Deputy Principals’ Column

Staff and Operations

Operationally, the College has made a very smooth start to 2019.

Some statistics about the start of the year:

  • We opened with 1095 students (including 51 students in Years 5 and 6)
  • We welcomed 196 students into Year 7
  • 25 new staff (including 17 teachers) commenced this year
  • Holy Eucharist Year 9 Campus opened with 14 staff, and 156 students.

All looks well for a terrific year ahead!

Year 12 Retreat

Unfortunately, we had to postpone the Year 12 Retreat due to bushfires in the Thompson River Catchment. Our thoughts are with all those affected by the fires. We hope the Retreat will be rescheduled for later in Term 1. Parents and students will be notified well in advance once arrangements are confirmed.

Kinnoull Library

In 2019 the Kinnoull Library will again be open after school for students. A roster of staff will support the students each afternoon.

Kinnoull Library closing times are:
Monday – Thursday: 6:00pm
Friday: 5:00pm

Mr Tom Ryan
Deputy Principal — Staff and Operations

Faith and Mission

Welcome to an exciting and hope‐filled year at De La Salle College. I would particularly like to welcome all of the staff, students and parents who are new to our College. I pray that your time here will be happy and productive.

2019 De La Salle College Theme

As Lasallians, we are a community of faith, and our faith underpins all that we do, in the living presence of God. We believe in our students, our community and our world.

Just as St John Baptist de La Salle lived out his faith in Christ by heeding the call to discipleship, a Lasallian is committed to the respect and reverence of others, seeing all as valuable and important in the eyes of God. This leads us to understand that educating the individual in the Lasallian tradition, providing a “human and Christian” education, is something that is supremely valuable and worthwhile.

For 2019, the Lasallian Principle of “Quality Education” has been chosen as our College theme and the accompanying quote in this special year of the Tercentenary was inspired from the upcoming 2019 APLEC Conference theme, “Educating for Life: One Heart, One Commitment, One Life.”

It is most fitting, that in the 2019 year of the Tercentenary, this Lasallian principle of “Quality Education is chosen as it recognises the deep aspirations that St John Baptist de La Salle had for his Lasallian communities. 2019 is a special year, as we commemorate the Tercentenary of our Founder, St John Baptist de La Salle. As Lasallians, we recognise this as an important milestone in the life of the Lasallian Institute – the 300th anniversary of the death of the Founder. The Tercentenary year will provide us with the opportunity to reflect on and celebrate our past as well as create a future that is filled with hope, living in the moment in the presence of God.

2018 Year 12 “Yaluwo” Lasallian Immersion to Sri Lanka

On Thursday 22 November 2018 the Yaluwo group prepared to depart for their immersion experience in Sri Lanka.

Having just completed their VCE exams, they were about to embark on a social justice experience of a life time, spending almost one month away from home. To those who are new to our De La Salle College community, Yaluwo means “Friends” in Sinhalese, the native Sri Lankan language, and the friendship certainly continued to grow and flourish in the most authentic ways as we arrived and settled at Diyagala Boys’ Town.

As Lasallians, we are committed to living our lives in solidarity with the poor and the most vulnerable. Our Year 12 students who embarked on the Yaluwo Immersion answered God’s call to live and serve their fellow Lasallian brothers (and sisters), at Diyagala Boys’ Town Technical Boarding School. An experience that provided them with an opportunity to appreciate our Lasallian vocation of service and “touching hearts”.

In the Gospel of St John, we are reminded of the importance of service as more than just words, that it needs to be visible and real;

 “Our love is not to be just words or mere talk, but something real and active.”

(Jn.3:18)

It was heartening to witness our students fully immerse themselves in the work and the community at Diyagala, recognising that an immersion experience is about building relationships with others, not just doing something for others. An immersion experience involves a recognition not only of the needs of others but also their gifts. Such service can enable those who are voiceless, devalued or forgotten in our society to be heard, valued and seen. Our Lasallian charism enables us to recognise that all lives are gifts from God and we can nurture our own gift by being of service to those in need. Through our listening, our compassion and our service we bring hope for the future to others.

After days of sanding wooden cupboards, painting walls and polishing ceramic floor tiles, the Diyagala students, Br Denzil, Br Loyola and Br Granville surprised and honoured us by revealing they were naming the room the “Yaluwo Parlour”. The Yaluwo Parlour will be used as a guest waiting room and social room for the students.

On behalf of the 2018 Yaluwo Immersion group, I would like to mention in the dedication of the De La Salle Brothers in Sri Lanka. The gentle, decent and good men who dedicate their lives to working with ‘the last, the least and the lost.” In the true spirit of the Founder St. John Baptist de La Salle, the Brothers work tirelessly to care for the students in their care at Diyagala, helping to provide them with an education to break the cycle of poverty. It was a privilege to know them, to support them and to have had the opportunity to work alongside them.

A personal thanks also to Mr Chas Thompson and Mr Anthony Freeman for their commitment, dedication and individual contributions.

Finally, to the students, Oliver Burke, Finn Carey, Jacob Carroll, Ky Morgenthaler, Heath McCullough, Panos Menidis, Hayden Rideg and Hamish Sutherland — a heartfelt thank you. Each day I was witnessing our young Lasallian men be the living face of Christ, “touching hearts” of all those they encountered.

Staff Formation with Steve Lawrence

It was great to have Steve Lawrence join the staff in our first week back to explore how we go about inspiring and equipping ourselves as educators in our role as custodians of the Catholic faith, how we model this to the students and how we represent and lead the faith.

As Catholic school educators, it is important that we remain openly Catholic in inspiration and nature. Our role as Catholic educators is the education of the whole person since we recognise that it is in Jesus Christ that all human values find fulfilment and unity. As Lasallians, we recognise that by living out, modelling and participating in the faith, we create a positive climate for our students to grow their faith.

Steve’s key theme to the staff was “Fanning the Flame of Faith” and he reminded us that the conversations, interactions, moments we have with our students resonate for years to come. Every day we are shaping the lives of the young people we encounter. We were challenged to allow God into our lives, even in times of doubt. Steve asked us to know the scriptures and to know them well. Christ was a teacher. We are called to be participators of Christ as teachers. To fan the flame, we ourselves, “need to be on fire.” Just like the example given in the Road to Emmaus, we too, are called to walk alongside our students, just as Jesus walked along the road with his disciples.

2019 Opening and Welcome Mass at St Patrick’s Cathedral

On Wednesday 27 February, all Year 7 students and new students across all year levels, will be formally welcomed into the College community.

All families will receive a formal letter, co‐signed by the College Principal Mr Peter Houlihan and the Deputy Principal – Faith and Mission, Mrs Rana Brogan outlining the details and expectations of the celebration evening at St Patrick’s Cathedral.

Parents are asked to please arrive no later than 6:00pm to ensure a prompt 6:30pm start to the Mass.

All 2019 College Leaders (All Year 12 College Leaders, Tiverton Captain and Vice Captains, Primary Captain and Vice Captains and Holy Eucharist Captain and Vice Captains), will be commissioned into their respective roles and are required to be dressed in full winter uniform.

Year 7 students and all other new students to the College are required to be dressed in full summer uniform.

Mrs Rana Brogan
Deputy Principal – Faith and Mission

Students

It has been a busy start to the year at De La Salle College, and despite being new to the school, I have been quickly immersed in Lasallian life. De La Salle has already proved to be a welcoming, positive place to be each day, and I look forward to working with the staff, students and families here.

Over the last week, students have returned to school and been involved in House and Year Level assemblies, spent extended time with their mentor groups, and enjoyed other opportunities to reconnect with school life.

While we hope that all students are immersed in the school community, the start of the year can be a tricky time. In order to support students and their families, De La Salle is proud to introduce SchoolTV, which can be accessed via the tab on Ollie. SchoolTV is presented by Dr Michael Carr‐Gregg, and offers expert information in an easy to access format. This month, SchoolTV covers two important topics:

School Transitions

Whether it is starting school for the first time, moving up to a higher grade or embarking on a journey through secondary school, there is no doubt that any school transition is a very exciting time for children and parents. It means your children are growing up!

However, transitioning is an ongoing process. It can continue long after students have entered their new environment and may encounter difficulties at a number of different stages. These stressors may appear as anxiety and frustration and result in negative or disruptive behaviours. Such behaviours can become problematic, making the transitioning process even more difficult for children and parents.

In this episode of SchoolTV, parents will learn practical strategies to assist your child during the transition process and reduce stress and anxiety levels.

Surviving Year 12

The final year of secondary school is a year of hard work and a huge commitment for students. It can be hard to find a balance between study and life. It is a time when personalities start to emerge, there are more complex interpersonal relationships and there is the pressure to perform academically. With all of this going on, it’s not surprising that some students have an emotional response and it is therefore extremely important for parents to know how to support their children during this time.

Some students will need more support than others. Keeping the communication lines open with your child, his teachers, mentors and other parents will be crucial. Being aware of your son’s mental and physical wellbeing can play a vital role in his success.

In this edition of SchoolTV, parents will discover practical advice for students and parents to help get through the final year of secondary school.

We hope you take time to reflect on the information offered in SchoolTV, we always welcome your feedback. If you have any concerns about your child, please contact the school for further information.

Ms Jessica Alger
Deputy Principal — Students


Back to The Duce Issue 2019 01 - 7 February 2019