Secondary News
Home Secondary News

Secondary News

Term 4, Week 7

 

Prayer for Advent: 

Advent prayers can help us focus on this important liturgical season when it seems like so many forces pull us from summer to Christmas Eve. Praying during Advent can help us keep in mind the true purpose of all of the build up to Christmas. 

Advent is a relatively short liturgical season, so perhaps it’s fitting that short, simple prayers are all we need to feel God’s calming presence in our lives amid the many distractions of November and December. 

Dear Lord, please allow me to embrace Advent in the way the Church intends: as a way to prepare for Your arrival. May everything I do–every gift I send, every party I attend, every meal I share–remind me to prepare space in my heart for You. Amen. 

Learning:  

AMOW & Min Standards: 

Every student in NSW in Year 10 must complete a course called All MY Own Work (AMOW) each year to be able to start the Preliminary Course in Year 11. This course outlines the importance of not plagiarising any work in their HSC years and what exactly this means in many forms. Each student must also complete an online test about this to show that they have understood what has been explained to them.  

Also, every Senior student must also pass minimum standard tests in numeracy and literacy to be awarded their HSC credentials. They have the 2 years to sit these tests and may attempt them several times but if they fail to pass them, they then have 5 years to re-sit these after they complete Year 12 to gain their HSC credential. 

We have always worked with our students to ensure they pass all these requirements and Mr Jones will be organising times for our present Year 10 to sit these over the next few weeks and for the Year 12, 2023 who have not yet passed to also sit these. 

It is vitally important that all students are at school and complete these to the best of their ability.  

Year 12 Major Works: 

Meetings will be held with every student and their parents who need to complete a Major Work as part of their HSC. This will be done by appointment for about 20 minutes with a discussion between the family and the student’s teacher and an Executive member. These will occur on Wednesday, 30 November for everyone, except the students in Mr Gasparotto’s Industrial class which will be on the Thursday. Appointments will be made on COMPASS as occurred for P/T.  

New Vertical Structure: 

This year the Secondary College has been reviewing the learning culture of the College. MacKillop has many strengths and a strong community but there are always areas where we can improve. As a result, we are making a major change in our Pastoral program in 2023 where we hope to improve the learning culture of the college. More information is coming about this soon. There has been a letter mailed home about this and a Zoom meeting held for all interested parents on Monday December 5th at 6.30pm. 

Spelling Bee Final: 

Last Friday we had a very exciting Spelling Bee Final. 24 very nervous Year 7 and 8 students who had been the top two spellers in their Pastoral Classes gathered in the Hall in front of their peers, teachers and parents to try and become the Spelling Champion. 

Ist, 2nd and 3rd all received trophies and gift vouchers and points were added to name the winning House. 

Congratulations to all these fine spellers and especially to our winners: 

3rd – Seleena Sao (7 Gesu) 

2nd – Jett Crook (8 Penola) 

1st – Theresia Laka (7 Fitzroy) 

Overall winning House – Fitzroy 

 

Year 9 Spirituality Day: 

On Thursday in Week 6, students from Year 9 engaged in their annual Spirituality Day at the College. The event began with our Year 9 students joining Year 5 and 6 in the MacKillop Church for Parish Mass, alongside members of the Parish community. We were delighted by the music provided by students and impressed with the connection our students demonstrated towards their faith. During the next session, Year 9 joined in various icebreakers and ministry-based workshops, run by our Year 10 Youth Ministry students, and orchestrated by Mrs Tenev. We thank all our students and staff who were involved in this experience and congratulate them on their active participation. 

 

 

 Local World Youth Day 

On Saturday the 19th of November, YMCC students attended a Local World Youth Day by attending the Vigil Mass at the Hornsby Cathedral in Waitara to celebrate the Feast of Christ the King. On this feast day, the church celebrates all young people and after the mass, young people gathered for an outdoor festival of stalls, games, music and food. Bishop Anthony Randazzo presided over the Mass and our MacKillop students were chosen to carry the pilgrim cross into the church. A big ‘thank you’ and ‘well done’ to Melissa, Elise and Ella from Year 10 who did some readings and to Aaliyah from Year 10 who entertained the crowd during the festival with her beautiful singing. Mr Legge, Ms Goodwin and I are so proud of how the students represented our College and a great time was had by all. 

Stage 5 Josie Mitchell Debating: 

Josie Mitchell was an English teacher from Mater Dei College at Tuggerah, now known as St Peter’s. She was passionate about debating and public speaking. These competitions were named in her honour after she passed away from Cancer. 

Last Wednesday the Stage 5 Josie Mitchell Debating Competition was held at St Brigid’s. 

Our students narrowly lost their first 2 debates, however, the judicator thought that the collaboration of the girls was something to be commended as they had some very strong arguments. 

Their third debate was an impromptu. The girls had 30 minutes to plan for their topic without the use of any resources and teachers were not allowed to assist them. The teachers present reported: 

“They absolutely blew us away (and the opposition) with their well thought out arguments and we came away with the win (by a landslide might I add).” 

It was so lovely to see the girls connecting with the students from the other schools. They left having made some friends and they were very grateful for the experience as they learnt so much about debating, public speaking, and the power of persuasion. 

We thank Miss Higgins and Mr Webster for working with the team and escorting them on the day. 

 

         

Period 6: 

This week our students heard from guest speakers who were able to inform us more about the reason that White Ribbon Day exists and a plea to all our students to never except violence in their lives. We thank Danielle from Catholic Care who assists us always in educating our students and to our guest speaker, Samara, who shared her story with us all. 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 4 Week 8 

  • Mon-Fri -Work placement for Hospitality/ PAT testing occurring / Ext History excursion 
  • Mon- NSWCCC Blues Awards 6pm in the Theatre 
  • Tues – Year 7, 2023 Parent Information Night in the Hall at 6.30pm 
  • Fri – White Card credential / Awards of Excellence for our First nation students- Wyong High 

Final Word 

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College. 

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information. 

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity…. strive for extraordinary lives. 

Debra Ferguson 

Secondary Principal 

Term 4, Week 6

 

Newsletter Term 4 Week 6 

Prayer: 

This Sunday is the Feast Day of Christ the King. Christ the King marks the last feast of the Church’s liturgical year. The season of Advent starts the Sunday after. 

The Feast of Christ the King was established by Pope Pius XI in 1925 to remind Catholics that Jesus Christ is the Lord of the Universe, both as God and Man. 

This feast day is about looking at Christ the King as our ultimate leader. The most important part of leadership lies in love. Christ the King shows us that the ultimate power is the power of love. Regardless of what happened to him, Jesus Christ always loved. No one could stop him. His love continued to flow from the cross and reveal the mercy and power of God. 

The Feast of Christ the King serves to remind us of his love. We are urged not to lose our perspective. Through the power of love, we can effect change in our world and continue to create a life filled with forgiveness and mercy in a world where justice and peace reign supreme. 

 

Learning:  

PAT testing: 

Our conviction as a school is to assist each child achieve one year’s growth for one year of attending school. PAT tests in the areas of literacy and numeracy are undertaken by students each year where we can study the data and plan for the following year and to identify students who may need extra assistance. It is also an exercise of reviewing teaching and learning practices. Our Junior students will be sitting these tests over the next couple of weeks. 

Towards Excellence: 

All Year 11 teachers are presently creating plans based on their observations of their Year 11 students over the Preliminary Course and their final exams. From this they will identify skills and knowledge that need extending and plan how they will improve these leading up to their HSC. Their plans will be reviewed each term and revised. This process has been named Towards Excellence. 

Year 12 Major Works: 

Meetings will be held with every student and their parents who need to complete a Major Work as part of their HSC. This will be done by appointment for about 20 minutes with a discussion between the family and the student’s teacher and an Executive member. These will occur on Wednesday, November 30th and appointments will be made on COMPASS as occurred for P/T. More information to come. 

New Vertical Structure: 

This year the Secondary College has been reviewing the learning culture of the College. MacKillop has many strengths and a strong community but there are always areas where we can improve. As a result, we are making a major change in our Pastoral program in 2023 where we hope to improve the learning culture of the college. More information is coming about this soon. There will be a letter mailed home about this and a Zoom meeting held for all interested parents on Monday December 5th at 6.30pm. 

Battle of the Builders: 

The Annual Catholic Schools Broken Bay Battle of the Builders competition was held at MacKillop Catholic College on Thursday 10 November 2022. Participating schools included MacKillop Catholic College, St Edward’s College, St Leo’s Catholic College and St Peter’s Catholic College. 

The competition fosters student’s communication, teamwork, organisation, and leadership skills. Empowering students with a skillset which prepares them for future success. 

Students competed in pairs, completing a series of practical tasks which provided an opportunity to demonstrate the skills and knowledge which have been developed through study undertaken towards Certificate II in Construction Pathways. Competitions are designed by industry experts to assess the student’s knowledge, practical competence, and employability skills against a set of strict criteria. 

Congratulations to Taylah M and Riley W who came third and to Aidan Van M and Romeo B. A special thank you to Mr Gasparotto who convened the event and to Mr Jones and Mr Gasparotto who prepared our teams. 

 

 

Battle of the Business Assistants: 

We are blessed at MCC with a diverse VET department, that supports students to gain real world career skills and pathways to industry through ASQA approved and nationally recognised Certificates.   

On Wednesday, 9 November, six students were selected from the Year 12 Business Services class to demonstrate their office and administration skills by competing in the annual Catholic Schools Broken Bay Battle of the Business Assistants. This competition was held at St Peters College and brought student teams from all over the Diocese to compete in an industry-based competition.  

Mackillop was represented by three outstanding teams: Laura E and Tayiah H, Tessa H and Taalirah G, and Breanna C and Charlie S. These teams worked together to prioritise and complete office tasks based on an industry scenario and worked to timeframes and specific guidelines.   

Our girls made us so proud in the way they presented the college and themselves in their uniform, respectful and positive behaviours and their quality sportsmanship. The competition was fierce, and we are delighted that Laura E and Tayiah H placed 3rd on the day.   

A huge congratulations to these students on this outstanding achievement, and special congratulations to Laura and Tayiah and also to Mrs Patil who prepared the teams for the day. 


 

Remembrance Day: 

Last Friday the entire school stopped at 11am whilst students from Primary and Secondary reminded us of all why this day is so important, and we all stood silently for the one minute of silence.  

On the day we had boys representing the College in cricket and it was wonderful to see the respect for this day also extended onto the cricket pitch at the change of innings when a little after 11, the two sides participated in a minute’s silence, led by the umpires. 

Ignite: 

During the school holidays eight students from Years 9 and 10 attended the four-day, three-night youth conference in Sydney called Ignite. 

Every year, Ignite Youth hosts one of Australia’s most powerful Catholic youth conferences. Delegates get to experience four days of real-world formation, encouragement in faith, great people and powerful worship. Ignite Conference draws together a network of high schoolers, young adults, ministry leaders, families, teachers, priests, and religious from around the country. 

The students participated in workshops, listened to a range of keynote speakers, testimonies of faith, danced, sung and made new friends from various parts of Australia. We are so proud of how they participated in the conference with enthusiasm, how they supported each other and represented the College. The students are: 

Caitlin W 

Ryan McC 

Leo B 

Josie R 

Melissa V 

Dominic B 

Olivia W  

Noah J

Brainstorm Productions: 

Last Friday afternoon, during period 5, Brainstorm Productions presented their live theatre experience ‘The Hurting Games’ to Years 7 and 8. The Hurting Games, explores the skills children need to cope with life’s challenges and to build meaningful connections. It touches on topics such as anxiety, loneliness and disconnection, and further challenges students to think about how they treat themselves and others, both online and offline.  

Other issues, covered include, fitting in, accepting others, keeping track of your mental health, asking for help and communicating positively and respectfully.

During the week 4 pastoral period, Year 7 and 8 completed a lesson on Positive Relationships Online, in preparation for ‘The Hurting Games’ Brainstorm production. 

Overall, we feel that many Year 7 and 8 students would have benefited from both lessons, and they will be able to use these skills when challenges arise. 

         

Other Important Dates coming up Term 4 Week 7 

  • Mon-Fri – Work placement for Construction/ PAT testing occurring  
  • Fri – Year 12 Leadership Day / Year r 7, 2023 Orientation Day 
  • Sun – 1st Sunday of Advent 

 

Final Word 

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College. 

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information. 

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity…. strive for extraordinary lives. 

Debra Ferguson 

Secondary Principal 

 

Term 4, Week 5

 

Prayer for Remembrance Day: 

At 11am on the 11th day of the 11th month each year we remember the moment in 1918 when World War I came to an end. On Remembrance Day, we remember Australian men and women who have served in war and peacekeeping activities. Remembrance Day does not glorify war – it honours the memory of all those who laid down their lives for Australia. As a mark of respect to those who have served, we stop to observe one minute’s silence which we will do as a college at 11am on this Friday. 

We pray: 

God of love and liberty, we bring our thanks this day for the peace and security we enjoy, which was won for us through the courage and devotion of those who gave their lives in time of war. We pray that their labour and sacrifice may not be in vain, but that their spirit may live on in us and in generations to come. That the liberty, truth and justice which they sought to preserve may be seen and known in all the nations upon earth. This we pray in the name of the one who gave his life for the sake of the world, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

 

Learning:  

Final Assessments: 

All students are now completing their final assessments for the year with either hand in tasks or exams. Parents can check what is due this term and when in the assessment booklets which can be found both in the Resource section of COPASS and on the website in Student Resources. 

Please assist your children by helping them to plan for each of these so to attain their personal best results. These assessments will then form your children’s final mark for the year and be used in their end of year reports. 

The Award ceremonies this year will occur on Tuesday, December 13th with the Years 7-9 awards being held in the Hall at 9.30am and the Yr 10 and 11 awards at 12.30pm. All parents and family members are invited to attend. All students are expected to be present for this day and the award winners will be notified closer to the event. 

 

Year 12 Formal: 

Last Monday we had a wonderful night to celebrate with all our teaching Year 12 students and their parents the end of their HSC exams and 13 years of education. 

As always, the students dressed with class and sophistication and were presented to the College and Secondary Principals with their Graduation Certificates, references, year group photo and gifts from the College.  Students also presented to their parents a letter that they all wrote to thank their parents for all they have done for them. 

We all shared in a meal and dancing with many photographs being taken to commemorate this night. 

We are so proud of this cohort of students and we wish them all well as they now move into the ‘real’ world to commence the next stage of their lives. 

We will meet with the students again on December 15 with a breakfast at the College to celebrate their HSC results, as they are released this day. 

 

Big Pelican Installation: 

The Big Pelican Opening was held Friday, 4 November 2022. Central Coast Council, Rumbalara Environmental Education Centre and Central Coast schools participated in the Official Unveiling of the Project Pelican sculptures. MacKillop JUMP Art students had pitched their design brief to the committee, and we were fortunate to create two Big Pelican designs. 

Through the project, students have increased their knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the Tuggerah Lakes system and what is needed to protect and restore this fragile environment. Their efforts will now also reach out into our community. Through their work, the sculptures will engage the wider community in conversations about the issues that face Tuggerah Lakes. The hope is that this can then lead to a more sustainable management of this environment and encourage the community to learn more and show change through their actions and support. The Big Pelicans are a permanent fixture at the Entrance Pelican Feeding Area and have been installed as part of the Lakes Festival 

A big thank you to our JUMP Art students and our Aboriginal Education Officer, Marilyn Frazer. Also, a massive thank you to Mrs Belinda Wells who initiates all these projects and supports our talented students. MacKillop is lucky to have such great custodians looking out for our local environment.

 

 

Period 6: 

After not being able to be in the Hall whilst the HSC exams were occurring, we were able to meet back in the Hall for Period 6 with all our students from 7 to 10. 

Last Tuesday we had the pleasure of listening to presentations by three of our Year 12, 2023 Leaders. Ryley C, Tessa H and Larissa A introduced themselves to the student body telling them about their families, their interests, some events in their lives and what it is like to be a leader. This allows our Juniors to know their leaders better and feel more comfortable in approaching them for support and advice. Well done and thank you to Tessa, Larissa and Ryley. 

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 4 Week 6: 

  • Wed – The Stage 5 Josie Mitchell Debating Competition 
  • Thurs – Yr 9 Spirituality Day & Mass 
  • Fri – Stage 4 Spelling Bee at 12noon in the Hall. Parents welcome. 
  • Fri – All My Own Work and Minimum Standards testing for all Year 10 
  • Sat – World Youth Day Local Diocesan Event 

 

Final Word 

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College. 

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information. 

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity…. strive for extraordinary lives. 

 

Debra Ferguson 

Secondary Principal 

 

Term 4, Week 4

Prayer from Catholic Schools Broken Bay for our Year 12 Students:

We continue to pray for our students completing the HSC. These conclude this Friday and all our Yr 12 have been exemplary throughout these exams.

All Saint’s Day and All Soul’s Day

In the Catholic tradition, November is traditionally a month of remembrance of the dead. The month begins with the Solemnity of All Saints on November 1st and the Commemoration of the All the Faithful Departed (All Souls’ Day), on November 2nd . While no longer holy days of obligation in Australia, the Church has consistently encouraged prayers for the faithful departed and, during November, a list of the names of the dead is usually placed in the church so that the community can remember them in prayer. We celebrated both these days during this week.

Learning:

Year 11 Reports:

The Preliminary Reports for year 11 are now available in COMPASS. It is very important that these are not just read but discussed with parents and teachers so that all students can see where they have been doing well and what knowledge or skills they need to work on. It could be that they need to assess how much time they are putting into their studies or how they go about studying. It might be looking at how many days of school they are missing or if they are in a good routine for studying.

At school we will be encouraging them to create study plans and to keep to these and to set clear and achievable goals for themselves.

Term 4 is very important for all these students as normally they are starting to slow down to move into the Summer holidays but, this year, they need to start Term 4 effectively and realise they have many assessments coming up in Weeks 7-9.

This Summer break they need to have a couple of weeks of rest and relaxation but during January they need to realise they only have 3 more terms of schooling, so Major Works should be well under way, all novels read, and all their study notes up to date to start the year.

We wish them well and will walk beside them all the way!

 

Junior Theatre Festival (JTF)

Students from MCC won a group award for Excellence in Music for our primary students and An Excellence in Acting for our Secondary students at the 2022 Junior Theatre Festival Australia, which was presented in Newcastle on October 29.

On Saturday 29 October, 21 finalist groups from all states in Australia as well as a group from New Zealand competed in person for the prestigious awards that are judged by a panel of international visiting artists from Broadway and West End. Junior Theatre Festival allows students and teachers representing a diverse number of theatre programs to come together to share their talents, cheer each other on, and be part of an international community of people who care as much about the art form as they do.

The event is part of the global Junior Theatre Festivals circuit, conceived by iTheatrics in New York, which take place in the USA, UK, Australia and New Zealand. A “rousing celebration of theatre” (The New York Times), the Junior Theatre Festivals are the world’s largest events exclusively dedicated to celebrating young people and student-driven musical theatre. In 2021, nearly 20,000 people worldwide attended a Junior Theatre Festival.

Participating in this year’s Junior Theatre Festival were Daniel J Mertzlufft, Broadway composer and TikTok influencer; Kate Leonard, Broadway lyricist; Stuart Hendricks, Managing Director of MTI Australasia; Marty Johnson, Program Director at XIX Entertainment; Nina Meehan, Founder of Bay Area Children’s Theatre (San Francisco); Ryan Macauley, West End Musical Director; Emma Bishop, President of Music Theatre New Zealand, and many more.

Our students performed brilliantly and a huge thank you goes out to Mrs Baird, Mrs Caruana, Mrs Passafaro and Mrs Broadley who trained and prepared our students for this competition.  Also, a big thank you to our parents who attended as chaperones over the 2 days. Our secondary students will now build on this performance to perform it in America at the beginning of 2024. Any students still interested in being part of this trip to see Mrs Baird asap.

Big Pelican Sculptures for the Lakes Festival

Mackillop JUMP Art students worked with the Central Coast Council to produce two Big Pelican sculptures for the Lakes Festival in November 2022. The end goal is to install the sculptures as a public art trail along a foreshore walkway at The Entrance.

Students had to develop a design concept, give a design pitch to the council representatives, then paint a Big Pelican sculpture. Mackillop was fortunate to obtain two sculptures to paint.

The aim of the Big Pelican project is to engage, educate and connect our community with this magnificent estuary so that we can work together to protect and restore the lakes and catchment.

 

Blue Pelican: Maugro (Aboriginal word for fish). The artwork represents the beauty and prosperity of the sea life in the Tuggerah lakes and how human actions have affected the fish species. Stop overfishing and destroying our sea life with pollution.

 

Aboriginal Pelican: Jila (Aboriginal word for water). ‘Be a Custodian. Protect our land and lake environment from pollution’. The original custodians of the land, the Darkinjung people have a sense of responsibility towards the land and lake. They embrace sustainable culture and have a deep spiritual, physical and cultural connection with the land and water. Protecting, caring and feeling a deep connection is a way of life.

All people need to embrace being custodians and take responsibility for our environment

Other Important Dates coming up Term 4 Week 5:

  • Mon- Yr 12 Formal at Mingara
  • Thurs – Battle of the Builders
  • Fri – Remembrance Day and Secondary Assembly

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity…. strive for extraordinary lives.

 

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal

 

 

Term 4, Week 3

 

We continue to pray for our students completing the HSC

Learning:

Curriculum Assurance Check:

Compliance Management refers to the way schools and the School System plan, organise and meet compliance requirements set down by NESA, our governing Education organisation. Compliance Assurance refers to the processes the system puts in place to ensure the schools and the system are meeting and delivering compliance requirements.

Last Thursday all Secondary staff underwent a review to ensure MacKillop is compliant and that there is a culture of mutual accountability and transparency.

We are very pleased to say that the CSBB Assurance Team was very impressed, and that the College is compliant in all areas with only some minor suggestions for improvement.

I congratulate and thank all our teachers, Faculty Heads and our Curriculum Leader on this fine result that ensures that our College is following all requirements set out for schools and teaching the correct curriculum.

 Year 12, 2023 Assistance for Achievement

To assist our Year 12, 2023 to reach their potential Mr Hanrahan, Mrs McGuinness and I are now working every Pastoral Period before school to assist students in ensuring they are all at school by 8.45am and coming to school every day. We are also expecting them all to have the equipment they need to supply each day for learning and to be in class with the correct attitude to learn.

This will entail many conversations with students and parents to be able to overcome any barriers that might be preventing a student from being the very best they can be each day. As the term progresses, we will also be monitoring their work ethic and behaviour.

With assistance we hope that all our students will flourish and have many options open to them at the end of next year.

Mission Mass:

On Thursday 20th October, a group of our school leaders from both the primary and secondary attended the Mission Mass at Our Lady of the Rosary Cathedral in Waitara. We recognised the dedication each school made with the ‘Socktober’ fundraiser for those in Ethiopia, supported by Catholic Mission.

At the Mass we heard from Catholic Mission workers about the importance of raising these funds to help communities in need and our students engaged with the homily which spoke about how we, as young people, are the ones to make a difference. MacKillop students were wonderful and reverent as they represented our school community.

Mass at East Gosford: Installation Mass

On the feast day of St John Paul II (Saturday, 22 October), a number of YMCC students attended the Installation Mass of his relics.

Relics are sacred objects that are associated with a holy person. They can be body parts or objects that the person used or touched. The relics of St John Paul II are his hair and a sample of his blood. Catholics venerate relics as a way of honouring the saint’s life and witness to God. It is also a physical and tangible reminder that we have the capacity to live the same kind of faith-filled life that the saint lived.

The relics installed will now be permanently housed at St Patrick’s, East Gosford which is now a ‘shrine’ of St John Paul II. A shrine is a church or other sacred place where a relic is kept, and it is also a place designated to foster a belief or devotion.

St John Paul II is a patron for young people and established World Youth Day for young Catholics around the world. Our students enjoyed the festivities of the day, which included a BBQ lunch and Polish donuts afterwards. Well done to Olivia, who read a prayer during the service.

It was an honour to be part of such a momentous occasion and we look forward to our students participating in future events at the Shrine.

Monthly Youth Mass

On Sunday, 23 October we had our Monthly Youth Mass. Thank you to all the students that read, sang and ran games after Mass. The students that attended the Ignite Youth Conference addressed the congregation and shared their experience of Ignite. It was a great turnout and be sure to save the date for the next one at 5pm on Sunday, 27 November. If you would like to get involved email Mrs Tenev on: Maisie.tenev@dbb.catholic.edu.au

CSBB Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Pathways / Careers Day’

On Friday, 21 October, MCC Indigenous students in Years 8 & 9 alongside St Bridget’s, St Peter’s, St Joseph’s and St Edward’s, had the opportunity to be a part of a pilot program at St Edward’s College. The program outlines future pathways and the endless opportunities for life after school. The day involved a number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leaders and industry professionals sharing their Pathway journey with the students all whilst building a cultural connection. Students enjoyed their downtime painting, reflecting in the Yarning Circle and they all received an information bag to take home.

        

Junior Theatre Festival (JTF)

This weekend we have both Primary and Secondary students competing at the Civic Theatre at Newcastle in the Junior Theatre Festival, Australia.

Festival events include adjudications, student workshops, professional development for teachers, the New Works Showcase, an awards ceremony and the largest collection of Aussie musical theatre lovers under one roof. Held annually in Newcastle, NSW, JTF Australia has become a must attend musical theatre event. The festival welcomes special industry and celebrity guests each year and since its inception in 2016, JTF Australia has grown from 250 people in attendance to over 1,000 attendees. It is a weekend of true musical theatre madness that is not to be missed and we are part of this.

At JTF students are asked to do a 10-minute shortened version including singing, dancing and acting of a Junior Disney musical. Our students will be performing the musicals that they presented this year.

We wish our students, our Performing Arts Teachers and our parent chaperones all the best and to have lots of fun.

Uniform Update:

Just a few updates we are making to our uniform as requested by Student Parliament:

  • The Junior girl’s dress will have an extra pocket
  • The Junior boy’s chambray shirt is being shortened so they can be worn out under the blazer and not hang below the blazer
  • For Junior girls who do not wish to wear the dress there will be tailored shorts and long pants as well as a chambray shirt cut in the same shape as the Senior girls’ shirts.
  • The woollen blue jumper has had the blend changed so they are no longer itchy
  • We are going to change the socks to navy blue for everyone K-12 boys and girls with the MCC logo, but this will not occur to 2024 when stocks we have are sold. We are also looking at the cost and blend of these.

Other Important Dates coming up Term 4 Week 4:

  • Mon-Fri – HSC continues / Year 12, 2023 Work placement / Year 10 Frozen Week
  • Tues – All Saint’s Day / Melbourne Cup
  • Wed – All Soul’s Day / Catholic Parent’s Meeting in Sydney
  • Sat – Parish Mass and Multicultural Dinner

 

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity…. strive for extraordinary lives.

 

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal

 

 

 

Term 4, Week 2

Prayer from Catholic Schools Broken Bay for our Year 12 Students: 

We continue to pray for our students completing the HSC  

 

Learning: Digital Citizenship: 

Digital Citizenship is the ability to use digital technology and media in safe, responsible and ethical ways. All students need digital citizenship skills to participate fully in their communities and make smart choices online and in life. At Mackillop we engage students in digital citizenship pastoral lessons every term. These lessons use the DQ Framework (https://www.dqinstitute.org/dq-framework/ ) and the Common Sense Media Curriculum (https://www.commonsense.org/education/digital-citizenship ). We focus on 8 competency areas across a sequence of lessons from Years 7-10. These areas cover Digital Identity, Use, Safety, Security, Emotional Intelligence, Communication, Literacy and Rights. This term the lessons are focussed on Year 7 – My Social Media Life; Year 8 – Responding to Online Hate Speech; Year 9 – Protecting Online Reputations; Year 10 – Can Media be Addictive. All students have a dedicated Google Classroom for these digital citizenship lessons. They are able to invite their parent / carer to join this classroom to share the resources they are discussing in class. Each lesson has a family resource for discussion. If you have any questions about this program, please contact Shayne.winkler@dbb.catholic.edu.au  

Tomorrow in Period 1 all students from Year 7-10 will be participating in this term’s digital citizenship lesson. 

 

Year 11 Retreat: 

Our new HSC class for 2023, formerly our Year 11 students, had the wonderful opportunity of attending their Senior retreat at Collaroy for 3 days this week. During this time, they participate in the usual challenges such as: Flying Fox, High Ropes and abseiling etc but, more importantly, they have time to listen to guest speakers, participate in group discussions and have time to reflect on their futures and how they might wish to live as good citizens in the future. 

I was fortunate enough to spend some time with them on Tuesday afternoon and then be there for dinner and to celebrate a very intimate and beautiful Mass and Prayer Station session.  

I am always so moved by how our Senior students respond to the Mass and stations and admire their courage to try new things and to deepen their relationships with each other as our senior students. 

I thank Mrs Phillipson, Mrs Price and Mrs Tenev very much for all their organisation and to all the teachers who attended and gave up their own family time to be with our students. We are a very fortunate school to have such generous teachers and wonderful students. 

 

IGNITE: 

Every year, Ignite Youth hosts one of Australia’s most powerful Catholic youth conferences. Delegates get to experience four days of real-world formation, encouragement in faith, great people and powerful worship. Ignite Conference draws together a network of high schoolers, young adults, ministry leaders, families, teachers, priests, and religious from around the country. 

During the school holidays eight students from Years 9 and 10 attended the four-day, three-night conference with much enthusiasm. The students participated in a range of workshops, explored the expo, listened to a range of keynote speakers and testimonies of faith, danced, sung and made new friends from regional parts of NSW, Tasmania and Victoria. Each night, the students would journal and debrief on their experiences of the day, and we are so proud of how they supported each other and represented the College. Special thanks to Sr Jiji and Mr Hodgson who accompanied the students during their own time during the school holidays. We hope to have a reunion lunch soon to look at how we can share the Ignite experience with the MacKillop community. 

 

The Bishop’s Art Prize 

The Bishops Art Prize, newly named the Religious Creative Arts Competition, is an annual competition whereby students across the Diocese in both Primary and Secondary creatively demonstrate their understanding of a religious theme and scripture passage. This year the theme was courage, “be strong and courageous…, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go” Joshua 1:9. 

The students in Stage 4 and Stage 5 were given the opportunity to creatively demonstrate their understanding of this theme through either visual arts, dance, drama, music or a short film. The overall winners go on to be judged by the Diocese from our College in Stage 4 was Sefania S and in Stage 5 Melissa V.   

Mel Varney was selected by the judges as a finalist in the Stage 5 Visual Arts entries in the Diocese for her reflective piece titled; For the life and love of God. 

Melissa said of her artwork, “This artwork I have submitted is called 𝐅𝐨𝐫 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐥𝐢𝐟𝐞 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐥𝐨𝐯𝐞 𝐨𝐟 𝐆𝐨𝐝 and was created on an A3 piece of paper with lead pencil for the sketch and Prismacolor pencils for the colour. 𝐅𝐨𝐫 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐥𝐢𝐟𝐞 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐥𝐨𝐯𝐞 𝐨𝐟 𝐆𝐨𝐝 depicts someone standing on a ledge looking towards the sea with their arms outstretched, this pose is often depicted as an invite to God in a lot of visual interpretations of Catholic ideas. The person is having the courage to open their arms and accept the light and life of God. The light coming down splits the dark or dead areas between a living, more vibrant version of it. The colours contrast each other with dull blue tones for the dark areas and bright vibrant colours for the lively areas. The Lord is depicted as the light and life against the dark and, is a message to see that God is in every living and joyful experience. That the life and love of God are everywhere, sometimes it’s just hidden by the dark or sometimes depressing experiences.”  

Well done, Melissa! 

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 4 Week 3: 

  • Mon-Fri – HSC continues / Year 12, 2023 Work placement  
  • Mon – Year 12, 2023 Information Night in the College Hall at 6.30pm. Important that all Year 12 and their parents attend this 
  • Thurs – BBQ with the Principals for students who have achieved Silver for JUMP 
  • Fri – Assembly 
  • Fri Night and Saturday- Junior Theatre Festival competition in Newcastle. 

 

Final Word 

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College. 

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information. 

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity…. strive for extraordinary lives. 

 

Debra Ferguson 

Secondary Principal 

 

 

 

Term 4, Week 1

 

Prayer from Catholic Schools Broken Bay for our Year 12 Students: 

Learning:

As we commence a brand new term it is time for all our students to reflect on what they have achieved so far this year in all facets of school life; academically, spiritually, culturally and in their areas of interest such as sport. A well rounded, learned person educates themself by showing interests across a broad spectrum as ignorance is not how smart you are, but how informed you are.

This term we see our Year 12 complete their HSC and 13 years of learning. Year 11 commence their HSC year and Year 10 start to move towards being ready to step up to Senior studies and will complete formal exams. Our Years 7-9 need to finish the year strong completing their last assessment tasks in their many subjects for the year. 

Reports will be written and sent home via COMPASS and it will be interesting to see if your child’s goals which they set in Term 1 have been achieved and, even, surpassed. 

Please ensure all your children have all the equipment they need for this term and that they aim for good attendance with the recommended percentage being 92% attendance.

We are looking forward to this always busy but exciting term that concludes with Gold Day, our final College mass and all our Awards ceremonies.

 

High Commendation Assembly:

On Tuesday we celebrated a number of our students who work consistently hard to learn each day they attend school and also with their learning preparation. The awards are the High Commendation Awards and are presented at the end Of Term 1 and Term 3.  Our Academic awards for 1st, 2nd and 3rd in each subject area are presented at the end of term 2 and Term 4.

These awards give a wonderful balance to the various types of learners; those who do well academically and those who work to achieve their personal best at all times.

Congratulations to all our award winners! 

Period 6:

Each Tuesday afternoon all our staff meet in their faculties to complete professional learning and to plan for their students. Just as you would expect your doctors, dentists, lawyers etc to be fully up to date with the latest research and information about their careers, so is it true for teachers to ensure they are presenting the best possible lessons to your children.

The seniors go home at this time and the Juniors meet with me. This time enables us to present information to the students that we normally would not have time to do. They have presentations by Senior students, rehearse for competitions, have guest speakers from inside and outside the College and also look at many of the important events in the world calendar so that the students understand their importance. 

Some students get a great deal from these sessions and others do not depending on their interest level but all students need to hear the information.

Period 6 is compulsory and all students must attend each week unless there is a very good reason for them to leave school early.

Staff Spirituality Day:

On Monday the staff attended their annual Spirituality Day at Magenta Shores. The purpose of the day was to introduce the staff to the new Diocesan Catholic Charter. It was an informative day which commenced with Mass celebrated by Fr Philip followed by a personal witness story by Mrs Mel McGuinness. Mr Jason Hanrahan led the session on the Catholic Charter which allowed for both input and time for some personal reflection and group discussion about the new document.

Staff then participated in 2 workshops of their choice based around spirituality and wellbeing such as addresses by the Diocesan Vocations Team and Catholic Care and opportunities for scripture and prayer formation.

They also had the opportunity to do 1 workshop for their own wellbeing with choices of yoga, boot camp and to have a lesson on how to play the ukulele. This was an informative and enjoyable day.

 

Heads Up:

Next Thursday, 20 October, school will conclude at 1pm with no classes for Year 11 and no sport for Years 7-10. The staff are undergoing a Compliance Review with Catholic Schools Broken Bay and two hours is required for this with all staff. We ask parents to collect their students, if possible, at 1pm and we will also dismiss those who walk home. Supervision will be available for all students who cannot leave until later or on the afternoon buses.

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 4 Week 2:

  • Mon-Fri – HSC continues
  • Mon – Wed – Year 12, 2023 Retreat at Collaroy.
  • Tues – Bishop’s Art Prize ceremony. 6.30pm
  • Thurs – Students go home at 1pm. 
  • Sat – Relic of St John Paul II Mass at East Gosford Catholic Church- YMCC

 

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity….strive for extraordinary lives.

 

Debra Ferguson 

Secondary Principal 

 

 

 

 

Term 3, Week 10

Prayer 

Yesterday, Sept 21, was the International Day of Peace. Each year on 21st September the World Council of Churches calls churches and parishes to observe the International Day of Prayer for Peace. 21 September is also the United Nations-sponsored International Day of Peace. So let us pray:

O God, on this day, the International Day of Peace, we remember that war and violence continue to maim, kill and destroy. 

Hundreds of thousands of human beings look at their sisters and brothers over the barrels of guns, cannons and missiles.

Help us to hear your voice that counsels forgiveness, compassion, patience and dialogue. Help us to “thirst after ever greater justice,” so that we might contribute to a peaceful world.

Help us to act on behalf of peace, not only today, but all of the days of our life.

All: Amen

 

Learning:

Year 11 have now completed their Year 11 Preliminary Year and will commence their Year 12 HSC Year from the beginning of Term 4. 

Year 12 now have the 2 weeks of Study Vacation and will commence their HSC exams on the Wednesday of the first week back in Term 4.

Next term is an important term for Years 7-10 as they prepare to be ready and able to move up a grade next year. Year 10 have formal exams in Week 5 of next term and all students will complete their final assessments for the year. Reports will be issued for all students from Year 7-11.

 

Charity Day:

Our Year 12 had so much fun on Tuesday dressing up, taking over the staff car park and raising money for CENTRAL COAST KIDS IN NEED and NSW CANCER COUNCIL. They raised $2014.60  on the day which is amazing. We are so proud of this group.

At the end of the frivolity they then cleaned up all their mess before leaving the College around 10am in their great costumes and big smiles.

 

Graduation Mass and Awards Night

What a beautiful Mass was held for the Year 12 Graduates yesterday. It was such a lovely way to say thank you and goodbye. We wish to thank Mrs Price, our REC and all our music staff and Entertainment group for ensuring we had a wonderful send off.

Prior to the Mass Year 12 had the opportunity to reminisce about their time here at MCC with their Pastoral Teachers and Pastoral Leaders and also to present thank you gifts to their teachers. Many tears were shed and much laughter throughout all this.

The Guard of Honour was as moving as always and many tears were certainly shed as the Year 12 completed their walk from the school to their families.

The students returned at 6.30pm that night to celebrate their achievements and many students left with certificates, medallions, perpetual and sponsored money. The entertainment was all supplied by the talented students in this group and Preston and Milly, the College Captains 2021/22 spoke eloquently to all present. Congratulations to all our Year 12 students.

 

Farewell and Thank You:

On Tuesday we had a farewell morning tea for some of our staff who are leaving us at the end of this term. We wish firstly to say goodbye and thank you to Mrs Maryanne Phelan who has been a truly valued lady in our Front Office for the past 17 years and one of the very friendly voices you hear on the phone when you ring. She has decided to retire and we wish her much happiness in this new beginning.

Alyssa Chilvers started at our College working in the Library and then moved to be our Media Officer. She really assisted in developing our media footprint and we thank her and wish her all the best for her future.

Christina Hutchinson is leaving us to join Catholic Schools Broken Bay as she has been recognised and rewarded for her amazing ability and skills in the area of publications and media. Congratulations and we will miss her. We welcome Mrs Zoe Farrell now into this role.

Lastly, our Business Manager, Anthony Dignan, has taken up another position but outside of education. He has helped transform the College since he has been at MacKillop enhancing our facilities and ensuring our College runs smoothly in the areas of WHS, maintenance, technology and, especially, in finance. We wish him well.

 

USA Trip 2024:

Last Monday night we had our first information meeting about the cultural trip to California in February of 2024. It was great to see so many interested students with their parents and this is so exciting. If anyone would like more information please contact Mrs Sharon Baird, the Leader of Performing Arts.

 

Last Day:

Tomorrow is the last day of term and we are so grateful to all our students, their families and all our staff. Please ensure your children are at school tomorrow as the teachers will be teaching in each lesson. 

Please be mindful that the students in the Year 9 PASS classes and one of the Year 10 PASS classes as well as the 2 SLR classes are booked tomorrow to attend the RAW Challenge and we still must attend this. We are financially bound, so all parents will still need to pay if your child does not attend. It will be a truly fun day and a great way for them to complete the term, so please ensure they are at school.

We wish everyone a very safe and happy holiday break.

 

Heads Up:

The first day of Term 4, Monday October 10th, is a Professional Learning Day for all Staff at MacKillop so it is also a pupil free day. Each year the staff are required to attend a Spirituality day where each teacher’s faith and spiritual life is enriched. Students first day will be Tuesday 11 October.

Also, on Thursday 20 October, school will conclude at 1pm with no classes for Year 11 and no sport for the Years 7-10. The staff are undergoing a Compliance Review with Catholic Schools Broken Bay and two hours is required for this with all staff. We ask parents to collect their students, if possible at 1pm and we will also dismiss those who walk home. Supervision will be available for all students who cannot leave until later or on the afternoon buses.

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 4 Week 1:

  • Mon 10 Oct – Pupil Free Day / Staff Spirituality Day
  • Tues  11 Oct- Students return to school
  • Tues 11 Oct – High Commendation Awards for Term 3 for Years 7-11. 9am. Parents are welcome. Commences at 9.45am- 10.45am
  • Wed 12 Oct – Year 12 HSC exams commence and continue each day.

 

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity….strive for extraordinary lives.

 

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal

 

 

 

Term 3, Week 9

 

Prayer for Year 12:

Good and loving God-
We thank you for the completion of another academic year, and for giving us the opportunity, short though it may have been, to play a part in the lives of our Year 12 students.. We are grateful for your guidance and love as we shared in this important work.

Please bless and guide our graduates as they reach this end, and as they chart new beginnings. May what they have learned by being here with us allow them to truly be “women and men for others.” May what we have learned from them enable us to be the same.

Please help them to use all that they have learned here to make the world a better place – to serve others in true solidarity and kinship – to seek ways to help the poor, the marginalized, and those who are suffering – and to always seek the greater good.

We know that some of them will experience pain and hardship, and we know that some of them already have, and we ask you to grant them solace and strength.

Finally, Father, we thank you for giving us the opportunity to build our community with these young men and women while they are here. Though they are leaving our campus, we know that they will always be with us as part of the MacKillop family, and we ask that the bonds that have been created here remain strong despite any distance.

We ask all of this in your name, and in the name of your Son. Amen 

 

Learning:

  • Major Works

This week we experienced the last 2 subject’s Major Works submitted and marked.  On Monday the Design and Technology Major Works were due and marked. On Wednesday we had external markers come to the College for the Music class’ performances. We congratulate all our students for now completing all their major works and especially thank all the teachers who have supported them along the way.

 

  • Year 11 Exams 

Year 11 completed their Year 11 Preliminary exams today, Thursday Sept 15th. We thank them all for their cooperation and hard work. These exams have been organised just as the actual HSC will be; being in the Hall and CA rooms, longer exam times and using an outside supervisor to allow them all to become more familiar and at ease about these exams.

Tomorrow, Friday, there will be catch up exams for any Year 11 who may have missed an exam. Also, any student who has not yet passed their Minimum Standards tests in literacy and numeracy will also be sitting these exams.

 

  • Year 12 end of Year organisation:

All Year 12 will be completing their last classes with their various subject teachers and this often means a class party for their last class and lots of gratitude by the students for their teacher.

  • Tomorrow, Friday, the Year 12 begin to celebrate the conclusion of 13 years schooling in a respectful but fun way. Usually this first day sees the students dressing up so we await what they have come up with for tomorrow. Despite dressing up, classes still continue.
  • On Monday next week all Year 12 will attend a rehearsal for their Graduation Mass, their Award Ceremony and their Formal. Again, they tend to dress up in a theme for this day. The rest of Monday is used for cleaning out their lockers, doing required leaving paperwork and some formal lessons.
  • Tuesday is their Charity Day and this year they are raising money with the proceeds being divided between CENTRAL COAST KIDS IN NEED and NSW CANCER COUNCIL. This day consists of the students doing something positive on their last day whilst having some fun. They usually take over the staff car park, have loud music playing, they all get dressed up and they play a number of harmless pranks around the college. They will also stop all cars both at the Primary and Secondary entrances asking for donations to their chosen charities. All students in secondary will be asked to donate a gold coin. This all occurs between 7am -10am. It is fully supervised by the staff and the Year 12 clean up any mess they have made……what a difference to the old ‘Muck Up Days’
  • On Wednesday there will be a Graduation Mass for students from Years 6-12 and the Year 12 parents and families. The Mass commences at 10am. Following the Mass there is a Guard of Honour and the Year 12 are led out of the College by a bagpiper which connects us all back to Mary MacKillop’s Scottish heritage. In Kinder we accepted the students into our care and now we pass them all back at the end of the Guard of Honour to their parents.
  • On Wednesday Night, starting at 6.30pm is the Year 12 Awards Night to recognise the efforts of our students. This is the last day for our Year 12 till they return for their HSC exams. Their Formal is in November.

 

Next Thursday – A Public Holiday:

Next Thursday has been assigned as a National Day of Mourning for Queen Elizabeth 11 and a Public Holiday. Therefore, there is no school on that day or supervision.

On Friday, there will be lessons as normal for the last day of school.

 Please be mindful that the students in the Year 9 PASS classes and one of the Year 10 PASS classes as well as the 2 SLR classes are booked this day to attend the RAW Challenge and we still must attend this. We are financially bound, so all parents will still need to pay if your child does not attend. It will be a truly fun day and a great way for them to complete the term, so please ensure they are at school.

 

JAG:

As many may remember, we have had a number of students involved with JAG (Josephite Action Group) over the years and some of these students are still involved in JAG even after finishing school which speaks to the impact this program makes on young people.

Last weekend, five Year 10s headed down to St Joseph’s Retreat Centre at Baulkham Hills for a three day retreat where they worked on a number of issues including refugees and asylum seekers, brainstorming and collaborating with other students on ways we can all work together to make a difference. These students will speak at the school assembly tomorrow about this experience.

Sr Jan, who convenes these days, always comments on how proud she is and in awe of the ‘calibre’ of the MCC students. Well done to Dominic Bunyan, Keely Swaysland,

Elise Gray, Kate Baldock and Ashleigh Jones

 

Tell Them From Me Survey:

This survey that all staff, students and parents are asked to complete closes tomorrow afternoon. All the details are on COMPASS and we would ask all parents to please complete this so we can see in what areas the school is achieving well and where our challenges might dwell.

 

USA Cultural Tour, 2024:

This tour will be open to students who will be in Years 9-12 in 2024. The students will be involved in the Junior Theatre Festival in Sacramento where they will compete against approximately 6000 students from mainly the USA but also other countries from around the world. It is a singing, dancing and acting competition and also includes visiting Disneyland, Universal Studios, Millennium Studios and more and they will also be involved in performance workshops at these venues. 

If you would like to know more please attend the information night in the College Library next Monday, September 19th at 6pm.

 

Heads Up:

The first day of Term 4, Monday October 10th, is a Professional Learning Day for all Staff at MacKillop so it is also a pupil free day. Each year the staff are required to attend a Spirituality day where each teacher’s faith and spiritual life is enriched.

Also, On Thursday, Oct 20th, school will conclude at 1pm with no classes for Year 11 and no sport for the Years 7-10. The staff are undergoing a Compliance Review with Catholic Schools Broken Bay and two hours is required for this with all staff. We ask parents to collect their students, if possible at 1pm and we will also dismiss those who walk home. Supervision will be available for all students who cannot leave until later or on the afternoon buses.

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 3 Week 10:

  • Mon – Yr 12 rehearsals / USA tour Information Night 
  • Tues – Yr 12 Charity Day (see poster in COMPASS)
  • Wed – Yr 12 Graduation Mass and Awards Night/International Day of Peace
  • Fri – Yr 11 RAW Challenge Excursion for the SLR class
  • Fri – Last day of school and ALL Yr 7-11 are expected to be at school.

 

Final Word:

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity….strive for extraordinary lives.

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal

 

 

 

 

 

 

Term 3, Week 8

Prayer: 

Wednesday next week is the International Day of Peace. Each year the International Day of Peace is observed around the world. The UN General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, through observing 24 hours of non-violence and cease-fire. However, achieving true peace entails much more than laying down arms.  It requires the building of societies where all members feel that they can flourish. It involves creating a world in which people are treated equally, regardless of their race.

Lord Jesus Christ, who is called the Prince of Peace, who is yourself our peace and reconciliation, who so often said, “Peace to you,” grant us peace. Make all men and women witnesses of truth, justice, and brotherly love. Banish from their hearts whatever might endanger peace. AMEN

 

Learning:

This is a very busy time of year for all our students. Assessments are due for our students in Yrs 7-10 and our Yr 11 students start their Preliminary Final Exams today which will continue till the end of next week. Our Yr 12 students have been receiving back their Trial HSC exam results and are now working hard to ensure that they now improve any areas lacking in knowledge or skills.

We wish all our students well with whatever stage of learning they are involved with and we urge them all to do their very best at all times.

 

Minimum Standards and Catch-Up exams:

All Yr 11 and 12 students must pass Minimum Standards exams in Numeracy and Literacy to be able to be awarded a HSC credential. They have a number of opportunities to sit these if they are not successful at first. 

Tomorrow, Friday, all Yr 11 who have not yet completed and passed these exams will be expected to be at school to sit these. Also, any yr 11 students who missed an exam during the last week are also expected to be present to complete these.

 

Year 10 Subject Selections:

On Tuesday afternoon all Yr 10 students with their parents met with Leading Teachers in the College to have a final conversation about the students subject selections for Yrs 11 and 12 and to ensure they have the best subject choices for their futures. 

It is important that if any student and parents missed this afternoon that you contact Mr Jones and/or Mr McNamara asap as students are not fully enrolled for 2023 until their selections have been signed off by the school and the parents.

 

Book Week:

This week has been a true celebration of Book Week. Established in 1919, Children’s Book Week is the longest-running national literacy initiative in the country. Every year, young people across the country participate by attending events at schools, libraries, bookstores, celebrating at home, and engaging with book creators both online and in person.

It allows us to be transported from our own world to another. Between the pages of a book, we can become immersed in the lives of fictional characters and learn about a culture entirely different from our own. We can also learn new words and phrases, experience a range of emotions, and acquire skills and knowledge.

The theme for this year was “Dreaming with eyes wide open…” Our students have had the privilege of listening to guest authors and to dress up as their favourite book characters which also allowed them to earn House points and prizes.

Congratulations to everyone and special thanks to our very enthusiastic Library Staff for running  so much fun for everyone EVERY year.

 

Drop Everything and Read:

As part of Book Week and celebrating the wonderful gift of literacy, every student in the College will be reading at the same time tomorrow, Friday for 20 minutes, commencing at 12noon.

All students are asked to have a book or ebook for this, and it is compulsory. What a lovely, peaceful way to spend 20 minutes discovering other times, worlds, people from many genres. Parents are welcome to join us if convenient from home or maybe at work if allowed etc. A real celebration of being able to attend school and be able to learn, a privilege that not all children around the world have.

 

Year 8 CPR:

Last Tuesday all Yr 8 had the opportunity to sit their CPR test. To have this skill is so important and we are so lucky to have PDHPE teachers who realise this and have added it to the Yr 8 curriculum. One of our PDHPE teachers, Mr Greg Hughes is a qualified examiner for CPR and he was able to conduct all the exams.

A big thank you to our PDH staff and congratulations to our Yr 8 students who passed their CPR exam.

 

Year 8 Spirituality Day:

On Thursday 1st September the Year 8 students participated in a Spirituality Day. The theme of the day was ‘Respect For All’ and this message was explored through their games and workshops. A number of Year 10 YMCC students assisted with the running of the day and they did such a great job. The day began with the students attending the parish Mass, and before break time the Year 10 students ran some icebreakers and games. Before going to Thursday Sport, the students participated in workshops in their RE class groupings. Workshops included art, basketball, and team challenges. Each class attended two different workshops and the Year 10’s made sure to end each session with a debrief on how their activity linked to the theme of the day. Thank you to the students and teachers who participated in the day, we hope it was a positive experience for you.

 

R U OK Day:

R U OK? Day (Are you okay? Day) is Thursday 8 September 2022.

A conversation can change a life. R U OK? is a harm prevention charity that encourages people to stay connected and have conversations that can help others through difficult times in their lives.

R U OK? Day is a national day of action to acknowledge every day is the day to ask, ‘are you OK?’ and start a meaningful conversation whenever you spot the signs that someone you care about might be struggling with life.

You don’t need to be an expert to reach out – just a good friend and a great listener. 

Use these four steps and have a conversation that could change a life:

  • Ask R U OK?
  • Listen
  • Encourage action
  • Check-in

In P6 our students have been learning about the importance of this day and where to find assistance if they or a friend or relative are not ok.

 

Heads Up for Yr 12 Events:

As we approach the end of Term 3, Yr 12 becomes all too aware that their 13 years at school are coming to an end. At the end of Week 9 we normally see them begin to celebrate and commiserate this fact. We see them engage in dressing up, raising money for charities and attending their final Graduation Mass and Awards Ceremony.

We wish them all the happiness and success in the world and safe and respectful end of school celebrations. There will be more information about their activities in next week’s newsletter.

 

Heads Up:

The first day of Term 4, Monday October 10th, is a Professional Learning Day for all Staff at MacKillop so it is also a pupil free day. Each year the staff are required to attend a Spirituality Day where each teacher’s faith and spiritual life is enriched.

Also, On Thursday, Oct 20th, school will conclude at 1pm with no classes for Yr 11 and no sport for the Yrs 7-10. The staff are undergoing a Compliance Review with Catholic Schools Broken Bay and two hours is required for this with all staff. We ask parents to collect their students, if possible at 1pm and we will also dismiss those who walk home. Supervision will be available for all students who cannot leave until later or on the afternoon buses.

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 3 Week 9:

  • Indigenous Book Sale Wk 9 and 10
  • Mon – Thurs -Yr 11 Exams continue all week
  • Wed – International Day of Peace
  • Wed – Music Yr 12 HSC Performance Exams
  • Fri – ‘Tell Them From Me’ closes so please ensure all staff have completed this survey
  • Fri – Yr 11 catch-up day for missed exams and to complete Minimum Standards exams

 

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity….strive for extraordinary lives.

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal

 

 

Term 3, Week 7

Prayer: For Father’s Day

We give our thanks, Creator God, for the fathers in our lives.

 Fatherhood does not come with a manual, and reality teaches us that some fathers excel while others fail.

 We ask for Your blessings for them all – and forgiveness where it is needed.This Father’s Day we remember the many sacrifices fathers make for their children and families, and the ways – both big and small – they lift children to achieve dreams thought beyond reach.

 So too, we remember all those who have helped fill the void when fathers pass early or are absent – grandfathers and uncles, brothers and cousins, teachers, priests and coaches – and the women of our families.

 For those who are fathers, we ask for wisdom and humility in the face of the task of parenting. Give them the strength to do well by their children and by You.

 In Your Holy name, O God, we pray. Amen

Thank you to all the families who were able to attend the Father’s Day Mass and breakfast yesterday. A beautiful celebration.

 

Learning

Learning is having as many experiences as possible to enrich our lives. For our students who undertake Vocational Education Training (VET) courses, they are required to do WorkPlacement each year. We are very thankful to our VET teachers who take on extra study and training to drive these courses and special thanks to Mrs Kerrie Pearce, our Careers and VET Leader who works tirelessly for our students and ensures that they have as many options as possible when they graduate.

 

Work Placement 

In Week 4 and 5 approximately 46 students have been out completing mandatory Workplacement for their VET Course. Students have gained a week of industry experience and developed skills in areas of Construction, Business and Entertainment. Our students have been wonderful ambassadors for our college and have made the most of this opportunity. In Week 7 Hospitality students will also be going out into industry to hone their skills in various workplaces. We thank you all for representing us and yourselves so well out in the community. Thank You also to the VET teachers who support our students every day and for visiting them on site and all the teachers back at school for keeping learning tasks for them while they are out. 

 

Spelling Bee

We had a hotly contested Spelling Bee last week for all Year 7 and 8 and the 2 finalists from each Pastoral Class are below. So many students demonstrated that they had studied their words and were keen to compete.

We congratulate them and the 2 students who ultimately were named the top 2 spellers from each Pastoral class. They will now contest for House points, Jump hours, trophies for 1st, 2nd and 3rd and a $100 gift card for 1st place in Term 4. Well done to the following finalists.

 

7F Olivia Abraham Theresia Laka
7P  Riley Green Cooper Daniels
7G Seleena Dao Iliana Kaahu
7A Mabel Reynolds Cooper Rieck
7T Angelina Binil Noah Dennis
7K Jaimen O’Donnell Aiden Rosman
8F Ruby McRae Aiden Mackin
8P Jett Crook Joshua Allison
8G Jorjah Collins Elija Guest
8A Keira Elvin Hannah Clark
8T Keanu Moimoi Keelie Sammons-McMartin
8K Sam Sulkowski Sarah Endacott

 

Connecting Catholic Coasties

On Friday 26th August 41 students from Years 7-12 attended the Term 3 Connecting Catholic Coasties event hosted by the Youth Ministry team at St Brigid’s Catholic College in Lake Munmorah. The theme for the afternoon was based on the Hunger Games, ‘Catching Fire in Faith’. After our hot chip sandwiches, students mingled and played some games. Once everyone was welcomed, the students were placed into ‘districts’, allowing them to mix with students from the other Central Coast Catholic schools. The districts completed a number of challenges and once the winning district was announced there was a focus on Pentecost and the Holy Spirit through scripture and personal testimonies. The night ended with singing and dancing and not even the rain could dampen the spirit of the students!

 

Monthly Youth Mass

On Sunday night our parish, St Mary of the Cross MacKillop had its first Youth Mass since covid. These will occur on the 4th Sunday of each month during the school term, but not during. the school holidays. YMCC students took on the roles of senior server and altar servers, readers, musicians and singers. After the Mass everyone was invited to stay back for a sausage sizzle, some games and fun. It was a great turnout from MCC students and the parishioners with lots of support from parents and staff. Thank you to Fr Phillip and the parish for their support and the bbq. The next Youth Mass is on Sunday 23rd October and if you would like to get involved please contact our Youth Ministry Coordinator, Mrs Maisie Tenev through the College or email maisie.tenev@dbb.catholic.edu.au.

 

JUMP

I wrote about this last week but it is important that all our students complete their JUMP hours.

A reminder to all our parents of students in Years 8-10 that all students need to be finalising their JUMP hours. All are required to complete a minimum of 15 hours of community service over the year. 5 hours may occur at home as long as they are jobs not usually expected. Anything your child does to help others for no payment can be considered. 

This program assists so many outside the College but also encourages our students to learn more about how others live, to be empathetic and open-minded and to realise that there is a true need for volunteers and to create community and belonging for all, especially the marginalised.

 

Peer Support Training

On Tuesday the 30th of August a group of Year 9 students participated in their first day of Peer Support training. They engaged in activities that developed their skills in communication, empathy and problem solving, to help them become effective leaders. Students were presented with a range of scenarios that allowed them to put these skills into practice, whilst simultaneously learning to deal with a range of challenges. Students enjoyed developing their relationships with others and learning about their own personal strengths. They are looking forward to their second day of training!

“Authentic leaders model appropriate interactions, empower others and make a lasting contribution.” – Peer Support Australia, 2013. 

 

Duke of Edinburgh Award Program

Last night we had a meeting at school for all those interested in being involved in this program. Thank you to all who attended this informative session and this opportunity is very exciting. If more information is needed, please contact Mr James Hodgson at school via email or phone. james.hodgson@dbb.catholic.edu.au 

 

‘Your Next Step Dance Challenge’

Last Thursday our Secondary and Primary students competed in this Dance Challenge at Gosford Leagues Club against other Central Coast Schools. Our Primary and Secondary Jazz Troupes took our 1st Place and our Secondary Entertainment Troupe took out 2nd Place. The attitude and behaviour of our students was excellent and we congratulate them and thank all the teachers involved.

 

Evacuation Drill

On Tuesday the College held an evacuation drill to ensure our students will know what to do if the real thing occurred. The students cooperated well and learnt what to expect and what will be required,

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 3 Week 8:

  • Book Week with the theme of ‘Dreaming with Eyes Open….’
  • Mon – Book Week guest speakers Yrs 7-10
  • Mon-Wed – Yr 11 Frozen Week
  • Tues- Yr 8 CPR / Yr 9 Peer Support Training No 2
  • Wed – Book Week Dress up in a book character in the theme
  • Thurs – Yr 11 Preliminary exams commence / The Skill’s Engineer Awards 
  • Fri – Drop Everything and Read at 12 noon – all students need to have a book.

 

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity….strive for extraordinary lives.

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal

 

 

Term 3, Week 6

Prayer: 

Last week was Science Week so it is a good time to remember the importance of our Scientists and the work they do and to also ensure that they use their findings for the betterment of the world.

Dear Lord, we pray for all scientists –engineers, students, teachers, physicians, technicians– who work diligently to unfold your holy mysteries and ask your blessing on each one of them. May these technological developments be used for the good of all and to alleviate suffering from the world.

 

Youth Mass

Do not forget that we are holding the first Youth Mass this weekend at our Parish Church at school at 5pm. This will be a joyful celebration and we encourage all our students and their families to attend.

 

PraiseFest

Praisefest is a Diocesan event for the young people of Broken Bay to come together in faith and friendship. Thirty MacKillop students attended on Friday 19th August at Our Lady of the Rosary parish in The Entrance. The evening started with some icebreakers, games, a BBQ dinner and students from Broken Bay Catholic high schools providing live music. Congratulations and well done to Caitlyn and Alyssa who both sang and gave a stellar performance. The other mention for an amazing performance goes to Sr Jiji for her dance battle with Sr Josie! Throughout the course of the evening there was music and dancing, students listened to guest speakers, participated in Adoration and even had the opportunity to go to Confession. The glow sticks, dancing and singing was the perfect way to end an amazing night. 

       

 

Father’s Day Mass and BBQ

We will be celebrating Father’s Day next Wednesday for all our dad’s, grandad’s  and all those other wonderful men who fill this space. There will be breakfast available from 7am till 8.30am and a beautiful 30 minute Mass at 7.30am in the Church. We hope you can join us for this.

 

Learning

Throughout last week all our students enjoyed Science Week and we thank our Science teachers very much for the effort they put into making this week memorable for the students. Observing Science in action and its relevance to the real world with exposing students to opportunities for careers is an opportunity for even more meaningful learning. 

Mr Herbert and Mrs Walters have shared the week with us below.

 

Science Week

What an incredible time we’ve had. So many events and students getting involved. What went down in Science week:

  • Monday:  the whole of year 7 in the hall watching a crazy science show- which ended with a liquid nitrogen fuelled explosion! 
  • Tuesday Lunchtime: Science Trivia in the library where about 20 teams entered a battle of the giants to find who knows the most Science facts and figures.
  • Thursday morning:  it was year 9’s turn, they all met in the theatre for an amazing ‘hands on’ show from the Reptile Park- no one was hurt by the free roaming creatures.
  • Thursday afternoon: movie afternoon for the senior students, with popcorn and nibbles watching ‘Science Fair’, inspiring us all to change the world.
  • Every day:  Most classes have had the chance to see incredible dry ice bubbling and foaming demonstrations in class, with each teacher deftly handling the -68 C solid as it sublimed and disappeared into the air. 
  • And more every day: Almost everyone was able to join in the Glass themed ‘Escape Rooms’ in class, where students solved tricky practical puzzles for prizes. 
  • The daily excitement continued: The whole school has joined in the thrill of an international Science competition, the results of which you can see in the next article.
  • That’s not all….We’re eagerly awaiting the results of the ‘Name the Science Skeleton’ competition- look out for a nameplate in the Science area very soon. The judges are also working hard with the primary and secondary ‘Art Meets Science’ colouring in competition- winners will be announced as soon as deliberations are complete.  

What a great week of engaging and informative Science, shared by our passionate Science teachers with the enthusiastic Scientists of MacKillop 

This was all made possible by the hard work and dedication of our Science team.  

 

Education Perfect and Science Week

Another year of the Education Perfect worldwide Science Championships were held last week. All students from Years 7-10 were entered. They gained points by answering Science related questions on topics of their choice. With a score of 500 points students receive a certificate and gain an entry into the prize pool. Another fantastic effort from our MacKillop students, collectively answering 194, 539 questions over 558 hours to finish 4th in the world, 3rd in Australia and 1st in Broken Bay! Our students achieved 41 certificates overall. Special mention to Kristian and Kalan who not only achieved the highest award possible, the Elite award, they continued answering questions and finished the competition 12th and 13th in the world, out of a total 122,842 students! Fantastic effort! Well done MacKillop and bring on 2023’s competition!

 

Love Bites

On Tuesday 23rd August the Yr 10 cohort participated in the Love Bites Program. Love Bites is a Respectful Relationships Education Program facilitated locally by Coast Shelter for young people aged 15-17 years. Mackillop was lucky enough to welcome twelve locally trained volunteers to work with our students by providing a safe environment to examine, discuss and explore respectful relationships. Students worked with their pastoral classes and the PDHPE staff in a variety of workshops throughout the day. Love Bites takes a strength-based approach and views young people as active participants who are able to make choices for themselves and their relationships when supported with information and opportunity for skill development. The overall aim of the program is to equip young people with the knowledge needed to have respectful relationships, encourage and develop their skills in critical thinking and assist them in being able to problem solve and communicate effectively. When equipped in these areas, Love Bites believes that young people can make the right choices for themselves and their relationships that are free from violence and abuse.

 

HSC Major Works

At present all the major works from the various HSC subjects are due and being collected for marking. Hours of work goes into these final products and we are impressed with the work being presented. We particularly thank all their teachers, many of whom have spent hours of their own time to assist these students after school and in the holidays.

 

Japanese Orals

We congratulate our Yr 12 students who study Japanese and completed their speaking section of this exam at Gosford High School last Saturday. They have all worked hard and we also thank their teachers Mr Andrew Kilham and Mrs Helen Beech.

 

Spelling Bee

NAPLAN has shown us for many years that spelling is an area that could be improved upon by our students. As a result, a number of years ago the Leaders of Learning in each subject provided 40 words from their subject area that students would come across whilst in Years 7 and 8. Two spelling books were devised with definitions and over the 2 years all students are asked to learn these words for a Spelling Bee.

Yesterday all Yr 7 and 8 students had their spelling bee in their Pastoral classes and the top 2 students will now move forward to the Spelling Bee Final in Term 4. Each of these students received a $20 gift card and there were minor prizes given out during the bee. 

We congratulate every student for trying hard and learning their words and we thank their teachers for assisting them. Wewill publish the finalists next week.

 

Farewell to Mrs Christina Hutchinson

Our Media Officer, Mrs Christina Hutchinson has been appointed by CSBB as the Senior School Marketing Officer to lead all the marketing officers across the system. This is a wonderful appointment for Christina and is a reflection of the great work she has been doing here at MacKillop. 

The CSBB team is currently working on making an appointment of a new School Marketing Officer for MacKillop to replace Christina. The School Marketing Officer is a recently created role and is a CSBB direct appointment. The role encompasses, among other things, all school marketing and promotion, as well as being the first point of call for all enrolment inquiries, following and liaising with families through to enrolment.

Christina officially starts in the role next week but will be here assisting the school until a new appointment has been made and a handover is able to be completed.

 

Tell Them From Me:(TTFM)

You would have received information about the TTFM survey. We ask that all parents please find some time to complete this to give us back as much information as possible so that we as a College can continue to reflect on what we do well and what challenges we have. All teachers, students and parents are asked to complete one of these surveys so we obtain a complete picture of the macKillop community.

 

College Immersions and Overseas Trips

Last week we had the pleasure of a Zoom with the company ‘Red Earth’ and interested parents about our Immersion opportunity next April. This will be a wonderful opportunity for our students as they prepare to learn so much more about our country and its aboriginal heritage.

 

JUMP

A reminder to all our parents of students in Years 8-10 that all students need to be finalising their JUMP hours. All are required to complete a minimum of 15 hours of community service over the year. 5 hours may occur at home as long as they are jobs not usually expected. Anything your child does to help others for no payment can be considered. 

This program assists so many outside the College but also encourages our students to learn more about how others live, to be empathetic and open-minded and to realise that there is a true need for volunteers and to create community and belonging for all, especially the marginalised.

 

Duke of Edinburgh Award Program:

All Yr 9 students had a guest speaker from the program speak to them at school yesterday and there is a Parent information night for all those interested on Wednesday, August 31st in the College Library at 6.30pm. This is a wonderful opportunity and we hope to see many students wishing to be involved.

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 3 Week 6:

  • Mon-Fri – Work placement for Yr 10 Hospitality
  • Mon- HSC Art Exhibition of the 2022 HSC Major Works in the Art Building
  • Tues – Peer Support Training for our volunteer Yr 9 students
  • Tues – Lockdown Drill and evacuation drill
  • Tues- Meetings with Yr 10 parents to finalise subject selections
  • Wed – Father’s Day Mass and BBQ
  • Thurs – Yr 8 Spirituality Day
  • Fri – BBSSSA Golf
  • Fri – HSC Drama Performance Day
  • Sun – Father’s Day

 

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity….strive for extraordinary lives.

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal

 

Term 3, Week 5

Prayer 

Every Week 5 of each Term the College Staff endeavour to remember the importance of our own wellbeing and the importance of making healthy choices for our mind, body and soul. 

Perhaps as never before mental health has occupied headlines and been at the forefront of political and social concerns as we emerge from lockdowns from the COVID-19 pandemic and now influenza and RSV infections. We can confidently expect a tsunami of mental health problems – both seen and unseen – as people have had to struggle with isolation, loneliness, unemployment and redundancy, debt, family tensions, illness, anxiety and bereavement. Of particular concern is the mental health of our children and young people, who will suffer or are already suffering some kind of mental health problem as a result of having been away from friends and struggling still from the issues created by COVID.

Loving God, You are always near to us, especially when we are weak, suffering and vulnerable. Reach out to those who experience mental illness. Lift their burdens, calm their anxiety, and quiet their fears. Surround them with your healing presence that they may know that they are not alone.

 

Learning

Next week, on Wednesday August 24th, all our students in Years 7 and 8 will participate in a Spelling Bee. Here are six reasons why spelling is important:

  • Communication: good spelling facilitates communication. By following the same rules for spelling words, we can all understand the text we read.
  • Comprehension: good spelling avoids confusion. In a way spelling is a bit like sports. It’s up to the person passing the ball to make sure the receiver actually catches it. The same goes for spelling. If you write with intent and proper spelling, the receiver of that text will understand it
  • Future: let’s face it, university applications and job resumes littered with spelling errors don’t make it very far
  • Computer error: we can’t rely on computers to check our spelling. They get it wrong too.
  • Distraction: poor spelling distracts the reader and they lose focus. It’s hard to read a text for comprehension when it’s full of spelling errors
  • Impressions last: when you have people read something you’ve written and that text is full of spelling errors, it does not leave a good impression. We should care about the fundamental part good spelling plays in our language.

All our students have been sent and given a Spelling booklet with words that they will come across over their 2 years in Stage 4 in each of their subjects. It would be helpful if parents could assist their children to learn these words and vie for good prizes. The top 2 spellers from each Pastoral class will then move to the Final in term 4.

 

College Immersions and Overseas Trips

prior to COVID our College was able to offer a number of wonderful opportunities to travel and represent our school in a number of areas. At present we are starting to plan for our next adventures that we hope will occur. 

  • An immersion with ‘Red Earth’ next April holidays 2023
  • World Youth Day to Italy and Portugal in Term 3 2023 
  • Our Sister School from Japan to come to Australia in Term 3 2023- an opportunity to billet
  • Sport Trip to NZ in Sept 2023
  • USA Tour for’ Junior Theatre Festival’ in Feb 2024
  • Trip to Japan Sept 2024

Keep a close eye on COMPASS for these opportunities and Information Nights.

 

Indigenous 2nd Hand Book Stall

Can you imagine not being able to read a train timetable, a road sign or directions on a bottle of medication? Sadly, this is a reality faced by many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders living in remote communities today. 

In true MacKillop style students and staff have helped in the past by donating their unwanted books to the school and then they were sold for 50c each. We raised a total of $481.95 and the proceeds were sent to the Indigenous Literacy Foundation to improve the literacy of Indigenous children living in remote areas of Australia.

The Indigenous Literacy Foundation (ILF) is a national charity that was founded and set up by members of the Australian book industry in 2005. It draws on the skills and expertise of the book industry to address children’s literacy levels in remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. The ILF’s vision is to make a positive difference in the lives of Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children by focusing on ways to improve their literacy levels which is life changing. Better education outcomes can also have positive intergenerational flow-on effects. Education has a strong association with employability and income, health, and control over one’s life (Pagnini et al. 2014; World Bank 2018). 

 

Year 7 Information Night about JUMP

JUMP stands for Josephites Undertaking Mission Projects and it is a wonderful program for all our students to open their eyes and their hearts to the plight of the less fortunate, to experience kindness and generosity and understand the importance of volunteer work. 

The program commenced as we were looking at a way to enhance the words of Mary macKillop of ‘never see a need without doing something about it’. We were also aware of the growing Wellbeing needs of our students and  research reveals that one of the best ways to assist with mental health is to get students out of your own head and to help others.

The JUMP Program runs from term 4 every year to the end of term 3 of the following year. All students are asked to complete 15 hours of voluntary service either at school or outside of school. Many students continue and gain their Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards for 20, 40 and 50 hours respectively. Each year we also have around 20 students who do 100 hours or more. All the latter is connected to our Award System and students gain certificates and badges. For Gold we take the students to ‘Raging Waters’ at the end of term 4 and for 100 hours students are presented at our Major Award Ceremony at the end of the year.

There is a Zoom Information Night for ALL Yr 7 parents and any other parents who might like to attend on Tuesday, August 23rd at 6pm. Keep an eye out for the Zoom invitation.

 

Duke of Edinburgh Award Program

We are very excited that we will be able to offer this to our Yr 9 and above students this year. The Award is a leading structured (non-formal education) youth development program, empowering all young Australians aged 14-24 to explore their full potential and find their purpose, passion and place in the world, regardless of their location or circumstance. The Award is a fully inclusive program and has no social, political, or religious affiliations.

How is an Award Achieved?

To achieve an Award, each young person must learn a skill, improve their physical well being, volunteer in their community and experience a team adventure in a new environment. All Participants are supported by a network of adult Award Leaders, Assessors, and Supervisors.

The key elements of the program are:

Open to all young people aged 14 to 24. / Three levels: Bronze, Silver, and Gold – each progressively more challenging. / Four Sections: Physical Recreation, Skills, Voluntary Service, Adventurous Journey plus Gold Residential Project (Gold Level only).

What impact does the Award have on a young person?

Through this challenging journey of self-discovery, our Participants:

  • Are equipped and empowered to achieve their personal best
  • Learn to take responsibility for their goals and choices
  • Become connected to and actively engaged within their immediate community
  • Make a real difference to society through their positive contributions and involvement
  • Learn to persevere and overcome barriers to success
  • Learn important life skills
  • Increase their career opportunities.

All Yr 9 students will have a guest speaker from the program speak to them at school in Week 6 and there is a Parent information night for all those interested on Wednesday, August 31st in the College Library at 6.30pm. This is a wonderful opportunity.

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 3 Week 6:

  • Tuesday – Love Bites incursion for Yr 10
  • Tues- Yr 7 Information Night about JUMP 
  • Wednesday – Stage 4 Spelling Bee / Yr 9 addressed about Duke of Ed.
  • Thursday – ‘Your Next Step Dance Challenge’
  • Friday – Yr 8 Reflection Day
  • Sunday – Youth Mass at our Church at 5pm.

 

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity….strive for extraordinary lives.

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal

 

 

Term 3, Week 4

Prayer

St Joseph of Cupertino is the Patron Saint of taking tests and of students. With our Yr 12 currently sitting their HSC Trial exams we might pray the following for them:

Lord, as they face another exam, send unto them Your Holy Spirit for guidance, enlightenment and inspiration.

Grant them CLARITY OF MIND so that they may be able to recall well and apply correctly all of the things that they have learnt and studied for in this course/subject/

Grant them a PEACEFUL and CALM DISPOSITION before and during the exam so that they may be able to smartly tackle the exam and use efficiently the time allotted for answering the test, not being hindered by any anxiety that may derail them as they answer the exam.

Grant them CONFIDENCE to face each item of the exam without any hesitation and fear.

Grant them HUMILITY to accept whatever will be the result of this exam.

Lord, I know that they have reviewed well and prepared for this exam. Help them, through Your Divine Providence, to do well in this exam.  AMEN

 

Learning

We are often asked by parents how they an assist their children with their learning, Following are some tips given by researchers:

Here are some practical tips for helping your older school-age child learn:

  • Encourage your child to try new things, to make mistakes and to learn about who they are through new experiences. Keep praising your child for trying new things.
  • Show an interest in your child’s activities. For example, if your child enjoys playing the drums, ask about the music your child is playing and whether they’d like to play for you.
  • Watch the news together and talk about what’s happening in the world.
  • If your child has homework, encourage them to do it at about the same time each day and in a particular area, away from distractions like the TV or a mobile phone.
  • Help your child build time management skills needed for learning. For example, you could help them make a schedule to balance homework and extracurricular activities.
  • Make sure your child has time to relax and play. For example, your child might like to read, take photos or kick a ball in the backyard.
  • Help your child develop or maintain a good sleep pattern.

Sometimes your child will need your emotional support for learning, as much as your practical help. Here are some ideas:

  • Try to be sensitive to when your child is struggling with learning tasks, and work out what your child needs. Sometimes it might be your help, and sometimes it might be a break from the task.
  • Trust your child’s judgment. For example, if your child feels ready to play a contact sport or try a new subject, let them have a go.
  • Accept your child as a whole person. This means appreciating that your child is strong in some areas of learning and needs support in others.
  • Respond to your child’s feelings. For example, share your child’s excitement when they master something new, and be patient when they’re having trouble.
  • Try thinking back to your own learning experiences, both the enjoyable ones and the challenging ones. This will help you understand your child’s experiences.

 

Nihon Daiichi Junior High School, Tokyo

Konnichiwa 

こんにちは

Our Year 9 and 10 Japanese elective students have had the most amazing experience the last two weeks connecting with our Sister School, Nihon Daiichi Junior High school in Tokyo. Not only did students make great friendships over the two weeks, but they were able to use their Japanese and English to communicate with their buddies. The students were all so engaged and there was lots of laughter. 

Students learnt origami, string games and lots about Japanese schools and school life. There was so much interaction in groups, and individually. We have been very proud of the students who have come not only in class time but in their breaks to be part of the zooms. 

We are really hoping next year we get to see them in person. 

Sayounara 

さようなら

       

Coast Shelter CEO Sleepout

Last week I stated that we were participating in the Sleepout on Saturday but I had my dates incorrect. As we have now raised over $5000 for the homeless, Mr Hanrahan, Mrs McGuinness, Mrs Baxter and I all had the privilege to represent our beautiful college at the sleepout last Friday night. We were thinking of you all as we participated on the night and even in the cold and not being in our own beds we all realised I twas just one night, unlike the fate of the homeless.

 

MacKillop’s Feast Day

Last Sunday night at the 5pm Parish Mass at MacKillop the Primary Yr 6 Leaders and the Secondary Student Parliament attended the parish mass to celebrate with the Parish members Mary MacKillop’s Feast Day. It was a lovely mass which we all enjoyed, and we are so grateful to have our school and Parish Church on the same property.

The highlight for us all was being able to participate on Monday in a different type of Mass. As we could not all be together our Feast Day Mass was held in the Church with the College Leadership team, our student leaders, Sr Marea and her guests. The entire College then participated in the Mass as it was Live Streamed to each classroom. It was an emotional time for Sr Marea as we celebrated her contribution to Catholic Education and thanked her for 20 years of service to MacKillop. We also remembered how lucky we are to have Mary MacKillop as our patron saint for this wonderful college.

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 3 Week 4

  • Science Week
  • Monday- Trial HSC exams end / Yr 7 immunisations
  • Tuesday 6pm – Red Earth Immersion Information Night for Yr 8-11 
  • Friday – PraiseFest 

 

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity….strive for extraordinary lives.

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal

 

 

Term 3, Week 3

Prayer

Next Monday is Mary MacKillop’s Feast Day. Our students learn a great deal about her but maybe our parents do not know all the wonderful things about her, so here is a short biography:

Mary was born in Victoria to Scottish immigrants. She was the eldest of eight children and spent her early years working to support her family. At the age of 24 she dedicated her life to God and took on the name “Mary of the Cross”.

Along with Fr Julian Tenison-Woods, Mary opened a school in a disused stable in Penola, South Australia. Her vision was to provide education for underprivileged children. Many other women came to join her there, and Mary and Julian founded Australia’s first religious order: the Sisters of St Joseph.

Mary and the Sisters were committed to serving the poor – to going to where the need was and living amongst those in need. This took Mary all over Australia to many rural areas.

Mary faced fierce opposition throughout her life, which at one point culminated in her being excommunicated. In the face of trial, Mary was a model of forgiveness, insisting no ill be spoken of those who wronged her, while also remaining resolute in her convictions.

On 11 May 1901 she suffered a stroke at Rotorua, New Zealand. Although retaining her mental faculties, she was an invalid until she died in Sydney on 8 August 1909.

Mary was remarkable as a strong female leader in 19th century Australia. Education in this country is what it is today thanks to her dedication and determination.

 Always regarded as holy, she was put forward in 1972 as a candidate for the honour of beatification and canonisation and on 1 February 1973 the Cause was formally introduced. Mary was beatified on 19 January 1995 at Randwick Racecourse, Sydney, in a Mass celebrated by Pope John Paul II. She was canonised as Saint Mary of the Cross at a Mass celebrated by Pope Benedict XVI in St Peter’s Square in the Vatican on 17 October 2010.

 

Learning

This week in  learning we will take a look at the new Pathways Maths we have started this year with Year 7.

 

Pathways Maths

Last night we held an information session for all our Year 7 parents on the new Pathways Mathematics Program. This is a program that has researched students’ progress in Australia in Maths and their approach is to make individualised learning practical by using tools that put administration in the background and bring teaching to the front, where it belongs. They focus on growth, not attainment levels. They provide teachers with support, not extra paperwork and wish to make a difference in the lives of students.

Each student is tested via many diagnostic tests searching for their strengths and weaknesses and individualised programs are set for each student. The concept is to ensure students can gain growth in their understanding and ability. It allows some students to go back and fill in gaps in their learning and to allow students to progress further once they have the skills.

So far the vast majority of students are enjoying this way of learning and feel they are progressing. Their mindsets are changing to be more positive, if they had been challenged by maths in the past and those who already loved maths are really enjoying being able to move on at their own pace.

 

Leave procedures

Just a reminder that there are procedures if your child wishes to take leave.

The school needs to be notified, where possible, 2 weeks in advance. if your child has a hand in assessment during their time away they MUST submit it prior to leaving. If they have an in-class task they need to have spoken with their teachers and made alternate arrangements. Failing to do so may result in a zero mark. For Yrs 10-12 they must collect a yellow form from Mr Jones and have this completed by EVERY one of their teachers  before their Leave will be approved. 

 

Academic and Sports Assembly

Unfortunately, both of these have had to be postponed due to COVID as we have not wished to have so many students together in the Hall and we have now been advised to limit parent access to the College,

As a result, this Friday in Assembly time we will have the students meet in Year groups and we will have College Leaders attend each group to present them with both their Academic Awards and their Sporting Awards.

We are so proud of all our students’ accomplishments and congratulate them all.

 

Nihon Daiichi Junior High School, Tokyo

Konnichiwa 

We have had another exciting week of virtual school visits with our sister school Nihon Daiichi Junior High  school. 45 Mackillop students and 15 Nihon Daiichi students have participated in trivia games, teaching our sister school a wiggle song and the nut bush dance and also having one on one time with their host student. Many friendships have been made, along with some giggles and some challenging zoom connections. MacKillop students have loved the opportunity to ask and answer their host students’ questions about Australian and Japan school life and daily activities. We are all hoping that next year that they will be able to visit in person. MacKillop students have been excited to attend the zooms and have enjoyed making friendships using both Japanese and English, 

Sayounara 

 

Coast Shelter CEO Sleepout

Last week I stated that we were participating in the Sleepout on Saturday but I had my dates incorrect. As we have now raised over $4000 for the homeless, Mr Hanrahan, Mrs McGuinness, Mrs Baxter and I all have the privilege to represent our wonderful college at the sleepout this Friday night. The 4 of us have been busy collecting warm clothes, sleeping bags and swags to protect us from the cold at the Central Coast stadium. Thank you to everyone who donated and supported this fine charity and a special thanks to our students who raised $965 last Friday for the mufti day…..We will be thinking of you all as we shiver tomorrow night but realise it is just one night, unlike the fate of the homeless.

 

Farewell to Cathy Martin

Mrs Cathy Martin will be leaving us at the end of week 4 to join the staff at St Brigid’s, Lake Munmorah. We will very much miss her and we thank her for her dedication and hard work whilst at MacKillop. She  truly sees teaching as a vocation and her work in the RE and HSIE faculties has been outstanding. We wish her all the best for her future endeavours.

 

Pizza Night

Last Friday night 50 students from either the outgoing parliament or the newly elected parliament came together at the Pizza Hut for a meal together . All 4 College captains, past and present, spoke and it was a highly enjoyable night. We can never quite believe how much pizza and dessert our students can eat on such occasions.

 

Yr 10 BStreet

On Tuesday 2nd August, the PDHPE Faculty accompanied the Year 10 cohort to Qudos Bank arena to attend the annual Bstreetsmart road safety event. Bstreetmsart is the inspiring initiative of the Trauma Service at Westmead Hospital. Bstreetsmart provides students with first hand experiences and a timely reminder of their responsibilities as both a driver and passenger. In the first session students experience the realities of a serious crash. The emphasis is placed on RESPONSIBILITY and that the vast majority of road trauma is a result of human error. How one poor choice can have devastating consequences. A serious road crash scene is played out in the arena. Students can get a feel of the reality of this situation and the associated consequences for the driver, injured passengers, bystanders, and the emergency service personnel are all explored.  

During lunchtime the students got to explore interactive displays and talk with emergency service personnel. You could hear a pin drop in the arena for the final session as a VERY brave mother shared her story about her son and how his one poor choice behind the wheel led to his own death and the deaths of four innocent bystanders. The impact was palpable. This excursion is such a worthwhile experience for students. We as a PDHPE Faculty truly hope that it has a lasting impact and remains in the forefront of our students minds as they take on the responsibility of driving in the coming years. 

 

MacKillop’s Feast Day

Unfortunately, we have had to make the decision not to have all the College together for Mass on Monday for Mary MacKillop’s Feast Day. With so much illness around us we believe this is the safest decision. However, it is still important to recognise and celebrate the day, especially as we are also celebrating Sr area’s wonderful career in schools and her retirement after 20 years of dedicated service to MacKillop Catholic College.

Therefore, the Mass at 10am will now be in the Church with Sr Marea, her guests, Student Parliament and students who have parts in the Mass. We will then Live Stream to all our students who will be in their classrooms. The rest of the day will be normal lessons for the students and Sr Marea and her guests will enjoy a lovely morning tea in the College Hall. 

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 3 Week 2:

  • Monday-Friday – Yr 11 Workplacement
  • Monday – CSSA Trials continue
  • Monday – Farewell Mass to Sr Marea at 10am
  • Wednesday-Friday-Yr 9 Camp 
  • Friday- Yr 12 Drama HSC Night

 

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity….strive for extraordinary lives.

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal

 

Term 3, Week 2

Prayer: 

There are some beautiful prayers for parents and I have shared one today that I hope you can use

A Parent’s Prayer

Loving God,

You are the giver of all we possess,

the source of all of our blessings.

We thank and praise you.

Thank you for the gift of our children.

Help us to set boundaries for them,

and yet encourage them to explore.

Give us the strength and courage to treat

each day as a fresh start.

May our children come to know you, the one true God,

and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.

May your Holy Spirit help them to grow

in faith, hope, and love,

so they may know peace, truth, and goodness.

May their ears hear your voice.

May their eyes see your presence in all things.

May their lips proclaim your word.

May their hearts be your dwelling place.

May their hands do works of charity.

May their feet walk in the way of Jesus Christ,

your Son and our Lord.

Amen.

 

Learning: 

Self efficacy is commonly defined as the belief in one’s capabilities to achieve a goal or an outcome. Students with a strong sense of efficacy are more likely to challenge themselves with difficult tasks and be intrinsically motivated. These students will put forth a high degree of effort in order to meet their commitments, and attribute failure to things which are in their control, rather than blaming external factors. Self-efficacious students also recover quickly from setbacks, and ultimately are likely to achieve their personal goals. Students with low self-efficacy, on the other hand, believe they cannot be successful and thus are less likely to make a concerted, extended effort and may consider challenging tasks as threats that are to be avoided. Thus, students with poor self-efficacy have low aspirations which may result in disappointing academic performances becoming part of a self-fulfilling feedback cycle. 

How can students gain self-efficacy?

There are four sources of self-efficacy which teachers and parents can use.

Mastery experiences – Students’ successful experiences boost self-efficacy, while failures erode it. This is the most robust source of self-efficacy.

Vicarious experience – Observing a peer succeed at a task can strengthen beliefs in one’s own abilities.

Verbal persuasion – Teachers and parentss can boost self-efficacy with credible communication and feedback to guide the student through the task or motivate them to make their best effort.

Emotional state -A positive mood can boost one’s beliefs in self-efficacy, while anxiety can undermine it. A certain level of emotional stimulation can create an energizing feeling that can contribute to strong performances. Teachers and parents can help by reducing stressful situations and lowering anxiety surrounding events like exams or presentations.

Assisting all our students to have self-efficacy is important and something that we as parents and teachers can work towards both at home and at school.

 

Subject Market and Information Sessions:

On Monday afternoon we held our Subject Market for all parents and students presently in Yr 8 and Yr 10. Every subject that will be offered for Yr 9 and Yr 11, 2023 was available with the teachers present to explain the courses and to answer any questions. There were also information sessions with further information.

All Year 8 and Yr 10 students now need to complete their selections by the set dates and we remind them to follow their passions and pick subjects that they enjoy.

 

Year 12 Frozen Week:

Yr 2 are presently in their Frozen Week and will commence their CSSA Trial exams on Monday next week. We wish them all the best and to use these exams to examine what they are proficient in and where they need to improve. They then have a number of weeks to work on the areas that need this.


Commissioning and Academic Awards:

We experienced a beautiful Commissioning service yesterday where we thanked our outgoing Parliament and welcomed in our new 2022/23 Student Parliament. Our outgoing College Captains, Preston Lorusso and Milly Perez thanked the students who have worked with them for the past 12 months and congratulated our incoming Parliament. Our new Student  Parliament was announced and they received their blessed badges. The names of our new Parliament is also included with this edition.

We were also doubly blessed with the celebration of our students who in Semester 1 gained 1st, 2nd or 3rd in a subject area. So many received these awards and we congratulate them all for their hard work and dedication.

Coast Shelter Breakfast:

Last Thursday, Mrs Camilleri and Mrs Baxter, along with students’ from Year 12 Cabinet, attended the Coast Shelter Breakfast Symposium.

They heard from Dr. Gordon Reid MP for Robertson and Hon. Emma McBride MP who spoke passionately about important issues related to housing, women’s safety, community wellbeing, mental health and the government plan for how these might be addressed on the Central Coast.

MCC students assisted with front of house service during the event, spent time chatting with a number of key guests, CEO’s and especially enjoyed chatting with Leisl Tesch MP and Paralympian.

We are very grateful for the invitation to attend such a meaningful gathering and being able to hear how we can all work together to ‘create change and a better future for all.’

 

Coast Shelter Sleepout:

This Saturday Night Mr Hanrahan and I will be sleeping rough at the Central Coast Stadium to raise money for the homeless. We will report on this in next week’s newsletter but we wish to thank all who donated towards this as we both had to raise $1000 each to be able to participate. We are particularly grateful to and so impressed with our Yr 12 students who initiated this and their genuine concern for this issue.

 

Jumper, Jeans and Joggers Day:

To assist with raising the above money we are having a mufti day tomorrow. Students may wear jeans, jumpers and joggers and bring a gold coin to support this great cause of reducing homelessness on the coast.

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 3 Week 2:

  • Monday – CSSA Trials commence
  • Virtual visit with Nihon Daiichi continues
  • Wednesday 6,30pm – Yr 7 Information Night on Pathways Mathematics.
  • Friday – Period 3 – Sports Assembly

 

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity….strive for extraordinary lives.

 

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal

 

Term 3, Week 1

 

Reflection on NAIDOC Week:

NAIDOC Week celebrations are held across Australia each July to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. NAIDOC is celebrated not only in Indigenous communities, but by Australians from all walks of life.

The theme of NAIDOC Week 2022 is  Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up!

This theme encourages all of us to drive institutional, structural, and collaborative change while also acknowledging and celebrating those who for generations have driven positive change for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities. 

The theme also explores ways Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have taken action to fight for justice and it considers ways Australians can stand alongside Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as advocates and allies; and to reflect on how the future might look when we all Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up! 

As Australians we have a proud history of Getting Up! Standing Up! Showing Up! From the Frontier Wars and our earliest resistance fighters to our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities fighting for change today— we continue to Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up!

This year celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the Tent Embassy and the 30th Anniversary of the High Court of Australia’s decision in Mabo v Queensland (No 2), which recognised that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have rights to land. We also celebrate the many who have driven and led change in our communities over generations—they have been the heroes and champions of change for equal rights and even basic human rights.

This year’s theme asks us all to continue to Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up! for systemic change and to keep rallying around our mob, our Elders, and our communities. Whether it’s seeking proper environmental, cultural and heritage protections, Constitutional change, a comprehensive process of truth-telling, working towards treaties, or calling out racism—we must do it together, and we encourage you all to Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up! with us! 

Prayer: Creator God, since the beginning of time many peoples have gathered on this land.  Since that time many more have gathered from all parts of the world.  Gracious God many times that gathering has been in a spirit of peace but also many times in a spirit of conflict and conquest.  

Help us to recognise the differences Lord and to restore that spirit of peace and harmony in which all people can live.  Help us now Lord, to gather together in prayer and praise in your name, to reach out for your peace and see your justice done.  We thank you for being able to gather in our diversity.  

In that diversity help us to reconcile ourselves to you and to each other by coming together.  Bless this time and what we do in the name of the one who knows us and brings us together Jesus Christ.  

Amen  

 

Learning: 

We welcome everyone back to Week 1 of Term 3 and we hope everyone was safe over that terribly wet week we experienced. Please ensure you have read the letter in COMPASS that I sent out in the 2nd week of the holidays. In it I stressed that we are now at a point where we expect all students to be attending school every day unless they have a very good reason and that every student will be equipped with the equipment they need for every class so that learning may occur. Schools are not babysitters but places where everyone needs to accept the challenge to grow and learn and to strive to be the best that they can be.

Our teachers work long hours to prepare rich lessons and differentiate their lessons to provide for learners at all levels. They are highly trained professionals who  come every day with the desire to assist each child to grow in their knowledge and skills but they also need compliant and willing students who allow the teachers to teach and all students to learn. We need to expect this of every teacher and student in our College and now that we have returned to ‘almost normal’ schooling again we need to ensure every student understands that they have an active part to play in their learning and a responsibility to their families to be prepared for every lesson, to be at school every day and to try their best to learn and improve.

We are consistently engaging our staff in professional learning so that we all can be effective practitioners in the classroom and provide a good standard of teaching and learning. It is equally vital that our students come to the classroom each day with a learning disposition that is willing and ready to engage in deep thinking, problem-solving and collaborative learning. Our teachers analyse a wide range of learning data to be in a position to know where students may need extra support with their learning. We know that NAPLAN data is a reliable predictor of HSC performance and this is an area of focus for us too. Learning each and every day is important and no single lesson should ever be considered as anything other than an opportunity for growing and developing as a life-long learner. The culture of an effective classroom is one where students are prepared to challenge themselves, as learning happens at the point of challenge. If we never challenge our own thinking we remain the same as we were yesterday.  

 

Staff Professional Learning (PL) Day:

Last Monday our staff spent the day reflecting on data providing information on how students are progressing over the past 12 months and working to ensure our two major projects for the Learning Improvement Plan for this year are being effective. The first project involves a 3 year Literacy Program where every faculty (except Maths) is involved in PL on how to teach literacy effectively in their faculty mainly involving reading and writing. The second is called “Towards Excellence” where each faculty has put in place plans to improve specific areas of our HSC results. This often works hand in hand with the literacy project working to improve extended responses, short response answers and multiple choice. Catholic Schools Broken Bay is working in tandem with us to ensure each faculty has the data they need, the resources and then good goals and targets for success that can be tested.

 

Subject Market and Information Sessions:

On Monday afternoon, next week, July 25th, there will be a Subject Market for all parents of our present Yr 8 and Yr 10 students and their parents. Every subject that will be offered for Yr 9 and Yr 11, 2023 will be available with the teachers to explain the courses and to answer any questions you may have. This will run from 4-6pm in the CA area and the Hall.

There will also be information sessions that all parents need to attend. The Yr 11 Information Session is at 6pm in the Hall. There will be an option of 2 sessions for Yr 9 parents in the Theatre. Parents and students may attend one of these at 4.30pm or at 5.30pm.

 

Year 12 Frozen Week:

This will occur in Week 2. This week means that every Year 12 student needs to attend every Year 12 class in preparation for their Trial examinations. This week is vitally important to spend with their teachers and to be sure they know exactly what to expect for their exams. The trials will run the following 2 weeks and are run as the HSC exams will be run including having an external supervisor for each exam. These are the last assessment marks for each student.

 

Commissioning and Assembly:

At the end of last term we had our nominations for leadership from each pastoral class in Years 7-10 and the interviews for College Captains from the Year 11 students who have been voted into leadership already. Next Wednesday, August 27th at 9am in the Hall, we will have our Commissioning Ceremony for all these new Leaders. Following we will then have the Academic Awards Ceremony for Semester 1 which honours all those students who have come 1st, 2nd or 3rd in each subject area for Years 7-11. This is such a proud day for our students. All parents are warmly invited to attend and there is a light morning tea provided after the ceremonies.

 

Nihon Daiichi Junior High School, Tokyo:

Zoom sister school visit : reconnecting with our sister school, Nihon Daiichi Junior High school. 

ひさしぶりですね   – Hisashibiridesune

This Japanese saying – means it’s been a long time since we have seen you  

Last Term Mr Hanrahan had a Zoom meeting with their Principal Mr Kumagai to meet each other and to discuss how we can reconnect as soon as it is safe after COVID.

Over the last two years we haven’t been able to have our annual sister school visit. We are so excited that this year we are able to reconnect, In weeks 2 and 3 students who are studying Japanese will be given the opportunity to be involved in a virtual sister school visit, This will include a welcome ceremony, each school showing our school’s way of life, through videos, Q and A sessions, and then smaller groups teaching each other a cultural activity. Students studying Japanese as an elective will be given the opportunity to be buddied with a Japanese student and we hope to create a modern 2022 pen pal arrangement so that life long friendships can be fostered

We so appreciate all the hard work of our Japanese teachers who organise all this, Mrs Beech and Mr Kilham. We are so fortunate to have all this occur and working many hours to ensure our students have these experiences.

 

Coast Shelter Breakfast:

Coast Shelter held a breakfast symposium on Thursday 21st July with the newly elected Central Coast Members of Parliament, Emma McBride MP, Assistant Minister for Mental Health, Suicide Prevention and Assistant Minister for Rural and Regional Health (Federal Member for Dobell) and Dr. Gordon Reid MP (Member for Robertson) as well as approximately 40 business CEO’s in attendance. MCC students were invited as special guests by Coast Shelter CEO Mr Michael Starr and Volunteer Coordinator Mrs Kylie Hogan to be a part of this event. As a follow on from the MCC Vinnies Sleepout in Term 2, this experience provided students further opportunities to speak with a number of key personnel who are currently working in the Government, DV and Homelessness sectors and to further consider what we as a school community can do to assist the housing and homelessness crisis on the Central Coast.  

Year 12 Cabinet heard about the Government’s priorities for the Central Coast, as well as discussing some of the current issues facing our community including the housing crisis, personal and mental health, women’s safety and local jobs. 

We look forward to continuing our partnership with Coast Shelter and hearing from our Leaders about this experience at an upcoming assembly.

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 3 Week 2:

  • Most important events are outlined above.
  • Friday, July 29th, 5.30-6.30pm -Pizza Night for the outgoing Parliament and the incoming Parliament. Notes have gone home.

 

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity….strive for extraordinary lives.

 

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal

 

Term 2, Week 10

Reflection:

NATSICC is the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Catholic Council.

Its members are elected by their local communities at State and Territory level. It is a truly representative voice for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Catholics.

Every year, on the first Sunday in July, Catholics come together across Australia to acknowledge and celebrate the gifts of Australia’s First Peoples in the Catholic Church.

This year is particularly important because of the need to reconnect due to the COVID 19 Pandemic and its impact on the ways in which we interacted and made contact with one another.

For 2022 NATSICC is asking for everyone to come together, but also consider practical ways in which they can support Australia’s First Peoples – not just for this special day, but every day.

 

Learning: 

Research demonstrates that effective schools have high levels of parental and community involvement. This involvement is strongly related to improved student learning, attendance and behaviour.

Good communication between teachers and parents will be beneficial to a student in many ways. For example, it will provide them the necessary motivation to study and subsequently boost their academic scores. You will also notice confidence and positivity in their attitude and behaviour.

Thank you to all our parents who met with their children’s teachers last week for the Parent Teacher Interviews. This was a great success, and we thank both our staff for their preparation and time and our parents for their concern for their children’s education.

Early next term all students will be asked to make goals for Semester 2. Please have conversations with your children about what these goals might be so to continue to improve their grades and attitude.

 

NAIDOC Week:

NAIDOC Week 2022 will be held from Sunday 3 July to Sunday 10 July. This year’s theme – Get up! Stand up! Show up! – encourages all of us to champion institutional, structural, collaborative, and cooperative change while celebrating those who have already driven and led change in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities over generations.

Events will be held around Australia during NAIDOC week to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

NAIDOC is celebrated by people from all walks of life, Indigenous and nonIndigenous. The week is a great opportunity to participate in a range of activities and to support and amplify the voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

Our College is attended by many proud Aboriginal students and we all celebrate together this important week. 

 

Concern for Others:

We are so impressed with our students’ generosity last week by raising almost $1900 for Bryanthe, our very ill Year 1 student and her family. Thank you to everyone who contributed and know that you have made a difference for another. Mary MacKillop lives on in our schools when we see a need and do something about it.

 

House Winners for 2022:

Even with COVID the House Challenge that occurs has still remained strong. It was hotly contested by the 6 Houses but the final results saw Kincumber, our White House, triumph. Yesterday, Wednesday, the members of the House and their teachers attended a movie at Erina and a pizza lunch to celebrate their win. Well done to this year’s Yr 12 House Leaders – Diana Beech, Abbey Lea and Caleb Pantos.

 

Leadership 2022/23:

This week we interviewed 18 students who are all vying for College Captain. What a privilege to hear from such wonderful students who want to give back to the College. The interviewing panel consisted of Mr Hanrahan, Mrs Ferguson, Mrs McGuinness, Mrs Price, Mrs Phillipson and Mrs Ardern. We now consider all the voting from Yr 10 -12, the Yr 12 Leaders, the Staff and the interviews to make a very difficult decision.

Also, we had students in every Pastoral Class in Years 7-10 make speeches this week applying for the position of Pastoral Leader for Parliament representing their House and Pastoral class. 

The Commissioning of the new Leaders and the Academic Awards assembly will be on Wednesday, 27 July at 9.15am and all parents are invited to attend.

 

Other Important Dates coming up Term 3 Week 1:

  • Monday July 18th is the first day of Term 3 but it is a Pupil Free Day as the teachers are meeting for a Professional Learning Day
  • Tuesday July 19th – Students return
  • Friday – HSC Dance Trials

 

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity….strive for extraordinary lives.

 

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal

 

 

 

Term 2, Week 9

 

Reflection

Refugee Week is celebrated in Australia from the 19th – 25th June. The World Day of Refugees was held last Monday, June 20th.

The theme for the week is “healing”. Australia and the rest of the world have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to hit the reset button on how we behave towards one another. The importance of human connections has been underscored by the pandemic and such lessons can help us in so many ways.  Mainstream and refugee communities alike can draw upon shared hardship to heal wounds, to learn from each other and to move forward. Healing can occur through storytelling, through community and also through realisation of our intrinsic interconnectedness as individuals.  

We should all take time to reflect on our own thoughts and knowledge of refugees and how this reflects Jesus’ message of protecting the marginalised and love for all.

 

Learning

At MacKillop we have a program called Pathways and Partnerships. This program is sponsored by the Catholic Schools Broken Bay by employing a representative from the corporate world to link industries and corporations in the real world to courses and subjects studied in our College. We have been lucky enough to have experts in their fields visit the college or we have taken students to their workplace to see and hear about how their learning in school links directly to various workplaces.

Last week the Year 11 Marine Studies class had a unique opportunity to learn more about fisheries and the important role the Department of Primary Industries play in supporting recreational fishing.

Students often do not see how what they learn has relevance to their future lives and this program assists in them making these links.

 

AJASS Conference

Mr Hanrahan and I had the privilege last week to attend the Association of Josephite Affiliated Secondary Schools Conference with 22 other Principals from MacKillop and Josephite Schools from around Australia. 

It was a time to learn even more about the work and legacy of Mary MacKillop and St Joseph and their importance as role models for our schools and especially our students. We heard from insightful guest speakers, went on a Pilgrimage around The Rocks on the work of Mary and her sisters from 1880 to 1900, attended Mass at St Patrick’s at The Rocks and visited Mount St Joseph College at Milperra to see a Josephite school in action.

It was a wonderful 3 days to reflect on the importance of our MacKillop charism in our College.

 

Sleepout

Last week, in the lead up to the Winter Sleepout, we had a number of guest speakers present at our P6 Assembly who continued to inform students about issues surrounding homelessness. We are so grateful to have presenters from wonderful services on the Central Coast who work so hard to help to house many who need the support. 

  1. Christian Laing – CatholicCare (supported temporary accommodation)
  2. Maddy Reynolds (former Mackillip student, CatholicCare – keys program helping Homeless youth)
  3. Grace Lim – Wesley housing program
  4. Steve – Coimba Men’s Refuge, Coast Shelter

These speakers spoke so passionately, sharing their stories and helping us to gain a deeper understanding about the issues that can lead to homelessness. We thank each of them for their time and especially to Danielle Habib, also from CatholicCare for assisting with the organisation of our speakers.

Over 200 students attended our annual Winter Sleepout last Friday night and we were so happy to share the first part of the night with our own Yr 6-9 and students from St Brigid’s, St Joseph’s and St Peter’s. A special congratulations to the Yr 10-12 students who braved the cold with a number of teachers to sleep the night with only boxes and cardboard to shelter from the cold.

Many staff cooked soups and the students experienced the idea of a soup kitchen for their evening meal and a number of games were played, many on the theme of the night. The students also heard many personal stories from guest speakers about homelessness and domestic violence as well as from a number of organisations who assist the homeless in our area.. Each speaker allowed our students and staff present to deepen their understanding on these issues and we deeply thank them all for their time.

A big congratulations and thanks must go to Mrs Baxter, Mrs Wells and Mrs Tenev along with our Yr 12 Leaders who organised such a wonderful lead up to the night, the winter appeal and the actual sleepout. So very proud of everyone involved.

 

Community Mass

Thank you to everyone who joined us for our Community Mass last Sunday. It was wonderful to celebrate Mass together and then socialise over a sausage sandwich and cake. Special thanks to our Student Parliament and Yr 6 Leaders who assisted on the day and to all the staff who assisted in the organisation and attended on the day.

 

Parent /Teacher Interviews

Just a reminder to check your COMPASS notifications on how to make your interviews with your child’s teachers for the Parent Teacher interviews that are today and tomorrow.

 

VAPING

This illegal activity is causing problems in schools across Australia. In P6 this week, Dr Lyndan Bauer, an expert in this area, spoke with our Yr 7-11 students about the dangers of nicotine and vaping.

Do you know what they’re vaping?

MacKillop Catholic College. like many other schools, has seen a recent spike in young people vaping. 

Electronic cigarettes or e-cigarettes, often called ‘vapes’, are electronic devices designed to deliver vapourised liquids into the lungs. There are many different styles of vapes and types of e-liquids, or e-juices, available. Vapes come in many shapes and sizes and can be made to look like everyday items including highlighters, pens or USB memory sticks.

The biggest misunderstanding about vapes is that they are harmless compared to cigarettes. This is not true. Vapes are not safe.

Vaping facts 

  • Many vapes contain nicotine making them very addictive. The nicotine in 1 vape can equal 50 cigarettes.
  • Vapes can contain the same harmful chemicals found in cleaning products, nail polish remover, weed killer and bug spray. They just don’t put it on the pack.
  • Vapes can leave young people at increased risk of depression and anxiety.
  • Young people who vape are 3 times as likely to take up smoking cigarettes 
  • Vape aerosol is not water vapour.
  • Vaping has been linked to serious lung disease.
  • Vapes can cause long-lasting negative effects on young people’s brain development.

Signs your child might be vaping

Tell-tale signs that your child might have started vaping include the symptoms of nicotine addiction such as feeling irritable or anxious. 

The laws around selling vapes 

Young people often purchase vapes online, from retail stores or from friends and contacts on social media. 

  • It is illegal to sell vapes to anyone under the age of 18 years. 
  • It is illegal to sell nicotine vapes to anyone, unless they are prescribed by a doctor to someone over 18 years for smoking cessation purposes and obtained with a prescription from a pharmacy. 

There are a number of retailers who sell vapes to young people. This is a crime. If you suspect someone is selling vapes to minors, you can report it to NSW Health via its website or by calling the Tobacco Information line on 1800 357 412.

Talk to your child about vaping

Whether you suspect your child is vaping or not, take the time to talk to them about vaping and help them understand the risks. Try to start the conversation in a relaxed easy-going way, be patient, and remember your goal is to have a conversation, not deliver a lecture. Importantly, have your facts ready.

For more information 

Get the evidence and facts at www.health.nsw.gov.au/vaping 

Support to quit vaping

  • Young people should see their General Practitioner, youth health service, or other health services for help to quit vaping.
  • Quitline counsellors are available to answer any questions about vapes on 13 7848 (13 QUIT). Quitline is a telephone-based service offering information and advice. Quitline counsellors provide tips and strategies, and help people to plan their quit attempts, based on their own needs and preferences. They can also help parents and carers think of ways to approach a conversation about vaping with young people.
  • The Aboriginal Quitline is also available on 13 7848. Run by Aboriginal counsellors, the Aboriginal Quitline is a telephone-based confidential advice and support service.
  • If you require assistance in a language other than English, Quitline has counsellors who speak Arabic, Cantonese, Mandarin and Vietnamese. You can ask to speak to one of these counsellors. For people who prefer to speak in a different language, Quitline uses the Telephone Interpreter Service (TIS).
  • The Cancer Institute NSW iCanQuit website provides information on quitting methods, links to support groups and top tips to help young people quit.
  • Too much nicotine from vapes can cause nicotine poisoning. If you think someone has been poisoned by liquid nicotine, please call the Poisons Centre on 13 11 26 immediately or 000 if it is an emergency. For more information see NSW Poisons Information Centre.

 

Final Word

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the College.

Remember to check COMPASS, our website and our Facebook pages for information.

Life is short so why only strive for mediocrity….strive for extraordinary lives.

 

Debra Ferguson

Secondary Principal