The College grounds have been much quieter than usual in this final week of term 2. This may be partly due to the ongoing provision of experiential, educational opportunities for the boys.
Our Year 9 students have been based this week at Victoria University, while exploring the Melbourne CBD under the watchful eye of Mr Trent Collins and a large number of support teachers. This ‘City Experience’ project enables the boys to enhance their understanding of Global Citizenship through structured research and reflection. The project concludes on Friday with peer presentations on their experiences.
On Monday morning a group of Year 10 and 11 students left for an indigenous immersion experience in the Australian top end. The boys and accompanying staff will be based in Darwin where they will be hosted by, and play football against, an indigenous team of similar age. The boys will be wearing specially commissioned jumpers that reflect and commemorate this experience through the artwork of Joanne Nasir. The image on each jumper is inspired by the following statement from the artist:
Growing responsible, generous and capable men.
Whitefriars College is represented by the tree. The strong root system represents the College, which is the foundation of growing future generations of responsible and generous men.
The boy’s education is represented by the ovals within the root area. These are the seeds yet to grow.
The blue dots within the roots symbolize the support given by the staff, students and families who are the foundation of a boy’s journey into manhood. The boys are represented by the elongated figures. In their background, the blue swirls represent learning.
The blue dots in this area symbolize how the boys influence their own stories and backgrounds through their life journeys.
The second group of Year 11 students to attend Kairos retreat this year, departed on Tuesday for some invaluable time away. These young men will have the opportunity to reflect on who they are, where they are going and who are the most significant people in their lives who will help them achieve what they aspire to.
Our Year 12 students will spend Thursday at Swinburne University attending a careers-focused, Innovation Workshop, Campus Workshops and Tours. This will include a Swinburne University panel presentation whereby past students share their experiences of study at Swinburne and how they used their qualifications to set up their own business. Careers advice, Industry Based Learning programs and the implications for students planning their future working lives will also feature.
The intermediate VCAL boys are also off-campus all week as they enjoy the associated educational challenges of their work placements.
Two staff, Mr Josh Vujcich and Mrs Fiona Matthews will be travelling to Timor-Leste where they will be again, generously continuing their work with the Carmelite Seminarians and the community in Hera over the term break.
Just over a week ago, the College hosted around 40 men who graduated from the class of 1987 at the 30 Year Reunion. It was wonderful to welcome back to the College these Old Collegian’s who were keen to share their stories about ‘the halcyon years’ of the College.
I would like to remind students and parents that Term 3 will provide many Student/Parent Information opportunities in support of the subject selection process for Years 10-12 particularly in 2018. It will be important for all students moving into these year levels to avail themselves of the opportunities for meaningful conversations around their subject selections and subsequent career pathways.
As many of our winter sports conclude for the term, I note that there have been close wins and some thorough defeats. I am full of admiration for our boys as they play their sport in such a fine spirit, no matter what the situation. The mark of a young man of character and integrity lies in how he responds to praise and to situations that can be quite challenging. College and other sport gives the opportunity to learn to deal with both aspects. Our ACC and sport coaches are to be congratulated for the manner in which they encourage, instruct and model this for the boys.
Federal funding for Catholic(and other) schools continues to be newsworthy of late. I would encoourage you to go to the Catholic Education Melbourne website (http://www.cem.edu.au/) to access the latest funding information for parents.
It is important to note that, at this stage, there is little likelihood of any major fee change in our school beyond the normal indexation per year over the next three years (as normally set by the College Board each year). This is the most accurate advice that can be currently given.
Please keep Luca Di Paola Year 8 S1 and his family in your thoughts and prayers on the recent loss of his maternal grandfather. May he rest in eternal peace.
Almae In Fide Parentis.