Cardinal Newman College Visit
The visit of our four Edmund Rice Beyond Borders students from Cardinal Newman College, Argentina at last Tuesday’s Senior Athletics Carnival was an enjoyable exchange and sharing of cultures for all involved. The four Year 11 students, Juan Salinas, Ben Mackinnon, Jack Deane and Manuel Tapia, greatly enjoyed our hospitality and the opportunity to win some place ribbons at the Athletics Carnival, showing the speed and spirit which is the mainstay of Argentinian Rugby.
Later in the afternoon the group enjoyed the inaugural Year 10 SPX-Mercy Drama classes’ Short Film Festival at Mercy College, with an impromptu recital of Justin Bieber’s latest Puerto Rican Spanish offering. We then travelled to Manly via Oxford Falls to see the origins of the boys Rugby hero in St Pius X College ex-student and Wallaby Captain Michael Hooper. A Ferry ride via Sydney Harbour to see the lights of Vivid, dinner in Chatswood and a drive back to Huntington House at Terrigal rounded out the evening before a return trip to visit Waverley and Christian Brothers High School, Lewisham on Wednesday.
Thanks to Mr David Blake who hosted the boys to the Australian Reptile Park, took them to Mass and supervised them over the weekend.
We hope that in the not too distant future a delegation of St Pius X College students can return the Immersion visit to our South American cousins, perhaps visit Machu Pichu, play some rugby, football or basketball and work with the Edmund Rice schools in Bolivia, Peru, Uruguay and Argentina.
'Boy Overboard' Edmund Rice Centre for Refugee Advocacy Visit
We look forward to visiting the Edmund Rice Centre at Homebush with the cast and crew of Ms Fernando’s SPX/Mercy production of 'Boy Overboard' next term. The Edmund Rice Centre is a social justice arm of Edmund Rice Education Australia at which our own archivist and ex-student of the College, Br Carl Sherrin, works several days a week. We hope to coincide our visit with the presence of Mr Phil Glendenning OAM who was awarded his Order of Australia this year for his work over many years in the fields of Social Justice as the foremost spokesman on areas of responsible refugee advocacy. Phil and Zaki Haidari both visited St Pius X College to watch the play in March. They were deeply moved by the performance of our young actors in courageously bringing to the stage the realities of challenges faced by refugees in a contemporary world of conflicting ideas and interpretations.
Year 11 Leadership Development
As our Year 12 cohort approach their HSC Trials, Retreats, Graduation and Final HSC Examinations it is incumbent on our Year 11 students to take up the mantle of leadership of the College.
Recent Reflection Days have focused on Leadership Case Studies and Models. While last Thursday Year 11 Coordinator Mr Batchelor launched the 2017 Leadership Team selection process, all Senior students of the College are expected to be leaders by example, concerned for the safety, wellbeing and reputation of all members of the College community and particularly younger students.
As such all Year 11 students have been asked to fill in the survey emailed to them last Thursday stating their leadership aspirations at the College as well as modes of transport they use to and from school, which is a way of being responsible for the safety and good conduct of our students.
Survey returns are due this week with the Student Leadership Team selection process continuing into Term 3 when the elected students will attend a Leadership Camp at Huntington House from 23rd to 25th August. Speechcraft Public Speaking Training, sponsored by the Old Boys Association, will continue over the September holidays post the Term 3 End of Preliminary Course Exams. No doubt the current Year 11 students will rise to the challenges of leadership as generations of St Pius X College students have done before them.
Kokoda Track Campaign History Guest Speaker
On Friday 11th August the College will host an esteemed member of the Trustees of the Christian Brothers Board, Mr John Honner, to speak to the students and interested members of the College community on matters relating to the 1942 Kokoda Track Campaign. Mr Honner’s father, Lt Colonel Ralph Honner, returned from the Battles of Crete and the Middle East with the 6th Division to take command of the 39th Militia Battalion at the Battle of Isurava Village on the Kokoda Track. The vastly outnumbered and inexperienced 39th Mud over Bloods, courageously withstood the Japanese advance for weeks on the Kokoda Track to lay the groundwork for eventual victory over the previously unstoppable Imperial Japanese army.
Lt Colonel Honner led his men with distinction returning them to the PNG Northern Beaches Battles in December 1942 where he reinforced the AIF assaults and masterminded the capture of Gona, famously signalling by radio “Gona’s gone”. He later commanded the 2/14th AIF Battalion in the battles at Shaggy Ridge, Northern PNG.
The opportunity to hear Mr Honner speak on these unique events in Australia’s history will be afforded to our Year 10 History students, guests and those interested in our St Pius X College Kokoda Expedition 2018 which we will launch with an information night on Monday 24th July. Please contact Mr Brannan for more information.
Mr S Brannan - Head of Student Services