Please note that the St Pius X Feast Day Holiday has been moved from Monday 27th August (as previously noted in the DRAFT Term Dates for 2018) to Monday 3rd September.
Please note that the St Pius X Feast Day Holiday has been moved from Monday 27th August (as previously noted in the DRAFT Term Dates for 2018) to Monday 3rd September.
As this year draws to its end we give thanks for the gifts it brought
and how they became inlaid within where neither time nor tide can touch them.
Surprises that came awake in forgotten corners of old fields
where expectation seemed to have quenched.
We bless this year for all we learned, for all we loved and lost
and for the quiet way it brought us nearer to our invisible destination.
Today the College held its end of year Mass and a beautiful celebration in appreciation for all that we have enjoyed in the College's 80th year. We offered special appreciation for those students and staff leaving the College and special blessings for Fr Paul Finucane who is moving to the Kincumber Parish next year.
We also thank all our families for their generosity in supporting both the St Vincent de Paul Christmas Hamper Appeal and the Christmas Giving Tree. We were overwhelmed by the tremendous response and it only demonstrates once again what a beautiful and generous community St Pius X College is. There is no doubt these will be gratefully received by the many communities who will benefit from these gifts.
I ask for God's blessing on all the St Pius X College families with thanks to everyone for a very productive and rewarding 2017. We look forward to 2018 with expectation and enthusiasm.
May the peace and hope of Christ's birth be with you now and in the days ahead.
Congratulations to the Eucharistic Ministers who were commissioned at the College Closing Mass today:
The Year 5 to 10 student academic reports have now been loaded on the portal. Parents can access these immediately. Letters have been emailed to all parents outlining details of the report.
If parents would like to discuss any aspect of their son's report you are invited to contact the relevant subject teacher or the year coordinator if you have a general question regarding your son's progress. Teachers will be available on Thursday if parents wish to contact teachers.
In Term 1 2018 recognition for achievements from these reports will be included in the Academic Awards Ceremony on 23rd February as has been our practice over the past five years. Separate invitations will be provided to parents early in the new term.
Our Snowy Hikers have continued on their hike through Kosciusko. This has been a modified hike due to the nature of the weather but all reports are very positive. The students and their teachers are in good spirits. They will return to the College on Thursday 7th December.
The 2018 College Calendar and dates will be available on the College website by the end of this week.
Mr John Couani - Principal
As I was walking through the College foyer this week I was certain I was witnessing Santa’s helpers in action. It was actually Mr Blake and his students packaging up the wonderful gifts and hamper items that surround our Giving Tree. Every year I am overwhelmed at the generosity of our families and staff. My thanks to Mrs Cummins who will personally deliver the Giving Tree presents to St Joseph’s Primary School in Walgett and Mr Blake who is organising for a delivery to St Mary's in Bowraville. Thanks to Mr Sean Brannan and Mr Adrian Brannan who are organising the delivery of the hampers to various local parishes.
Last week I had the utmost pleasure to be on immersion in Bowraville with Mr Adrian Brannan and seven Year 10 students. I always tell staff and students that our immersions, be it to Walgett (Mr Reay, Mr Sean Brannan and four students), Central Coast (Mr Blake, Ms Ramsey and seven students), St Edmund's Wahroonga or St Gabriel’s Castle Hill (Ms Keighery and six students) are life changing. These are our partner communities and our staff and students are the face of our communities. Whilst there are challenges on these immersions our students walk away knowing that whilst they cannot change the circumstances of the lives of the students they will meet, they can make a difference for the time they are with them.
As we enter the season of Advent I hope that you will have a safe and joyous Christmas break. I pray that we will have an understanding that Jesus our Saviour comes not just on Christmas Day but is present to us every day through the love we hold in our heart and the actions we show to others.
Ms D Dempsey - Assistant Principal Mission & Identity
Thank you to the St Pius X College Community
A huge thank you to the entire St Pius X College community for your extreme generosity with the Christmas Giving Tree and the Christmas Hamper Appeal. Although these two appeals are run by Years 7 and 9 respectively it is the entire community that gave so generously.
Mr D Blake - Social Justice Coordinator
Tuition Statements for Term 1, 2018 will be emailed to all families at the end of next week. If you do not receive your statement, please contact the Finance Office urgently at [email protected]. Unless you have a payment arrangement in place with the College, payment is due by 30 January 2018.
Mr N Carson - Business Manager
St Pius X College Pacific Schools Games Representation
We are well represented in the NSW Touch Football Team at the Pacific Schools Games in Adelaide this week by U/15 player Kyle Bowen who by all reports has scored a plethora of tries as NSW approach a likely finals showdown with Queensland Schools who they defeated narrowly in an extremely fast rounds game.
Notably SPX Year 6 Teacher Mrs Deb Cummins is the NSW Team Manager so we can have every confidence the St Pius contingent will give a good account of themselves
Year 10 Peer Support Training drums out the post Dinner Dance fatigue
Our Year 10 students benefited from The Positive Project’s James Cummins' Peer Support Training on Tuesday at Oxford Falls as they prepare to be challenged in their role in supporting the transition of Year 5 and Year 7 students in 2018. The sessions included a Leadership Training Workshop, African Drum Circle, VIA Personal Strengths Analysis and Yoga Session to push the boys out of their comfort zones.
Well done to Ms J Dempsey and Mr Lynch who led our Peer Support Program, Wellbeing Coordinator Stage 5 Ms Foord who led the Character Strengths Analysis, Ms Whelan who coordinated the Drum Circle and Corrie our Yoga Guru who challenged our flexibility and mindful practises.
After a twilight training session on Friday of Week 1 next year, to consolidate our program the Year 11 Peer Support Leaders for 2018 will certainly add great value to the College Community and Student Transitions programs.
Christmas Hampers to communities in need
The College can be immensely proud of the holistic social justice initiatives led by Years 7, 9 and 10 which have led to the accumulation of great piles of Christmas Hampers and Toys to be distributed to worthy recipients this Christmas.
Year 9 student Sam Barrell will lead a team of students packing the hampers into school vans tomorrow and delivering those going to St Anthony in the Fields Terrey Hills Frenchs Forest Parish Hamper Mass at 9.30am this Sunday.
If you wish to attend Mass with Sam this Sunday to bless the Hampers, please wear your College sports top and present yourself to the Parish Council Leader Mrs Kate Ryder after Mass for a photo with Fr José and the Hampers.
Year 10 students James Miller and Hamish Alexander will meet Mr Adrian Brannan at the College Vans next Tuesday at 8.30am to travel to Terrey Hills and deliver the hampers to local charitable organisations.
What a great way for our College and students to support this initiative of social justice in action.
Mr S Brannan - Head of Student Services
Greenwich Sailing Club - School Holiday Learn to Sail
Glenaeon Holiday Program
Glenaeon Holiday Care Service provides a program for children up to 14 years of age during the school holidays. Please see the flyer below for details.
Boxercise will begin again in 2018 and is held every Thursday and Friday morning at 7.30am in the Junior School playground. This MindMatters initiative provides friendship, fun and fitness to strengthen students’ resilience and general sense of wellbeing. Classes are free to all students.
Mr R Russo - College Counsellor
Thank you to all the class parents, social coordinators and many volunteers who have worked hard throughout 2017 to create many successful events for the boys and their families.
We at the P&F wish all College families and friends a safe and happy Christmas and New Year.
We look forward to seeing you in 2018.
Year 5 New Parents' Morning Tea 10.00am on Tuesday 30th January
Years 6 & 7 Parents' Morning Tea 9.00am on Wednesday 31st January
Once the boys are set for their first week at school, enjoy a chat and a cuppa with current and new parents at Lid & Jar in the Concourse - see the invitation below.
P&F Welcome Mass & Light Supper 5.30pm on Saturday 17th February
All Families are invited to the P&F Commencement Mass on Saturday 17th February 2018 at 5.30pm in Our Lady of Dolours Church, followed by a BBQ in the College grounds. A reminder to RSVP will be in Woodchatta early in 2018.
Nadine Robson - Assistant Secretary P&F
0412 272 056
Our Year 10 students have just finished an activity called Australian Business Week. The week has a student centred approach and epitomises the ideas of project based learning. This was our fifteenth year of taking part in the ABW program and once again with the help of past students, parents and external business mentors the College was able to offer a challenging but ultimately successful week for the boys. In a program that offers choices, both theoretical and practical learning, as well a whole series of deadlines, it encourages collaboration and teamwork.
The groups of ten begin the week running a company which has just been taken over. In making a host of decisions across a range of criteria each company is differentiated moving on to develop a new sporting product. This product, backed up by the use of astute marketing, is showcased through a trade display later in the week. Logos and slogans are designed adorning the firm's website and advertisements. Each category of the program is judged and scored, culminating in both individual and team winners. A business report is written by each CEO and contains the story of each companies exploits through the simulation on to a final presentation in Harrington Hall on Friday afternoon. In ABW 2017 our Business Student of the Week was Matthew Crotty who it was agreed led his team in an outstanding fashion. In what is a very different week for the boys they get a chance to both succeed and fail on multiple occasions in the program.
We are grateful for all the help and encouragement we received this week from our mentors and helpers. A special thank you goes to Cathy Jellema who once again made the whole program work through her wonderful administrative and organisational skills.
Mr S Quilty - Commerce/Economics/Business/Geography Coordinator
Gifted and Talented Secondary Teachers Association (GATSTA) Cluster Days.
St Pius X College has developed formal links with the Gifted and Talented Secondary Teachers Association (GATSTA) and will be running an Applied Philosophy one day program and a Creative Writing one day program at our College in Term 1, 2018. These exceptional days of learning are not only an opportunity to support students to develop their academic skill sets; they also provide an opportunity for students to mix with like-minded students from other schools in Sydney.
Applied Philosophy Program: Week 8 Thursday 22nd March
In Term 4 this year Ms Collins and Mr Madani took several Maths students to the GATSTA Math Philosophy Day held at Christian Brothers’ Lewisham. Their enthusiasm for this event cemented our participating in hosting a similar event in Term 1.
The opening speaker will be Dr Mark Colyvan, a Maths Philosophy lecturer at the University of Sydney. Mark is an engaging and passionate speaker who engages well with students and is very generous with his time and intellect. This provision will be for students determined by the Head of Mathematics.
Creative Writing Program: Week 9 Tuesday 27th March.
English students will be able to attend this important skill development course to help them to enliven their creative writing skills. The program will be run by Anne McCallum, ex-President of GATSTA, who will be supported by St Pius X College English staff. The program will be provided to students identified by the Head of English.
Ms M Waterson - Vice-President GATSTA
Another boy has cracked it! Just try it yourself if you don’t believe it’s difficult. Start anywhere on the chessboard and try to visit every square, moving like a knight.
Matt Watts from Year 8 achieved the goal in his Maths lesson yesterday. See the solution below.
Mr T Garvey - Mathematics Teacher
My sincere thanks to all Ensemble Directors, students and staff who helped make Friday night’s concert a great success. The rain held off, the wind only bothered us at the end and a great time was had by all! Additionally, it is important to recognise and thank the parents who worked tirelessly at the barbeque, along with those who sold raffle tickets. Thank you also to Performing Arts Captain Jasper Choi, Vice-Captain Sam Smith, College Vice Captain Nikita Papastamatis, and Cultural Prefects Hunter Clarke and Phillip Cullen for hosting the concert and last but by no means least to thank you to Lachlan Chue who acted as runner and general “go to” person during the night.
Closing Mass and Junior School Prize Giving
Well done to the Junior Choir and their Director Miss Felicity Whelan on their beautiful singing at the Closing Mass. Congratulations also to the Junior Jazz Band and Junior Guitar Ensemble and their Directors Mr Jonathan Dollin and Mr Shane Cranney, for their lively and rousing performances at the Junior School Prize Giving.
The parents of all new enrolment and current students who auditioned for places in the Co-curricular Music Ensemble program at the College will be notified by email of the results during the week beginning 11th December.
Performing Arts Orientation Night 2018
For all new and current parents this orientation will take place on Wednesday 31st January 2018 (second day Term 1) commencing at 6.00pm in the Band Room. It is an opportunity to learn more about what happens in Music and Drama at the College. Parking will be available in the Junior School yard.
PAPA Meeting No. 1 - 2018
The first PAPA meeting for 2018 will take place immediately following the Orientation Night at 7.00pm on Wednesday 31st January in the Band Room. Light refreshments will be served.
Volunteers' Thank You Drinks
Thank you to the Senior String Quartet; Matthew Crotty (Year 10), Luke McManus, Young Oh (Year 9) and Thomas Van Dijk (Year 8) for playing background music during this gathering yesterday afternoon. It was a last minute request to have the boys play and they willingly stepped up for one last final performance for the year!
And finally ...
Thank you to all students who have participated in the Performing Arts Program at the College in this 80th Anniversary year. There have been some truly wonderful and inspiring performances. I wish everyone a happy, holy and safe Christmas. I look forward to seeing you all in 2018.
Ms T Bates - Performing Arts Coordinator
Encourage your son to take advantage of his library access to a huge collection of audiobooks to listen to, and ebooks to view and follow along with, over the Christmas and New Year break. Whether he uses his PLD or has online access on his home computer, it is easy to access this online library through the link on School’s Portal – in the Student Resources or Senior Library section. Just look for this icon:
Listening to digital audiobooks and reading ebooks, may be done in tandem or independently through the above site. What better way to do some relaxing wide reading over the holiday period, or to get a head start reading the prescribed texts for study next year in English or other subjects making use of literature as part of their teaching and learning.
This use of this electronic form of ‘assisted reading’ has risen with the positive influence of technology, and has been found in some research studies to benefit students’ reading abilities, reading fluency and their own reading enjoyment: assisted reading is an easy way to expose students to a wider variety of literature, and hearing books read by competent, expressive readers can make the reading experience so much more pleasurable (Casbergue & Harris, 1996). In addition, it can provide an ideal way to enable struggling or reluctant readers to self-select, review, highlight or enlarge text through the interactivity and visual enhancement features (Carbo, 2005). This will have direct positive impacts on increasing engagement and understanding of what’s happening in the story, and giving readers an opportunity to listen to new words and phrases, pronounced accurately and modelled with fluency.
The audiobook and ebook collection, to which your son already has access, includes popular titles such as: The Diary of a Wimpy Kid (series), The Graveyard Book, The Hunger Games (series), Harry Potter (series), Jasper Jones, The Prince, Dracula, Othello and many other Shakespeare titles.
The Learning Support and Enrichment (LSE) Department is responsible for liaising with our Counselling team and gathering the necessary details (on nature of the condition, the latest diagnosis or doctor’s report, etc.) for the purposes of the upcoming NSW Census data compilation in February 2018. This is the annual, mandatory government census, involving the collection of information from all schools and families in the State.
To assist us with this task, we ask that you please check your son’s latest medical documentation for an updated diagnosis (or arrange to get one from his treating health practitioner) and send it in to the College, or via scan as a PDF and directly email to the following Student Support Staff member: Joanne Raheb-Mol, LSE Coordinator, on [email protected] (for learning difficulties and related conditions), or Rick Russo, Coordinator of Counselling Services on [email protected] (for all mental health and related conditions). Student Support staff welcome copies of such documentation at any time in the school year, and will be grateful for your ready assistance, each time your son’s doctor or therapist provides a review or update.
Medical information includes updated diagnostic reports, assessments and letters, from a registered doctor, psychologist, specialist or therapist, which identifies and/or confirms your son’s medical or psychological condition.
The College is required to provide summary information only to our advising body, the Catholic Education Commission (CEC). The information you provide will remain confidential between our school and our designated advisers at the CEC, as it is used for identification of support needs and school funding purposes.
Your forward-thinking action in this matter will directly benefit your son and his ability to succeed and enjoy his schooling, as the LSE and Counselling teams are able to update teachers confidentially about students and make recommendations about ways to better accommodate your son’s learning or emotional needs in the classroom, and in exam situations.
If you have queries about what documentation is required or if you have a query about any aspect of the above, please contact Joanne on [email protected]
These are intensive small group courses, open to all students at SPX in Years 5-10, who are interested in improving vital writing and typing skills, which can only enhance performance at school. Each course involves one nominated afternoon per week for a block of 8 weeks, and is run by our experienced occupational therapist and registered provider, Anna Orchard. For Term 1 2018, the courses will run for 8 consecutive sessions (except where affected by the Easter holidays) at a cost of $280.00 for students. All course sessions are held at St Pius X College.
Students who have attended these courses in the past and would like to again build on their skills, are also welcome to register.
ALL courses begin Week 3 of Term 1 (week beginning Monday 12th February 2018).
All classes run from 3.20pm – to 4.30pm and are held in LC2 (Leary Room 2), D Block.
Once registered and enrolled, Anna will confirm and advise parents and boys about all the details closer to time.
Ms J Raheb-Mol - Learning Support & Enrichment Coordinator
2018 TAFE students
Reminder: If you are starting or continuing a TAFE course in 2018, the TAFE fees need to be paid BEFORE you can start classes in 2018. Please refer to your email for more information.
Career Advisory Service
The CAS (Career Advisory Service) website, developed by the NSW Department of Education provides students, parents and caregivers with access to career information to help guide decisions about students next steps after school. Whether it is study, work or travel, there are numerous paths for young people to get skills that make them employable now and into the future. It is available throughout the whole year.
The HSC Inquiry Centre, phone 1300 13 83 23, will be available from 8am on Thursday 14 December 2017 – 20th December 2018
For more information: http://www.careersadvisoryservice.com/
TSFX – School of Excellence – School Holiday Programs
Get a head start on Year 11 or Year 12 studies. Holiday Programs run from the 8th-23rd January at Sydney University.
NSW Summer School
Macquarie University Info Day 2017
UNLOCK YOUR FUTURE
Year 12 exams are over and students are ready to relax over summer and enjoy the holidays knowing they’ve got their future sorted.
Students don’t have to wait until the new year to decide where they’ll study. They can come along to Info Day on Saturday 16 December and find out how Macquarie will prepare them for their future. No matter what they’re interested in studying, they can unlock their future at Macquarie’s Info Day. Info Day is their opportunity to:
When: Saturday 16 December 2017, 9.30am – 3pm
Where: Macquarie University, North Ryde
RSVP: Register by Saturday 9 December
Students can visit the website to register and plan ahead to make the most of their Info Day experience. Or use the button below to register now.
If they can’t make it to Info Day but have a bunch of questions in need of answers, they can join us the day before to discuss all things ATAR, entry and pathways.
What: Online chat
When: Friday 15 December, 9am to 8pm
Students can jump on any of our undergraduate course pages and chat live to one of our advisers - look for the chat icon at the bottom right hand corner of the page.
We’re looking forward to seeing you.
Ms D Janes - Careers Adviser
Christian Brothers Cricket Week – Queensland Tour 9-16 January 2018
Match Report: SPX U12 Blue
Mr D Reay - Convenor
The squash season has been very competitive this year with the top players from Monday and Wednesday duelling it out at the last Monday squash session for the term. What is interesting is that the top players all come from Year 9 and I have to say they are pretty even at the top with not one person dominating entirely.
Squash will resume in Term 1, 2018. A new schedule will be given to the players at the first Friday sports meeting of the year.
The mid-season ladder for both the Monday and Wednesday Squash competitions are as follows:
Photo: Finalists and Runners-Up at Monday's Sports Assembly
Mrs S Iwatani - NSTA Convenor
In Term 2 PDHPE obtained a number of table tennis tables and each year group has done a unit of work on this sport. There was a high level of interest from the boys for more table tennis and I was recently made aware of a Table Tennis Holiday Program being run by Vivian Tan at Willoughby Squash Courts . Vivian is a former Olympic athlete who has coached table Tennis at the school previously.
Details of the camp can be found in the flyer.
Mr R Lacey - PDHPE Coordinator
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Reports were posted yesterday on the portal. Please check your son’s report and hopefully after a full year there won’t be any surprises. If you have any queries for your son’s teacher or a specialist teacher, please ask tomorrow as the staff will be on holidays after this time.
SPX YEAR 6 END OF YEAR PICNIC
Last Sunday was the Year 6 end of year picnic to celebrate a ‘milestone’ in their lives, the completion of their primary schooling before they move into the Senior School. Thank you to the parents who organised this event and to Mrs Iwatani and Mr Cummins who attended.
SPX JUNIOR SCHOOL SPORTS AND ACADEMIC PRIZE GIVING ASSEMBLY
Congratulations to the all the prize winners for both the Sports Assembly which acknowledged those summer sports we haven’t as yet had a presentation for, and the major Academic Prize Award. Congratulations to our Sportsman of the Year, Ryan Jom.
Congratulations to our two Dux of the year who received the Academic Scholarship. The Year 6 Scholarship was awarded to Maxwell Forbes who will receive the Br Paul Leary Award. Br Leary was a fairly recent charismatic leader of the College who I knew personally, and earlier in his career Mr Couani was his Deputy Principal.
Congratulations also to our Year 7 Scholarship recipient, Joshua Bewley, who receives the Br R B Quirke Award. The Year 6 boys are about to commence their first year in the secondary school and Br R B Quirke was the first Principal of the College.
Thank you to all the parents for their support throughout the year and I wish all our young gentleman the very best for their future. To the several boys who are leaving the school, best wishes and 'Once a Pius boy always a Pius boy!'
Outstanding Mathematics Award
Congratulations to Jack Lonergan in Year 6 for his achievement in the recent ICAS Mathematics Competition. He was awarded a High Distinction which was only received by the top 1% of the total number of students who entered the competition. Well done Jack on this outstanding achievement.
ADVENT: “ THE REASON FOR THE SEASON”
Advent comes from the Latin word meaning "coming." Jesus is coming and Advent is intended to be a season of preparation for His arrival. The themes for the four weeks of Advent are Hope, Peace, Joy and Love. Last Sunday we lit the candle for Peace and next Sunday will be Joy. Best wishes for a Peaceful, Joyous Christmas full of Hope and Love.
Thanking you for your support and all the best for a safe and holy Christmas season. As I say to the boys every Friday, "Don’t bruise any bumper bars!" Please remember that you have precious cargo, your children and yourself, so please drive safely these holidays.
Mr T Long - Head of Junior School
Volunteers needed: If you can assist on any weekday between 9:30am and 2:00pm please contact either Anna or Marianne on 9414 4301. It's a wonderful opportunity to meet other parents and your help will be greatly appreciated.
Canteen Roster for Week 1, 2018:
Ms M Erickson and Ms A Coombs - Canteen Supervisors
THE UNIFORM SHOP HAS CLOSED FOR 2017
The Uniform Shop will reopen in 2018 before the school term starts on the following days:
Regular Trading Hours begin in Week 1: (8am - 2pm)
REGULAR TRADING HOURS
MONDAYS, TUESDAYS & WEDNESDAYS 8.00AM – 2.00PM IN TERM TIME
The online ordering system can be accessed via http://uniformshop.stpiusx.nsw.edu.au/
An Price List is available on the College website.
Orders can be placed:
Collection of Orders (whether made by phone or on-line):
Blazer Buttons are available from shop - $2.00 each.
Second-Hand Uniforms: Parents are reminded that the Uniform Shop also sells second-hand uniforms, including Blazers. Please read the form below for information on providing second-hand clothing to the Uniform Shop.
Ms D Muirhead - Uniform Shop Supervisor