australia’s leading parenting educators. He’s an award-winning speaker and the author of 12 books for parents including Spoonfed Generation, and the bestselling Why First Borns Rule the World and Last Borns Want to Change It . Michael is a former teacher with 15 years experience, and has 30 years experience in parenting education. He also holds a Master of Educational Studies from Monash University specialising in parenting education.
With the new school year fast approaching, we know many parents and carers will struggle to cover the cost of essential school items. This additional stress on families is especially difficult for those already experiencing financial hardship.
I am writing to let you know of a wonderful initiative available through Vinnies NILs called No Interest Loans (NILs). A NILS loan has no interest, no fees, no charges ever.
Every year, we help parents and carers on low incomes (in particular those on Centrelink) to apply for a NILs loan of up to $1,500 to cover the cost of essential school items such as uniforms, books, laptops, stationery, school camps, and musical instruments(as well as other essential such as washing machines, fridges, car repairs, medical and dental expenses).
A NILs loan is a safe, affordable alternative to high-interest payday loans or rent-to-buy leases. It’s not a payday loan or a bank loan but a form of ‘circular community credit'. This means when a borrower makes a repayment to NILs, the funds are then released to someone else in the community. NILs is supported by not-for-profit Good Shepherd Australia New Zealand, with funding from the Australian Government in partnership with NAB.
Parents can find out more information about NILs by contacting:
Vinnies NILs on 03 5229 8829
Join Saver Plus and we'll match your savings, dollar for dollar, up to $500 for school costs.
To join Saver Plus, you must be at least 18 years or over, have a child at school or attend vocational education yourself, have regular income from paid employment (you or your partner), have a current Health Care or Pensioner Concession Card and be in receipt of an eligible Commonwealth social security benefit, allowance or payment.
The eligibility criteria has also been broadened to assist more families, with JobKeeper and/or a formal Child Support arrangement classed as ‘income’.
Contact: Your local Saver Plus Coordinator
See PDF flyer for details:
Local Community and Sporting groups you may be interested in.
Parent Education Events - Geelong Region: Term 4 2020
All Regional Parenting Services programs are free and will be run via Zoom, however, bookings are essential.
To book visit www.geelongaustralia.com.au/parenting or call us on 5272 4781.
There are a number of events planned for Term 4, please see attached flyer for event details:
There are also a number of free mental health and wellbeing events being offered by the Surf Coast Shire during November see attached flyer for details
Jumping From Jetties and Piers
Summer holidays are almost upon us and we are seeing an increase in people under 18 jumping or diving into the Barwon River at Barwon Heads from the Public Jetty and William Buckley Pedestrian Bridge. This is often with the support of their parents.
It is important that your students understand that jumping into a natural water body such as the Barwon Estuary can result in a serious spinal injury or death. Tides and sand movement make the safety of jumping different every time. Water depths, sand bars and submerged debris and rubbish around jetties and bridges can change on a daily basis which makes water conditions unpredictable.
The key message is: Safety is everyone’s responsibility; please observe all safety signage and don’t jump from piers and jetties this summer. Find a safe place to access the water.
Drummond Street Services
Drummond St services is still here for you, running many webinars, groups and events all accessible on line. There is something for everyone, from music and movement for kids in lockdown, to support with new babies, to managing uncertainty during Covid and staying connected with worried kids and teens during this challenging time.
The Geelong team will be facilitating a free webinar and then a 4 week group – this is a version of our Parenting teens who worry seminar and the focus is on Staying connected with your Anxious Teen through Covid.
Registration is online. The specific link https://ds.org.au/events/parenting-teenagers-who-worry/