The Duce Issue 2018 08 - 7 June 2018

From the Principal

In recent weeks I was privileged to attend the annual conference of the Association of Victorian Catholic School Principals, held in Creswick.

The conference theme was “Education From and For Faith” which may initially sound a little heavy but with a terrific presenter, the three days provided rich and fertile ground for discussing how to bring our Catholic faith into the lives of contemporary teenagers in our schools. Dr Thomas H Groome, Professor of Theology and Religious Education at Boston College, Massachusetts, was our keynote speaker. Dr Groome also currently serves as Director of Boston College’s Church of the 21st Century whose mission is to be “a catalyst and resource for the renewal of the Catholic Church”. Growing up in County Kildare, Ireland, the youngest of ten children, Dr Groome is an outstanding speaker, very engaging with many tremendous anecdotes and stories, all illustrating his lifelong passion — that Catholic education be “from and for faith.” His main goal is to present religious education in a fashion which enables people to bring life to faith and faith to life.

The reason I mention my experience with Dr Groome is the way in which he was able to take the traditional messages of our Catholic experiences and make them relevant for education of our young people in our Australian Catholic schools. He believes Catholic education must reflect a “transcendent” take on life – looking a long way forward to the “ultimate horizon,” to make sense, find purpose, forge community, and receive help. Dr Groome’s intrinsic theme is that Catholic schools encourage every student to grow into fullness of life — to realise their potential, to bring values of God’s reign into the public domain and commit to social justice. In considering Dr Groome’s ideas, I couldn’t help but make the connections between his impressions and some terrific examples of our young men living out their commitment to our Catholic and Lasallian ethos.

On Tuesday afternoon I went along to see a group of our Year 9 students presenting their Intergenerational Projects in St Joseph’s Parish Hall in the culmination of their six‐week immersion with JoCare. JoCare is a free service supported by St Joseph’s Malvern and Cabrini Health. Their vision is of encouraging friendship and support within neighbourhoods in the local Malvern area. People in the Malvern area are welcome as volunteers or recipients of the services offered by JoCare. Organised by Ms Elizabeth O’Connell, Year 9 In9uiry Coordinator, the 15 students worked with JoCare service as an expression of their Christian faith in action. It was also an opportunity to be of “service to their neighbour as a means of connecting with others and as fulfilling their desire to build community.”

For six weeks these students met with an older person from the community, getting to know them, listening to their stories from a bygone era and providing friendship, support and connection. The presentation on Tuesday was a summary of what they had learned about their JoCare companions’ life and what they now understood and appreciated about people from that generation. The students wondered at the stark differences between their companions’ lives and their own brief and privileged experiences. It was beautiful to see and hear the obvious affection the students developed for their JoCare companions and in presenting a booklet with scanned copies of precious old photos and flowers or a gift, I saw our young men find real purpose, forge community and a commitment to making others’ lives better. The JoCare and Cabrini staff were tremendously impressed with the De La boys, and it was an enriching experience which will remain an integral feature of their Catholic education. Dr Groome would approve, I’m sure!

Mr Peter Houlihan

Deputy Principals’ Column

Faith and Mission

I was sitting in mass last Sunday, listening to Father deliver his homily. I was intrigued as he explained to the congregation the details and history of what was, Sunday’s feast day, The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, which most would still know by its traditional Latin name, Corpus Christi. As he unpacked the origins of this observance, I began to reflect on how nowadays, this feast invites us all to sit at the table with Christ and join in the mystery of Jesus self‐gift to us in the Eucharistic meal. St Paul, in his letter to the Corinthians, reminds us that our being in communion in the body and blood of Christ makes the Church become one, in the body and blood of Christ,

The blessing cup that we bless is a communion with the blood of Christ, and the bread that we break is a communion with the body of Christ. The fact that there is only one loaf means that though there are many of us, we form one single body because we all have a share in this one loaf.”

1 Corinthians 10:16–17

Jesus’ hospitality is wide; it embraces the whole person. I think it is true that anyone willing to turn up to the table to share in this loaf will find that the hand of the Lord is generous and that they will encounter a welcoming spirit, genuine hospitality, tenderness and companionship.

Year 9 Lasallian Service Intergenerational Project

This year, a number of our Year 9 students have been working under the guidance of Ms Elizabeth O’Connell completing their Year 9 Lasallian Service. In conjunction with JoCare, an organisation from St Joseph’s Parish in Malvern a group of our Year 9 students volunteered in the inaugural Intergenerational Project sponsored by the St Joseph’s Parish, Cabrini Hospital and Stonnington Council.

Each Tuesday afternoon, the Year 9 group met with an older person from the parish community and compiled a book of the highlights of each older person’s life. These were recently presented at a gathering which celebrated the lives of these older members of our community. Lasallian Service is a ‘community service’ program, structured in a way that allows our students to put into practice the core principles of our Lasallian charism; Faith, Inclusiveness, Justice, Respect and Quality Education. The experience of Lasallian Service encourages students to put their faith into action, as well as enhancing their learning and awareness of social justice in a broader sense.

Please click here to view photo gallery.

We are called to be stewards of God’s creation

 As stewards of God’s creation, we are called to make the earth a beautiful garden for the human family. When we destroy our forests, ravage our soil and pollute our seas, we betray that noble calling.” — Pope Francis, January 18, 2015.

At De La Salle College, we take this call to be stewards of God’s creation seriously. Knowing that solar energy creates clean, renewable power from the sun and benefits the environment, we have recently drastically increased our solar energy generation.

Mrs Rana Brogan
Deputy Principal – Faith and Mission

Staff and Operations

Staff Changes for change of Semester

As Semester 1 draws to close there will be a number of changes to staff that need to be communicated. Planned staff changes for circumstances such as Long Service Leave are part of the regular cycle of College life. In addition to this some staff become ill or change their employment arrangements after the year has started and must be covered. Below is a list of staff changes that will occur either at the start of the new semester on 18 June or the start of Term 3 on 16 July.

Staff Changes from the start of Semester 2 (18 June 2018)

Staff member on leave Duration of absence Replaced by
Mr Shaun Buckley Until end of Term 2 Mr Nic Nicolau
Mr Paul Coyle Until end of Term 2 To be confirmed
Ms Emily Ryan Until end of Term 2 Internal cover
Mrs Caroline Fitzpatrick Until end of Term 2 Miss Olivia Wenczel (Year 12 English), Ms Elena Brasacchio
Mr Kevin Hunter Semester 2 Ms Jennifer Spence
Ms Lisa Harkin 25 June until end of Term 2 Internal cover
Mr Shane Slavin Semester 2 To be confirmed
Mrs Joan Ferguson Until 20 July Internal cover
Ms Michele O’Mahoney Until end of Term 2 Ms Freda Siomos, Ms Catherine Gadzinski
Mr Gerard Barns 25 June until 30 July Internal cover

Staff Changes from the start Term 3 (16 July 2018)

Staff member on leave Duration of absence Replaced by
Mr David Happ Until 30 July Ms Isabella Kottek, Year 8 YLC by Mr Luke Kenealy
Mrs Vanessa Marolda Until 25 July Ms Nadia Pacella‐Solace
Mr Shane Mackintosh Until 30 July Mr Matt Jones, Austins HC by Mr John McAlroy
Ms Trish Woodman Until 24 August To be confirmed
Ms Christine Cooper Term 3 Dasha Vorobieva

Mr Tom Ryan
Deputy Principal — Staff and Operations


Are your contact details up‐to‐date?

There are times when we will need to contact you, including on the day if your son is absent and you haven’t informed the school as to why. Do we have your most up to date contact details? If not, please contact the College on (03) 9508 2100 so we can update our records. Please include parent/carer’s name, address, phone number, email address and emergency contact details. Please remember to contact the College if any of these details or your circumstances change.

Please notify the College of your son’s absence

Protecting the safety and wellbeing of children through the reporting and monitoring of absenteeism is the responsibility of both parents/carers and schools. Please remember to call the College on (03) 9508 2100 or log your son’s absence here early in the morning if your son is going to be away or late for school so your child’s absence can be recorded correctly.

For further information on the processes and procedures our College uses to record, monitor and follow‐up student attendance and absence please read our Attendance Policy here.

School Refusal is not the Same as Wagging

Attempting to understand school refusal is no mean feat. Many people still consider it in a similar vein to “wagging” or parent‐condoned absenteeism. However, school refusal is an often misunderstood and serious difficulty for many students. To find out more, click here.

Family and Domestic Violence

Family and domestic violence has a serious impact on the community, workplaces, families and individuals. The CECV joins in the sentiment of the Victorian Catholic Bishops’ statement on Domestic Violence: Committing to prevention and response.

Our goal must be a society where all people are safe in their home, families and close relationships; where violence and abuse are not acceptable: and where all relationships respect the equality and dignity of teach person. This is part of the Gospel of love and respect.

Ms Lisa Harkin
Deputy Principal – Students

Chaplain’s Notes

Year 7 Liturgies

Year 7 Dunstan led the community in prayer on Tuesday morning in the Tiverton Chapel. The students had focused on “disability” and took as their starting point the Gospel account of curing the man born blind. In formulating their liturgy they discussed the many forms of blindness that hamper people in the world today; blindness to God’s love; blindness to the needs of others; blindness to their own faults.

Their contribution to the prayer life of the College was a gift to all present. Parents are always welcome to attend the Tiverton Chapel for an 8:15 am start each Tuesday morning. Please sign in at Reception before heading to the Chapel.


Next Tuesday we pray for Gus Osborne (Yr 7 Vincent) who will be Baptised into the Catholic Church. May God bless Gus and fill him with grace, peace and love as he enters his new life of faith.

First Reconciliation
Father Martin Tanti will celebrate the Sacrament of Penance in the College Chapel on Tuesday evening 12 June. Year 7 students have been preparing to receive this Sacrament for the first time and will gather in community with their families, as we celebrate this wonderful Sacrament of forgiveness.

First Communion has been scheduled for 18 November 2018 at 11:00am Mass at St Anthony’s Parish, Cnr Grange and Neerim Roads, Glen Huntly.

Confirmation will be take place on Friday 10 August 2018 at 7:00pm at St Anthony’s Parish, Cnr Grange and Neerim Roads Glen Huntly.

Important Dates for Confirmation Candidates

Some important dates for Confirmation Candidates and families:

Confirmation Information night
Thursday 7 June, 7:30pm
Padua Pavilion, St Anthony’s Parish, Cnr Grange and Neerim Roads, Glen Huntly.
It is important that all families attend this night. Please note it is for parents and the Confirmation Candidates.

Retreat Day
Wednesday 1 August, 8:45am

Bishop’s visit with the Confirmation Candidates
Monday 6 August, 10:00am
St Anthony’s Parish, Cnr Grange and Neerim Roads, Glen Huntly.

Family Mass, Practice and Shared supper
Tuesday 7 August, 7:00pm
St Anthony’s Parish, Cnr Grange and Neerim Roads, Glen Huntly.

Mrs Joan Ferguson
College Chaplain

In9uiry Intergenerational Project

The Intergenerational Project has been a Lasallian Service collaboration with JoCare, St Joseph’s parish, Malvern.

A chance to relive some of the things I have done in my life’ was how Mr John Horan (class of 1944) described his part in the Intergenerational Project. John, together with Ms Claire Kelly, Ms Maureen O’Bree, Mrs Mary Thomas and Mrs Marie Grafen, bravely led 15 of our Year 9 students along voyages of remembrances in this project, recounting their life stories.

Over the past seven Tuesdays, culminating in a presentation on 5 May, these St Joseph’s parishioners and ‘their’ De La Salle students created ‘This is your Life’ books. These books were presented in a ‘Celebration of Life’ in the presence of family, friends and members of the Malvern and De La Salle communities. Both the Mayor, Cr Steven Stefanopoulos and Principal Peter Houlihan acknowledged the importance of these types of projects, both for an understanding of the past but, more importantly, for the creation of community.

All participants enjoyed the experience and have forged strong and respectful relationships. I would like to thank the supervisors of this project: Kerri Anne, Br Michael, Br Paul, Sr Julia and John. Special mention must go to our Master of Ceremonies, Thomas Hobbins — you did a marvelous job! Please enjoy a photo gallery of images from the afternoon’s celebration below.

Ms Elizabeth O’Connell
In9uiry Coordinator

Sustainability at De La Salle

The College has recently installed an extensive photovoltaic solar power generation system onto rooftops across the Kinnoull campus.

Three hundred and five 325 Watt panels are now installed on all roof surfaces (except Saint Miguel Theatre). Most face north however, there are some facing west to harvest the afternoon sun.

The new system is a 99.125 kWh system which is enough power to replace the equivalent of approximately two months of total power consumption for the school (on average), and equate to $21,452 off our annual power bills. The new system will go live later in June 2018 when United Energy connect us to the grid.

The College had earlier invested in LED lighting right across both campuses, mainly over the last Christmas Holidays. There are some additional fittings being changed out on 15 June. Overall this has contributed to a power consumption reduction over the last 4 months of 51,000 kWh (approximately 12,750 kWh per month) up to 1 June 2018 compared to the same period in 2017. This is equivalent to one month’s consumption under the old lights and equates to a 25% reduction in overall power consumption with the advent of LED.

De La Salle also recently converted all of the chemicals used in the daily maintenance and cleaning of the College to green versions and were awarded the Hunter Green certificate of compliance.

Future Work Summit Report

On 31 May, I had the privilege of attending the 2018 Future Work Summit. The event featured a mix of experts from industry, management and academia. They spoke of informing curricula that will shape the mindsets of future leaders.

The room was asked to consider the following quote from Warren Bennis:

The factory of the future will have only two employees, a man and a dog. The man will be there to feed the dog. The dog will be there to keep the man from touching the equipment.”

According to recent data, automation threatens 800 million jobs globally. Anything that is “dirty, dull or dangerous will be a target for automation”, said Hon Craig Laundy, Minister for Small and Family Business. However, it appears the real issue is whether we as a nation are able to keep up with this displacement, and more so, whether we are skilling and willing the students of today for a workforce with so much uncertainty.

Consider this:

  • 70% of current jobs will be lost to automation by 2030
  • 65% of children in primary school today will work in jobs that don’t yet exist
  • 60% of current university students are studying for jobs that will either not exist, be disrupted or be radically changed
  • A child today will have a predicted average of 17 jobs in five industries during their working life.

De La Salle College is always evolving. Our Year 9 In9uiry program currently adopts several project‐based tasks where students are encouraged to lead their own learning and learn from failure. This model of learning was backed by Sally‐Ann Williams, Engineer of Google AustraliaShe said, “students should fail fast and learn from it.” Sally suggested that inter‐disciplinary skills like leadership, communication, collaboration and time management were the non‐negotiable skills students must have when entering the workforce in 2020. “These skills are best learnt through trying to solve complex problems”, she said.

Keynote speakers agreed that resilience would also help students prepare for the periods of transition they will confront both now and in the future of the workforce. Contemporary schools, like ours, have the opportunity to prepare our students for the impacts of digital disruption on their work lives. It is critical we continue to implement the curriculum in ways that give our students opportunities to develop the critical and creative skills that they will find so invaluable in the future.

Mr David Alexander
Director of Learning and Development (Experiential Learning)

Time and Space Mother and Son Night

Time & Space programs are designed to strengthen and grow relationships, especially during times of change and transition. Time & Space for Mothers and Sons focuses on the big step from primary to secondary school.

On Monday 21 May, De La Salle College hosted our Time & Space Mother and Son event and it was a great success. Every year we receive wonderful feedback from both the students and their female guardians and carers. Thank you to Bill Jennings for his work in this space, and we hope you enjoy these reviews from two participants, Mrs Sally Ashe and Ellis Ashe, Year 7.

Mother’s review by Sally Ashe

The Time and Space evening, hosted by Bill Jennings, was an evening dedicated for mothers, female mentors and their sons to reflect on their important relationship. At the beginning of their De La Salle journey our boys are experiencing a major transition from primary to secondary school and this evening allows us to share our experiences of this big step. Throughout the evening Bill led discussions about how times of transition can be major events in a boy’s life, bringing many challenges, joys and emotions for mother and son.

I was looking forward to spending some quality one‐on‐one time with Ellis, away from our busy day‐to‐day lives, to chat, laugh and reflect on our relationship. The evening also allowed me to share discussions with other mums and their boys regarding their experience of starting at De La Salle. The boys were fantastic and I was impressed how confidently they spoke to openly share insights into their lives.

As part of the evening, we were each asked to bring along a treasured item to share with one another that said something about our relationship. The highlight of the evening was seeing all these treasures from every mother and son displayed at the front of the hall.

Overall, the evening was an extremely positive experience that Ellis and I were able to share with other families at De La Salle. By allowing ourselves time and space we will continue to strengthen our relationship as mum and son.

Son’s review by Ellis Ashe

I expected the night just to be mainly speaking one‐on‐one with my mum but it was a nice surprise to speak to the others boy’s parents. I think it was really good how they structured the night to make sure we weren’t just speaking with our mums but with other mums too. To begin the evening we went off and spoke to another parent and student and I think this was a really good way to find out what relationships other people had with their mums/mentors. We then moved into small groups and were asked to discuss questions about our transition from primary to secondary school. These questions allowed us all to talk about our experiences of starting at De La Salle and it was reassuring to find that we all felt the same about this big step. Finally, we spoke with our mums/mentors and shared our treasures with them. As part of the evening, we had to share a treasure that meant something with our mum/mentor. I brought in a photo of my mum and me when I was just born and my mum brought in the ultrasound picture of when she was pregnant with me and wrote me a letter. This night allowed me to talk one‐on‐one with my mum without having the distractions of everyday life. I think the night was a great experience to have and I recommend it to the future year 7 boys.

Ms Sarah O’Connor
Personal Development Coordinator

Parent Network News

Year 7 drinks and conversation

On a chilly winter’s night, in front of a cosy fire at the Rosstown Hotel, 75 keen Year 7 parents gathered to share stories of their boy’s journeys so far and also to get to know each other.

Thank you everyone for attending our first function with such enthusiasm. It is always nice to seek out the parents of your son’s “new” best friends, swap strategies for ‘Fortnite’, listen to any teething issues with school and realise that after half a year everyone is ok and having a great time at De La Salle. Thank you also to the Rosstown who made us feel very welcome as we took over the Front Bar. Drinks and conversations were flowing free and easy which made for a great night. If you were unable to attend this time, don’t worry, there is always the upcoming function in August which is our major fundraiser for the school. Put Saturday 11 August in your diary and we hope to see lots of Year 7 parents attending.

Thanks again,

Sam Pickering and Lisa McCormack (your happy Year 7 reps!)

Mr Anthony Muir
President of the Parent Network

Important Notices

Time to Shine 2018

Time to Shine 2018 is a musical celebration to showcase the extraordinary talents of youth – featuring singers, dancers and musicians from Catholic secondary schools across the Archdiocese of Melbourne. This year’s production will be staged at the State Theatre, Arts Centre Melbourne on 28 July 2018 with two shows at 2 pm and 7.30 pm. Tickets now on sale at the Arts Centre Melbourne website. Discount tickets for group bookings (10 or more) are available by phoning 1300 182 183. Featuring almost 400 students from over 50 secondary schools, this event has become a key celebration for Catholic secondary schools in Melbourne to display the performance talents of their students. Time to Shine will also be screened on the Seven Network after the event.

Catholic School Parents Victoria Newsletter

We encourage all in our community to read the latest issue of Catholic School Parents Victoria eNewsletter. If you would like to subscribe to the CSPV newsletter or provide CSPV with feedback on State advocacy issues you are most welcome to do so via the subscribe or feedback button on the link provided. Alternatively, you can send an email to

Important Dates

Important upcoming dates on the College calendar.

Queen's Birthday Public Holiday
Year 8 Camp - 12 May to 14 May - Phillip Island
General Achievement Test (GAT) - Gymnasium, 10:00am - 1:15pm
Year 7 Band Concert - PAC, 7:30pm - 8:30pm
Semester One Examination Period Concludes
Year 12 Formal - Lincoln of Toorak, 7:00pm - 11:00pm
Report Writing Day - No Classes
Semester One Concludes
20 Year College Reunion - Prahran Hotel, 7:30pm - 11:00pm
30 Year College Reunion - The Village Belle Hotel, St Kilda, 7:30pm - 10:30pm
Semester Two Commences
Year 10 Academic Assessment Services Catch Up Testing - Morgan Hall, 8:50am - 1:00pm
House Cross Country Championships — Years 9 and 10 - TH King Reserve, 1:30pm - 3:00pm
Year 8 Parent Information Night - Gymnasium, 7:30pm - 9:00pm
Year 9 Reflection Day (Dunstan, Roland) - Syndal Baptist Church, 8:30am - 2:45pm
House Cross Country Championships — Years 11 and 12 - TH King Reserve, 1:30pm - 3:00pm
Year 9 Reflection Day (Hegarty, Solomon, Vincent) - Syndal Baptist Church, 8:30am - 2:45pm